Music City is a title often given to Nashville, but back in the late '50s it was also the name of a record label based in Berkeley, California. Ace's 2013 compilation digs deep into the Music City vaults, unveiling four rare A-sides recorded between 1957-1959 and 20 other sides that languished in the vaults until this release. In all honesty, these aren't classic forgotten cuts but rather enjoyable generic exercises, the sound of a bunch of teenagers rushing to embrace the sound of Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, and Elvis Presley, along with hints of doo wop and surf and maybe a little bit of jump blues. Some of these songs are straight ripoffs (the E-Marks' "Lovin' Charlene" is "Shakin' All Over" by any other name), but that's part of the fun of digging into these 24 songs: you get to appreciate the cheapness and enthusiasm of these teenage rock & rollers. If none of these tune stick, they nevertheless capture the wild-eyed rebellion of the time, so Going Wild! winds up as a pretty fun listen for anybody eager to dig into the wilderness of early rock & roll.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine