Early '60s (1963-1964) recordings that the Isley Brothers cut for United Artists Records. This was prior to their signing with Motown in 1966. Always wanting creative control, they had some here, penning and producing a number of compositions. And if you ask them they'll probably put these recordings over their more successful and memorable Motown sides, which they had a problem with because they didn't have creative input. But most of their fans wouldn't. While smoother and more palatable than the noisy, disjointed tracks (more like jams) that they cut earlier for Atlantic Records (again with creative control), these are hardly as satisfying as later creations when their younger brothers (Ernie and Marvin Isley) and Chris Jasper joined and turned out marvelous tracks from the late '60s on. Track spotters will note the first rendition of "Who's That Lady," a song they turned into a monster on their CBS-distributed T-Neck label years later, and it's A-side, "My Little Girl." Other interesting originals (i.e., "Tango," their first UA single) are mixed among remakes of "Please, Please, Please," "Stagger Lee," "Lets Go Lets Go Lets Go," and "Long Tall Sally"; all decent but no reason to toss the originals. Attempts to re-create "Twist and Shout" via "Surf and Shout," "Do the Twist," and "Shake It With Me Baby" fell way short of the mark.
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AllMusic Review by Andrew Hamilton