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FreakBeat Freakout (1964-72)

FreakBeat Freakout (1964-72)



FreakBeat Freakout (1964-72)

Track Label Cat# Date Comments Rating
Troggs

01: Feels Like A Woman Pye UK 7N 45147 2 Jun 1972 2 8.0
The Blue Rondos

02: Baby I Go For You Pye UK 7N 15734 27 Nov 1964 9 9.1
The Sorrows

03: Let Me In Piccadilly UK 7N 35336 26 Aug 1966 4 8.6
The Spectres

04: (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet Piccadilly UK 7N 35368 10 Feb 1967 7 8.0
The First Gear

05: Leave My Kitten Alone Pye UK 7N 15703 9 Oct 1964 4 9.5
The Brand

06: I'm A Lover Not A Fighter Piccadilly UK 7N 35216 27 Nov 1964 3 7.5
The 5 A. M. Event

07: Hungry Pye UK 7N 17154 22 Jul 1966 13 9.0
Tony Jackson With The Vibrations

08: Fortune Teller Pye UK 7N 15766 12 Feb 1965 6 9.5
Simon Raven

09: I Wonder If She Remembers Me Piccadilly UK 7N 35301 4 Mar 1966 6 10.0
The Sheffields

10: It Must Be Love Pye UK 7N 15600 Jan 1964 0 8.0
The Clique [UK]

11: We Didn't Kiss, Didn't Love, But Now We Do Do Pye UK 7N 15853 May 1965 7 10.0
The Primitives

12: You Said Pye UK 7N 15755 15 Jan 1965 5 10.0
Jimmy Powell And The 5 Dimensions

13: That's Alright Pye UK 7N 15663 Jun 1964 4 8.5
The meddyEVILS

14: It's All For You Pye UK 7N 17091 29 Apr 1966 2 7.7
Jan Panter

15: Scratch My Back Pye UK 7N 17097 6 May 1966 8 9.0
The Worrying Kynde

16: Got The Blame Piccadilly UK 7N 35370 10 Mar 1967 2 9.5
The Montanas

17: That's When Happiness Began Pye UK 7N 17183 7 Oct 1966 4 7.0
The Carnaby

18: Jump And Dance Piccadilly UK 7N 35272 29 Oct 1965 16 7.1
The Sorrows

19: You've Got What I Want Piccadilly UK 7N 35277 29 Oct 1965 4 7.2
Don Craine's New Downliners Sect

20: Roses Pye UK 7N 17261 24 Feb 1967 2 8.5
The Truth

21: Baby You've Got It Pye UK 7N 17095 29 Apr 1966 2 7.0
The Movement

22: Tell Her Target Ireland 7N 17443 1967 6  
The Primitives

23: Help Me Pye UK 7N 15721 Nov 1964 2 7.0
The meddyEVILS

24: Ma's Place Pye UK 7N 17091 29 Apr 1966 2 7.7
The Clique [UK]

25: She Ain't No Good Pye UK 7N 15786 26 Feb 1965 4 8.2
The Sheffields

26: Plenty Of Love Pye UK 7N 15767 10 Feb 1965 2 8.0
Tony Dangerfield With The Thrills

27: She's Too Way Out Pye UK 7N 15695 18 Sep 1964 6 8.5
Johnny Neal and The Starliners

28: Walk Baby Walk Pye UK 7N 15838 30 Apr 1965 4 7.5

Enjoy



The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds



The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds

Members: Ali McKenzie: vocals - Ron Wood: lead guitar, vocals - Tony Munroe: rhythm guitar, vocals - Kim Gardner: bass, vocals - Pete McDaniels: drums.

