THE PRETTY THINGS - Unrepentant [Bloody But Unbowed]: The Anthology (Limited Edition, 1995)
Of all the original British Invasion groups, perhaps none are as underappreciated in the United States as the Pretty Things. Featuring the hoarse vocals of Mick Jagger-lookalike Phil May and the stinging leads of guitarist Dick Taylor (who actually played in early versions of the Rolling Stones with Jagger and Keith Richards), the Pretties recorded a clutch of raunchy R&B rockers in the mid-'60s that offer a punkier, rawer version of the early Stones sound. Their first two albums, as well as a brace of fine major and minor British hits (of which "Don't Bring Me Down" and "Honey I Need" were the biggest), feature first-rate original material and covers, and remain the group's most exciting and influential recordings. Unfortunately, the band remained virtually unknown to American audiences, most of whom would first hear "Don't Bring Me Down" on David Bowie's Pin Ups album (which also included a version of the Pretties' "Rosalyn").
After their initial run of success, the group took a sharp left turn into psychedelia with the orchestrated album Emotions (1967), impressive singles that owed more to Pink Floyd than Bo Diddley, and, most significantly, S.F. Sorrow (1968). The first rock opera, S.F. Sorrow was a major influence on Pete Townshend, who released his much more successful opera, Tommy, with the Who the following year. Founding member Taylor left shortly after S.F. Sorrow, and the group continued to record progressive rock and hard rock with less impressive results through the mid-'70s, although Parachute (1970) was named Album of the Year by Rolling Stone. The group reunited sporadically for occasional gigs and recordings in their early R&B vein before officially re-forming to release Rage...Before Beauty in 1999 and Balboa Island eight years later.
DISC 1: 01. Rosalyn 02. Don't Bring Me Down 03. Get Yourself Home 04. Roadrunner 05. Judgement Day 06. Honey I Need 07. You Don't Believe Me 08. Buzz The Jerks 09. Cry To Me 10. Midnight To Six Man 11. LSD 12. Death Of A Socialite 13. Growing In My Mind 14. Defecting Grey 15. SF Sorrow Is Born 16. Private Sorrow 17. Balloon Burning 18. Old Man Going 19. Loneliest Person 20. Scene One 21. In The Square 22. Letter 23. Rain 24. Grass 25. Parachute 26. October 26 (Revolution) 27. Summertime
DISC 2: 01. Peter 02. Rip Off Train 03. Havana Bound 04. Dream/Joey 05. Bridge Of God 06. Is It Only Love 07. Singapore Silk Torpedo 08. Under The Volcano 09. Sad Eye 10. Remember That Boy 11. It's Been So Long 12. I'm Calling 13. Office Love 14. She Don't 15. No Future 16. God Give Me The Strength (To Carry On)
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