Rob Price
Gutbrain Records
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2020 March 23 • Monday

The 614th Soundtrack of the Week is this album of songs from the movie Mondo Hollywood.

It opens with "Mondo Hollywood (City of Dreams)" by The Mugwump Establishment, a blast of organ, fuzz guitar and harmonica with vocals extolling Hollywood as a place with gold-paved streets and where you'll never get old, "home of adventure and romance". Presumably this is meant to be ironic.

Next is Mike Clifford's "The Magic Night", a peppy and poppy sort of tune with horns. Clifford is sort of in the Dave Berry or Bobby Darin zone, maybe even a proto-Morrissey, and it's easy to imagine his voice in a Joe Meek production.

The third track, "Moonfire" by Davie Allan & The Arrows, is one I'd heard before because Davie Allan & The Arrows has been on the radar for decades. It's a hard-driving number with a pounding piano line and a typically sick guitar sound.

"Last Wave of the Day" by The Riptides is a solid surf number with the lyrics about shooting the curl and the sweetly blended vocal harmonies and pugnacious guitar picking that usually come with the territory.

And the Side One ends with Bobby Jameson's "Vietnam", a real stomper of a song that's essentially a Bob Diddley number with the words changed to be about Uncle Sam sending boys to Vietnam.

The second side starts out with "Great God Pan" by God Pan: "I came down from Mount Olympus just to tell the people what I know". It's a jaunty song all about being Pan and how great that is.

"You're Beautiful" by Darrell Dee is a very pretty and restrained love song. It starts out slow and then picks up the pace about halfway through and has a cabaret sort of feel to it.

Then there's a band called 18th Century Concepts with the song "Magic Night March", a kind of woozy take on a march with snare drum and lots of blaring horns. There isn't much to it.

"Beast of Sunset Strip" by Teddy & Darrell is another one I've heard somewhere, probably on at least one compilation. It's kind of like a Halloween take on "Route 66". It's fun.

And then we wrap up the album with The Mugwump Establishment again and "Mondo Hollywood Freakout", a pretty awesome psychedlic instrumental, maybe the best song on here.