Nazareth “Hair Of The Dog” has always been a monumental standout Hard Rock album for me. This is what I consider a real album with no pretensions, no fancy gimmicks. What you hear on “Hair Of The Dog” is true Classic Hard Rock, no tunes found here are subdued or watered down. Nazareth came up the Hard Rock ladder during the 1970′s, surrounded by Hard Rock icons such as: Bad Company, Queen, Boston, Foreigner, Sweet, Styx and Cheap Trick. What a fabulous time it was for Hard Rock music! For the Metal record, I always considered Nazareth to be a Hard Rock band, albeit they do have their Heavy Metal musical tendencies. “Hair Of The Dog”, lyrically, is for me, a true stick it to the man - heavy song. “Now your messin’ with a son of a bitch” – these lyrics say it all, my fellow citizens. I can remember so many moments, in my life, where this song has benefited me. Sure, I have been slighted and backstabbed, so have trillions of other people on this planet have as well. “Hair Of The Dog”, when played LOUD, especially after you know you have been jerked around by someone, well, it is the sure fire remedy for feeling vindication.
I remember, uh, reflect, on my High School days… early ’80′s… it was homeroom at 7:45 in the morning, for my first four years of serving time there, “Love Hurts” was played on the school’s radio station, every single day. Yup, every single day. Did I ever grow tired of this song? Nope. It is Nazareth for Metal sakes. I only used to wonder why “Hair Of The Dog” was not played… probably due to it’s lyrical content, the sacred & self righteous school administrators did not want to stir up the masses. I will delve more into the “Love Hurts” tune in the upcoming paragraph, uh, review.
If you are looking for a great, Classic Hard Rock album to buy and cherish, “Hair Of The Dog” should be an easy choice. This album is saturated with Hard Rock. Oozing with bluesy, Hard Rock music and attitude, “Hair Of The Dog” has so much more to offer, with the title track “Hair Of The Dog” being as close of an example to 1970′s Heavy Metal as you can possibly hear. This song revs it up into high gear, kicking off this album on a real high note. “Miss Misery” is a melancholy song that thumps along with a denim and leather flavor, highlighting the raspy vocals of Dan McCafferty. “Love Hurts” is the ballad, the big radio hit for Nazareth then and now. This song is a cover from the Everly Brothers, only this version is hardened around the edges and overflows with pure Rock emotion. “Whiskey Drinkin’ Woman” is a song with a grooving coolness happening, it has that American Southern Rock sound and atmosphere. “Hair Of The Dog” is in my opinion, quite diversified musically. The opening track being very Metal, another track having Southern Rock flavor and a classic 1950′s ballad cover song. “Please Don’t Judas Me” is a lengthy rocker at nearly ten minutes long. I appreciate this song for it’s jamming, it also exemplifies how albums years ago were geared more to the music than to releasing instant commercial hits. Nazareth released a memorable album back in 1975, it should be enjoyed and passed along for all Rock and Hard Rock fans. Heavy Metal fans should embrace this album for its quality musical content and ground floor sound. “Hair Of The Dog” helped shape Heavy Metal in the 1970′s and beyond. This is an album that can never, ever, be forgotten.
Nazareth on “Hair Of The Dog”: Dan McCafferty on vocals, Manny Charlton on guitars & synthesizer, Pete Agnew on bass guitar & backing vocals and Darrell Sweet on drums, percussion & backing vocals. The liner notes do not contain lyrics, it is a fold out with an enlarged scale of the album cover artwork.