The Animals - Singles Collection (1964-1966)

The Animals were an English group active in the 60s, part of the 'British Invasion'.

The Animals were formed in Newcastle during the early 60s, with the original lineup of Eric Burdon (vocals), Alan Price (keyboards), Hilton Valentine (guitar), Chas Chandler (bass) and John Steel (drums). Like other early 60s British groups, their sound was firmly rooted in American R&B, with Eric Burdon's powerful, bluesy voice a defining part of their sound, alongside Alan Price's Vox Continental organ (which played an equal if not greater role than the guitar). They moved to London in 1964 in time to be grouped with the 'British Invasion', and were signed to Columbia Records. Their first single was a re-worked version of the folk-blues standard "Baby, Let Me Follow You Down" (re-titled "Baby Let Me Take You Home"). This fusion of American blues roots with commercial pop sensibilities became their formula for their long string of singles between 1964 and 1966. It was their second release, a rocked-up version of the folk song "The House Of The Rising Sun", which gave them their first and biggest hit (and only #1), and is the one song they are best remembered for today.
Seven more fantastic singles followed, mostly written by outside songwriters. These included such classics as "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood", "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place", "It's My Life", and a cover of Sam Cooke's "Bring It On Home To Me". All but one of them reached the Top 10 in the UK. Meanwhile they released three Top 10 albums of mostly R&B covers, which explored the roots of their music. In the US, the album material and the singles were re-packaged into five seperate LPs, though they didn't reach quite as high on the charts.
They stuck with mostly the same lineup throughout their career, though keyboardist Alan Price was replaced by Dave Rowberry in '65, and drummer John Steel was replaced by Barry Jenkins in early '66. Later that year all the original members except Burdon left (bassist Chas Chandler going on to manage Jimi Hendrix). Burdon moved to California and formed a new group under the Eric Burdon & The Animals name. Their music was greatly different, as they adopted a psychedelic sound.

This compilation features their nine singles as The Animals, plus most of the b-sides. A couple of b-sides can also be found on their LPs, so aren't included here. The a-sides are "Baby Let Me Take You Home", "The House Of The Rising Sun", "I'm Crying", "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood", "Bring It On Home To Me", "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place", "It's My Life", "Inside Looking Out" and "Don't Bring Me Down". The songs in between are the b-sides of the preceding a-sides.
These singles are generally the songs they are best remembered for, their singles and albums being in quite different styles. Therefore this is almost a greatest hits package, containing the 'pop' side of their material, though these songs all still have a hard, raw, blues-styled edge to them. Even when they were performing songs written by songwriting teams such as Goffin-King and Mann-Weil, the Animals were always the bluesiest and grittiest of the British Invasion groups.

More from The Animals


1 comment:

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Wonderful post thanks, i really like old music is the best for me, there's not enough singer on actual times that can be compared with the old ones.