Leaf Hound
Leaf Hound
The classic lineup.
Background information
Origin London, England
Genres Hard Rock, Psychedelic Rock, Blues Rock
Years active 1969–1971, 2004–present
Labels Decca, R.A.R.E., Ripple, Rise Above Records
Associated acts Free, Black Cat Bones, Atomic Rooster, Foghat, Cactus, Wishing Well
Website Official Page

Leaf Hound are an English 1960s/1970s hard rock band, formed from the ashes of Black Cat Bones. The group has been cited as a major influence on the stoner rock movement, namely with their iconic studio album Growers of Mushroom. Initially active between 1969 - 1971, Leaf hound reformed with a different lineup in 2004, eventually putting out a second album, performing at multiple festivals and even on occasion (Namely 2011)[1] performing Growers of Mushroom in it's entirety.

Original Decca pressing of Growers of Mushroom are highly sought after, with mint or near-mint condition copies selling for thousands in US Dollars.


Classic Lineup Years (1969 - 1971)Edit

Rhythm guitarist Derek Brooks and his brother, Stuart Brooks, had been in the Black Cat Bones (Who had recorded Barbed Wire Sandwich in 1968), a South London-based band that at one time featured Free's Paul Kossoff. Vocalist Peter French and his cousin, lead guitarist Mick Halls, had been in several London groups: Switch, Erotic Eel, Joe Poe, and the Brunning Sunflower Blues Band (featuring Bob Brunning). In the latter half of 1970, after the Black Cat Bones' lead guitarist Rod Price quit to join Foghat, the Brooks brothers formed a new group with Halls and French, drafting in newcomer Keith George Young on drums. This new group -- christened Leaf Hound, a name found in an anthology of stories by horror writer Herbert Van Thal. The band started playing clubs around England, sharing the stage with the likes of UFO.

A full-length recording contract with Decca Records soon followed, and the band found themselves ensconced in the Mayfair's Spot Studios, where they recorded Growers of Mushrooms in a mere 11 hours. Meanwhile, the band traveled to Germany, where their album was licensed for release by the Telefunken label. This German-only release actually preceded the official U.K. release on Decca; somewhat surprisingly, it omitted two tracks: the title song and the lead-off track, a blistering "Freelance Fiend." Telefunken also issued a single, "Drowned My Life in Fear," which was backed with the non-LP track "It's Going to Get Better." Then, in October 1971, Decca finally released the band's debut in their own country, adding back the omitted tracks. However by then, Leaf Hound had already decided to call it a day once French had joined Atomic Rooster and Cactus. Leaf Hound from that point became somewhat of a myth or mystery, the key point being the value of original copies of Growers of Mushroom.

Many labels would see to reissuing the album in the 90s including Akarma, Repertoire and Walhalla to name a few.[2]

Reunion and Onward (2004 - Present)Edit

In 2004 Peter French put together a new incarnation of the band and started performing shows with the earliest known of this lineup being on 10 November 2004 supporting Nazareth.[3]. The band would play more shows around Europe over the years, including appearances at Roadburn Festival, Sweden Rock Festival. In 2006 they released a limited 7" on Rise Above Records featuring a live version of "Freelance Fiend" recorded in Soho, London in September 2005. The b-side is also taken from the same recording. In 2007 Leaf Hound released a second album of brand new material (Along with a reworking of an Atomic Rooster song) in Unleashed on 'Rare Recording', with the newer songs being added to the band's live sets. In 2011 the band performed Growers of Mushroom in it's entirety at shows for it's 40th anniversary which featured a second appearance at Roadburn the next year along with an appearance at DesertFest London.[4] In 2014, the band released a live album from a performance in Japan circa 2012 on Ripple Music.


Studio AlbumsEdit

  • Growers of Mushroom (1970, Decca; As Leaf Hound, 1970, Telefunken)
  • Unleashed (2007, R.A.R.E. Music)

Misc. ReleasesEdit

  • Drowned My Life In Fear / It's Gonna Get Better (1971, Telefunken)
  • Freelance Fiend (2006, Rise Above Records)
  • Live in Japan 2012 (2014, Ripple Music)


Current LineupEdit

  • Peter French - vocals
  • Luke Rayner - guitar
  • Peter Herbert - bass
  • Jimmy Rowland - drums

Classic line-upEdit

  • Peter French - vocals
  • Mick Halls - guitar
  • Derek Brooks - guitar
  • Stuart Brooks - bass
  • Keith George-Young - drums

External LinksEdit


  1. Hellride Music ForumAccessed 16 January 2017
  2. DiscogsAccessed 17 January 2017
  3. Last.fmAccessed 17 January 2017
  4. Last.fmAccessed 17 January 2017

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