The Yardbirds

The Best of the 60's

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The Yardbirds entry in Dutch label Disky's Best of the 60's series differs from some of the others in that, while it contains many of the band's chart singles, it also delves extensively into lesser known album tracks and even rarities. Among the Yardbirds' British and American hits, "Good Morning Little Schoolgirl," "For Your Love," "Heart Full of Soul," "Evil Hearted You," "I'm a Man," "Shapes of Things," "Little Games," "Ha Ha Said the Clown," and "Ten Little Indians" are all present, but "Over Under Sideways Down" (which reached the U.K. Top Ten and the U.S. Top 20), "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" (Top 40 in the U.S.), and "Still I'm Sad" (Top Five in the U.K.) are missing. It's fair to say that the group's singles, many of them crafted to commercial considerations, only give one side of them, however, and an attempt has been made to suggest some of their other sides, notably by including the frantic version of "Too Much Monkey Business" that led off their Five Live Yardbirds album and an uncredited vocal by Sonny Boy Williamson on "Pontiac Blues." The European market may appreciate the inclusion of both sides of the obscure single "Boom Boom"/"Honey in Your Hips," two songs recorded at the band's first session in December 1963 and initially released only in West Germany in 1966. Another late 1963 track, "Let It Rock," didn't see its first release until 1981, again on a German disc. Such inclusions undermine the album's claim to present the Yardbirds' best, however, especially when such legendary tracks as "Train Kept A-Rollin'" have been omitted. On the whole, then, this is a good single-disc compilation that may appeal to collectors, but it doesn't quite live up to its name.

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