(2014) Piledriver

Status Quo

... read moreThough Status Quo is best known for fast and undistinguished boogie rock, they were quite capable of subtlety when it suited them. Despite the name, most of the music on Piledriver is varied and subtle enough to be interesting. The power boogie is indeed there, as represented by crowd-pleasers like...

01:58′:42″ 23 Songs

1
Don't Waste My Time
Status Quo
4:18
2
Oh Baby
Status Quo
4:33
3
A Year
Status Quo
5:50
4
Unspoken Words
Status Quo
5:10
5
Big Fat Mama
Status Quo
5:53
6
Paper Plane
Status Quo
2:55
7
All The Reasons
Status Quo
3:43
8
Roadhouse Blues
Status Quo
7:28
9
Don't Waste My Time (Bbc 'Sounds Of The Seventies’, London/ 1972)
Status Quo
4:20
10
Oh Baby (Bbc 'Sounds Of The Seventies’, London/ 1972)
Status Quo
4:23
11
Unspoken Words (Bbc 'Sounds Of The Seventies’, London/ 1972)
Status Quo
5:03
12
Paper Plane (Bbc 'Sounds Of The Seventies’, London/ 1972)
Status Quo
2:57
13
Softer Ride (Bbc 'Sounds Of The Seventies’, London/ 1972)
Status Quo
4:02
14
Paper Plane (John Peel Bbc Session, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
2:56
15
Don't Waste My Time (John Peel Bbc Session, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
4:20
16
Junior's Wailing (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
3:40
17
Someone's Learning (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
8:10
18
In My Chair (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
3:41
19
Railroad (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
6:16
20
Don't Waste My Time (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
4:30
21
Paper Plane (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
3:36
22
Roadhouse Blues (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
15:47
23
Bye Bye Johnny (Bbc In Concert/ Paris Theatre, London/ 1973)
Status Quo
5:11
Released 01 January 2014, ℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

Review

Though Status Quo is best known for fast and undistinguished boogie rock, they were quite capable of subtlety when it suited them. Despite the name, most of the music on Piledriver is varied and subtle enough to be interesting. The power boogie is indeed there, as represented by crowd-pleasers like "Don't Waste My Time" and "Paper Plane," but so also are quieter, softer pieces with acoustic textures and progressive structures. The melancholy "A Year" is a standout track, a stark, melancholy song about carrying on after a loved one has died. The soft rock intro gradually shifts to a more powerful guitar piece in a way that is reminiscent of early Fleetwood Mac and has that band's delicate sense of dynamics. Elsewhere on Piledriver the band turns in a very credible slow blues piece and a folk-inflected duet for 12-string guitars. Still, most of the Status Quo fans wanted power rock, and the band obliged with one of their best pieces, the tempo-shifting "Big Fat Mama," which actually managed some U.S. airplay, though no actual chart position. The only major misstep is a version of "Roadhouse Blues" that only serves to remind the listener what a good vocalist Jim Morrison was. On the whole Piledriver is still an enjoyable listen, one that has aged much better than later albums by the same band or much other hard rock from this period. ~ Richard Foss