Superb disc of '60s garage rock
When Lenny Kaye put together the legendary double-LP "Nuggets" in the early '70s, he kicked off an anthologizing craze that's still going strong. Varese's producers navigate a rockin' line between the more well-known names of '60s garage rock and the sort of obscurities found on anthology series' like "Pebbles" and "Beyond the Grave." It's a winning mix, combining killer classics like Paul Revere & The Raiders "Just Like Me" and The Kingsmen's "Louie, Louie" with lesser-known gems like The Moving Sidewalks' "99th Floor" (featuring a young Billy Gibbons, later of ZZ Top) and The Litter's "Action Woman." ¶ Followers of garage rock will know most these tracks, but given the regional fame of many singles, and the uneven quality of their anthological reissue over the years, there will be some nice surprises for even die-hard collectors. More importantly, those familiar only with the national hits will treasure this introduction to a broader sampling of mid-60s garage rock riches. This is a superb disc for charting a course to additional purchases (e.g., original album reissues and multi-disc box sets like "Nuggets" and "Nuggets II"), with 25 well-selected original tracks and liner notes from garage rock authority (and "Ugly Things" fanzine editor) Mike Stax. ¶ Cuts 1-3, 9-12, 17-18, and 24 are true stereo, while the rest are AM-radio-ready mono. Tracks 26-28 were recorded live at the Cavestomp garage rock celebrations in 1999 and 2000, and show aging garage rockers - especially The Standells - to hang on to their mojo with impressive force.
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