The Music Machine were in the premier league of garage bands, up there with bands like Love, the Seeds, the Mysterions, etc.
Although called `The Best of' this album is essentially the band's first album, together with non-album singles tagged on.
Structurally and lyrically, the songs are complex, and not a million miles away from Love, with odd changes of tempo, and complex chord structures for the era. In fact the vocalist Sean Bonniwell doesn't sound entirely unlike Arthur Lee either. The musicianship is also way above average, with some incendiary guitar and combo organ.
Whilst Talk Talk is touted to be one of the *classic* songs of the era, there's plenty more to enjoy here, on what is a very consistent album. There are some interesting covers - a punchy version of the Beatles' Taxman, a cut of 96 Tears which gives the original a run for its money, and a moody slow rendition of Hey Joe. The band's own compositions are equally strong too. Besides the aforementioned Talk Talk, I'd particularly flag up the sinuous organ-led Come on In, and the more rocky numbers Absolutely Positively and Eagle Never Hunts the Fly, but really there's no filler here.
If only Sean Bonniwell had been allowed to put out the intended album of originals, as his own stuff is strikingly inventive, diverse and light years away from the vast majority of other so-called Garage acts. His band is a cut above as well-super tight,playing unusual riffs in unusual tunings,anchored by a punchy,funky at times rhythm section.You can see where The Doors got their ideas, (once they'd looted Love's material)in the moody,organ led sound and verbose lyrics-only they had the pretty alcoholic up front and added a whole new dimension in pseudo-intellectual pomposity. The MM canter through the covers, though,only "Hey Joe" warranting more than a couple of listens,which is a shame, as tracks like "Talk Talk", "The People in Me" and "Wrong" will make you wonder how such a talented and original band weren't massive.