Thin Lizzy - Fighting
Thin Lizzy - Fighting

Thumped Album Club Week 42: Thin Lizzy – Fighting (1975)

The first Album Club choice for 2017 is Thin Lizzy‘s Fighting

Fighting is the fifth studio album by Irish rock band Thin Lizzy, released in 1975. After spending four albums trying to find their niche, the band finally forged an identifiable sound featuring the twin guitars of Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson. This sound draws from hard rock, folk, pop and rhythm and blues. It set the stage for the big commercial breakthrough of the follow-up album, Jailbreak.

The track “Suicide” was originally performed by Thin Lizzy when guitarist Eric Bell was still in the band, including on a BBC broadcast recorded in July 1973. It was first performed with different lyrics under the title “Baby’s Been Messing”. Another track recorded at the Fighting sessions was “Try a Little Harder”, which was eventually released on the Vagabonds, Kings, Warriors, Angels boxed set in 2002.

Fighting is the only other Thin Lizzy album aside from their 1971 debut where band members other than Phil Lynott receive sole songwriting credits for certain tracks. Bell wrote “Ray Gun” on the debut, and Robertson and Gorham wrote “Silver Dollar” and “Ballad of a Hard Man”, respectively.

Thin Lizzy - Fighting

Three listens before commenting as is traditional, please. Comments can be posted either further down the page or over on the forum.

All previous Album Club selections can be found at https://thumped.com/tac.

  1. Ah great. I haven't ever listened to this album but all the songs I know off it are great so that bodes well.

    OR DOES IT??

    I don't know.

  2. 2 listens in.

    The stuff beyond their 'hits' is a bit dubious, isn't it?

    I like the rockier, edgier songs. The ballads are a bit dull.

    I shall keep going with it.

  3. Shaney?

    View attachment 11597

    Popularity of Thin Lizzy albums according to google. Fighting struggling in 11th place.

    popularity based on what? sales?

    I never looked at google ratings for other bands' albums. I wonder how reliable or consistent it is.

  4. scutter

    popularity based on what? sales?

    I never looked at google ratings for other bands' albums. I wonder how reliable or consistent it is.

    Its probably a load of shite. They could be using plays on Google Music and searches I suppose and all the other data they're hoovering up.

  5. ok ok ok.

    I have a few Lizzy albums but mostly listen via this yoke that I picked up a few years ago. Disc 2 on that is definitely my most listened to disc and contains 5 songs from this album, all of which are in the first 6 tracks on here. They're all great but I was a bit worried that the rest would just be lesser versions of the same:

    Fuck it, i'll go track by track:

    1. Rosalie – Amazing. Perfect cover. The original is great too and not that different but this just works. It becomes a Thin Lizzy song in the same way I fought the Law is a Clash song for anyone except rockabilly purists and signed up Clash hateclub members.

    2. For Those Who Love to Live – this is the track from the first half not on the boxset and I can see why. It's perfectly serviceable but a little almost Thin Lizzy parody. I'd say with further listens it'll fade into the background as another decent track on the album but it's nothing that special.

    3. Suicide – deadly song. Okay the chug cha chug cha chug cha chug beat is kind of heavy metal by numbers but hey it's 1975 so thats ok and the vocals and guitar licks are A+ and bring this song up to first class.

    4. Wild One. Its Wild One by Thin Lizzy the very famous song that is loved by all. Wistful about being wild. Here, did Thin Lizzy pioneer the twin lead guitars or just popularize and perfect it?

    5. Fighting My Way Back – Yeah love this. Not much to say about it, I can't imagine anyone being so joyless that they couldn't get excited when listening to it.

    6. King's Vengeance – Jesus what a track, album highlight. I can't believe this doesn't seem to be on any of the best ofs! This is, as @scutter likes to say, pure driving around in the summer with the windows down music. Great music, great recording, mental lyrics.

    7. Spirit Slips Away – Right, onto the tracks that are new to me. This is the kind of thing – slow, kinda ponderous rocker- I would expect not to like but i'm actually a big fan of it. It threatens to go a bit Spinal Tap halfway through but doesn't quite fall down that hole. It's probably saved by the vocals, some real yearning in there. Great stuff.

    8. Silver Dollar – a boogie number! I wasn't expecting this. It feels a bit underwritten but that ends up working in its favour. It's walking a very fine line between good times boogie and the kind soul/funk/jazz hybrid that Sting plays on a bad day but it comes out on top in the end. Decent!

    9. Freedom Song – not a highlight but another good track. Some nice tuneful twin guitarring that doesn't go too over the top and the vocals are great. I like when a band realiaes a song doesn't need a chorus just for the sake of having a chorus. Yeah I like it.

    10. Ballad of the Hard Man – ehhh, I dunno about this one. A bit of a crap way to end the album, meat and potatoes hard rock. It's sung and played like they mean it but does nothing for me.

    As an album overall i think it's missing something – could have done with either some of mystical folky attempts on their earlier albums, which are always interesting even when they don't work, or one of Phil's pure pop songs like he'd do later on.

    So yeah, 7.5/10 as an overall album but with a few 10/10 standouts so i'll round it up to an 8.

  6. That's a fair review Lili.
    Like most my Lizzy "in" was Live & Dangerous and the studio versions look some getting used too. I never listen to L&D now though. I must prefer Lizzy's studio albums (ok, ok, lets not debate the authenticity of Live & Dangerous). I love a Philo ballad so Slips Away Does it for me.
    They went on to better this for sure so 7.5 is fair.

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