Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Padua College Students - "Too Munch" EP

Title: "Too Munch"
Label: Sundown Records
Cat: SUN 331
Distributor: Independent
Release Date: October 1987
Producers: Giovanni Porta & Chris Dodemont


1) The Crustaceans - "Shake, Rattle & Roll" (Calhoun)
2) That's All - "Bitter Duel" (Joe Ragusa/David Atkinson)
3) Blue Brick - "She's The One" (Tony Field)
4) Staff & Students - "Little Fishermen" (Giovanni Porta & Chris Dodemont)

The Crustaceans:

Michael "Mojo" Webb: Guitar and Vocals
Damien Searle: Sax
Stephen Giacomantonio: Bass and Keyboards
Daniel Purdie: Drums

That's All:

Marco Ferro: Lead Vocals
David Atkinson: Guitar and vocals
Tom Cooper: Bass and vocals
Joseph Ragusa: Guitar and vocals
Simon DiMichele: Drums

Blue Brick:

Stephen Slade: Guitar and Vocals
Andrew Rootes: Bass
Bernard Maude: Keyboards
Giovanni Porta: Drums

Staff & Students:

Giovanni Porta: Drums and Vocals
Anne-Maree Moon: Vocals
Tom Cooper: Bass and Vocals
Joe Ragusa: Guitar and Vocals
Simon DiMichele: Drums and Vocals
Daniel Purdie: Percussion and Vocals

A bit of a trip down memory lane for me, because this EP was recorded by my school friends and teachers when I was in Year 11 at Padua College. I had originally reviewed this EP for my school yearbook "The Paduan" in 1987, and thought it'd be worth mentioning on here.
Padua College is generally famous in Australia for being the breeding ground for renowned footballer-turned-commentator Paul "Fatty" Vautin in 1974. By the 1980's the multi-talented and charismatic music maestro Chris Dodemont (formerly of Sydney jazz-rock band The Jumpers) had been enlisted to run the music department at the school. In 1986 the school invested a substantial amount of money into building a new state of the art recording studio. The following year one of the teachers Giovanni Porta decided to put it to good use to record an EP featuring the cream of the musical crop at the school together with a song he had written for one of the recently departed teachers Frank Gracias (in "Little Fishermen").
Out of the musicians on here, only Mojo Webb has sustained a serious career in music as a top blues guitarist.

SHAKE RATTLE & ROLL: Opens up with some fine sax playing from Damien Searle, but the track sounds rather lightweight with cheesy synth playing, plus the guitars could have been brought up a lot more in the mix. The mulit-tracked vocals in the instrumental break sound very effective though.

BITTER DUEL: An anti-drug song written about a fictitious teenage girl who beats addiction and lives to tell. Nice piece of radio friendly power pop which also had the band interviewed on 4ZZZ a few weeks later. I was friends with the guys in the band, but none of them continued it after leaving school although I did try to work with Joe on another musical project four years later with a particularly nasty control freak of a producer (whose name I will not reveal on here), but that's something for another story sometime later.

SHE'S THE ONE: This was a cover of a good rollicking number by good-time rock'n'roll revivalists The Cockroaches, and their biggest hit which reached the Top 5 in the charts. I remember Stephen having a bad cold at the time this was recorded and you can hear his voice going a little bit raspy here and there. In all, a good arrangement of the song though not quite as loud and aggressive as the original.

LITTLE FISHERMEN: Written about Frank Gracias who taught maths, religion and technical drawing at Padua up until his untimely death in 1985 when he was struck with a fatal cause of influenza. Frank's main passion outside of teaching was fishing which he used to teach as a sport for a few interested students. This is a pleasant reggae influenced track with great percussion, duet vocals with Giovanni and Anne-Maree Moon (who was then teaching music) and a student chorus. He was one of my favourite TD teachers, firm but soft spoken and always did his best to encourage students. It was the only time that I really enjoyed doing the subject at school as the one I had the following year was a misanthropic bully who was an ex-cop and got his rocks off from intimidating students.......just goes to show that school days aren't always all happy days, but at least I've survived it!

This EP has not been re-released in any format, but I will get round to transferring it to MP3 and put it up, so keep an eye out for it! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment