Rob Price
Gutbrain Records
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2020 March 02 • Monday

Tomorrow is so-called Super Tuesday and in honor of Senator Bernie Sanders, our 611th Soundtrack of the Week is the music from Wild in the Streets!

This is a short soundtrack album with mostly songs on it, mostly by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil. Les Baxter was also thrown in here and composed some music as well. And then there's one song by Guy Hemric and Paul Wibier.

We'll start with the Mann/Weil songs.

"Love To Be Your Man" is a Monkees-ish sort of a song with a cool soaring melody and nice guitar and organ sounds.

Like many of the songs here, its performance is credited to a band called The 13th Power. In the movie, this same band is called Max Frost and the Troopers. In real life it was probably a bunch of studio session musicians.

The next one is kind of bar blues rock soul number called Fifty Two Per Cent, one of the less interesting efforts here.

But after that comes "Shape of Things To Come", which is an absolute classic and one of the greatest songs ever! It turned out to be enough of a hit on its own that a record with that name was released after the movie. (It's at least at this point that Davie Allan and The Arrows get involved.)

"Fourteen or Fight" kicks off the B Side, and it's kind of a sixties pop/rock political campaign song agitating for the voting age to be lowered to 14. It's got a nice catchy sunshiney energy to it even if it's musically a little stale.

The last two Mann/Weil songs are supposedly performed by a band called The Second Time.

The first of these is "Listen to the Music", and it's one of the most tuneful numbers, with really nice vocal harmonies and a Bacharachy pulse in the rhythm section.

And then there's "Sally Le Roy", another '60s pop/rock gem that will remind you of three or four other songs at least, and that's okay!

Les Baxter gets credit for three tracks on this album.

The first is called "Psychedelic Senate" and purports to be performed by a band called The Senators. (Why not?) It's not as crazy as you might hope, but it is agreeable trippy and does some interesting things with layering sounds and, it seems, speeding up and slowing down tape.

Then there's the title song, credited to Baxter and Guy Hemric with performance given as by "Jerry Howard". This is a groovy and slinky number with some great drumming and occasional sitar. The lyrics are about getting with it and digging it and not being old.

Finally there's another Baxter cue called "Shelly in Camp" and apparently performed by a band called The Gurus. This one blends military-style snare drum with sitar and tambura for an obvious contrast of styles and scenes.

The Guy Hemric and Paul Wibier songm also by The 13th Power, is called "Free Lovin'", and is a familiar sounding sixties pop soul thing.