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25 YEARS ON (AS HAWKLORDS)

Hawkwind

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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Hawkwind 25 Years On (as Hawklords) album cover
3.17 | 85 ratings | 13 reviews | 11% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential


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Studio Album, released in 1978

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. PSI Power (6:04)
2. Free Fall (5:10)
3. Automoton (1:12)
4. 25 Years (4:32)
5. Flying Doctor (5:36)
6. The Only Ones (4:12)
7. (Only) The Dead Dreams Of The Cold War Kid (3:46)
8. The Age Of The Micro Man (3:25)

Total Time: 33:57

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Harvey Bainbridge / bass, backing vocals (all except 3)
- Dave Brock / guitar, backing vocals, synthesizer, bass (4)(all except 7)
- Robert Calvert / vocals (all), jaw harp (5), percussion (6-7), guitar(7)
- Martin Griffin / drums (1-2-5-6)
- Simon House / violin (6-7-8)
- Simon King / drums (4-7-8), voice(4), congas (6)
- Henry Lowther / trumpet (1)
- Les McClure / whisper voice (4)
- Steve Swindells / keyboards (all except 3)

Releases information

Cd. Virgin/Charisma CDS 4014 (1989)

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HAWKWIND 25 Years On (as Hawklords) ratings distribution


3.17
(85 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(11%)
11%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
32%
Good, but non-essential (46%)
46%
Collectors/fans only (11%)
11%
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)
1%

HAWKWIND 25 Years On (as Hawklords) reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Single minded

Very much a Hawkwind album, despite the subtle adaptation of the band name (for if I recall correctly, the usual "contractual reasons").

The opener, "Psi power" is almost pop, with good synthesiser and Hawkwind's trademark driving beat. "Freefall" is more ambient, while "25 years" revives the pounding beat, this time combined with chanted vocals.

"Flying Doctor" has a Bowie feel to it, while "The only ones", with its harmonic pop tones is probably the best track. "The age of the micro man" is as close to Hawkwind get to a ballad, complete with echoed vocal.

A pleasant outing for Hawkwind, who give the impression they are seeking another successful single, but far from essential.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#25498) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Another great "Ultravox!" opener. I can't listen enough of these great songs. Not unexpected any longer since "Hawkwind" copes with this style of music as of "Astounding Sounds". Indeed astounding but so pleasant and of course fully in-line with the new wave which was aired and very popular in those days.

Another tendency I could feel during the last couple of albums was.the early Roxy. And when you give an ear to the title track, the relation is pretty obvious although rather unexpected (well only half since they have already produced such Roxy-like oriented songs). I really like these two numbers but that's pretty much all you get here.

The band also gets back to some more "normal" standards with "Free Fall". Almost Floydian (at least during the first part). A nice way to remember that the band used to play spacey and psyche music.a very long time ago.

Some blunders still ("Automation", and more than anything else "Flying Doctor"). Unfortunately, the last three songs from this album are also pretty much forgettable which means that this "25 Years On" is the poorest "Hawkwind" offering so far.

Two very good songs. Two stars.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#165887) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, April 06, 2008

Review by Tom Ozric
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This new incarnation of Hawkwind, HAWKLORDS (also known as SONIC ASSASSINS) came about when the 'Mothership' ceased to exist for a little while during late '77 through '78, for whatever tumultuous reasons that often surrounded the band - contractual, personal, you name it, they've been through it !! Anyway, this album '25 Years On' seems to be centred around mainstay Dave Brock and the eccentric Robert Calvert, along with original drummer Simon King appearing on some tracks and a newer drummer, Martin Griffin on others. Violinist Simon House appears on 2 songs, Steve Swindells mans the keyboards/synths, and, the debut appearance of a highly creative and imaginative force in Harvey Bainbridge, at this stage handling the Bass guitar. Later, Harvey would switch to playing the synths/keys. Housed in a bizarre but rather bland cover-art, the album has some fantastic songs, and some which I find weaker - the production is really full and 'tidy' - quite lush sounding to my ears. This really shows off on the amazing piece 'Free-Fall', a song with lyrics about jumping off a skyscraper (or is it skydiving??), sung dramatically by Calvert. Bookended with some tasty synth-work and entrancing Bass, the main section features an excellent, heavy Bass-riff, and lots of atmosphere. Another great track is 'Flying Doctor', built around a heavy semi-tone riff (most popular with Brock) and Calvert puts on an 'Aussie' accent - and since I live in Australia, I can relate to the song perfectly. A very amusing song, and most enjoyable. We also have a brief experimental electronic piece with 'Automoton', the album opener 'PSI Power' is a well composed tune and surprisingly accessible , but elsewhere the album slumps into the mundane, with little to excite all but the most diehard Hawkfan. The few awesome tracks are worth owning the album for - 2.7 stars

