Flamin Groovies – Supersnazz (1969)

FrontCover1Supersnazz is the first studio album by the garage rock band the Flamin’ Groovies. It was released in 1969 on the Epic label. The record was the group’s only album for a major company. Its commercial failure put an end to their major label recording career. Supersnazz was later released in compact disc format in 2000 with several bonus tracks. (by wikipedia)

The Flamin’ Groovies’ debut album went almost directly into the cut-out bins within a year or so of its 1969 release. Fortunately, the band survived the neglect heaped on that record, and has survived in one form or another into the 21st century. And in the ensuing years, Supersnazz has achieved an exalted reputation among not just Groovies fans, but lovers of rock & roll in general, having held up extraordinarily well across the decades and still able to make its own case for greatness as an astonishing document of straight-ahead rock & roll circa 1969 — fully contemporary to its time (and, by extension, almost timeless), with none of the artificial period nostalgia (and parodying) that was already creeping into the “oldies” scene. But it’s also a lot of fun; in fact, based on the evidence, Supersnazz may well have been the most fun record of 1969.

FlaminGroovesRoy Loney, Cyril Jordan, Tim Lynch, George Alexander, and Danny Mihm run through a quirky mix of Loney and Loney/Jordan originals and standards, encompassing styles from proto-’70s punk (want to bet the Ramones wore out copies of this album?) to ’50s New Orleans R&B, country music, and even ragtime, and while a small bit of it is compromised by the presence of some too-prominent clarinet and saxophone, the whole record is a rollicking good time, made even better by the sequencing, which offers a full range of surprises, even on the fourth or fifth listen — one can never settle in with this record before something weirdly wonderful comes along to draw the listener in yet another direction. From the fiery, Brian Jones-era Stones-style, fuzztone-driven opener “Love Have Mercy,” the band shows what it can do in everything from straight-ahead boogie to slow ballads (“A Part from That”) and ’50s rockers (“The Girl Can’t Help It,” “Rockin’ Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu”), country (“Brushfire”), and R&B, all done with a unique array of stylistic flourishes that made this one of the most original long-players of 1969. By the ninth track, the pounding, punk-driven “Somethin’ Else/Pistol Packin’ Mama,” the whole album achieves a kind of otherworldly continuum, like something out of a strange and wonderful corner of the universe that — though none knew it at the time — pointed the way to a coming decade of achievement by the likes of the Ramones, Jonathan Richman, et al, not to mention the Groovies themselves. (by Bruce Eder)

Booklet insideAPersonnel:
George Alexander (bass, vocals, harmonica)
Cyril Jordan (guitar, vocals)
Mike Lang (keyboards)
Roy A. Loney (guitar, vocals)
Tim Lynch (guitar, vocals, harmonica)
Danny Mihm (drums, percussion)

01. Love Have Mercy (Loney) 4.30
02. The Girl Can’t Help It (Troup) 3.30
03. Laurie Did It (Loney) 3.52
04. Apart From That (Loney/Jordan) 1.59
05. Rockin’ Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu (Smith/Vincent) 2.43
06. The First One’s Free (Loney) 3.41
07. Pagan Rachel (Loney) 1.55
08. Somethin’ Else (Cochran) 3.45
09. Pistol Packin’ Mama (Dexter) 3.18
10. Brushfire (Loney/Jordan) 3.45
11. Bam Balam (Loney/Jordan) 1.50
12. Around The Corner (Loney/Jordan) 4.10
Singles mixes:
13. Rockin’ Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu (Smith/Vincent) 2.36
14. The First One’s Free (Loney) 3.37
15. Somethin’ Else (Cochran) 2.06
16. Laurie Did It (Leoney) 3.47