Bailey's Nervous Kats

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Six of these 26 tracks are taken from rare 1959-1961 singles, but the heavy majority of them are previously unissued cuts, both studio and live. No dates ARE given for those unreleased items, but from the sound of things, it can be gathered that they're from roughly the same era. It's fairly primitive and repetitive, though not incompetent, guitar-based rock that is something of a link between the initial flush of '50s rockabilly/rock & roll and the surf and self-contained rock bands of the '60s. (The surf link is especially prevalent in the reverbed guitars.) It joins the large gallery of releases that are more noteworthy as a historical document than as something to be appreciated for its innovations, or even mightily enjoyed. Does that mean it sucks? No, that's too harsh. It's just kind of dull, particularly all at once, although those collectors who like a crude attitude (and larynx-ripping vocals) above all else will champion it. Actually, some of the vocals released on singles were on the light pop/rock side; perhaps there was pressure to go commercial, not that it helped their sales much. Some of the better numbers, like the spooky "Cobra," aim for a Link Wray-type menace, though Wray of course did that much better; at other times they sound like a lesser version of the Fendermen (with whom they toured); and "Traveling Sam" anticipates the primitivism of the Cramps with its war-chant rhythms. Funny moment on one of the live cuts: someone warns the crowd to calm down if they want the dance to continue, after which the fellows launch into Link Wray's "Rumble," which you figure was probably one of the songs most likely to cause trouble at these kinds of things.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:05
2 1:58
3 2:48
4 1:25
5 2:45
6 2:02
7 2:12
8 2:24
9 2:41
10 1:44
11 1:22
12 2:47
13 2:27
14 1:50
15 1:54
16 1:50
17 1:49
18 3:02
19 2:18
20 2:03
21 4:03
22 2:13
23 2:19
24 1:37
25 1:50
26 2:14
blue highlight denotes track pick