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Send comments to Tom Ozric (BETA) | Report this review (#205620) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, March 07, 2009

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover Team
5 stars One of the greatest thrills of engaging the progressive genre to the fullest (and I must concede that I have been doing just that for the past 39 years!) is invariably finding that rock jewel on the road that many fans do not find that extraordinary. Well some do need further furious polishing and we all have some in our collections that fall into that unjust category. Perhaps because our refined tastes are fueled by so many intangibles that simply do not exist as starkly as in prog, we can be fatally attracted by the haunting melodies, the impossible mood, the profound lyrics and even the epic concept. I loved this record from day one , knowing full well that it was miles removed from masterpieces such as Space Ritual, In the Hall of the Mountain Grill and the spectacular Warrior on the Edge of Time. It has been loosely criticized as an Ultravox deep electronic space rip-off , as if that was bad!?! First let me say that Ultravox only predated Hawklords by a few months and that the John Foxx-led version remains one of my fave outfits (prog or no prog!) anyway . I have been (at times in deep desperation) searching for this CD release as I cannot use my vinyls anymore (Stylus search) and having been pining to hear "Only the Dead Dreams", "The Age of the Micro-Man" and "Freefall", as well as the rockier punk-laced tunes such as "PSI Power" , "25 Years On", "Flying Doctor" . I finally found a spanking new Extended Deluxe Edition 2CD set through Greg Walker's Syn-Phonic prog label. Am I happy, wot? Bloody delirious, I say! Yes we are far from the usual Brock fueled riff-heavy space excursion, the tracks being clearly influenced by the lyrical genius of Robert Calvert , a match to Michael Moorcock as far as music goes, and delivered with a fury that belies the now legendary ultra-extreme nature of the Hawkwind lead lung. "PSI Power" rollicks on with precisely that über-attitude, a fabulous intro that knocks and rocks, in that very peculiar English way! From the liner notes, one can get an idea of the weird exaltations that haunted Calvert's mind:" Harvey Bainbridge went to Calvert's house, where he found the singer and lyricist dressed in World War 1 officer's uniform". Ughh! The majestic "Freefall" is a synth and bass ride that swirls at the fingers of Steve Swindells and then suddenly diving into a gloomy groove, the hypnotic Bainbridge bass pummeling along, Brock unleashing a driving riff while the drums are kindly adhering to the mind drive. Calvert gently floats about in psychedelic verbiage, tumbling words that reach for the abyss. Slow and gentle, sentimental, as Ferry would say. "Automaton" is a weird yet brief electronic oddity, that serves as a moody intro to the title track, a punkoid/psychotic rocker that bops along in dissonant chicanery, boom, boom, boom... A chugging piece of hiccup brutality that still incites rebellion, to these ears anyway! Brock takes "Flying Doctor" on a heavenly guitar ride, the hard-space we all love and enjoy but laced with that disturbed mind that was Calvert. Drummer Martin Griffin pounds mightily, bravely thus emulating the massive Simon King. "The Only Ones" is a dreamy, almost West Coast psychedelia-infused that rambles on breathlessly, Calvert showing a seamless voice, proving that he could sing not just rant about the human condition. "Only the Dead Dreams..." is a Cold War discourse on the paranoia of living under the threat of nuclear obliteration, masterfully sung and penned by Calvert , propelled by a simple Simon King drum beat, swooping synths and rolling bass grooves. A masterpiece tune that has been one of my "hummers", for so many decades now. Without any mercy, the majestic "The Age of the Micro Man" comes shining through the electronic mist with swooning vocals that contemplate, as per liner notes, "the future of human beings being, pawns in the game of mechanized industry." Amazing! Disc one offers three bonus tracks, a single version of "Psi Power", a madcap piece called "Death Trap" that booms along deliriously and a single remix of the title track. Disc 2 offers a live setting for 5 quirky tunes, now calling themselves The Sonic Assassins (keyboards handled by Paul Hayles as the only change) and tossing in a memorable Hawkwind piece as well, the imperial "Magnu". Heavy microphone stands not withstanding (weird!), Calvert kicks this in the teeth of those who attended this show, drooling like a maniac on "Over the Top", a bizarre space dirge that squawks along asunder, showcasing almost spooky Joy Division-like schizophrenia (Calvert died from a heart attack in 1988, 43 years of rage, a tortured soul in too many ways to comprehend). "Magnu" possesses an even rawer edge (was already the case on "Warrior"), a cosmic pile driver that batters unrelenting, a deep sonic attack displaying no mercy or pity. Brock tortures his guitar fiendishly, while the others prance in delirium. The innocuous segue into the short "We are Angels of Life, Angels of Death" is seamlessly inserted. The live version of "Freefall" is ever bit as exhilarating as the studio version, more room to spread the Hawk's wings armed with Bainbridge's way up front bass, leading the charge. Calvert expressing his perspiring fears and lunatic traumas with utter conviction, less sedate when I saw him live with Hawkwind (Lemmy's last show). Obviously the nascent punk phenomenon only further incited his musical vision, shoving him into even deeper introspection. This live version certainly evokes the creepier manifestations that were simply not showcased on the rather clinical studio take. "Hello Earth" indeed! "Death Trap" is even wilder in an audience-soaked setting, pure rage and spitting anger that veers rigid into punk land, Brock riff slashing like madman (he is odd too, ya know!). The remaining disc contains assorted revisits, some entirely acoustic, secondary takes, demos, rehearsal stabs etc?as well as "Assassination" and "Digger Jam". Obviously put together with deep respect and care, the packaging and the extensive liner notes hint at a reverence that is truly deserved. This album (and one shot deal) retains its podium as a unique and hence timeless exercise that dared to foresee a certain musical future, at a junction when everything was topsy-turvy in rock land. I am deeply relieved to have this in my collection. So I am not in the majority! Thanks, Robert RIP. 5 blowing interstellar falcons.

