Guitarist John Fiddler and harmonica/jews harpist Peter Hope could never decide how many people they wanted in Medicine Head, even though they were a perfectly capable blues duo, especially with Fiddler banging the bass drum
Classic Rock, March 2005
…an enjoyable album, with Johns’ vocals and guitar playing very much to the fore…the sound is very much of a blues band trying to find their roots, not an established act that had already had plenty of hits…
This is definitely a worthwhile reissue…As usual this Angle Air release contains plenty of photos and interesting comment.
Feedback, May 2005
Recorded during 1974, the previously unreleased Don’t Stop The Dance catches Medicine Head during its period of expansion from unique duo to five-piece blues-rock band. Releasing a half dozen British albums during the early 1970s, guitarist-songwriter John Fiddler and harmonica player Peter Hope-Evans created a full-throttled two-man band sound. On these Tony Ashton-produced tracks, the twosome was joined by bassist George Ford, ex-Family drummer Rob Townsend, and guitarist Roger Saunders of the power trio Freedom.
Fiddler unleashes his heavy blues-based guitar attack on the title track, and he mixes swampy slide guitar into “Walkin’ Blues.” Displaying his songwriting talent, Fiddler takes the atmospheric “Dark Side Of The Moon” in an acoustic, English folk direction, while the influence of the Stones’ “Wild Horses” drives the muscular ballads “Can’t Live A Lie” and “You Gotta Love Somebody.” Besides adding stylish licks throughout, Hope-Evans delivers propulsive harmonica leads on “Lay Around” and Muddy Waters’ “Just Wanna Make Love.”
In addition to the never-before released album tracks, Don’t Stop The Dance compiles three concert recordings and the CD-debut of two U.K. singles. “Part Of The Play” nicely fits the era’s singer-songwriter style; pumping up the tempo, “Come On Over” competes with the most infectious glitter rock of the early ’70s; “Mama Come Out” and “It’s Got To Be Alright” display Fiddler’s knack for dropping sly guitar riffs into cleverly offbeat tunes. Live versions of the 1973 Anglo hits “Rising Sun” and “One And One Is One” underscore the manic energy that Hope-Evans’ Jew’s harp brought to Fiddler’s guitar-powered tunes. With a mix of blues-rock album tracks, pop conscious singles, and energetic live cuts, Don’t Stop The Dance offers a snapshot of 1970s British rock.
Joseph Tortelli, April 2005
…this just unearthed unreleased and unfinished…album from 1974 shows that, had they perservered, they could have cracked it. Fiddler’s songs rock more, his growling guitar is to the fore and Hope-Evans harmonica leads the show.
Record Collector (June 2005)
…Full of harmonica, Jew’s harp and blues rock, these recordings sound like a crossover between the free-spirit white-blues of Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac, the R&B psychedelia of The Rolling Stones and the fierce folk romanticism of Thin Lizzy.
www.maelstrom.nu (June 2005)