The Shambles feature on a new compilation, Sweet Relief 3, from Michigan based label JAM Record. Funds raised from sales of the disc go to help victims of natural disasters. The 27 track disc includes contributions from former Beatle, Pete Best as well as Shoes, The Records, Lola’s and Brian Wilson band multi-instrumentalist, Nelson Bragg. An unreleased version of the Shambles song “All Sorts” is included, built around a backing track produced in 2002 by Gregory Page. Musicians include Bart Mendoza (vocals, rhythm guitar), Jeff Berkley (lead guitar, production), Cathryn Beeks (vocals), Derek Duplessie (12-string guitar), Danny Cress (drums) and Dylan Martinez (bass).
It's really a terrific album with a lot of great music, opening strong with Pete Best's psychedelic "Come With Me", complete with sitars and backwards guitars. With it's lyrics about welcoming you to a show, it's a solid introduction and a cool song. Other highlights include the Junipers "Dandelion Man," which is a perfect slice of melancholy jangle pop, the Lemon Clock's garage rocker, "The Beginning of the End," and the Lola's take on the Yardbirds "For Your Love." Meanwhile, The Mayflowers turn up the volume and the energy level with "Move Over" a tune that will appeal to fans of Redd Kross or maybe, Jet.
Fans of powerpop icons, Shoes, will love the track "Heaven Help Me," up there with their best, with signature harmonies and riffs on a really good song. These guys know their way around a melody! Also in the icon category are seventies heroes the Records who turn in the second shortest tune here, "Gimme Coca Cola" - at 1:07, a perfect encasulation of everything right with that eras major label powerpop.
Top track could be Mark and the Spies "Give Me Your Love" - a great folk rocker with a British Invasion beat, this sounds like a lost gem, pure hook and rhythm. That's just the start though. There's a lot of really good stuff. According to producer Jeremy Morris's liner notes, he spent three years compiling this album. One listen to this great compilation proves it was worth the effort.