6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
More late-60's cali-soft-pop guilty pleasures from the vaults of Capitol Records.....,
This review is from: Book A Trip 2 - More Psych Pop Sounds Of Capitol Records (Audio CD)
This follow-up to last year's "Book A Trip" compilation of soft psych sunshine pop from Capitol Records is not a patch on Volume 1 and definitely displays evidence of diminishing returns. Firstly quite a few of these tracks have already been issued on Now Sounds in single artist compilations (eg. The Sugar Shoppe, The Tuneful Trolley, The Knack, etc) which I think is a little dubious. Secondly of the 24-tracks at least four are pure bubblegum with infantile lyrics (even by the standards of soft pop!) and teeth-grindingly cheesy, upbeat melodies and therefore will not appeal to fans of soft psych pop (eg. Ian Whitcomb, Ellie Janov, The Unforscene). A few more skirt dangerously near bubblegum but just about hold it together with enough psych-touches to make them listenable (eg. Timothy Clover, The Pink Cloud, The New Kick). The remainder is a mix of pretty good folk-rockers which definitely are the highlights of the set (eg. The Tombstones, Sidewalk Skipper Band, Chris & Craig, These Vizitors, etc) and slightly trippy baroque pop, again some good tracks here such as James Fleming, Griffin with an excellent Nilsson cover, Michael Blodgett, Jesse Lee Kincaid, Raw Edge and Robbi Curtice, etc.
In conclusion therefore there are probably 15-odd solid tracks out of the 24 which equates to about 40 minutes of solid music that will appeal to fans of this genre, however nothing is as good as The Association or any of the other stronger sunshine pop bands. You can probably add another 3-4 tracks to this total if you don't possess any of the Now Sounds single artist comps that have been cherry picked for some of the tracks on this set which would knock the playing time up to about a solid 50 minutes.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Nov 2013 13:05:59 GMT
P. Davies says:
Surely with any comp there'll be some you like, some you don't. 15+ out of 24 is not a bad hit rate. Also, it's perfectly valid to include tracks that have appeared on single artist discs, for those that don't have them, they act as a taster.
In reply to an earlier post on 19 Nov 2013 20:17:16 GMT
Fair enough point but you haven't heard the bubblegum tracks, they are astoundingly bad! Also several of the other tracks that skirt bubblegum are merely 'passable' not lost classics. Finally at the end of the review I state that you can add 3-4 tracks if you don't have the single artists comps that they are drawn from. I was slightly underwhelmed by this compilation and my review reflects that in what I hope is a fair assessment.
In reply to an earlier post on 20 Nov 2013 14:09:17 GMT
P. Davies says:
I will admit I've yet to receive my copy so hopefully my (fairly high) expectations aren't dashed! You might like to know a further volume is planned in the future. You might ALSO like to know, the guy who compiles these for Now Sounds is a contributor to a general music discussion forum run by Steve Hoffman. He happily engages in regular dialogue with fans and welcomes feedback - well worth checking out.
Posted on 30 Nov 2013 00:32:05 GMT
Mark Phillips says:
A really useful review! Thank you for objectively pointing out the good and the bad in such a way that I'd know exactly what I was buying. Wish more reviews were like this.
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