Redcoats

Meet the Redcoats: Finally

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There are few specific chronological details on this collection of 12 songs, which have obviously been pasted together from sessions recorded at various points; only the tracks from the rather unrepresentative "Love Unreturned"/"The Dum Dum Song" single were previously released. Although the liner notes infer that the cuts are from the mid-'60s, and many of them obviously are, some are obviously too Sgt. Pepper- and Magical Mystery Tour-influenced to be from before 1967. Anyway, this is decent, though not wonderful, original music from young fellows who obviously worshiped the Beatles. "You Had No Right" fits right into the mid-1965 Help! period, with its jangling guitars and well-thought-out exuberant harmonies. "Words of Wisdom," "Sing a Song," "When Tomorrow Comes," and "Opportunity" fall squarely into the Beatles' 1967 mode of bouncy, mid-tempo keyboard-dominated tunes and optimistic, cosmic-tinged lyrics. "Man" is very much like the harder-rocking Revolver songs, with its audibly "Paperback Writer"/"Taxman"-informed high harmonies. "Another Took Her Place" must date from earlier, with its hard Merseybeat sound, as must "Back to His Door," with its stomping Dave Clark Five beat and "Anyway You Want It"-like effect on the chorus. If a convincing emulation of the Beatles and the British Invasion was their strength, it was also their obvious problem: there's not much originality going on here. All the same, it's quite a refreshing contrast to the cruder, less-melodic, and less-musically accomplished sounds that are far more the norm for super-obscure '60s garage reissues.

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