Quartz is back!
Who is Quartz? They’re a band from the late 70’s that Tony Iommi produced, and their most notable member (to Black Sabbath fans anyway), is Geoff Nicholls. The guy who played keyboards on 10 studio and 3 live Black Sabbath albums from 1980 through 2004. When he was brought in in 1979 to work on the Heaven & Hell album in place of Geezer Butler, it began a long streak of work with Geoff. After he and Sabbath parted ways after the 2004 tour, he played with Tony Martin’s solo band for awhile.
I wrote Geoff today and asked him if he was involved in the new Cage album Martin’s on, and he said he wasn’t. So I asked him what he’s up to, and he told me that he’s semi retired these days. However, he has been rehearsing with the Quartz guys, and there will be a one-off charity gig in Birmingham on December 16th with another band called Cryer.
If you’re in the Birmingham area around then, you should check it out. It’s a charity gig benefiting “Teenage Cancer Trust”, and costs just £10, so you should go check it out. Below is some press on the gig, as well as a promotional video for you to check out.
Also at the bottom is a copy of a poster/flyer for the gig. You can look at it below, and also download a pdf of the thing if you want to print it out yourself and spread the word.
The BIGGEST NEWS of the week however is that the impossible have been possible. 70-80s Nwobhm act Quartz have been reunited for a gig in their hometown on the 16th of December. Quartz came out of the British hard rock hotbed of Birmingham to join the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement in the late ’70s. With a line-up that included John Bonham-associate Mike Hopkins and future Black Sabbath keyboardist Geoff Nichols, they were actually founded under the name Bandylegs but changed when Jet Records showed interest in the band. They signed a contract with the label and toured with both AC/DC and Black Sabbath before beginning work on their first album. The tour with Black Sabbath turned out to be quite fruitful, as they gained a tour manager (Albert Chapman) and a big fan in Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi. Iommi took over the production duties on their eponymous debut, drafting Queen’s Brian May into the sessions to play some guitar. The album was important to the emerging scene, and they joined Diamond Head and Def Leppard in being one of the first bands to make heavy metal faster and less plodding. Quartz stayed relevant to the genre for their short time together, but by 1983 their irreconcilable differences split the band apart. Time has eroded how important the band was to the genre at the time, but fans of that period in heavy metal history know Quartz’s place in the scheme of things. Quartz were among one of Birmingham’s greatest rock bands and all Nwobhm fans still holds tracks like `Satans Serenade’, `Wildfire’, `Street Fighting Lady’ close to their hearts. Joining them on this re-union gig are none other then Cryer who released a single on Happy Face records back in 1980. Quartz and Cryer last played together at Digbeth Civic hall in Dec 1979 where Quartz recorded the performance and released it as a live album. Quartz member Geoff Nicholls joined Black Sabbath where he spent well over 20 years. Dont miss the chance to see two of Brum’s best loved rock bands on a very special night, don’t be one of the ones that didn’t make it, be there and enjoy the nostalgia, the show and the music. Tickets are priced at only £10 for more information check out: http://www.theasylumvenue.co.uk/gigs.php
After the success of last years Cryer reunion, the band has managed to persuade one of Birmingham’s greatest rock bands Quartz to join them in a double header. Quartz and Cryer last played together at Digbeth Civic hall in Dec 1979 where Quartz recorded the performance and released it as a live album, Quartz also toured with Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Rush, and many more. Their first album `Quartz’ released 1977 on Jet records was produced by Tony Iommi, good friend and mentor to the band, who in 1980 invited Geoff Nicholls to join Black Sabbath where he spent well over 20 years. Now there back together for a reunion gig with Cryer, whose 2 gigs last year went down a storm, remembered for stunning vocals from Graham Careless, sparkling guitar solos from Huwey Lucas and a polystyrene head that would not blow up. So join us and see two of Brum’s best loved rock bands on a very special night, don’t be one of the ones that didn’t make it, be there and enjoy the nostalgia, the show and the music, this will be a sell out so don’t leave it too late, get your tickets early.