It is no accident that the first song on our first album was also the first song we ever wrote as a band: once completed, Cut Me Loose came to form the template for our entire style.
The song didn’t come quickly, though. When we started the band, we had about six practices during which we put together some half-hearted ideas that were good but not great.
Then I stumbled across this song’s central riff one night while noodling on Chispa (my Flamenco guitar) and watching the film, Alien (which is how I tend to “song-write” – fiddling around on a guitar while my concentration is fixed upon something else).
I took it to the band and immediately saw what I had hoped to see in those previous six practices: smiles, nods, and the fire of genuine enthusiasm. As normally happens with good ideas, the rest of the song fell into place during the following two hours.
Cut Me Loose has a strong AC/DC influence in the verses, mainly because we use a trick AC/DC use all the time: the bass plays the root note (A in this case) while the guitars hit ringing open chords over the top (G/D/A).
The central section leading into the solo established another 109s’ trademark – each of our songs normally contains a carefully orchestrated middle-part that seeks to mine the maximum amount of power and dynamism from each instrument. Listen to the central section of Cut Me Loose and you will hear a band that is listening to and complementing each other’s musicianship without anyone showing off (something many bands fail to do).
Once that central section was up and running, I wrote the guitar solo: I threw every Chuck Berry lick I knew at the first part, then headed into Wishbone Ash/Maiden territory for the final guitar harmonies. I return to Chuck Berry’s style for the guitar stabs that bring the song to its conclusion.
The idea for the Western-themed lyrics was Damian’s (our first singer). He and I share a love of quality Western films and literature, and when he brought his words to the song, I realised they were perfect for the mood of the music.
When we released this song as our first single, it gained us immediate attention from dozens of radio stations across the world, who praised its contemporary take on classic ‘70s rock.
Watch the song’s video here: