Mark Leeman Five

Memorial Album

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The liner notes to this anthology make Leeman out to be an up-and-coming star whose success was all but assured, but the actual sounds of the legend leave one in doubt. This CD uncovers perhaps more material than anyone but British Invasion completists would find desirable: 25 songs, culled from Leeman's singles, alternate takes, nearly 20 demos, and a couple singles cut by the band after Leeman's death. Several tracks cut with zany producer Joe Meek in 1962 show the singer in a standard pop mode that isn't distinguished by much except Meek's trademark bizarre studio flourishes. A couple of his last studio performances are fairly effective -- a moody, bluesy workout on the folk standard "Portland Town" and a cover of The Drifters' "On The Horizon."

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