Not many bands last fifty-one years while consistently producing new albums and still touring. Molly Hatchet, a band named for a murderous prostitute, has been around since 1971, playing southern rock and hard rock. Despite their substantial contributions to music, this band is one of the underrated groups that is not (yet) inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Despite that obvious and ridiculous oversight, we are ranking all the Molly Hatchet studio albums.
14. Justice, 2010
Justice is a well-titled album. The songs adhere to the overall theme of making things right and serving justice in keeping with its name. While we cannot call the thirteenth Molly Hatchet album their best work, it is a solid album from a well-respected group with a half-century career doing what they love. The album resembles the way Hard Rock Heaven describes the first track, “Solid musicianship, good lyrics… Vocalist Phil McCormack does a fine job on this track, along with guitarists Bobby Ingram and Dave Hlubek (the last founding member still with the band), and the band plays with a great sense of fun and energy.”
13. Southern Rock Masters, 2008
Southern Rock Masters sounds like a brag more than an album title. However, Molly Hatchet’s SRM album is filled with well-executed covers of other bands’ greatest hits. It’s hard to call a tribute-slash-cover album the best work of any group with such a long and storied career full of original music. However, 2008s Southern Rock Masters album is another good album from a great band.
12. Regrinding the Axes, 2012
Molly Hatchets’ most recent album, Regrinding The Axes, is also a tribute album. While the songs are outstanding, and the delivery is crisp, it’s not exactly a career-defining album. Regrinding the axes is fine and a lot of fun to listen to.
11. Warriors of the Rainbow Bridge, 2005
The 2005 album Warriors of the Rainbow Bridge was almost the first Molly Hatchet album without surviving original members. However, original guitarist Dave Hlubek rejoined the band in January of that year thanks to a timely invitation from Bobby Ingram. The album dropped just months after original Molly Hatchet singer Danny Joe Brown passed away, making it the last album released in his lifetime, though not the last he sang for.
10. Lightning Strikes Twice, 1989
Lightning Strikes Twice in 1989 was an album full of firsts and lasts for Molly Hatchet. This was the first time we heard guitarist Bobby Ingram on guitar with MH and the first album not produced by Epic. Unfortunately, it was also their last release before the 1990 (temporary) breakup, the last time a Molly Hatchet single charted, and the final time Danny Joe Bown, the original singer, was featured on an MH album.
9. The Deed Is Done, 1984
The first three Molly Hatchet albums have three guitarists. However, The Deed Is Done only sported two guitars, which changed the sound slightly. This would be the bands’ last album with Epic Records. Additionally, it would be the last album to feature Dave Hlubek for over two decades, though he eventually returned to play with MH when they needed him in 2010.
8. Kingdom of XII, 2000
By the time the Kingdom of XII came out in 2000, some fans had called the band the ‘new’ Molly Hatchet derisively. There’s no question the lineup changed a lot over the years, but it was never genuinely detrimental to MH. The band always managed to find new members who did a fantastic job carrying the torch, and this album is proof of that. Kingdom of XII is very true to the original band without feeling it’s unevolved or a tribute.
7. Devils Canyon, 1996
Although Danny Joe Brown is the only original band member on Devils Canyon, the eighth studio album, he wouldn’t remain with the band. Unfortunately, DJB had to retire in the middle of recording this one because of his health. However, the silver lining is that Phil McCormack joined MH, and he was ready to rock the vocals.
6. Silent Reign Of Heroes, 1998
Silent Reign Of Heroes came out in 1998 after Molly Hatchet had been making albums and touring for well over two decades. This is the one that marks the approximate middle of the band’s career so far, and it’s a great album. The vocals, in particular, stand out. As In Music We Trust so elegantly states, “Especially impressive throughout the CD are the vocals of Phil McCormack, whose whisky-soaked voice is stunning in its pure southern rock glory. He is a fine addition to the legacy of Hatchet singers.”
5. Beatin’ The Odds, 1980
Coming in at number five on our list is the excellent Beatin’ The Odds. This is the first Molly Hatchet album to feature Jimmy Farrar instead of original singer Danny Joe Brown. In 2008 the band re-released a newly digitally remastered version of this album with bonus tracks. The Special Collector’s Edition’s bonus tracks are all previously unreleased material unique to that album.
4. No Guts No Glory, 1983
No Guts No Glory was Molly Hatchet’s fifth studio album. Danny Joe Brown made a triumphant return to the band for this album. However, one of the most often remarked about features of this album is that it’s the only one to break with the band’s longstanding tradition of using epic fantasy art for their cover. Instead, No Guts No Glory features a photo of the band at what appears to be Old Tucson Studios before it burned in April of 1995, dressed as though they were in a western film
3. Molly Hatchet, 1978
Molly Hatchet’s first album was self-titled and well received. By the time it came out in 1978, the group already had a large fan base and was touring with other famed groups of the era like Aerosmith, AC/DC, and Judas Priest. Although this group never quite reached the level of fame that some of their tour-mates received, they were there on the same tours, playing to the same massive crowds.
2. Take No Prisoners, 1981
If the cover art on this outstanding album looks strangely familiar, then you have excellent taste. Famed fantasy artist Boris Vallejo painted the image, including all the band’s current (in 1981) members. In keeping with their tradition of using stellar fantasy artworks to match the overall aesthetic of hard rock and heavy metal in its early years, Molly Hatchet commissioned this extraordinary cover. The original was sold in 2007 through Heritage Auctions for an undisclosed sum.
1. Flirtin’ With Disaster, 1979
Flirtin’ With Disaster is the fan-favorite album from 1979. Not only is this Molly Hatchet’s most sold album, but it was reissued in 2001 with several bonus tracks. The most famous track on this beloved double-platinum album is arguably the often replayed Let The Good Times Roll. Meanwhile, the memorable cover art is a Frank Frazetta painting known as Dark Kingdom. Frazetta would go on to make more MH covers over the years contributing to the image of the band and making their albums instantly recognizable even before you read the name on them.
Between 1978 and 2012, Molly Hatchet put out fourteen studio albums, so there’s plenty to listen to on this list. We recommend checking them out in chronological order to hear the band’s progression over the years as they evolve and change with the times. Unlike many classic heavy bands from the seventies and eighties, you can also catch a live show. So once you run through the entire Molly Hatchet discography, you can check them out in person too.