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At Long Last!,
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This review is from: Cameo Parkway - The Best Of ? And The Mysterians (Original Hit Recordings) (Audio CD)
Over 40 years after 96 Tears hit the top of the American charts comes the first official Best Of CD from the mighty Question Mark and the Mysterians. Althought several of these tracks have been kicking around for a few years on various 'unofficial' greatest hits packages, or as re-recordings, only now can we hear the true original versions, digitally remastered from the source tapes in the Cameo-Parkway vaults. Just as they deserve to be heard.
So what do we get for our money? Basically, everything from the Mysterians' two original studio albums - 96 Tears and Action, plus both sides of the non-LP 45 Do Something To Me b/w Love Me Baby (Cherry July) dating from 1967, together with alternative versions of 96 Tears and Midnight Hour for good measure.
And is it worth buying? Absolutely! Even after half-a-lifetime the 27 tracks you get here (their entire Cameo-Parkway output) can still leap out from the speakers and grab you with both hands. And that is because, more than any other band, Question Mark and the Mysterians epitomised the whole 60's garage-rock genre. A bunch of street kids from Detroit who loved making music, lit up the charts for a few gloriously incandescent moments, and, in the process, created arguably the greatest garage-band classic ever! Everything about them - their look, their lyrics, their posturing - screamed ATTITUDE! But they were talented too. While most of their contemporaries relied heavily on cover-versions, the Mysterians wrote almost all of their own material, while creating a organ-based sound that was unmistakable their own. And in the sinuous, swaggering Question Mark they had a fantastic front-man, who was able to project both macho sexuality and romantic vulnerability all at once.
Overall then, whether you want to remind yourself of how great it was to be a teenager once upon a time, or explore one of the great seminal influences on everything from 70's punk to the garage-bands of today, go grab yourself a copy of this.
You'll be glad you did!