Various Artists

Ho-Dad Hootenanny, Too!

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For the unenlightened, frat rock was the noble precursor to garage rock, a primitive teenage wail informed by the cheerful but determined pursuit of beer and women rather than the fuzztone sneer that permeated the garage sound. Imagine an entire aesthetic sprung whole from the Kingsmen's "Louie, Louie" and you get the idea. The archivists at Crypt have delivered a suitably raucous celebration of the secret history of frat rock with the collection Ho-Dad Hootenanny, Too! This album features 32 howling frat rock obscurities recorded between 1964 and 1966, several of which have never received proper release, and at its best, this album sounds like the crazed teenage party your parents would have warned you about in the mid-'60s, full of cheap guitars, buzzy portable organs, pounding drums, and singers raving about problematic females, cheap wine, the latest dance craze, and hot cars they probably wished they owned. While most of these tracks sound somewhat more coherent (or at least better recorded) than comparable garage rock obscurities of the era, the frat rockers were often even more primitive, and hearing the Intruders transform Dylan's "Subterranean Homesick Blues" into a blurry teen party stomp, complete with honking sax and reverb-drenched guitars, is especially instructive -- anyone who could play three chords and had an older sibling willing to buy a case of cheap suds could turn their fave tunes into frat rock touchstones in rec rooms across America. Whether they're celebrating personal wealth ("Money" by Sir Kenneth & the Yorkshire Coachmen, "Long Green" by the Breakers), swilling cheap hooch ("Wine Wine Wine" by the Nightcaps), looking for love ("Do It" by the Checkmates, "Looking for Girls" by the Pharoahs), embracing other cultures ("Injun" by the Hotbeats, "Jujikami the Warrior" by the Hi-Fives), or paying homage to Van Morrison ("Gloria" by the Pendletons), the long-forgotten bands on Ho-Dad Hootenanny, Too! tap into the simple joys of rock & roll on every cut, and this collection is a blast for anyone who digs music that's loud, sloppy, and suitable for wild parties. Points added for excellent liner notes from Crypt's Tim Warren.

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