The Ventures

Where the Action Is!/The Ventures Knock Me Out!

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The two albums compiled together on this CD are in reverse of their release order but, otherwise, are well juxtaposed chronologically. The first dozen cuts, taken off of 1966's Where the Action Is, offer the Ventures doing crunchy American garage rock, covering "Lies," "Hang on Sloopy," etc., plus some post-Beatles American pop/rock ("She's Just My Style," etc.) and garage rock-styled originals. The second dozen, from early 1965's The Ventures Knock Me Out!, are weighted heavily toward covers of British Invasion standards (like "I Feel Fine," "Love Potion No. Nine," "She's Not There," all featuring heavy use of the fuzz box); "Sha La La," which includes a vocal contribution for the title chorus; plus their then hit "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue." Reversed order or not, it's all eminently listenable and at times intriguing, as is their galloping rendition of the slow ballad "A Taste of Honey," which manages to sound distinctly different from the versions by Herb Alpert or the Beatles. They also demonstrate their knack for removing the expected elements from seemingly familiar material (going back to their version of "My Own True Love" (Tara's Theme)" in 1960), rocking up the television commercial theme "No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" into something not half as hokey as the original and a pretty cool dance number. The One Way CD features a trio of bonus tracks, "The Savage," "The Stranger," (adapted from Wright and Forrest's "A Stranger in Paradise," from Kismet), and "Superstar Revue" (a disco-era number), which, like the rest of the disc, sound wonderful but have no annotation to accompany or identify them.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:01
2 2:26
3 2:44
4 2:20
5 2:22
6 2:37
7 2:13
8 2:38
9 2:36
10 2:09
11 2:15
12 2:32
13 2:15
14 2:07
15 2:18
16 2:53
17 2:15
18 2:24
19 2:15
20 2:20
21 2:44
22 2:02
23 2:45
24 2:27
25 2:09
27 3:02
blue highlight denotes track pick