Various Artists

Rip It Up

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The sounds of Jerry Lee Lewis, Bo Diddley and other early rock & rollers runs all through this group of 30 songs, none necessarily original sounding, but pretty much all played and sung hard and well. The Jiants ("Tornado") co-opt Diddley's sound in a shimmering guitar figure, while Blacky Vale's "If I Had Me a Woman" cuts across Jerry Lee and Bill Haley's sound with Chuck Berry-style lyrics. "Sweet Rockin' Mama" by Cody Reynolds' Hi-Tombs is a beautifully scatological piece of rock & roll that never could have gotten airplay, but doubtless elicited lots of knowing looks from their audience. Diddley meets hillbilly rock on "I've Got a Baby" by Clyde Arnold. And "She Sure Can Rock Me" by Dan Radar doesn't leave too much to the imagination -- being practically a teen-music answer to The Joy of Sex -- the piano break is a little winky, but its heart (and other organs) is definitely in the right place (and positions). This is a delightfully rough and raunchy collection of singles, many of which weren't going to get heard on the radio, regardless of how good they were.

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