Various Artists

Texas Flashbacks, Vol. 1-6

  • AllMusic Rating
    7
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

David Shutt was a record collector from Austin, TX with a passion for garage rock and early psychedelia from the Lone Star State. Eager to spread the word about the many great but hopelessly obscure records he'd unearthed over the years, Shutt was responsible for a series of limited-edition vinyl compilations released under the umbrella title Flashback, which featured choice rarities from his archives. The original LP editions of the Flashback series (the last two volumes were billed as Texas Flashbacks) were pressed in small runs of only a few hundred copies, but they've been reissued in various forms by several collectors' labels over the years, and now Psychic Circle (run by Nick Saloman of the Bevis Frond) has brought together the complete series in a box set called Texas Flashbacks, Vols. 1-6. The material has been cleaned up sonically for this edition, with greater success on some tracks than others; a few bits show the effects of a bit too much digital noise reduction, but for the most part, this sounds better than the average collection of vinyl-sourced rarities from the '60s. From a musical standpoint, these six discs lean to rarity over strict quality, but on average, each volume is at least as good as the average installment in the Pebbles or Teenage Shutdown series, and the fact all this music came from one state within a space of a few years says a lot about how good the rock & roll scene in Texas was in the mid-'60s. This also is a bit more eclectic than most garage-centric compilations, often acknowledging the Lone Star psychedelic scene, which more strongly dominates the track listings on the final two discs on this set. This also may be the only garage rock collection that features not one but two bands featuring a violin (Shiva's Headband and the Mind's Eye), as well as two bands boasting future members of ZZ Top (the Moving Sidewalks and the Warlocks). The set is a bit bulky and the packaging leaves a lot to be desired (the sleeves for the six discs reproduce the original artwork for the LPs, which would be more impressive if the graphics weren't so ugly), but the accompanying booklet includes useful data on nearly all the bands (a few still remain unknown all these decades later), and if this is for hardcore garage and psych fans, most of them will feel well-served by this box set.

blue highlight denotes track pick