gullbuy music review

Trash Box (Pebbles Box Set)


Trash Box



various artists 5xCD

Trash BoxThe Trash Box 5 cd set features 109 punk rock tracks from the sixties and was originally released on vinyl under the name Pebbles Box (1987).

Included are the first 5 Pebbles compilations (minus some tracks which could not be licensed like the surf compilation but with added garage tracks to fill their place).

The original single LP Pebbles compilation (1979) was inspired by 1972's Nuggets compilation which had revived the interest in the sounds of mid-'60s garage rock. While Nuggets concentrated on the cream of the crop, it only graced the tip of the iceberg, and in the late '70s, the Pebbles compilations came along to fill in the gap with the more obscure gems contained herein.

Including 5 cds and a 24 page full color booklet informative liner notes, this collection is a goldmine of obscurities. These songs were originally issued on small indy labels and in some cases were remastered for Pebbles right from the rare original vinyl.

For the most part they were at one time completely unknown groups except to collectors. With often juvenile and sexist lyrics, a snarling sound and stance, often combined with British Invasion-inspired hooks, as well as fuzzed-out guitars, Farfisa organs, and punk-inspired songwriting and performances, this music anticipated and perhaps was a direct influence upon the punk rock explosion of the 70s.

Disc One Highlights: The compilation starts out with The Litter's "Action Woman" probably the best known track here and a snarling classic; The Preachers raw cover of "Who Do You Love"; The Rogue's Yardbird's/Johnny Burnette cover of "Train-Kept a Rollin"; The Soup Green's grungy Louie, Louie inspired cover of Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone"; from Eastern Texas Positively 13 O'Clock's cover of "Psychotic Reaction" which actually has Mouse & the Traps as the backing band; "The Trip" and "Underground Lady" by Kim Fowley: The Trip is an outright classic by now and Underground Lady from 1966 is available for the first time on cd (!); The Wild Knights "Beaver Patrol" is a punk frat anthem; "Hate" by The Stoics who put this out in Texas and I'm sure you didn't want to meet them in a back alley; the Grodes (from Tucson) did the original version of "Let's Talk About Girls," which was actually released as the only record by the Tongues of Truth, a spontaneous joke-name change given by the band's manager, DJ Dan Gates: for years, the Tongues were thought to be an alias of San Jose's Chocolate Watchband, who also covered that song (but this is not true); The Rogues "Wanted Dead or Alive" is a rare collectible Kim Fowley production raga folk rock answer song to the Leave's "Hey Joe" (same chord changes but different lyrics) and includes two pre-West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band members - great percussion and a blistering guitar break bring this track into folk/garage transcendence; Third Bardo's "Five Years Ahead of My Time," check out the guitar solo on this track.

Disc Two Hightlights: The Split Ends "Rich with Nothing" came out in FLA in 1966, and it has cool reverb, echo and fuzz, to start this disc out; The Sons of Adam "Feathered Fish": we start to hear some harmony vocals on this obscure rocking tune composed by Arthur Lee of Love; The Choir, one of the better obscure '60s bands (and the progenitor of the Raspberries), do the Merseybeat-influenced "It's Cold Outside" (which can also be found on the Nuggets box set); The Journeymen "She's Sorry" I like this straight pop song out of Tampa FLA; The Wee Four "Weird" combines a hybrid of Mersey beat and driving punk; the amazingly crude "Green Fuz" by Randy Alvey & Green Fuz is the original version which was covered by the Cramps' when this was issued on the LP verison of Pebbles (Vol 2); The Bees' "Voices Green and Purple," is a great alien fuzz rocker which also made the Nuggets box set; The Barbarians "Hey Little Bird" came out in '64 and was their first 45 and truly shows the Brit influence early on in the garage scene; The Spades doin a Roky Erikson cover of "Your Gonna Miss Me"; and the original version of "I Ain't No Miracle Worker" by the Brogues can't be missed.

Disc Three Highlights: This disc features a psych theme: Higher Elevation's "The Diamond Mine," spotlights the nonsense rambling of disc jockey Dave Diamond; Teddy & the Patches' "Suzy Creamcheese," combines elements from both Frank Zappa and "Louie Louie"; Calico Wall's "Flight Reaction," a psych masterpiece view into the acid- tinged mind of a airline passenger worrying about a possible crash; Hogs' (allegedly the Chocolate Watchband under a different name) "Loose Lip Sync Ship," contains an instrumental section that mutates into Zappa-influenced strangeness; Driving Stupid's "Reality of Air-Fried Borsk" and "Horror Asparagus Stories," which features precisely the kind of lyrics that would be expected; Godfrey's "Let's Take a Trip," which is a remake of Kim Fowley's "The Trip"; Monocles' "The Spider & the Fly," which is supposedly a '50s tune remake; TC Atlantic's "Faces," which describes what you see a lot of after taking a substance that inspired some of the songs on this disc; and Oshun's "Rattle of Life," summarizing the entire disc when the singer states that "the butterfly you possess will spin our nature's merry-go-round."

Disc Four (Completely unissued on compact disc!) Highlights: The Dearly Beloved's (from Tuscon) "Flight 13": almost hit it nationally with their single "Peep Peep Pop Pop," and after an album's worth of recording was not released on Columbia Records subsidary White Whale and one member of the group died in a car crash, the band sued to get out of the contract but broke up soon after; put-down grunge by the Grodes "Cry a Little Longer"; the original demo of "I Fought the Law" by Bobby Fuller; "I'm a Hog For You" by the Groupies is the B-Side to their one single and a cover of the Coasters' tune; The Bethlehem Exit "Blues Concerning My Girl" is a B-side that far outdoes the A-side - ain't that often the case?? - a raw, viscious, blues-punk song; The Choir's Rolling Stones- influenced "I'm Coming Home," which is not even on the group's Choir Practice compilation; The Miles Ends "Bottle Up and Go" can also be found on the Best of Pebbles Vol 2; Kit and the Outlaws "Don't Tread on Me" sums up teen rebels with the original version of this song; the Omans original version of "Searching" (later recorded by the Pandoras and the Gravedigger V)"; The Id "The Rake" a very obscure raw gem in deed; and J.D. Blackfoot's "Epitaph for a Head" from '69.

Disc Five Highlights: The Tree "No Good Woman" is a snarling 1967 punker on the Barvis label produced by a black minister; The Gentlemen's "It's a Crying Shame" is great Texas punk; The 5 Canadians "Writing on the Wall": they were actually from San Antonio, Texas but perhaps they were all transplants from the great white north; Satori "Time Machine" has some buzzy "space" guitar; William Penn Fyve "Swami" is droning raga rock; The State of Mind " Move" from Wilmington Deleware put out this lilting well-produced gem; Thursday's Children "You'll Never Be My Girl" and "Air-Conditioned Man" both incredible Brit invasion inspired tunes and particularly sought after; from Tampa FLA, The Tropics "I Want More" this band had quite a few gems and need more recognition; The Turfits "Losin' One" strained lead vocal and ghostly background vocals make this song a keeper; The Jury "Who Dat?" who dat playing such fine riffs in fuzz guitar which buzz like a bee???

To sum up: there is plenty of amazing vintage garage rock on this 5 cd set - dig in and pick your own favorites!!!

Patrick, October 30, 2001