The Nazz

Nazz from Philadelphia

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This compilation of late-'60s demos and alternate takes should not be viewed as being on the same level as Nazz's three albums. But when a cult band such as the Nazz only made three LPs, followers hunger for more, and this delivers the goods to satisfy the tastes and curiosities of specialists. A late 1967 demo of "Hello It's Me," close to the released version but less fully produced (particularly in regard to the backing vocals), is the highlight. Otherwise there's another song from the same late 1967 tape ("Crowded"), a mid-1968 demo of "Lemming Song" (a different version of which appeared on their debut album), alternate versions of "Kicks" and "Some People," radio commercials, a slightly different take of "Open My Eyes" (no phase on the guitar), and some alternates of songs from their second and third albums. The differences between these versions and the official ones are not radical, and if listened to for musical value alone rather than historical purposes, the tracks reflect (as does all their work) a confused band. They gravitated between soul-tinged ballads, power pop, and harder psychedelia and blues-rock, rarely coming up with tunes in the same league as their debut "Hello It's Me"/"Open My Eyes" single. If you've gotten this far, you'll also want the "Sydney's Lunchbox"/"It Must Be Everywhere" 45 (also on Distortions), which unearths two previously unheard songs from the late '60s. [Nazz from Philadelphia was reissued by 3D Japan in 2000 and by Air Japan in 2001.]

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