The Troggs

Mixed Bag

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The title of Mixed Bag was an appropriate description of this rather scrapheap Troggs assembly, as it wasn't really a regular album. Instead, it was a budget-priced compilation matching eight songs that appeared on British and American singles in 1968 with four others that made their first appearance on the LP. Although all but one of the tracks was a Troggs original ("Hip Hip Hooray" being the lone exception), and although there were a few solid cuts, overall it was disappointing due to the weakness and surprisingly low energy of many of the songs. "Hip Hip Hooray" was somewhat puerile bubblegum, and "Little Girl," a small British hit, was a lame attempt by Reg Presley to keep milking the pop ballad style he'd used the much better effect in earlier hits like "Love Is All Around." In brighter news, the old salacious Troggs sound surfaced to good effect in "Say Darlin'"; "You Can Cry if You Want To" was one of Presley's better soft numbers; and both "Purple Shades" and "Maybe the Madman" were two of the band's best ventures into psychedelia, albeit of the rather tongue-in-cheek sort. All of the best numbers, however, were the ones most likely to show up on later best-of compilations, making it only of interest to collectors and completists. If you're among the fans who do want it, however, you should seek out the 2005 Repertoire CD Hip Hip Hooray, which contains everything on Mixed Bag and adds 11 songs from rare 1970 and 1973 singles (including three tracks from Reg Presley solo singles of the era) as bonus cuts.