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Send comments to tszirmay (BETA) | Report this review (#224923) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
3 stars Hawklords 25 Years on continues in the new-found flair of QSaC. Unfortunately the song quality doesn't entirely measure up to it.

PSI Power is a good opener but exists in better live versions, The Only Ones and the Cold War Kid are sleek pop songs that will sure please David Bowie fans. But the real standouts for me are Free Fall and the Flying Doctor. Both are very tight and gripping songs where Hawklords found an excellent merge between their psychedelic space rock and the no nonsense attitude of punk. For traditional Hawkwind fans who are displeased by QSaC and PXR5, those two tracks might be your way into this incarnation of Hawkwind.

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Send comments to Bonnek (BETA) | Report this review (#244463) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars "25 Years On" is the followup to "Quark Strangeness And Charm" and I actually like this one a little better than it's predessesor. They changed their name to THE HAWKLORDS for this album only but it's still Brock, Calvert, House, King etc. Those commercial sounding tracks from the previous album are still to be found here, just not as many of them.

"PSI Power" is one of those such tracks. Strummed guitar to open as vocals join in. Backing vocals on the chorus. Psychedelic voices late to end it. "Free Fall" is spacey to open before it changes 1 1/2 minutes in as the bass, drums and vocals take over. Guitar too. Nice. It's spacey again before 4 minutes to the end. What a great tune. "Automotion" is a short experimental piece. "25 Years On" kicks in right away.This is catchy and one i've tired of quickly.

"Flying Doctor" is my favourite on here. A good heavy sound with vocals.This is vintage HAWKWIND.The guitar is excellent. "The Only Ones" opens with strummed guitar as vocals join in. Drums and backing vocals follow. Love how this sounds. Violin 3 minutes in. "(Only) The Dead Dreams Of The Cold War Kid" is another good one with the spacey synths and heavy beat. The vocals remind me of late 60's Psyche. "The Age Of The Micro Man" is a relaxing tune that builds in the beginning. Piano and drums standout as the vocals join in.

