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Concrete & Clay - The Complete Recordings 1964-1969 Double CD
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1. The Green Fields
2. Swing Down Chariot
3. Sorrow And Pain
4. The Lonely Valley
5. Concrete And Clay
6. When I Fall In Love
7. Woman From Liberia
8. Wild Is The Wind
9. Cotton Fields
10. Cross A Million Mountains
11. To Be Redeemed
12. (You've) Never Been In Love Like This Before
13. Tell Somebody You Know
14. Couldn't Keep It To Myself
15. You'll Remember
16. 500 Miles
17. La Bamba
18. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'
19. The Girl From New York City
21. Stop Wasting Your Time
22. You've Got To Be Cruel To Be Kind
23. I Won't Let You Down
1. Baby Never Say Goodbye
2. Rainy Day
3. For A Moment
5. I Was Only Playing Games
6. I've Seen The Light
7. Too Fast, Too Slow
8. Booby Trap
10. A Place To Go
11. Loving Takes A Little Understanding (As Unit)
12. Would You Believe What I Say? (As Unit)
13. You Ain't Going Nowhere
14. So You Want To Be A Blues Player
15. I Will
17. Face In My Head
18. Something I Can Believe In
19. (Living In) The World Of Broken Hearts
20. I Can't Stop
Best known for their huge international hit single from 1965, 'Concrete And Clay', Unit 4 + 2 were a part of the British Beat explosion, with a strong emphasis on vocal harmony. Their guitarist was Russ Ballard, who later enjoyed further fame with Argent and as a solo artist. The band four hits in total, the others being their debut 45 'Green Fields' (No. 48, 1964), '(You've) Never Been in Love Like This Before' (No. 14, 1965) and 'Baby Never Say Goodbye' (No. 49, 1966). Unit 4 + 2 signed to Decca in 1964, enjoying notable success and recording a string of singles, an EP and an album for the label before over a three-year period. In 1967, the band switched to Fontana, updating their sound for the 'summer of love' period with a handful of highly collectable 45s (which now appeal to both latter-day Mods and Psychedelia fans), as well as a self-titled compilation album boasting exclusive material. For the first time, this new 2-CD set boasts Unit 4 + 2's entire recorded output, comprising 14 singles, an EP and two albums and a US-only B-side, remastered, with new sleeve-notes in which original band members are interviewed. Concrete And Clay offers Unit 4 + 2's entire recordings from 1964-1969 in one place, remastered with detailed sleeve-notes in the accompanying booklet.
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on 14 March 2017
Format: Audio CD
Unit 4 + 2 still gets airplay today thanks to “Concrete and Clay.” The 1965 single which hit no. 1 on the U.K. pop charts and no. 28 on the U.S. Hot 100, and inspired covers by everyone from Gary Lewis & the Playboys to they might be giants (including Randy Edelman’s hit revival in 1976). But there was more to the British pop band, as evidenced by RPM’s double- CD anthology, Concrete and Clay: the complete recordings. The 43 tracks here hail from 1964-1969 and encompass two albums, an EP and fourteen singles for a full overview of the band’s career. Lead singer Tommy Moeller and guitarist Brian Parker, the group’s songwriting duo, were joined by singers David Ian “Buster” Michael and Peter Charles, “The Count” Moules to form Unit 4, so named for their four- part vocal harmony. When the foursome recruted part- time drummer Robert John Henrit and guitarist Russ Ballard of the Rulettes, Unit 4 + 2 was born. (Never mind that banjo player Norman “Rusty” Snook was also involved for a short time!) Decca signed Unit 4 + 2 in 1963, premiering the band on 45 with the folk- influenced “the Green Fields.” (A no. 48 U.K. hit, it turned out to be Snook’s only recorded contribution to the band’s catalog.) Shortly thereafter, Parker opted to consentrate on his behind-the-scenes role as a songwriter, with his place onstage taken by Howard “Lem” Lubin. Rodney “Humble” Garwood also joined the band on bass . Though sophomore single “Sorrow and Pain” failed to set the charts on fire, third A-side “Concrete and Clay” certainly did. It’s Latin beat and soulful sound was atypical for Unit 4 + 2 and indeed, from must of mainstream radio. Bob Crew noticed it’s pop/ R&B Potential early and drafted Eddie Rambeau to record a cover