Now Playing: Sinners "Mystic Eyes"
Working my way through old CD-R binders while doing hard disk transfers, I came upon an item I hadn't seen in 10+ years. It could well have been included in the Acid Archives book, but already at that time I had forgotten about its existence.
THE SINNERS ( )
The Sinners 1966 (no label) [Gold Star acetate only]
Sent to me long ago by a gentleman in the Los Angeles area, this is a sleeveless demo/acetate disc for an album credited to 'The Sinners'. No other information is present, but the grooves themselves contain a powerful garage message. Opening with a very good, intense take on "Mystic Eyes", the twelve tracks traverse a broad '66 spectrum including British covers such as an efficient "I'm A Man", a couple of vocal pop tunes ("It's Not Unusual", "Pied Piper", "You're The One"), one James Brown ("I'll Go Crazy") and two oldies (the Bell Notes "I've Had It", Richie Valens' "That's My Little Susie"), even more British Beat covers, and possibly an original or two. There's none of the residual surf or folkrock often found on this type of albums, which may or may not give a clue as to the band's origins. The vocals are semi-buried in places which suggests it may have been a rough mix acetate only. In any event, there's more Them via "Here Comes The Night", Animals' "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" and, somewhat unusually, "Concrete And Clay" by Unit 4+2. Looking at the track list, I would venture a recording date of late Summer 1966, with "Pied Piper" the most recent track, while the bulk of the material looks more like a '65 set list than '66. All numbers except one are identifiable covers, the exception being "Ya Done Me Wrong" which is either an obscure r'n'b cover or in fact a band original. The odds are decent on the latter, as it's an uncomplicated tune with a fair debt to Jimmy Reed as processed through the Rolling Stones. If this checks out as a self-written number, it is the high point of the disc along with the opening "Mystic Eyes". It's a little unfortunate the band's live bookings demanded three (or more) lame pop tunes where they could've done the Byrds and the Raiders instead, but all over a respectable obscurity certain to interest garage collectors. [PL]
Note: after I posted the above, noted garage expert Mike Markesich suggested that this could be the East LA Sinners, who had a major label contract but no records out. The appearance of an obscure Richie Valens cover offers this hypothesis some weight.