This isn't even close to being grouped with their earlier classic albums but we do get some good songs here. In fact i've made a cdr combining my favs from this one and the previous one "Quark Strangeness And Charm".

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#277953) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Review by seventhsojourn
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RPI
3 stars 25 Years On (1978) is the only studio album by this Hawkwind incarnation, and is a collection of mostly short and catchy songs with a considerable New Wave sensibility. Although these songs reflected the musical climate of the time, lead vocalist Robert Calvert later disparaged, somewhat paradoxically or perhaps ironically, the conserative nature of the New Wave and its return to the 3-minute pop song format. The UK tour that Hawklords undertook to promote the album involved an elaborate stage show with Calvert's fictional Pan-Transcendental Industries (PTi) at its dystopian centre. PTi's 25-year plan sought ''absolute authority over the planet'' via the ''industrialisation of religion'' and the obliteration of Nature by ''the new psycho- technology''.

The slow-paced THE AGE OF THE MICRO MAN is one of the album's highlights and its lyrics concern the ''Voluntary Prisoners'', or workers, in the giant PTi factory. The commercial- sounding PSI POWER and the punky 25 YEARS (with Calvert doing a great Bryan Ferry impersonation!) were both released in slightly different versions as singles, whereas the ambient synthesizer soundscape FREE FALL provides a rare helping of typical Hawkwind space-rock. My personal favourite is the humorous FLYING DOCTOR, which features Calvert's mock Australian accent and jaw's harp that serves as a surrogate didgeridoo. There's even some wobble board in the background; who would have thought that Rolf Harris would influence prog?!

25 Years On is ok, but it's certainly not the place to start if you're new to Hawkwind. Symphonic fans should look to earlier albums but the post-punks among us should enjoy this.

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Send comments to seventhsojourn (BETA) | Report this review (#284470) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "The Hawklords - 25 Years On" is the 8th full-length studio album by UK psychadelic/Space rock act Hawkwind. The album was released in October 1978 by Charisma. The album was originally released under the Hawklords monicker because of a legal dispute over the ownership of the Hawkwind name. Hawkwind split-up while touring in the US earlier in 1978 and apparently various members of the band claimed ownership of the Hawkwind name. This resulted in only Robert Calvert, Dave Brock and Simon King being part of the lineup who recorded "The Hawklords - 25 Years On". The latter on and off as he left during the recording sessions to join David Bowie. He would eventually return though.

The tracks on the album is a bit less "loose" and more tightly structured than what we´ve been used to from Hawkwind, but other than that I actually think this is unmistakably the sound of Hawkwind. The hard rocking riffs, the driving beat, the distinct sounding vocals by Robert Calvert and the psychadelic sounds are all there. There´s a new wave element to the sound that hasn´t been there before though. It´s most apparent in the track "25 Years", which could have been a Roxy Music song, but the new wave elements appear here and there all the way through the album. The punk wave that Hawkwind themselves were proabably quite a large influence upon, hasn´t gone by unnoticed either. "Flying Doctor" is a very punk influenced track with an aggressive attitude. But again those are elements and to my ears Hawkwind´s "core" sound is intact.

While the unappealing cover artwork is sure to scare away fans of space/psychadelic rock, there´s really nothing to be afraid of inside the album. The music is very well composed, played, and produced and I think this album has a much worse reputation than what it deserves. I actually think it´s a very good album that appealed a lot to me and it deserves a 3.5 star (70%) rating. A positive surprise given the negative criticism this album often receives.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#439459) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Robert Calvert's last album with Hawkwind - though PXR5 was released after this one, it was in fact recorded before it - is another attempt to fuse the New Wave with the approach of Quark, Strangeness and Charm. Recorded under the name of The Hawklords due to legal issues surrounding the Hawkwind name at the time, the album has an entertaining enough opener - the telepathy-themed PSI Power - but its chanted chorus and adept lyrics can't hide the fact that the music isn't up to much. On tracks like Flying Doctor Calvert's vocal gymnastics become increasingly repetitive and irritating (the Australian accent he adopts on that track is particularly atrocious), and on the whole whilst none of the songs are flat out bad, few stand out either. Hawkwind would steer a course closer to space rock in coming years; whilst the attempt to make their sound less heavy and more approachable during the later Calvert years was an interesting one, I can't say it was much of a success.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#558582) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, October 28, 2011

