Stunning version of this old standard. Jimmy Scott's voice is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful things in the world. I've never heard anybody else who could channel so much pain into a song. Regardless of your feelings toward David Lynch, you have to respect him for rescuing Scott's career from obscurity.
24 Jul 01 ·delicado: yeah, I picked up the European reissue of this album recently, and have to agree with you on its power. I first came across Scott on the 'fire, walk with me' soundtrack, and for many years, 'Jimmy Scott' was just that strange voice. I only figured out the gender quite recently.
"Don't you know that my hate is everlasting, baby?" The story of the Monks is the story of rock & roll...in an alternate reality, perhaps. Take a bunch of bored US servicemen stationed in Germany about to be discharged, put them in a band, and have them decide to freak out the establishment by dressing in black capes, shaving their heads into monk's tonsures and wearing nooses as neckties. Perhaps not so shocking in these days after punk rock, but this was 1965. Oh, and don't forget the electric banjo. What began as a fairly standard surf/beat combo called the Torquays mutated into this band, churning out some of the most nihilistic music you've ever heard, even by German standards.
This album has been called "Britain's answer to 'Pet Sounds'", and while I wouldn't necessarily agree with that, it is certainly a masterpiece of psychedelic pop, and even more impressive when you factor in that Nicholls was barely 19 when he wrote & recorded it. Nicholls was indeed influenced by Brian Wilson in his melodic construction and orchestration, however...the album's sound is very reminiscent of the pseudo-Spector work that Andrew Loog Oldham was using with Del Shannon at this period (Oldham, not so coincidentally, also produced this LP). This song in particular, with it's intricate multi-tracked harmonies really hints at the kind of promise Nicholls' career had, and had this album not been shelved at the last minute, it's anybody's guess what may have followed.
from Would You Believe?, available on CD (Immediate)