Friday, February 13, 2015

Les Sauterelles - Les Sauterelles (1965)

 Although much of this debut consists of covers of popular British and American rock songs of the mid-'60s, it's pretty enjoyable in spite of its unoriginality. The raw, almost punky cover of "Cheryl's Going Home" is terrific, and arguably better than the prototypes by Bob Lind and the Blues Project; not far behind is the moody reading of "No No No," a power-chord pounder originally performed by the obscure (in the U.S., at any rate) British Invasion group the Sorrows. Dylan's "Desolation Row" and "She Belongs to Me" are given British mod-type arrangements that, while they will most likely find no favor with most Dylan fans, have a refreshing irreverence that most Dylan covers lack; the Paris Sisters' wimpy ballad "I Love How You Love Me" is somehow transformed into a decent rock tune. The rest of the album doesn't match these highlights, yet it's a decent (and very rare) artifact of a Swiss band that no doubt wowed 'em live in their homeland; in the absence of frequent tours by the genuine originators, they were probably a pretty acceptable substitute.

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