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
2 stars "The Hawklords ? 25 Years On" has the dubious distinction of sporting an album cover that looks like a deodorant advertisement, complete with underarm roll on. All kidding aside this is an odorous album any way you look at it. Calvert absolutely dominates and sounds like an imitation of early Bryan Ferry with Roxy Music; 'Virginia Plain' comes to mind. The title track may be the worst thing that the Hawkwind machine spawned, the idiot brother of 'Silver Machine' at least in terms of the chord structure, and with awful vocals, think Public Image Ltd, and don't get me started on those repetitive whispers. The lead break is okay but not enough to salvage this mess. Why can't the band just stop plagiarising itself and come up with something original?

However, as with all Hawkwind albums, there are some tracks worth listening to. Of particular note is the terrific 'Psi Power', especially the melodic chorus; "I can read your mind like a magazine", and "I get all the secrets". The production is crisp and makes this a standout, particularly the musicianship, acoustics, percussion and that great synth solo. The ending with all the mathematical quadrations or whatever they are is fairly effective.

'Free Fall' takes us into ambient solar winds and synth soaked spaciness. Calvert has a decent vocal style here similar to Brock; "All you need to do is take one step into the sky". A dirty guitar riff locks in with some effective chords. There is a trademark feel to this too like early 70s Hawkwind, making it another highlight.

'Automotion' is a 1 minute transition like most transitions it just fills in a gap but the synths are quite a nice sound. 'Flying Doctor' has a choppy riff which is okay but has some awful Aussie accents, yes we can sound like that but talk about stereotyping to the Nth degree. The relentless riffing is the best thing about it, but it's ruined by the over indulgent vocals. It is obviously a homage to the Australian TV series "Flying Doctors", and I never liked that either, so this one is best avoided. And my oath, that kangaroo bouncing sound is just plain offensive. For those who think that kangas bounce all around the outback, guess again. Anyway, I think it is different enough to stand out, but all for the wrong reasons. And the repeated phrase "cabinet key" does not do it any favours either. Oh well, moving right along.

'The only ones' is next, with lyrics sounding like hippies at a free form festival celebrating their new found freedom. Surely this is one of Hawklords in jokes. It certainly sounds it, but in any case, unfortunately this is a terrible track marring an already mediocre album.

Next is '(Only) The dead dreams of the cold war kid' that has a nice title. The music is moderate cadence and dull, with repeated phrases and dreary music. 'The age of the micro man' closes the album with a better track, very slow in tempo but the vocals are okay from Brock. Thus folks we have the absolute worst album of the Hawkwind project, with one decent salvagable track 'Psi Power'. Thank heavens the band changed their name so that Hawkwind could not be associated with such trash.

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Send comments to AtomicCrimsonRush (BETA) | Report this review (#646594) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, March 05, 2012

Latest members reviews

3 stars Hawklords - 25 Years On Over the extensive duration of their career, Hawkwind has undergone many changes in their lineup and in their direction. Every Hawkwind release is accompanied by a progression in sound. While 25 Years On certainly belongs among the discography of Robert Calvert's cle ... (read more)

Report this review (#1088094) | Posted by The Mystical | Tuesday, December 10, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I was a waiting for a new Hawkwind album and this one came along. The cover put me off but that was the only me.My friends all gave me a funny look until the speakers began to pump this little Gem right into their faces. I had to special order nearly all Hawkwind inthe USA so I got this sight un ... (read more)

Report this review (#101760) | Posted by Ganzfeld | Tuesday, December 05, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I first heard this album in 1980 and, 24 years on both PSI power and the Flying Doctor remain amongst my fave rock tracks ever.A surprising change of pace and style from their purely spacey stuff, but very cutting, full of the subtleties of LPs like "Captain Lockheed" and Moorcock-credited "A New Wo ... (read more)

Report this review (#25497) | Posted by | Monday, April 05, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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