Growers of Mushroom



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“Leaf Hound’s tantalising cocktail of drugs and distortion was so ahead of its time that their sole album Growers of Mushroom, still sounds like it was released yesterday. It’s also the blueprint for every “stoner rock” album of all time ever.” Sleazegrinder Morphing out of blues-orientated Black Cat Bones, Leaf Hound were a London-based heavy rock band whose lone album Growers Of Mushroom has long been prized among collectors, with original copies exchanging hands for thousands of pounds. Sitting somewhere between nascent metal and psychedelia, their self-titled LP was originally issued on the German Telefunken label; however, that pressing left off two tracks, an oversight remedied when the album saw release on UK Decca in October 1971. Alas, by that point the band had split up, adding to their mystique, and assuring the album’s cult status into the bargain. Fronted by dynamic rock singer Peter French and underpinned by lead guitarist Mick Halls’ assured licks, brothers Derek and Stuart Brooks (guitar and bass, respectively) and drummer Keith Young, this was powerful stuff inspired in part by horror writer Herbert van Thal (from whose anthology they took their name), with a distinctly European rather than American sound. Lauded as a stoner rock classic and one of the genre’s most sought after artefacts, Growers Of Mushroom and Leaf Hound appeared to vanish into the ether, with French resurfacing in Atomic Rooster and Cactus, and later Randy Pie.