Liverpool Five

Best of the Liverpool Five

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First off, the Liverpool Five weren't from Liverpool, although they were British and they played the same tough German and U.K.R&B clubs as the Beatles and the rest of the so-called British Invasion groups from the early 1960s. The Liverpool Five went a step further, though, and actually relocated to the United States in 1965, landing in Spokane, WA, where they absorbed the "Louie Louie" garage sound of the vibrant Northwest club scene, emerging with a hybrid sound that somehow managed to sound both American and British at the same time, veering from sneering garage rockers to hard R&B to melodic jangle pop seemingly at will. Eventually shifting their U.S. base to L.A., the band signed to RCA Records and released several interesting singles, none of which made much of a commercial dent, and two albums, Arrive and Out of Sight, for the label between 1965 and 1968. This 18-song set collects the best of those singles along with key tracks from the two LPs to make a fairly seamless portrait of a band that definitely ought to be better known than they are. There's a lot to like here, including a sly cover of Bob Dylan's "If You Gotta Go, Go Now," a folk-rocky take on Jackie DeShannon's "Too Far Out," the impressive "Just a Little Bit," a gorgeous reworking of the Petula Clark-penned "Heart," the fuzztone-laced "I Can Only Give You Everything," and the spooky, gospel-garage hybrid "Do You Believe," none of which rewrite the history of rock but are certainly worth hearing.

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