The Sweet were possibly the most ridiculous-looking of the “builders-in-drag” glam rockers who enlivened Top Of The Pops during the 70s. While their primped and shiny visual now looks like the precursor to 80s hair metal, there’s no denying the abiding naughty charm of classic singles such as Ballroom Blitz and Blockbuster. Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman’s mini-pantomimes, charged with the group’s hard rock aspirations and risqué camp elements, put them a class above the Muds and Glitters. Unsurprisingly, beneath the Wig-Wag Bam slap’n’tickle were serious musicians busting to get out but, despite self-made hits such as Love Is Like Oxygen, they were gone by the 80s.
Today, with perma-pissed singer Brian Connolly and drummer Mick Tucker deceased, both surviving members have their own Sweets, guitarist Andy Scott’s in the UK, another in California led by pouting bassist Steve Priest, whose old tapes form this 2-CD set. Disc One trumpets “Rare Studio Tracks”: a handful of classics mixed with lesser-known tackle, while Disc Two’s 1976 Danish gig favours harder rockers, Priest’s Ballroom Blitz exclamations taking on a triple-X hue, with puerile additives such as “arse” and “clitoris”. Not the place for all the hits, so: completists only, if there is such a thing.