The Birds were one of the hard-luck outfits in the annals of '60s British rock. By reputation, they were one of the top R&B-based outfits in England during the mid-'60s, with a sound as hard and appealing as the Who, the Yardbirds, or the Small Faces. In contrast to a lot of other acts that never charted a hit, the Birds are remembered slightly by some serious fans, and are mentioned in several history books -- but for entirely the wrong reasons. the Birds are remembered for the fact that Ron Wood got his start in the band before moving on to bigger things with the Faces and the Rolling Stones; and that they shared a name, albeit spelled differently, with an American band of considerable prominence. Nobody knows a lot about their music, however, which, on record, consisted of fewer than a dozen songs. Ron Wood (guitar, harmonica, vocals), Tony Munroe (guitar, vocals), and Kim Gardner (bass) grew up within a block of each other, along with original drummer Bob Langham (succeeded by Pete Hocking, aka Pete McDaniels), and had gotten together with lead singer Ali McKenzie to form a band in 1964, while all were in their teens. They were based in Yiewsley in West London, and played the local community center regularly, building up a serious following, which led to their turning professional. The name the Birds came about when they were forced to change their original name, the Thunderbirds, owing to the name of Chris Farlowe's backing band of the period. Their music was hard R&B with a real edge to to it, and was good enough to get them into in a battle-of-the-bands contest held under the aegis of Ready, Steady, Go, the weekly music showcase series. They didn't win, but got a television appearance out of it, on which they were spotted by executives from Decca -- a contract followed, resulting in the recording of their first single, "You Don't Love Me," in November of 1964. Early the following spring, they tried again with a second single, "Leaving Here," which they got to perform on television.
The group seemed poised for success. Their bookings placed them ahead of the Pretty Things and the early Jeff Beck group the Tridents, and they were billed with the Who on some of the same gigs. In that company, there seemed to be no way that they could fail, especially with their sound, a loud, crunchy brand of British rhythm & blues-based rock, roughly akin to early Who, the Yardbirds, and the Kinks.
Disaster struck the band from a completely unexpected quarter -- across the Atlantic -- at in the spring of 1965, however. Fresh off of their first U.S. hit came a Los Angeles-based quintet called the Byrds. Their debut single, "Mr. Tambourine Man," released on the newly established British CBS Records label, was burning up the British charts, and "Leaving Here" by the Birds was left there, on record store shelves (when it was ordered at all). That summer the rival group toured England for the first time, and although the Birds' manager tried to take legal action, it was to no avail -- the spellings were different, and both groups' claim to the name were about equally good. A third Decca single in late 1965 brought their relationship with that label to an end. The group then moved to Reaction Records, at first under the name Birds Birds, but their debut single for the label, "Say Those Magic Words," was delayed in release for almost a year due to a contractual dispute. They also cut a version of Pete Townshend's "Run Run Run" highlighted by Wood's crunchy guitar and McKenzie's punked-out vocals, that could've given the Who a run for their money in a chase up the charts by rival singles. And they got one delightfully bizarre film appearance under their belt, performing a Ron Wood/Tony Munroe song, "That's All I Need," in the horror chiller The Deadly Bees, in 1966. Munroe was out of the band not long after, and Wood left in 1967, passing through the lineup of the Jeff Beck Group before joining the reconfigured (Small) Faces with Rod Stewart in 1969.
the Birds were one of the better bands of their era, as evidenced by the large following they built up from their live performances, playing a hard, loud brand of R&B, with polished vocals and a forceful, crunchy guitar sound. They weren't far removed from the Small Faces or the Who in sound, and perhaps they might've fared better, or had a longer run at success, if they hadn't been signed to a label that already had the Small Faces and the Rolling Stones under contract. The name confusion probably killed whatever chance they had of cracking the English charts, as well as eclipsing their musical virtues for posterity.


The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British Birds


This is an astonishingly lively and exciting collection, coming from a band that scarcely sold any records in their own time and are known today for their name and their lineup, but not their music. The stuff here is as crunchy and grinding as the early Who material, and if the band's own songwriting isn't as distinctive, the style of the performing is more appealing. The songs range from some hot Ron Wood originals ("You're on My Mind," "Next in Line," "That's All I Need") to covers of obscure Motown songs and Pete Townshend material. Think of the Kinks from "Long Tall Sally," the Yardbirds from "A Certain Girl," or the Who from "The Good's Gone" and that's the dominant sound here -- curiously, their cover of Townshend's "Run Run Run" starts out as though it's going to turn into "My Generation." Ali MacKenzie sounded like a punkier Roger Daltrey, and Ron Wood's playing was a delightful compendium of rhythm fills and angular blues licks that must've been devastating on-stage. There's also an unlisted bonus track on the CD -- at the risk of spoiling the surprise, it's their number from the 1966 horror film The Deadly Bees, which seems not to have survived as a formal, free-standing studio master.

