The Rockin' Ramrods

The Best of the Rockin' Ramrods

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A strange compilation that spans several stages of the group's evolution. There are eleven songs (one previously unreleased) from their mid-'60s prime, presented in much better sound than on the Eva reissue, but six of the songs from the eight singles they recorded during this time are missing. Then there are eleven tracks (one previously unreleased) from the obscure 1968 MGM recording by Puff, a spinoff group that did not feature Ramrods leader/singer/songwriter Ronn Campisi, although, oddly, he wrote all of the material. The Puff cuts are light, sophisticated pop/rock with lots of harmonies and slight psychedelic touches; mildly interesting, it's much less hard-rocking than the other "Bosstown" groups MGM was giving a big push to in 1968. The CD finishes with three unreleased songs recorded by a 1971 incarnation of The Ramrods. A wealth of genuine Rockin' Ramrods unreleased material from their 1966-67 prime that has circulated among a few '60s/garage collectors was not tapped at all. Though less comprehensive, much harder to find, and of lower fidelity, the French import on Eva -- which includes both sides of every one of their eight early singles -- still gets the nod over this less cohesive batch.

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