Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Brat – Not Quite Right

Brat – Not Quite Right/ Long Time Away –Red Rooster Records (1974 US)

This is in fact the first release by Artful Dodger prior to signing to Columbia and to big shot management team Leber-Krebs. Artful Dodger never really made it, but were big favourites as they really hit the spot with their special mix of Power Pop /Byrdsian jangle and upfront raspy Faces rock. All 4 albums are worth seeking out –but I especially recommend their first two ( self-titled and Honor Amongst The Thieves) as well as their later album as a four piece on Ariola (Rave On). Not Quite Right finds the band at the boogier edge of the spectrum, although the intro is reminiscent of Wayside and there’s enough melodicism to elevate them way above being average boogie merchants. Long time Away is simply gorgeous and is very different to the version found on their first album.

Click below for edits of Not Quite Right and Long Time Away

Friday, September 21, 2007

Fred Cass And His Fabulous Cassettes – At The Weekend

Fred Cass And His Fabulous Cassettes –At The Weekend/ Donny & Marie (The Disco Queen) –The Fred Cassette Co (1980 AUS)

Ok, here’s a little something to end the week…The A side is a cracking rockin’ ode to the weekend, which would sit perfectly next to Eddie And The Hot Rods or Stanley Frank. Recorded in the summer of 1976 with The SportsStephen Cummings on lead vocals, it features a great Glitter drum break and blazing dual lead guitars. The packaging on this DIY single includes an insert that’s pretty hilarious and if you believe the credits, the A side was used in a movie called Hot Throat. Whatever the truth, here is a link to a film clip of the band miming the song in the studio: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_hFJUoYgY4
The B side, Donny & Marie somehow manages to be pure filth without a sheep or ewe within hearing distance …

Click on title for a soundclip of At The Weekend

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Slowbone – Oh Man

Slowbone – Oh Man/Get What You’re Given – Rare Earth RES 119 (1974 UK)

Slowbone were an East End combo formed by Barry Hart and Jeff Peters from 60s Psych band Turquoise. They released 2 other singles at the time on Rare Earth: Happy Birthday Sweet 16 and Hot California Beach (under the name Rough Riders). They were also the backing band on the Sonny And The Sovereigns single –School Is Out (also on Rare Earth, check out the October 30th 2006 post ).
Oh Man is a snappy uptempo Teen/Glam/Boogie workout much in the same vein as The Bo’ Flyers or April, while Get What You’re Given sounds more grown up and is in Freaky/Prog/Rock mode and I assume this is more in keeping with the material found on their posthumous Tales Of A Crooked Man and a Live at The Greyhound albums.

Oh Man is bound to bring a smile to your face and get your feet tapping…

From left to right: Keith Shepherd (drums), Jeff Peters (bass), Lea Hart(guitar,vocals) and Jim Hunter (keys)

Click below for a full version of Oh Man

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Casuals –Tara Tiger Girl

The Casuals –Tara Tiger Girl/Nature’s Child –Parlophone R5959 (1972 UK)

Tara Tiger Girl was sandwiched between The CasualsDecca period and The Witch on Dawn in 1974.
The Casuals at this time were most likely Ex-World of Oz Chris Evans and his Kansas Hook/ American Jam Band cronies in full-on Pure Pop mode. Nature’s Child also appeared as the B side of The American Jam Band’s American Jam single.
Tara Tiger Girl is a fine Psych/Pop number very much like The Move circa 1968 albeit with a vocalist sounding a lot like Anthony Newley in very tight loons! The tune is damn catchy anyhow, with some nice Psych touches. Enjoy the fun!

Click below for a full version of Tara Tiger Girl

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Toggle –Little Green Men

Toggle –Tiger Woman/ Little Green Men –Decca 85.029 (1974 French issue)

Another fun and near-genius creation from the Tony Atkins/Gerry Morris partnership. It shares a sci-fi theme with Galahad’s Rocket Summer (Bell) , but with a more na├»ve Joe Meek-like sense of innocence . Musically this is a perfect example of BubbleGlam with its dual sustained guitars and killer chorus coming in nice and early around the 30 second mark. The A side is more straightforward and is a top Boogie/Glam number, again with nice sustained guitar plus handclaps and a neo/pseudo-Rockabilly vocal delivery.

Hear edits of Little Green Men and Tiger Woman

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Smiley –I know What I Want

Smiley –Penelope/ I Know What I Want –LMCE LM 78008 (1972 French issue)

Post Creation single featuring Bob Garner. Although the A side is written by Kenny Pickett, I am unsure if he actually appears on the record. I Know What I Want ( written by Bob Garner) is an atmospheric semi-Glam/Late Fuzzbeat Stomper. As a further link to The Creation; both sides were co-produced by Shel Talmy, but strangely the production lacks a bit of power and bite. The A side is pretty hard to take: It’s a seriously grating piece of 70s Bubblegum, with obnoxious kiddie vocals . Anyone have confirmation of the line up on this single?

Click below for an edit of I Know What I Want and a snippet of Penelope (for information purposes only!)

Friday, September 07, 2007

My Version Is Better Than Yours Part 6 –Incorporating the Mike Berry story Part 2: Round The Gum Tree:Fire VS Real McCoy

Fire –Round The Gum Tree/Toothie Ruthie –London 45 -20048 (1968 US issue)
Real McCoy –Round The Gum Tree/ I Will –Target 7N 17704 (1969 IRL)

We are talking Bubblegum here and with a capital B! Fire were a trio from Hounslow featuring future Strawb Dave Lambert, they are more widely celebrated for their classic Psych/ Freakbeat number My Father’s Name Was Dad (Decca). Mike was producing this later Fire session.