The Cops 'n Robbers - The Cops 'n Robbers (1964-65)

The Cops 'n Robbers -  The Cops 'n Robbers (1964-65)

A little-known but quality group from the R&B wing of the British Invasion, the Cops 'n Robbers (named after a Bo Diddley song) issued just three singles in the mid-'60s, as well as a French-only EP. Their chief claim to fame is recording (and writing) the original version of "You'll Never Do It Baby," a cool, nasty R&B-rock raver that was covered by the Pretty Things on their second album. Cops 'n Robbers were indeed rather similar to the Pretty Things in their punky R&B-rock approach, yet even punkier than the Pretty Things (but not as sloppy as another sub-Pretties act, the Downliners Sect). Singer Brian "Smudger" Smith had an unrefined, sullen leer in his delivery, and the band was picked up by the same management team that signed Donovan (a friend of Cops 'n Robbers). They issued a good version of "St. James Infirmary" on Decca in late 1964, but after its failure moved to Pye for the rest of their meager recorded output, which included a bizarre, ill-chosen cover of the My Fair Lady standard "I Could Have Danced All Night." Drummer Henry Harrison joined the New Vaudeville Band ("Winchester Cathedral"), an act which could have been hardly any more of a polar opposite from his previous group.

The Cops 'n Robbers -  The Cops 'n Robbers (1964-65)

All 14 songs known to exist by the band -- both sides of their three singles, two tracks that only appeared on their French-only EP, and six blues-rock covers rescued from a 1964 acetate. "You'll Never Do It Baby," and with its compelling, jerky riff, is the clear highlight (although the Pretty Things cover is better); "There's Gotta Be a Reason" is also good moody early British R&B, while "St. James Infirmary," with its gloomy deep organ sound, is a worthy treatment of that covered-to-death standard. Otherwise, it's uneven sailing: an original ("Just Keep Right On") that sounds like Gerry & the Pacemakers trying to be an R&B band, the strange R&B version of "I Could Have Danced All Night," and six pretty routine covers of classics by Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, and the like from a 1964 acetate. The album was remastered from singles and acetates, and the fidelity is often dull (though obviously there were limitations on what could be done with the acetates), yet this is still recommended to fans of bands like the Pretty Things for its appealingly grimy British R&B stance.

LP vinil. Low quality

The Sorrows - Old Songs, New Songs

The Sorrows - Old Songs, New Songs


The first-ever official reissue of this legendary Italian-only late Sixties album! British freakbeat/garage R&B giants the Sorrows relocated to Italy in 1966, recording the album Old Songs New Songs a couple of years later for a small independent label based in Milan. Now extremely rare as an original pressing, this new, band-approved reissue features the album in sparkling sound quality and adds an extra 100 minutes of music, nearly all of which is previously unreleased. Among the highlights are the magnificent heavy psychedelia of the band's aborted early 1968 Pye single 'Which Way'/'My Way Of Thinking', the theme song to the cult Italian spy caper Ypotron, a couple of movie collaborations with soundtrack maestro Ennio Morricone, and even an entire late 1968 demo album that, following the departure of two group members, was eventually scrapped and replaced by Old Songs New Songs! Completed by a previously unheard live gig from 1980 that proved the Sorrows' savage garage band instincts were fully intact a decade later, this package features new, extremely detailed sleevenotes concerning their time in Italy, with fresh band quotes and some superb, previously unpublished photos. This incredible 2CD package is the final word on the band's lengthy but previously little-documented Italian sojourn!

