9 Songs, 33 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

These earliest recordings of the Yardbirds are demos and live takes of material that would figure greatly in the band’s catalog. They became known for their ferocious take on Howlin’ Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightnin’” and Bo Diddley’s “You Can’t Judge a Book By Looking At the Cover.” The playing here features a very young Eric Clapton handling the lead guitar and giving the group an added edge. His take on Chuck Berry’s “Let It Rock” gives the Rolling Stones a good run for the best British group to tackle the immortal Berry. Singer Keith Relf has always been an underrated singer and his blues harp work is integral to the band’s early success, as he honks in perfect response during “I Wish You Would.” If some of the tracks are more mannered than the band’s best work — the handclaps for “Talkin’ ‘Bout You” and “Honey In Your Hips” are a tad stilted — it provides an important look into the evolution of one of the ‘60s most important bands.

EDITORS’ NOTES

These earliest recordings of the Yardbirds are demos and live takes of material that would figure greatly in the band’s catalog. They became known for their ferocious take on Howlin’ Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightnin’” and Bo Diddley’s “You Can’t Judge a Book By Looking At the Cover.” The playing here features a very young Eric Clapton handling the lead guitar and giving the group an added edge. His take on Chuck Berry’s “Let It Rock” gives the Rolling Stones a good run for the best British group to tackle the immortal Berry. Singer Keith Relf has always been an underrated singer and his blues harp work is integral to the band’s early success, as he honks in perfect response during “I Wish You Would.” If some of the tracks are more mannered than the band’s best work — the handclaps for “Talkin’ ‘Bout You” and “Honey In Your Hips” are a tad stilted — it provides an important look into the evolution of one of the ‘60s most important bands.

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