for the American market, which split sales when the original was released in America. International versions also cropped up. Unit 4 + 2 unseated the Rolling Stones from the top of the U.K. pop chart in April 1965; the band’s next single, the melotic ballad “You’ve Never Been In Love Like This Before” couldn’t top “Concreet” but performed respectably no. 14 U.K./ No 95 U.S.) on the charts. Decca issued the band’s first album, simpley titled 1st Album, filling it out with covers of the Righteous Brothers (a rather raw “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’”), The Ad Libs (“The Girl From New York City”) and the late Richie Valens (“La Bamba”). Henrit also departed the line-up, replaced by Hugh “Pigmy” Halliday. The Complete Recordings, Naturally, features all of the above tracks as well band’s subsequent, diverse recordings which hoped to recapture the “Concrete and Clay” magic. Unit 4 + 2 recorded big beat ballads, harmony pop and folk tinged material, and even returned to the “Concrete” rhythm for “Hark” and “Baby, Never Say Goodbye,” but the public simpley wasn’t receptive enough. “Baby” cracked the U.K. Top 50 to become Unit 4 + 2’s final chart entry. Decca dropped the group, and there were further line-up changes. Michael resigned to form the duo Bill and Buster (with Tommy Moeller’s brother Billy), and Russ Ballard and Bob Henrit joined full-time. Fontana signed Unit 4 + 2 as the band struggled to modernise its identity. One single (“Loving Takes a Little Understanding” b/w “Would you Believe What I Say?”) was credited solely to The Unit. The group touched on Folk-rock (Bob Dylan’s “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere”) and light psych (The Bee Gees’ “Butterfly”) but dissolution was in the cards. By late 1968, only Tommy Moeller remained from the original group; Ballard and Henrit notably defected to an early iteration of Argent. Moeller assembled a new Unit 4 + 2 for the single “3:30”, but it turned out to be the group’s last single release. In 1971, drummer/singer Michael David Ingle formed a new Unit 4 + 2 that continues to perform live today. Tommy Moeller joined Harmony Grass, and Russ Ballard has of course enjoyed a long career as a songwriter, producer and performer with hits like America’s “You Can Do Magic” and Argents “God Gave Rock and Roll To You” among his credits. The other band members, to, went on to pursu music in various avenues. RPM’s Concrete and Clay: The Complete Recordings includes a 16 page booklet with a comprehensive essay about the band’s history and music, plus a discography. Simon Murphy has remastered all track which showcase Unit 4 + 2’s eclectic and frequently rewarding, enjoyable pop journey. RPM Collects Unit 4 + 2 on “Concrete and Clay: the Complete Recordings”
on 27 September 2016
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Worth the price just for the title track but there are lots of other songs not as catchy but very easy listening. One criticism is the songs sound a bit samey but many bands and songwriters also show this trait. There are some good versions of covers which add to the record. Good male harmonies and very competent musically but no real fireworks.
on 17 September 2016
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Some very good songs, clearly they were quite talented. However, in my view they are fairly tame for the most part and it's not hard to see why they had so few hits when compared to what was happening at the time. Hark deserved to do better but overall a bit too middle of the road for most tastes.
on 18 October 2016
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
these are good merseybeat songs but a bit on the soft side with not to much kick, also the covers done here where rather typical for the mid 1960s, regardless this is a great collection of most of what concrete and clay recorded back in the day, the remastering here makes these songs sound the best they have in years and the booklet is great!!! anything cherry red puts out is usually on spot but when it comes to 50 years back i was more into THE ATTACK, THE WHO, THE SMALL FACES, ACTION, THE ARTWOODS , and a million other bands that where coming out of the uk at this time,
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