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VA – Sophisticated Boom Boom! The Shadow Morton Story (2013)

23-05-2014, 07:08
Pop | Rock

VA – Sophisticated Boom Boom! The Shadow Morton Story (2013)

Artist: VA
Title Of Album: Sophisticated Boom Boom! The Shadow Morton Story
Year Of Release: 2013
Label: Ace Records
Genre: Pop, Psychedelic Rock, Rock'n'Roll
Quality: MP3
Bitrate: 320 kbps
Total Time: 1:10:17
Total Size: 166 mb


1. The Markeys Featuring Georgie Morton – Hot Rod [02:22]
2. The Lonely Ones – I Want My Girl [02:17]
3. The Beattle-Ettes – Only Seventeen [01:55]
4. The Shangri-Las – Remember (Walkin’ in the Sand) [02:53]
5. The Shangri-Las – Give Him a Great Big Kiss [02:12]
6. The Goodies – Sophisticated Boom Boom [01:59]
7. Ellie Greenwich – Baby [02:42]
8. Ellie Greenwich – You Don’t Know [03:05]
9. The Shangri-Las – Past, Present and Future [02:40]
10. Janis Ian – Society’s Child (Baby I’ve Been Thinking) [03:11]
11. The Nu-Luvs – So Soft, So Warm [02:53]
12. The Nu-Luvs – Take My Advice [02:00]
13. The Blues Project – Lost in the Shuffle [02:54]
14. The Shaggy Boys – Stop the Clock [02:16]
15. The Shangri-Las – I’ll Never Learn [02:40]
16. Janis Ian – Too Old to Go ‘Way Little Girl [03:09]
17. Vanilla Fudge – You Keep Me Hangin’ On [06:47]
18. The Vagrants – And When It’s Over [02:15]
19. Vanilla Fudge – Season of the Witch, Pt 2 [03:13]
20. Iron Butterfly – In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida [02:52]
21. Mott the Hoople – Midnight Lady [03:28]
22. The New York Dolls – Puss ‘N’ Boots [03:07]
23. The New York Dolls – Stranded in the Jungle [04:05]
24. Shadow Morton – Dressed in Black [02:52]

Shadow Morton is one of the legendary cult figures of rock & roll, a mad genius who existed in, well, the shadows. He was one of the great girl group producers, best known for his cinematic work for the Shangri-Las, and he was one of the only Brill Building-related musicians to successfully transition from pop to psychedelia and acid rock, helming Janis Ian’s breakthrough 1966 single “Society’s Child (Baby I’ve Been Thinking) before producing heavy hits for Vanilla Fudge (“You Keep Me Hanging On”) and Iron Butterfly (“In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida”). The curtain on Shadow’s golden era closed with Too Much Too Soon, the second album by the New York Dolls, the melodramatic proto-punkers who were destined to work with Morton (they lifted the opening of the Shangri-Las’ ”Give Him a Great Big Kiss” for “Looking for a Kiss,” after all), after which he returned to the murky shadows from whence he came.

Sophisticated Boom Boom: The Shadow Morton Story, a 2013 compilation that’s part of Ace’s ongoing Producers series and arrives, sadly, just a few months after Morton’s death, shines a light on those shadows, both from his ’60s peak and in the decades afterward. Mick Patrick’s excellent liner notes reveal the extent to which alcohol was responsible for the long gaps of silence at his commercial peak and his retirement, with Morton himself frankly admitting to his reliance on the bottle, but much of his mysteriousness was a witty contrivance: Billy Joel, who played piano on Morton’s career-making “Remember (Walkin’ in the Sand),” recalls Shadow “wearing this big cape and dark glasses…he’s waving his arms in the air saying, ‘Give me more purple!’” This love of the dramatic infused all of Shadow Morton’s work, whether he was cobbling together “I Saw Her Standing There” and “I Want to Hold Your Hand” for a Fab Four cash-in called “Only Seventeen” by the Beattle-ettes, or barely restraining the chaos of a Mott the Hoople session. All this and more is evident on Sophisticated Boom Boom, but that doesn’t mean that it has everything of note Morton did. Most egregiously, “Leader of the Pack” has been left behind, as have several other mini-masterworks Morton made for the Shangri-Las, but it’s a testament to the strength of his vision, as well as the work of compiler Patrick, that the 24-track compilation tells a vivid, compelling story anyway. Cut over the course of 16 years, this collection begins with Morton as a Hicksville hustler, knocking out hot rod knock-offs before blagging his way into the Brill Building, where he reunited with old school friend Ellie Greenwich and then carved out his own histrionic, theatrical sound within the confines of the Brill Building. His showmanship served him well whether he was shepherding the sensitive Ian, expanding the horizons of the Blues Project, or delving into the heavy, acid-fried rock of Vanilla Fudge and the Vagrants. In this context, the New York Dolls do seem like a career-capping masterwork, drawing upon everything else Morton tried in the previous decade and a half, but Sophisticated Boom Boom shows that in between the Shangri-Las and the Dolls, Morton created a wild, wooly, visionary body of work that retains its mystique to this very day.

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