"This is the final word on the Sorrows, dating from their later Italian period. Disc one is the real keeper here, coupling the rare Cream/Hendrix inspired '69 LP Old Songs New Songs in great sound with the addition of nine rare and unreleased tracks from the same period. The spy film theme 'Ypotron' is a freakbeat jewel and 'Which Way' and 'My Way Of Thinking' from a '68 acetate are sublime psych gems, up there with the greatest of the genre. Disc two is not essential but adds interest as wider documentation. There's a nine track demo album, featuring some great band originals and alternate takes as well as rather less thrilling extemporisations of Bee Gees, Animals, Beatles and Traffic songs. A 1980 live reunion reflects the band's mid-60s stage repertoire but other than spirited renditions of 'Let Me In' and 'Take A Heart', this is mainly a rock 'n' roll revival show. The booklet and David Wells' liners are immaculate and make clear sense of the convoluted story of this undervalued band." (Shindig!)

"To most 60s pop fans, the Sorrows are known as one-hit wonders with a rough sound and a surly attitude, featuring the soon-solo talents of Don Fardon - himself a one-hit wonder with 'Indian Reservation', but perhaps best known for being six foot, seven-and-a-half inches tall. And that's it. Long after Fardon split, however, some of the band grabbed a last chance (for an extended holiday, at least) and relocated to Italy in 1966 to try and cash in on an Anglophilic scene. During this footnote era, they did achieve some squealing success as a placebo live draw, and hung around for years playing Family and Traffic songs, plus numbers by the ex-pat rockers who made up a bewildering, revolving cast list (two relatively major players are remembered only as "Kit" and "Rod"). They recorded singles for a tiny Italian indie label and, eventually, an LP. Old Songs New Songs is rare, inevitably hailed as a legendary cult classic. This two-disc set contains a complete bonus demo album and various 45 sides, including the sole outstanding track 'Ypotron' - feed-backing freakbeat recorded in '66 for an Italian spy caper movie." (Record Collector)

The Sorrows hardly require introduction - their 1965 chart single ‘Take a Heart’ virtually defines freakbeat, after all. As most readers will know, the group began shedding members when they failed to match that record’s modest commercial success in the following months, but did carry on, eventually decamping to Italy where, for a time, they were regarded as genuine pop stars. Their collectible, sometimes bootlegged 1969 LP for the tiny Milan-based Miura label here receives its first authorized reissue, together with a wealth of related singles, film soundtrack numbers, demos, and the previously unissued live recording of a 1980 band reunion gig. With an informative and photo-packed booklet, this set sheds considerable light on the Sorrows’ previously somewhat murky Italian period. If a bit of a hodge-podge, considering that it was cobbled together from bits and pieces by at least three different band configurations, Old Songs New Songs actually hangs together pretty well as an album. Basically, it reflects their live sets of the period, which featured covers of numbers by Traffic, the Small Faces and Family along with band originals like guitarist Chuck Fryers’ ‘Hey Hey’, ‘Same Old Road’ and the decidedly heavy ‘Io Amo Te Per Lei’ (heard elsewhere here in an earlier UK-recorded demo of its original English language incarnation, ‘Which Way’). By far the strangest track - and possibly the most interesting - is ‘The Maker’, six minutes of loopy British psychedelia that rocks like mad before fading on a coda of sitar and Spanish guitar. It’s a holdover from the short-lived line-up that included two fellows named Kit and Rod (their surnames have faded from memory). Based on this and two other Kit and Rod-penned numbers from the same demo sessions (the catchy ‘Dogs And Cats’ and the Ogden’s-flavoured ‘Answer My Questions’), they were a clever pair of songwriters, and one wonders what became of them. Also of interest are the very cool ’66-vintage film soundtrack recordings ‘Pioggia Sul Tuo Viso #1’ and ‘Viso #2’ (both Ennio Morricone co-writes and both sung by former member Pip Whitcher) and the spy flick theme song ‘Ypotron’, a freakbeat winner with plenty of feedback and crunch. In 1980, the mid-‘60s Sorrows line-up, minus Don Fardon, reconvened for a series of pub gigs in their old Coventry stomping grounds. The set captured here concludes with (what else?) ‘Take A Heart’. “We had a hit record with this in 1965,” says the member announcing the number. “Three pounds each out of it!” (Ugly Things)

