September 23, 2003
Varèse Sarabande
Pop/Rock, Soul, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Brill Building Pop, Early Pop/Rock, Blue-Eyed Soul, Frat Rock, AM Pop

Album Review

The Newbeats were eventually remembered almost solely for their 1964 number two hit, "Bread and Butter," and it comes as a bit of a shock that they had quite a few other chart singles, though only two of those (the Top 20 entries "Everything's Alright" and "Run, Baby Run (Back into My Arms)") were that popular. Nine chart singles are on this 18-track compilation, in fact, one of them from as late as late 1969. Commercial success aside, it's not much of a joyride, as Larry Henley's ear-scraping falsetto -- such a novelty when first heard on "Bread and Butter" -- grates when heard in such a concentrated dose. Too, none of the other tracks had as naggingly memorable hook lines as "Bread and Butter," though the original version of "Thou Shalt Not Steal" (quickly covered for a big hit by Dick & Dee Dee) comes close. At other points, the Four Seasons-meets-Motown influence is similarly dominant, though cornier pre-Beatles girl group-teen idol influences come into play sometimes as well. Give them some points for versatility, however, with "Hey-O Daddy-O" a blatantly Bo Diddley-derived shaker and some quite prominent songwriters contributing material, like Doug Kershaw, Nancie Mantz (though not in partnership with Annette Tucker), John D. Loudermilk, Joe Melson (who wrote with Roy Orbison), and early Buddy Holly associate Bob Montgomery. And Bobby Charles of "See You Later, Alligator" fame, under his real name, Robert Charles Guidry, penned the laid-back blue-eyed soul tune "Groovin' (Out on Life)," later covered by UB40. The CD also tacks on the 1963 Everly Brothers imitation ("With Tears in My Eyes") by the Mathis Brothers, comprised of future Newbeats Dean Mathis and Marc Mathis, and the Henley solo 1965 single "His Girl," on which he discards his falsetto for a lower Buddy Holly-esque range.
Richie Unterberger, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Bread and Butter
  2. Everything's Alright
  3. Pink Dally Rue
  4. A Patent on Love
  5. Thou Shalt Not Steal
  6. Break Away (From That Boy)
  7. Hey-O Daddy-O
  8. (The Bees Are for the Birds) The Birds Are for the Bees
  9. Human Kindness
  10. I Can't Hear You No More
  11. Little Child
  12. Run, Baby, Run (Back into My Arms)
  13. Shake Hands (And Come Out Crying)
  14. Crying My Heart Out
  15. You and Me and Happiness
  16. Groovin' (Out on Life)
  17. With Tears in My Eyes [*]
  18. His Girl [*]