Fastway was formed by King, UFO's Pete Way and Fast Eddie (who also produced early Tank albums) in London and mixed British hard rock with a sleazier US-based sound. Fast Eddie had left Motörhead in a row over Lemmy's collaboration with Wendy O Williams ('Stand By Your Man'!!!). King was little known and had spent a short time in the then-hip Mama's Boys. Way got a gig with Ozzy and was off but the band, major contract in hand, recorded Fastway with Eddie Kramer. Angus replaced Feat right after the recording. The band's first single and hit was Easy Livin'. The band toured with Iron Maiden and Saxon and got good airplay and supposedly sold a million records. McCracken was the new man and the band supported All Fired Up by opening for nearly ever band on the road (Scorpions, Rush and Bill Squire). Sales were not all there and Shirley and McCracken were soon out. A couple of Stilwood ex-colleagues joined the band and more albums and tours followed. The band appeared on the 1986 soundtrack to Trick Or Treat. At this point GWR signed the band - not coincidentally the label of Motörhead. In 1988 Hart (Joan Jett collaborator/writer) replaced the departed King and eventually became the only constant in the band with Fast Eddie. Bad Bad Girls featured Girlschool members. In 1992 it was all over. True Brits was Paul DiAnno's band.
The group reappeared in 2007 and began touring the festival circuit. Fastway soon parted ways with its Irish singer, John "Harv" Harbinson formerly of Sweet Savage and Emerald, in early 2007 reportedly due to the physical distance between the two parties. Fastway and ex-Little Angels singer Toby Jepson released an EP called Guitar, Bass And Drums EP 2 in 2007.
In 2011, Fastway signed a deal with Steamhammer/SPV. The band's first studio album since 1990 was called Eat Dog Eat and was released on November 11th. The album featured vocalist Toby Jepson (ex-Little Angels). Former guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke died on January 10th 2018 after a bout of pneumonia. He was 67 years old.
FASTWAY - EAT DOG EAT - MVD
'Oh no, another name from yesteryears has reformed,' one is prone to think. Fastway was last heard from several years ago undergoing a resurrection of sorts, with only Fast Eddie Clarke he of Motörhead remaining, but that itself was not the band’s first return. To make the story short, the band had essentially disbanded in 1992 or so.
Suffice to say, Eat Dog Eat - very clever - is the band’s first album since 1998’s On Target Reworked album and the first all-original full-length since Bad Bad Girls of 1990. Seriously.
This could go badly. It hasn’t. This album is serious, seriously good and chock full of genuine music, better yet genuine hard rock. One cannot find one bad song, but never mind the lowered expectations for the tracks are actually good. One could say fans of AC/DC, Y&T or Motörhead would love this stuff, but never mind that those bands’ fans are not into the music; they are into those specific bands. Let us do better and say fans of Fastway (all 3 of them) and good solid hard rock will really enjoy Eat Dog Eat.
Want particulars? Read on. No? Skip this paragraph. The album begin with the particularly strong Deliver Me. Fade Out has straighter vocals and is an upbeat rocker. The beginning and main riff is Def Leppard 1981. Cool. The bass is high and crisp. Sick As A Dog is reminiscent of Clarke’s work in Motörhead. Those riffs... The vocals are almost soulful, the hard rock is solid and so is the sound. Riffs galore here. Dead And Gone is the right place to mention Jesus. Although when the band mentions “onto higher plain” it probably means “onto higher plane.” Love I Need is, of course, slower , groovier and gutsy. On And On is another winner. It is hard rock song with feeling and catchiness/. The vocals rock and the lead guitar is too short given its feeling. Only If You Want It is almost sleazy, but not quite, and has a different beat. Think AC/DC. Think Dave Meniketti on vocals. It closes the album to a different tune.
Fast Eddie is not so fast anymore, but is surefooted, honest, organic and quality. One hopes this line-up stays together. Hard rock lovers into those adjectives should n.o.t. he-si-ta.teeee! - Ali “The Metallian”