Initial line-up
Philip (Pip) Whitcher - (born 1943, Coventry) - lead guitar and vocals.
Don Fardon - (born Donald Arthur Maughn, 19 August 1940, Coventry) - vocals
Philip (Phil) Packham - (born 13 June 1945, Bidford-on-Avon, near Stratford, Warwickshire) - bass guitar
Terry Juckes - (born 27 August 1943, Broadway, Worcestershire ) - rhythm guitar - vocals
Bruce Finlay - (born 20 September 1944, Huntly, Aberdeenshire, Scotland) - drums

After 1966
Philip (Pip) Whitcher - rhythm guitar and vocals
Wesley 'Wez' Price - bass - (born 19 July 1945, Coventry, Warwickshire)
Roger (Rog) Lomas - lead Guitar (born Roger David Lomas, 8 October 1948, Keresley Hospital, Coventry, Warwickshire). 1966 - 1967
Bruce Finlay - drums
Chuck Fryers - Guitar, vocals. (born Alan Paul Fryers, 24 May 1945, Bognor Regis, West Sussex). 1967 -1969
Geoff Prior - Bass. 1967 -
Chris Smith - lead vocals Hammond organ

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sorrows

The Sorrows - Old Songs, New Songs (1966-1980)

The Sorrows - Old Songs, New Songs

The Sorrows - Old Songs, New Songs

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting



The band's history began in 1963 with a group called the Blue Jacks in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, to the north of London. The band had just gotten a new lead singer, Kenny Pickett (who'd previously driven the van for Neil Christian & the Crusaders), and with the addition of a new lead guitarist, Eddie Phillips, they changed their name to the Mark Four. The latter band got signed to Mercury Records' British division in 1964 but the resulting two singles failed to sell. Even as British audiences were finding their work quite resistible, however, German audiences were greeting their performances at the Big Ben Club in Wilhelmshaven with rousing enthusiasm. It was during their extended residence in Germany that the band chanced to cross paths with a local band called the Roadrunners, who had attracted amazing local club attendance with their use of guitar feedback in their songs. Eddie Phillips made note of the effect and started working out how he might assimilate it into his playing.

The Mark Four got a second crack at recording success with Decca Records, which resulted in a single of "Hurt Me (If You Will)" b/w "I'm Leaving." It also failed to sell, but it did establish the beginning of a new sound; on that record, Phillips introduced his own approach to guitar feedback. It was all a little too wild for Decca, which stuck the song on the B-side, but it was a beginning of sorts. It also coincided with an ending, as the band's rhythm guitarist, Mick Thompson, and their bassist, John Dalton -- soon to join the Kinks, replacing Peter Quaife -- quit. The Mark Four finished their history with a temporary lineup and one last single in early 1966. During the weeks that followed, Pickett and Phillips, along with drummer Jack Jones, held the group together and began rethinking their precise image and direction -- for a brief time, future superstar bassist Herbie Flowers even sat in with them. By the spring of that year, the group had evolved into the Creation, with ex-Merseybeats bassist Bob Garner filling out the lineup, and they had also signed with an ambitious young Australian-born manager -- then closely associated with Brian Epstein -- named Robert Stigwood.

The Creation burst on the British pop/rock scene that June with "Making Time," a single that seemed to have everything going for it -- a killer beat after a brief (but catchy) stop-and-go intro, a great chorus, and a flashy, slashy, crunchy lead guitar part by Eddie Phillips that intersected very neatly with and expanded upon the kind of sound that the Who were carrying high onto the charts at the time. The parallel was no accident, as that single was produced by Shel Talmy, who'd also worked on all of those early Who sides. In an eerie and inexplicable portent of their future, however, "Making Time" soared to number five in Germany but peaked at an anemic number 49 in England, this at a time when they were getting amazing press for their stage performances, which included paintings being lit afire and, in anticipation of what Jimmy Page would one day be doing with the Yardbirds, among others, Phillips began playing his electric guitar with a violin bow.

