At 31 tracks in 50 minutes, Hunky Dudes is a tribute to the A-Team matching one of the episodes as an alternative soundtrack. The description features notes for the tracklist intricately detailing every songs purpose.
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Conceived as the first in an irregularly occasional series in which an alternative score was to be provided for all eighty five episodes of The A-Team (The thirteen episodes of Season Five were not to be included due to their sub-par quality) this album (originally titled ‘Chopping Spree’) was specifically devised as a canorous companion for Season Two, Episode Nineteen.
A typically action-packed affair in which Hannibal and the gang lock horns with second hand car dealer Sam Friendly and vow to put an end to his illegal “cut and shut” operation after their iconic van is purloined by Friendly’s goons.
And indeed, the album does function as originally intended. Certainly, no-one could dispute that its thirty one tracks sync seamlessly with the thirty one gripping scenes of the ‘Chopping Spree’ episode.
However, at an early stage of the protracted production, external forces and extracurricular interests began to exert their influence; bending and distorting the music to their will. And so it was decided that a mere A-Team inspired collection of songs just wouldn't cut it. No! Additional subjects demanded to be addressed.
The most prominent of these supplementary themes is that of Antipodean legacy rock act INXS (particularly their curious early-nineties period). Previously appearing on 2020’s ‘Easy Peeler’ by way of a cover version, the band provide endless acres of fascinatingly fertile ground ripe for remarking upon, and the eagle-eared will find countless references to Hutchence and chums conspicuously included within.
The next topic deemed worthy of inclusion was that of the under-appreciated overseas footballer. Specifically, a small selection of those who appeared in Italy’s Serie A between the years 1992-1994.
Stand-out subjects who met the qualification criteria included Inter Milan’s Igor Shalimov, Napoli’s Freddy Rincón and Udinese’s Marek Koźmiński.
Finally, it was felt that light should be shone upon a handful of heroes, the appreciation of whom seems to have diminished somewhat over the previous two decades. Thus, the performances of Brookside’s Jimmy Corkhill, East Enders’ Ted Hills and Neighbours’ Colin Taylor all receive recognition here.
And so, to the album’s title. Once focus shifted from the sole subject of The A-Team’s Season Two, Episode Nineteen, it was decided that the title of ‘Chopping Spree’ (along with the original artwork) were no longer fit for purpose. As the voracious hunt for a shiny new moniker got underway, the album’s contents were examined for inspiration in the desperate hope that a little internal analysis may spew up a winner.
Consider the themes:
Continental footballers of the early nineties
Strapping superstars of soap.....
Beacons of unbridled masculinity, one and all.
Hunky Dudes, if you will.
1. Good Morning
A pair of hoodlums steal a speedy-looking roadster from the car park of the Lobster House restaurant.
The stolen vehicle is seen entering Dirksen's Auto Repair and Salvage.
Inside, a plinth is briefly visible onscreen
3. It All Started With The Industrial Revolution
At Sam Friendly's Used Cars we hear Dirksen advising Friendly of the theft. Mr Friendly is then menaced by mobster-type Tony Victor.
Meanwhile, INXS frontman Michael Hutchence attempts to claim partial credit for the industrial revolution (1760-1830).
4. Remain At Large
A man named Davey enters O'Reilly's Legal Service.
Davey claims he is being framed for car theft and then hires The A-Team.
5. Street Of Ducklings
The A-Team discuss recent car thefts in the local area.
Templeton Peck parks his Corvette outside Lobster House, hoping to tempt some car thieves. The trap fails and The A-Team then look on in horror as their van is appropriated.
7. The Victor Job
Friendly informs Dirksen that "The Victor Job" must take priority.
8. Have You Ever been To Maidstone?
Davey explains how "chop shops" work while Michael and Jon from INXS endure a challenging conversation with Andrea from Maidstone.
9. Oblivious (feat. Edip Akbayram)
The A-Team beat up Tiny Roscoe. Roscoe then informs them that Sam Friendly is the person most likely to be responsible for the theft of their beloved van.
10. Insufficient Understanding
Hannibal and B.A. chase after their van in an attempt to reclaim it. They are unsuccessful and the vehicle disappears around a corner.
