Another one I picked up during the Numero Group’s Rapp Cats sale: a gem of a garage/psych rock track that originally hails from San Antonio’s “Teen Canteen” scene of mid-60s. The song would be memorable enough if it only kept to the opening, two-note bass line but the way it switches up for the chorus seals the deal.
Matthews Southern Comfort: Sylvie (Decca, 1971, Later That Same Year)
Truly, I know nothing about the band except for the fact that it was fronted by Ian Matthews after he left Fairport Convention (and again, I only know this because of a thing called “google”). What I do know? “Sylvie” is some sublime shit (and while not nearly as good, “And When She Smiles” is rather glorious folk pop).
Once upon a time, before I got into hip-hop, I listened to a lot of new wave (translation: I was an Asian dude growing up in the SGV in the ’80s). All said, this still sounds pretty good to me. Also: can’t you imagine Kanye or someone flowing over this? We need more modern rock sampling.
Psych is one of those rabbit holes that I’ve deliberately avoided jumping down because I’m scared at how far I’d fall. It’s albums like these – one of the big hits for this popular Budapest band – that keep beckoning me to the precipice. The album’s best-known track is “Gyöngyhajú lány (Girl With Pearly Hair)” (just ask ‘Ye) and while I get the appeal of its rousing, anthematic vibe, I’m even more about a song dedicated to callous-handed woodcutters. Swing swing swing, chop chop chop.
Spontaneous Combustion: Walk On By (Rod, 196?, 7″)
Psych/garage cover of Dionne Warwick.
I’m pretty sure this is not the same Spontaneous Combustion that did this song but beyond that, I can’t track down any info about these guys (they may be from Iowa). Cool Chris played this at a gig and it stuck with me given my obsession with cover songs. A very cool one at that.
I can’t quite figure out if this is a cover of an Edgar Alexander song or of Alexander first wrote it for Rodriguez. Either way, I’m all about these kinds of unexpectedly funky tracks from the late ’70s and early ’80s since they take the borderline cheesiness of rock production in that era but marry it with some slick rhythm section. It’s a good combination.