The group finally saw some slightly significant chart action at home in the fall of 1966 with "Painter Man," a cheerfully trippy pop anthem -- with a feedback-oozing guitar break -- that made the Top 40; predictably, the same record hit number one in Germany. The B-side, "Biff Bang Pow," opened with a "My Generation" guitar riff and jumped into a pop/rock idiom with a psychedelic edge that could have earned it airplay on its own.

By the start of 1967, however, the Creation had hit a crisis point, as Kenny Pickett quit over creative differences and frustration at the need to continue touring in Europe, where their audience was seemingly rooted. He was eventually replaced by Kim Gardner, late of the group the Birds. Their sound at that point was still intact -- Phillips was still there on guitar, which was a huge part of what they were about musically and sonically. At this point, with whatever momentum they'd built up in jeopardy, the group took a totally unexpected turn into blue-eyed soul with "If I Stay Too Long," which was a good enough showcase for Gardner (supported by some reverb-soaked backing vocals and an organ) but offered little from Phillips except some emphatically played chords; it was as though the Who, having established themselves on the charts and the radio with "My Generation" and "Anyway Anyhow Anywhere," had suddenly issued their version of "Please, Please, Please" as a 45 rpm -- it confused people who knew the Creation, and was mostly ignored by established fans. Much more like their established sound were "Can I Join Your Band," which somehow only got issued in France, and the U.K. single's B-side, "Nightmares."

We Are Paintermen They were still struggling for a commercial foothold in England, despite being one of the most widely touted live acts of the time, when the group's German label decided it was time to release a Creation LP. We Are Paintermen ended up being better than anyone could have anticipated, highlighted by the previous hit plus a surprisingly good, crunchy, at times almost Byrds-like rendition of "Like a Rolling Stone," and a version of "Hey Joe" that had the temerity to take Jimi Hendrix's slow tempo and treat its jagged guitar line even more harshly. There was also a rousing rendition of "Cool Jerk" for anyone who cared, though a lot else of what was there was either off-point or represented the earlier lineup. One more single, "Life Is Just Beginning" b/w "Through My Eyes," showed up in the fall of 1967 -- the A-side was a rousing psychedelic showcase, with elements of Indian raga and a catchy, chant-like main body, plus jagged guitar and a string orchestra with the cellos sawing away in the best "King Midas in Reverse" manner. "Through My Eyes" was no throwaway, either, with a lean, crunchy guitar, beautiful choruses, and a great central tune, with three-minutes-and-change of spacy sensibilities ending in a feedback crescendo.
Evidently, Eddie Phillips felt that the single was as good a showcase as he would ever get, and in October of 1967 he quit. His departure was followed by Kim Gardner's decision to exit the group for a team-up with Ron Wood, Jon Lord, and Twink in what became known as Santa Barbara Machinehead. The Creation was kept "alive" into the spring of 1968 when their U.K. label, Polydor, released a single of "How Does It Feel" b/w "Tom Tom" on both sides of the Atlantic, with the U.S. version tarted up with all sorts of dubbed-on psychedelic effects. They were both good sides but never charted, and that might've been the end of the group, but for the sudden re-emergence of Kenny Pickett, who got Gardner and Jones back together to form the core of a new Creation. That band went through a couple of lineup changes, played around Europe for a bit with Ron Wood as a member, and then dissolved, and somewhere in the midst of all of those lineup changes a new album was started and abandoned (and forgotten for 36 years). Oddly enough, the "new" group at its best didn't sound bad, or all that much different from the classic lineup, although they lacked Phillips' knack for brushing up right against the edge of chaos with his guitar breaks.

That might've been the end, once and for all, of the group's history, but for four excellent (and very early) sides, probably demos by the Pickett/Phillips lineup, with Herbie Flowers sitting in on bass -- including a fine soul side, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy," and a killer rendition of "Bonie Maronie," kitted out in a manner not that different from "Hey Joe" or "Biff Bam Boom" -- that turned up in Germany in 1968. This time, however, the group was really gone, the members going their separate ways -- Phillips into soul singer P.P. Arnold's band, among other activities; Gardner became part of Ashton, Gardner & Dyke ("Resurrection Shuffle") and Tony Kaye's group Badger; Dalton and Thompson tried reuniting under the name Passtime, and Kenny Pickett, after enjoying some success as a songwriter and performing in a variety of contexts, returned to being a roadie, this time for Led Zeppelin and other bands; and he eventually re-formed the Creation in the first half of the '90s.