11. Real Freddy Rincón
The A-Team drive to Sam Friendly's car lot. Murdoch expresses concern for his potted plant, which is located inside the stolen van.
Elsewhere, Colombian midfielder Freddy Rincón Signed for Parma in the summer of '94. He was immediately loaned to Napoli, where he scored seven goals in twenty eight appearances, before being sold to Real Madrid.
12. Drop The Pieces
Templeton Peck, posing as a car salesman, sells a Sedan to The Denvers. This convinces Friendly to hire him on a seven day trial basis.
13. Sympathetically Braised
Hannibal, disguised as a music promoter, asks Friendly to procure him a dozen stretched limos for an upcoming event.
Elsewhere, INXS's underwhelming 'Elegantly Wasted' LP is considered.
14. Peck Sassen Bears
Peck sells cars, wildly outperforming rival salesman Sassen and Bears.
Meanwhile, Michael Hutchence is offered some sage advice.
15. You're A Pretty Good Guy
Peck retrieves an attaché case from Friendly's safe which he then hands over to Hannibal (still in disguise as music promoter Johnny B)
In addition to this, we hear Michael Hutchence confess to Jon Stewart that he ignored two of his fellow band members for nineteen years.
16. Every Step
Hannibal reveals that the attaché case contained a tape recorder that will enable Face to crack Friendly's safe.
17. Doors Will Open
Templeton Peck, using the tape recorder, opens Friendly's safe and takes photos of some documents. When interrupted by Friendly's assistant he kisses her. Friendly witnesses the clinch and takes Peck outside.
18. It's Not That Important
Friendly punches Peck in the face
Meanwhile, 1993-era Hutchence discusses songwriting.
19. Supposed To Be Upstairs
Peck, still employed as a car salesman, tells Friendly that Johnny B wants a Porsche with all the extras.
20. It Is As Us
Up in the hills, The A-Team implement a road block, enabling them to halt and seize a car transporter loaded with stolen vehicles.
21. I Got Asked To Join INXS
Friendly learns of the car transporter incident. He is then concerned by Johnny B's threat to call off the stretched Limo deal if the Porsche doesn't arrive soon.
Elsewhere, Faith No More's Mike Patton recalls the time he was asked to Join INXS.
22. Six Black, Six Silver
Dirksen talks to Friendly on the phone and is instructed to get to work on a Porsche that has just arrived at his garage.
23. Need To Know
Hannibal pulls a gun on Friendly and forces him to reveal Dirksen's location.
24. Shark Attack
Inside Johnny B's Limo, Templeton Peck resigns from his role as car salesman.
Meanwhile, Julian Clary is rude to Michael at the 1996 MTV European Music Awards.
25. Pancake Party
At Dirksen's Auto Repair and Salvage The A-Team attempt to put a stop to the "chop and shut" operation, only to be bettered and held at gunpoint by Tony Victor and his goons.
26. Too Many Nut Rolls
Murdoch commandeers a tow truck.
27. You Need To Lose Some Weight
Tony Victor and his gang, now dressed as armed Police officers, drive away from Dirksen's in patrol cars.
Meanwhile, '93-era Michael Hutchence and Tim Farriss posit the opinion that 'Full Moon, Dirty Hearts' is the best album they've ever made.
28. Someone Told Me To Call
At the scrapyard, Friendly and his henchmen demand that The A-Team reveal their true identities and motivation. Murdoch causes a distraction and a fight ensues, from which The A-Team emerge victorious.
Elsewhere, Ray Cokes and Michael Hutchence struggle to communicate via videophone.
29. Mechanical Modification Montage
Hannibal spies a scrapped Hearse and The A-Team proceed to transform it into a fully operational assault vehicle.
30. They Don't Know My Vision Is Augmented
At the city cemetery Tony Victor and his mob are attempting to assassinate the District Attorney. The A-Team arrive in their fully-loaded Hearse, a car chase / shoot-out occurs and Victor is foiled.
31. Dogs That Pass By In The Dark
On a patch of wasteland, The A-Team observe from their van as Murdoch beds his beloved potted plant into the ground and says goodbye, but not before imparting some kindly words of guidance.
Hunky Dudes features first-class contributions from:
Brendan O’ Leary
The Michael Aspul
Natalie Balloon Manticore
Nathan O’ Leary