|Genres||Hard rock, psychedelic rock, acid rock, blues rock|
|Free, Foghat, Atomic Rooster, Cactus, Wishing Well|
Leaf Hound formed in 1969 under their original name, Black Cat Bones. Early incarnations of the Black Cat Bones featured guitarist Paul Kossoff and drummer Simon Kirke who both left to form Free. Black Cat Bones issued one album for Decca Records entitled Barbed Wire Sandwich. They replaced their vocalist shortly after releasing the album, adding Peter French to the line-up. Guitarist Rod Price departed soon after to join Foghat and French added his cousin Mick Halls on guitar. Soon afterwards, Black Cat Bones changed their name to Leaf Hound. At this point the band consisted of French on vocals, Halls on guitar, the Brooks brothers, Derek and Stuart, on guitar and bass respectively, and Keith George-Young on drums.
Growers of Mushroom was recorded at Spot Studios in Mayfair, London in late 1970. Shortly after the Brooks brothers departed and Ron Thomas filled in on bass. The band toured Europe as a four-piece and released the "Drowned My Life in Fear" single and the Leaf Hound album in Germany on Telefunken. The Growers of Mushroom album was released shortly after (featuring all of the tracks on the self-titled album) but by this time French had already departed to join Atomic Rooster for their album In Hearing Of. French would also later join American hard rock band Cactus. Growers of Mushroom became a collectors item in the years to come and was voted the number one most collectable rock album in Q magazine. It was released on CD in Germany by Walhalla Records with one bonus track, "It's Gonna Get Better" (b-side to the "Drowned My Life in Fear" single). It was re-released by See For Miles Records in 1994 with two bonus tracks, "It's Gonna Get Better" and "Hipshaker". Akarma Records re-released the vinyl version in 2003 featuring one bonus track, "It's Gonna Get Better." It was re-released on CD a third time in 2005 by Repertoire Records featuring the two bonus tracks on the See For Miles release as well as a third bonus track, "Too Many Rock 'n' Roll Times."
In 2004 Peter French put together a new incarnation of the band. 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 'Unleashed' on 'Rare Recording'. According to the band's website, a live album is set for future release. Leaf Hound released a live album recorded while they were in concert in Tokyo 2012, Titled Leaf Hound Live in Japan. This was released as a special limited 500-only package which consisted of a green-coloured vinyl, CD, and DVD and a hand-printed poster album cover. This album was later released in 2013 featuring a different album cover design on Ripple Music released on either black vinyl, or a CD/DVD package; there was also a very limited distribution issued of the vinyl in a yellow-and-black mottled design. 2016 finds Leaf Hound still very much alive.
New album Unleashed was released on 12 November 2007. It features eight all new compositions by Peter French and Luke Rayner and also a reworking of Atomic Rooster's "Breakthrough". The album has been met with critical acclaim from the music press with Kerrang! calling it, "As good a rock album as you could hope to hear." Classic Rock Magazine noted, "An unpretentious hard rock record, relying on strong songs and powerful performances." French and Rayner were also praised for their production skills, "Preserving the Classic Rock sound."
Stuart Brooks now lives in the Los Angeles, CA area. He was a member of Wishing Well, a power trio led by guitarist/vocalist Greg Leon, who issued their eponymous 1997 debut album on Tokuma Communications in Japan and on their own label stateside.