Various Artists

Sixties Rock

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Passport Video's Sixties Rock offers a promising array of 16 clips by such top mid-'60s acts as the Searchers ("Love Potion Number Nine"), the Yardbirds ("I'm a Man"), Herman's Hermits ("Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter"), the Mamas & the Papas ("California Dreamin'"), the Byrds ("The Times They Are A-Changing"), the Kinks ("You Really Got Me"), interspersed with a few unexpected contributors such as the Outsiders ("Time Won't Let Me") and the Bobby Fuller Four ("I Fought the Law"). No sources are identified (though most of it is definitely from Hullabaloo), and the performances are principally mimed to official recordings, though most of the acts put on a good show, and some of the settings are bizarre -- the Bobby Fuller Four do their signature tune in a jailhouse setting with a go-go dancer in an adjoining cell whose movements make her look almost demented. Some of the details are entertaining as well, such as the fact that the Mamas & the Papas do their song on a set decorated with plumbing, including bathtubs, which may have been a conscious nod to the design of their first LP cover; the Byrds' rendition of "The Times They Are A-Changing" from Hullabaloo is seen in color, perhaps for the first time -- and they're miming to a version of the song pre-recorded for the show that actually was better than their released version of the song; the Outsiders' "Time Won't Let Me" is definitely a new recording, and the Moody Blues are definitely playing and singing live on "Go Now" in one hell of a great performance. Oh, and on Paul Revere & the Raiders' set, it's interesting that guitarist Drake Levin plays a double-neck guitar, and that Paul Revere looks old enough to be the other bandmembers' music teacher. And one would love to get the set designer on a psychiatrist's couch to get him to explain the go-go dancers'-heads-as-mounted wall trophies on the Animals' "It's My Life," on which they're definitely singing live. Most of the clips are in black-and-white, with fair to good resolution and good, loud volume -- each song gets its own chapter marker, and the CD opens automatically to a simple menu offering play-all and track selections options.

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