Kendra Steiner Editions

June 19, 2019

BEATFREAK, Volume 10 (Particles UK, cd)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 9:06 am

PART4105CD_CU

BEATFREAK VOLUME 10 (Particles UK, CD 4105)

RARE AND OBSCURE BRITISH BEAT 1964-1968, 20 track compilation
01. The Mighty Avengers – Hey Senorita (1964)

02. The Firing Squad – A Little Bit More (1964)

firing-squad-bull-moose-parlophone

03. Eden Kane – Gonna Do Something About You (1964)

04. The Juniors – Pocket Size (1964)

juniors-pocket-size-columbia

05. Neil Landon – I’ve Got Nothing To Lose (1966)

06. Bobby Angelo & The End – I Got Wise (1967)

bobby angelo

07. The Sonics – Hey Baby (1968)

08. Laurie Jay Combo – A Song Called Soul (1965)

09. Wee Willie Harris – Try Moving Baby (1966)

wee willie

10. The Roger James Four – Leave Me Alone (1965)

11. The Mustang – Why (1967)

12. The Monotones – If You Can’t Give Me All (1965)

13. Dave Curtiss & The Tremors – Que Sera Sera (1965)

dave-curtiss-and-the-tremors-que-sera-sera-karate

14. The Mosaics – Let’s Go Drag Racing (1966)

15. The Monotones – When Will I Be Loved (1965)

16. The Merseybeats – I Stand Accused (1968)

17. Jackie Lynton – Little Child (1964)

18. The Cousins – Yes Sir, That’s My Baby (1964)

yes sir

19. Bobby Cristo & The Rebels – I’ve Got To Get You Out Of My Mind (1964)

20. The Mighty Avengers – I’m Lost Without You (1965)

mighty-avengers-im-lost-without-you-press

The BEATFREAK series of compilations finishes up with Volume 10, and it’s a strong conclusion to an essential series. It’s hard to believe that at this late date, some 50+ years after the original British Beat era, one could find 20 (let alone 200, counting all the songs on the 10 albums in the series) unvarnished, raw UK beat records that have (mostly) escaped reissue, but here they are, in all their glory. Yes, some volumes have had some padding….but still, when the volumes would have tracks from someone like Billy J. Kramer, they actually were first-rate sides, but from an artist one might not want to seek out because of some non-beat records that tend to be better known. One of the strengths of this series is that they base the selection on what’s in the grooves, not on someone’s reputation. Therefore, if a balladeer or someone known for novelty records or someone rooted in the pre-Beatles period or someone who usually leaned toward jazz or skiffle made a solid Beat record, they are not afraid to include it in the series. I’ve been collecting this kind of thing since I first started buying used records in the early 1970’s—-I remember when I lived in Oklahoma in the early 80’s, finding the Ian and the Zodiacs US album in Philips, the German Star-Club LP’s by Kingsize Taylor and the Dominos, and various odd US 45 releases of obscure UK beat records, put out by various mid-sized labels who were no doubt thinking they might have the next Beatles or Yardbirds on their hands—-and all these decades later, there is still the same excitement on hearing new-to-my-ears classic UK beat quartets and quintets from the Golden Age, blasting away in the studio and sounding much like they probably sounded on the stage of some small club in Croydon or wherever. I should make the point that what we’ve got here is pure rock-and-roll, not romantic teen-pop heart-throbs, or vocal quartets with instrumental backing, or toytown baroque pop confections.

The tracks range from early 1964’s primitive “Hey Senorita” from The Mighty Avengers (best known for recording various Jagger-Richards songs), which sounds like it could be a demo recorded in the back room of a publisher’s office—-to later Merseybeats song “I Stand Accused” (from 1965, not 1968 as the back cover states) that harkens back to the glory days of pre-psychedelic Hollies, a song that The Action would have killed for—-most of the songs are from 64-65 (and the few from 66 are 64-65 in spirit), so just imagine that you are in the offices of the NME in 1965, and the postman drops off a huge burlap sack of random new singles from labels large and small by lesser-known and unknown artists hoping for their big break, longing for a write-up in the NME that will get them better-paying gigs. There is no order to the random singles in the sack, so you just put them on, one after the other, on your portable Dansette record player, blasting one beat blast after another at maximum volume, quaffing a pint or three of stout, stomping along with 20 gems of pure UK rock and roll from an era that set the standard, a standard that’s never been equaled. As in, say, Memphis in 1956 or Los Angeles or San Francisco in 1966, when you could probably go to any neighborhood and find local bands playing high school dances of gigs at the local VFW hall who were first-rate in every way playing at a fever-pitch of excitement, but because bands were a dime a dozen and we were in such a productive period, they tended to get lost in the shuffle….that’s how London and the UK in general was in the 64-67 period. You could dip the ladle into the pot and pull out 20 random songs and you’d have gold, if by gold you meant unpretentious rock and roll bands who knew their Bo Diddley and who wanted a taste of the fame that the Hollies or the Yardbirds had.

There are legendary names involved here–productions by such luminaries as Shel Talmy and Andrew Loog Oldham, as well as involvement by such music-biz pros as Arthur Greenslade and the John Carter-Ken Lewis duo–but really, it’s the randomness of a compilation such as this which gives BEATFREAK 10 its strength. If these are the barrel-scrapings of the UK Beat era—-and no one is doubting that they are—-then what an era it was! And you can experience it yourself for the minimal cost of this CD, and also get educated via the usual voluminous expert set of liner-notes with many pics and label shots. Grab some Guinness Stout or Newcastle Brown, crank up the volume, and set your player on repeat….you’ll want to listen to this album 3 or 4 times straight and feel it “kick in.” In anticipation of this Volume 10 of Beatfreak, which was waiting for me in the mail when I returned from my recent sojourn in Louisiana and East Texas, I blasted earlier Beatfreak volumes in my car as I was driving down I-10 and the state highways between Beaumont and Lake Charles. They all delivered the goods.

The Past & Present/Psychic Circle/Particles family of labels like to issue compilations in groups of 5, 10, or 20 (there were 20 volumes of Piccadilly Sunshine, for instance) so they can later issue the same material as box-sets. I would not be surprised to see the 10 Beatfreak albums issued in such a box a few years down the line. Until then, be sure to score some of the individual volumes, particularly this new Volume 10.

dansette

1962 Dansette Tempo record player

———————————————

ps, please note that the cover posted online for promo purposes (seen above) lists 1965-1968—-the cover of the actual album in my hands reads 1964-1968

 

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