Leave it to the folks at Rhino to give the First Class treatment to one of the Sixties second-tier groups. If you believe the story told in the liner notes, there were two struggling bands who auditioned at Decca on New Year's Day in 1962 and the budget allowed for only one band to be signed. Brian Poole & The Tremeloes got the contract and over the next few years had a couple Top Ten UK hits--including a No. 1 with a remake of the Contour's "Do You Love Me." [Oh, by the way, the band they beat out? The Beatles, but I understand they eventually got signed by EMI and had a few hits of their own.]
This CD begins after Brian Poole and original bassist Alan Howard quit the group in 1966 and was replaced by Chip Hawkes (bass, vocals). During a brief five-month period in 1967, this new version of the Tremeloes would have their only three Top 40 US hits on which their stateside reputation is largely based.
The first was the upbeat "Here Comes My Baby" (written by Cat Stevens). Next came the lovely "Silence Is Golden." And if the song sounds like it owes a lot to the Four Seasons, it should. This is a note-for-note copy of the Four Seasons' arrangement that was on the b-side of "Rag Doll" back in 1964 and written by Bob Gaudio and Bob Crewe. To the Tremeloes' credit, they do a drop-dead-perfect impersonation of the Four Seasons on their version. [They tried the falsetto vocal again on "Run Baby Run" with no chart success.] Finally there was "Even the Bad Times Are Good" which sputtered up to No. 36. Their last US chart entry was "Suddenly You Love Me" (#44) in the summer of 1968.
The Tremeloes, however, would go on to have several more hits in their native England, including "By the Way" which has the group sounding like early Bee Gees, the bublegum pop of "My Little Lady," the slightly psychedelic-sounding "(Call Me) Number One" and their final UK hit from 1970 "Me And My Life."
You get a healthy sampling of album cuts thrown in to round out this 20-track collection, including a rousing version of "Too Many Fish in the Sea" with its fuzz tone guitar, a competent rave-up in "Ain't Nothin' But a House Party" and a goofy remake of "Alley Oop."
Certainly not essential nor as influential as contemporaries as the Who, Kinks, Beatles or Stones, but a joyful reminder of the heady days of late-Sixties British pop music.
# Hello Buddy
# Suddenly You Love Me
# By The Way
# Ain't Nothin' But A House Party
# Here Comes My Baby
# Run Baby Run (Back Into My Arms)
# Hello World
# My Little Lady
# (Call Me) Number One
# Helule Helule
# Silence Is Golden
# I Shall Be Released - The Tremeloes (with The Keith Mansfield Strings)
# Be Mine (Mi Seguirai)
# You Can't Touch Sue
# Do I Love You
# Alley Oop
# Show Me
# Too Many Fish In The Sea
# Even The Bad Times Are Good
# Me And My Life