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Boots - Nancy Sinatra,
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This review is from: Boots (Audio CD)
Of all the 60's female vocalists, Nancy Sinatra was surely the grooviest. Her vocal talents were at best average and her range limited but her unlikely partnership with maverick producer/ singer/songwriter Lee Hazelwood resulted in some of the strangest pop of the late 60s and has acheived cult status and respect from contemporary songsmiths like Nick Cave and Morrissey.
On this her debut, released in 1966, there is nothing approaching the genius of 'These Boots Are Made For Walking' which appears twice in both stereo and mono. As with all her 60s albums, the material is dominated by covers with a few Hazelwood originals.
Oddly, the album opens with a cover of Marianne Faithful's 'As Tears Go By', it starts out like a real downer until Hazelwood bravely or foolishly turns it into a lilting Bossa Nova. Where possible, and who could blame him, Hazelwood capitalises on the hit 'These Boots...'. On (The Beatles)'Day Tripper' for instance Hazelwood cheekily throws in the descending bass line of These Boots and (The Beatles)'Run For Your Life' sounds like it was composed for a cage of Go-Go dancers. The Castaway's (Beatlesque) 'Lies' features some cool brass work but Nancy sounds like she's struggling. She's much better on Hazelwood's Dylanesque 'So Long, Babe' and better still is her cover of Joaquin Prieto's dramatic ballad ('El Amor') 'In My Room'. Aided by some wonderful mournful Spanish trumpet, Nancy's vocal is strong and utterly compelling and is one of the album's true standouts.
The bonus tracks, all Hazelwood originals, includes the truly wretched 'Leave My Dog Alone'; 'In Our Time' which sounds like it might have been influenced by Sonny & Cher's 'The Beat Goes On' but is no where near as good and dares to rhyme 'Louvre' with 'Groove.'
There are, it's true, copious amounts of Nancy compilations on the market - most of which are stronger than the individual albums but as is the case you have to buy several of them to get everything you want. The Sundazed re-issues are affordable, include the original album covers and all include bonus tracks, pics and liner notes by the girl herself.