MB: Time was running out and their songs were not coming together, so I showed them this song that I knew we could finish before we ran out of time.

At 1 minute and 32 seconds you can see his point and it’s also a very simple but catchy tune, even the backing vocals are sped up sounding like the Chipmunks on Helium.
MB: After we finished the session, I said to myself –What I have done here? –I’ll never work in this business again.

Later Mike received a phone call… “Hello Mike –Dick Rowe (head honcho at Decca at the time) here –I have to say that Round The Gum Tree is the most commercial song I’ve ever heard, we must release it and it will be a huge smash

MB: I thought it was a prank call and I put the phone down on him, but rang back to check and it was actually him...

Fire’s Round The Gum Tree wasn’t the predicted smash, but Irish showband Real McCoy gave it another shot. Their version is longer with added Psych guitar effects and even a key change. Whatever version you prefer, this song sounds like a real hit, just a shame that it wasn’t issued in the US as The 1910 Fruitgum Company

Click below for edits of Fire’s and Real Mccoy’s versions of Round The Gum Tree

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Remember This –Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival

Remember This –Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival/Over and Over Again –Penny Farthing PEN 862 (1975 UK)

Remember This is in fact Brum legend Mike Sheridan as the A side was originally recorded for the unreleased Elmer Goodbody Jnr album (check out his version of The Move’s Do Ya on Charisma). Featuring members of Wizzard (minus Roy Wood), it stands head and shoulders above The Cherrie Vangelder-Smith version. Rock ‘N’Roll Revival is a real opus. Part Slade, Rubettes, Wizzard with some Glitter Band thrown in plus with a Bolan/ Buddy Holly (or is it Gene Vincent?) hommage at the end. The performance ends up being much more than the sum of its parts. I don’t know what it is, but there’s something happening here and it all ends up being strangely touching and evocative. The B side is also a pretty good rocker written by Mike Sheridan.
To check out the Mike Sheridan/ Elmer Goodbody Jnr story go to

The Elmer Goodbody Jnr album is available there and real cheap

Click on title for a full version of Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Smith & Weston – A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues

Smith & Weston –A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues/Run Run Run –Decca F13441 (1973 UK)

Smith & Weston come up with a neat version of the Arthur Alexander track. Rawer than The Flamin’ Groovies' version from the previous year, this version stands (and stomps) at the crossroad of the then current Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival (Wild Angels, Fumble…) and crunching Glam. It features great power chords and handclaps, but the fuzzy/ scratchy guitar didn’t get quite through the mastering stage unscathed. Who the hell were these guys? More Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival/ Glam crossovers soon…

Click below for a soundclip of A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues

Monday, September 03, 2007

Mogan David And His Winos –Savage Young Winos

Please welcome scribe and curator extraordinaire Collin to Purepop with his review of this artifact that I hadn’t taken out of its sleeve for at least 25 years…God it's FUN. Hopefully Collin will be submitting more reviews, which will be great as I only have so many words in my vocabulary…

Mogan David And His Winos –Savage Young Winos –Kosher Records KOSR-001 (1973 US)

"Proto-punk and general good taste fans should definitely try and track this one down

It's Harold Bronson, the guy who founded Rhino Records, leading a gang of school-pals (all with great names like 'Cute Dan' and 'Speed Freak Paul') through a side and one more of excellente giz-rock of the oily 1970's vintage. Saturday Night Pogo owners should instantly recognize the Winos brand as their Beauty Queen (reecoded circa '73) is probably - no, definitely - the best track on said sad slab o' wax. Lethal levels of ineptitude are reached and somehow hitched to unbelievable lines of melodicism!!! Street Baby is The Real Kids seven years early, Party Games is more psychedelic than the Leopards picking a fight with Poobah and Nose Job has lyrics stolen from MAD Magazine - recorded on George Carlin's portable tape machine no less! Side two is live and kinda blows (plus it's all covers - though there is a surprise bluezz bonus track!).

The packaging is Live-At-Leeds-lavish beyond all reason - especially given its limited nature - with the sordid history of the band all typed out on the back-side of the gatefold (three members quit to devote more time to working on their hot rods only to miss out on Nose Job becoming the semester hit of the UCLA campus bookstore). Funny inserts, comics, contests, failed music theory papers and clippings are all an extra-tall glass of glee and refreshingly round out this bubbly belly-washer of an LP. Can still find dis 'un for not too much money (got mine for a ten spot) and it's all over (the U.S.) given that it was sold mainly through the pages of Phonograph Record and other period TB sheets.

Has Chris Stigliano done a Winos tribute issue of Black To Comm yet - if not, somebody should tell him! Sure to be a hit amongst Low Numbers fans, especially since most of 'em were Winos before graduating to chic, L.A. modernity.

To sum up:The name of the band is Mogan David & His Winos, The name of the record is Savage Young Winos, available on Kosher Records

Click below for edits of Beauty Queen, Street Baby and the bonus track (comes after The Berkowitz Blues)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Barracuda –Summer Girls

Barracuda –Summer Girls/ I Feel So Down–EMI 2027 (1973 UK)

Just to salute the end of summer (what summer???), here is a superb Beach Boys cop written by Marty Wilde and Peter Shelley. I don’t know how this one slipped by especially as it could easily be confused with that other summer song by The Barracudas (also on EMI). Summer Girls was later covered by Flash Cadillac And The Continental Kids as Hot Summer Girls on their fine Sons Of Beaches LP (Private Stock PS 2003). The B side I Feel So Down is a cool piece of hypnotic bongo psych and makes this single a great 2-sider.

Click on title for edits of Summer Girls and I Feel So Down