How Does It Feel to Feel? His reactivation of the Creation was a response to a long series of events belatedly recognizing the band. In the early '80s, Eva Records of France released an LP that combined the singles by the Mark Four and some of the key sides of the Creation, while England's Edsel Records released How Does It Feel to Feel?, the definitive LP collection of the Creation. The group gained a reputation as one of the great lost missing links of '60s rock, sort of England's answer to Moby Grape in terms of massive talent unaccountably caught in a dead-end. The latter-day group enjoyed three years of success before Pickett's death from a heart attack in 1996 ended their history. Since then, Demon Records in England has issued a slightly fuller, better mastered compilation (Our Music Is Red -- With Purple Flashes), and Retroactive Records released two CDs of their work, complete with outtakes, alternate mixes, and television performances, all amazing for a band that couldn't get a proper LP recorded in their own time. In 2017, the Numero Group released Action Painting, a double-album that included new stereo mixes of most of their records, and Edsel made a bid to top that with a four-CD set called Creation Theory, which gathered up later-period recordings in addition to their classic sides.




The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting 2017


Of all the bands that almost made it in the swingin' '60s, the Creation are one of the most storied and most anthologized. Thanks to a small number of classic singles, especially the brilliant "Making Time," their incendiary stage show, and their guitarist Eddie Phillips' use of a violin bow to conjure otherworldly sounds out of his guitar, the art-pop freakbeat group is often seen as the quintessential lost band of the era. The Numero Group's double-disc set Action Painting is the latest effort to make sure the Creation's music is given the attention it deserves. From the exhaustive booklet to the pristine remastering done by the group's original producer, Shel Talmy, it's the best-looking and best-sounding set yet. It gathers up all their singles, tracks that never saw the light of day at the time but were later issued on compilations, a handful of songs cut by the band in its pre-Creation Mark Four incarnation, a small number of backing tracks, and, most interestingly for Creation obsessives, 15 new stereo mixes done by the collection's producer Alec Palao and approved by Talmy. Hearing the songs yet again, it's clear that given a break here or there, or if they had managed to keep a stable lineup together, the Creation really could have been as big as the Small Faces or the Who. Songs like "Making Time," "Try and Stop Me," and "Biff, Bang, Pow" have the powerful crunch of the latter and the swaggering attitude of the former. Add in Phillips' startling guitar work, Kenny Pickett's powerfully soulful vocals, and the punchy overall sound and you've got some timeless stuff. Even when the band reconfigured and lost Pickett's vocals, the other guys stepped up to fill the void, and later songs like "How Does It Feel to Feel" and "Life Is Just Beginning" have all the energy and power of the best music coming out of the U.K. at the time. All their best songs are here, interspersed with the R&B covers and novelties bands had to do to survive the '60s. Even at their dorkiest though, when covering "Cool Jerk" or singing about dancing girls on "The Girls Are Naked," the Creation always had that special something that made everything they did sound alive and important. In the years since the band split up, smart labels have made sure to keep the Creation's work available with varying degrees of quality. The Numero Group have done their usual top-notch job, and Action Painting is the best Creation collection yet. The remastering is clear and strong, the booklet is a great read, and the stereo mixes on the second record are an interesting diversion, opening up the sound a little and giving the guitars more room to breathe. The band is a classic just-missed story, detailed in painstaking fashion in the booklet, but as Action Painting shows, the Creation's music lives on as some of the most exciting, most impressive sounds of the '60s.

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting

The Creation ‎– Action Painting


The Creation ‎– Action Painting


FreakBeat Freakout (1964-72)The Birds - The Collector's Guide To Rare British BirdsVA - Echoes From The WildernessThe Cops 'n Robbers -  The Cops 'n Robbers (1964-65) The Sorrows - Old Songs, New SongsThe Hounddogs - Respect (1967)The Creation ‎– Action Painting

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