David Byron Solo Albums
Lyrics | Original Liner Notes | Reissue Liner Notes | Fan Reviews

David Byron Solo Albums

Take No Prisoners | Rough Diamond | Baby Faced Killer | On The Rocks

Take No Prisoners
(1975)
Rough Diamond
(1977)
Take No Prisoners cover
Rough Diamond cover
Tracks:
  1. Man Full Of Yesterdays
  2. Sweet Rock 'N' Roll
  3. Steamin' Along
  4. Silver White Man
  5. Love Song
  6. Midnight Flyer
  7. Saturday Night
  8. Roller Coaster
  9. Stop (Think What You're Doing)
  10. Hit Me With A White One
Tracks:
  1. Rock 'n' Roll
  2. Lookin' For You
  3. Lock & Key
  4. Seasong
  5. By The Horn
  6. Scared
  7. Hobo
  8. The Link
  9. End Of The Line
Lineup:
  • David Byron (LV)
  • Mick Box (G)
  • Lou Stonebridge (K)
  • Denny Ball (B)
  • Lee Kerslake (D tracks 1, 5, 7-10)
  • Pete Thompson (D tracks 2-4, 6)
  • Ken Hensley (G track 10)
  • John Wetton (K tracks 1, 5)
  • Backing vocals: David, Lou, Denny,
    Lee (all tracks); Chanter Sisters,
    Martha Smith, Neil Lancaster,
    Chas Mills, Russ Stone (tracks 2, 9)
Lineup:
  • David Byron (LV)
  • Clem Clempson (G)
  • Damon Butcher (K)
  • Willie Bath (B)
  • Geoff Britton (D)
Baby Faced Killer
(1978)
On The Rocks
(1981)
Baby Faced Killer cover
On The Rocks cover
Tracks:
  1. Baby Faced Killer
  2. Rich Man's Lady
  3. Sleepless Nights
  4. African Breeze
  5. Everybody's Star
  6. Heaven Or Hell
  7. Only You Can Do It
  8. Don't Let Me Down**
  9. Acetylene Jean
  10. I Remember*
  • Down On My Luck (b-side of African Breeze)
  • All In Your Mind (b-side of Rich Man's Lady)
Tracks:
  1. Rebecca
  2. Bad Girl
  3. How Do You Sleep?
  4. Little By Little
  5. Start Believing
  6. Never Say Die
  7. King
  8. Piece Of My Love
  9. Every Inch Of The Way (short version)
  10. Routine
  11. Tired Eyes
  12. Every Inch Of The Way (long version)
Lineup:
  • David Byron (LV)
  • Mick Box (G V on *)
  • Daniel Boone (G K P)
  • Allan Jones (B)
  • Stuart Elliot (D)
  • Barry DeSouza(D on **)
  • Lester Fry (P)
  • Backing vocals: David, Daniel,
    Lelly Boone, Gabrielle Byron,
    Alyson McInness, Muff Murfin,
    Brad Davies
Lineup:
  • David Byron (LV)
  • Robin George (G B)
  • Bob Jackson (K)
  • Roger Flavelle (B)
  • John Shearer (D P)
  • Mel Collins (Sax)
  • The Powder Puffs (BV)

Overview: Take No Prisoners sounds very much like a Heep album, due in no small measure to the presence of Mr. Box's guitar and the strong similarity between the organ playing of Lou Stonebridge to that of Ken Hensley. Lee Kerslake plays drums on several tracks and both John Wetton and Ken make guest appearances. Two songs, Man Full Of Yesterdays (apparently written about Gary Thain shortly before his death) and Silver White Man, both received airplay. Man would've made an incredible FM hit for Heep if they'd recorded it for High And Mighty. Most of the remainder of the songs would've fit in very well on any of the Heep albums of the period, except for the two excellent R&B numbers, Sweet Rock 'n' Roll and Stop!. If you're a fan of the post-Live 1973 Heep albums, this is a must for your collection. Grade: A+

Rough Diamond took me a while to get into as it doesn't sound at all like a Heep album, save for David's spectacular voice. The band are all quite talented, but each plays in style completely unlike that of Heep, especially Clem Clempson's guitar, who brings his bluesy Humble Pie crunch to the album. Scared, a great slow burning blues number, is the highlight, but every track is well done. It's a shame that David didn't stay for the band's next album. Hopefully Island Records will someday see the light and release this on CD. In the meantime, if you find this on vinyl or cassette, pick it up! Grade: B+

Baby Faced Killer is a great 70s pop album, covering a variety of styles. The only Heepish track is the title, which is reminiscent of Return To Fantasy. The best tracks are Only You Can Do It and the very ELO-like Heaven Or Hell. African Breeze is a disco track similar to Blondie's Heart Of Glass - the kind of disco I like while I Remember is one of Dave's best ballads, including a lovely solo from Mick Box. Everybody's Star is another good ballad. The b-side Down On My Luck is the best rocker in the bunch, the b-side All In Your Mind is a decent reggae tune while the remaining songs are good ol' 70s rock 'n' roll. Grade: A-

On The Rocks is nothing short of fantastic. This is the best Heep-related album released between Firefly and Sea Of Light. In fact, it beats all the Heep albums released during that period. How Do You Sleep? and Piece Of My Love are my favorites. Tired Eyes is also an excellent ballad, sounding like a rewrite of Here Am I. The only weak track is King (the music's great but the lyrics are weak). Mel Collins' distinctive sax adds a King Crimson or Foreigner flavor to the sound, which I really like. The last 4 tracks on the CD are all bonus tracks, Every Inch (short version) is a single a-side, Routine and Tired Eyes are single b-sides and Every Inch (long version) is the unreleased album version. Grade: A

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Content Copyright © 1997, 1998 Jay Pearson

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