by Rob Jones

‘Pushin’ Too Hard’ is a new 94-track celebration of 1960s garage punk, a retrospectively named genre first compiled on Lenny Kaye’s seminal 1972 collection ‘Nuggets’. This is raw, exciting music with tons of attitude – fuzz guitars, swirling organs, wailing harmonicas, thumping drums and tough vocals are plentiful. In the mid 1960s, teenage rock ‘n’ roll groups proliferated throughout the USA, often inspired by ‘British Invasion’ bands such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Yardbirds as well as US styles including surf, blues and folk rock.

Most towns and cities had local scenes revolving around dance parties, clubs and ‘battle of the bands’ contests and many of the bands here were regional royalty but never broke nationally. Key bands featured include The Seeds, The Sonics, The Standells, The Shadows Of Knight, The Thirteenth Floor Elevators, Love, The Electric Prunes, Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band, We The People and ? & The Mysterians.
There are national US Billboard Hot 100 hits from Sam The Sham & The Pharaohs – ‘Wooly Bully’ (#2), The Strangeloves – ‘I Want Candy’ (#11), The Castaways – ‘Liar, Liar’ (#12), The Beau Brummels – ‘Just A Little’ (#15), The McCoys – ‘Fever’ (#7), The Bobby Fuller Four – ‘I Fought The Law’ (#9), Paul Revere & The Raiders – ‘Just Like Me’ (#11), The Barbarians – ‘Are You A Boy Or Are You A Girl’ (#55), Love – ‘My Little Red Book’ (#54), The Knickerbockers – ‘One Track Mind’ (#46) and The Seeds – ‘Pushin’ Too Hard’ (#36) presented here in a longer unedited version.

Rarities from The Blue Beats, The Dirty Wurds, The Apparitions, The Bedlam Four and The Jackals are released here on CD for the first time while many other tracks have never been released in the UK before.

It is time to check out the origins of some of the great anthems in aural history while also discovering those hidden gems that also need to be heard. Pushin’ Too Hard as you listen with ease.