|All Artists: SRC|
Title: Lost Masters
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: One Way Records Inc
Release Date: 10/5/1993
Genres: Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
Style: Psychedelic Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Signed 'Anonymous' from Ann Arbor
running_man | Chesterfield Twp., MI | 10/21/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"'SRC' is short for Scot Richard Case, which is short for lead singer Scott Richardson. The band was founded by Gary and Glenn Quackenbush, who provide guitar, keyboards, and backup vocals for lead singer Richardson. The band hails from my backyard of Ann Arbor, Michigan. SRC had their heyday in the late 1960's when they released several albums that generated a good deal of local interest in Southeast Michigan, but national success eluded the band, despite a single ('Black Sheep') off their debut, self-titled album that almost cracked into the Top 40. Their early work was heavily influenced by bands such as Pretty Things and Cream (one of their local successes was a cover of Cream's 'I'm So Glad'), and as such fell into the psychedelic rock genre. While the collection of tracks included in 'Lost Masters' still celebrates psychedelia with mainstays such as the wah-pedal guitar and occasional experiments with distortion, most of the numbers included here are more straight ahead rock and roll.
The first ten tracks on 'Lost Masters' were recorded at the bands own recording studio, Morgan Sound Theatre, between 1970 and 1972, and were intended to comprise their fourth album. Unfortunately, SRC disbanded after the failure of yet another single to make a national impression, 'Out In the Night' b/w 'Gypsy Eyes', which was released under their new, short-lived moniker 'Blue Scepter'. Those songs appear as tracks six and two respectively on this disc. It's my personal opinion that neither are among the best the band had to offer, however. The opening track, 'After Your Heart', for instance, is a hard-charging guitar-army composition with a catchy basic riff. Kudo's are also due for track thirteen, 'The Deeper The Longer', featuring another forceful guitar melody and a sweet wah-pedal bridge, as well as track eighteen, a cover of the Animals 'I'm Cryin', featuring an almost indistinct, high-pitch cry and wail of "I'm cryin" in the background. The band displays their ability to diversify with horns ('Out In the Night'), strings ('No Rules In Love' and 'My Sunday's Gone'), a loping blues cover of Willie Dixon's 'Evil' (featuring an uncredited harmonica), and even one slow tempo love ballad, the closer 'Richard's Song'. There are also two instrumental offerings, 'Valerie' (not the Monkee's hit, unfortunately), which bring together conga, organ, acoustic and wah-pedal guitars into an up-tempo mix, and 'Badaz Shuffle', with a heavy lead guitar from Gary Quackenbush laying down the basic riff. SRC's lyrics are rather generic, with an occasional gem thrown in, such as "you can't play to win or you lose" from 'No Rules In Love'.
Scott Richardson's vocals are clear and crisp, the Quackenbush's guitar and organ are first rate, and E.G. Clawson (drums) and Richard Haddad's (bass and vocals) rhythm section are workmanlike and able. Their ability to write quality tracks is more of a supplement to their capacity as a fine cover band. Offered here as testimonies are their renditions of two familiar Holland, Dozier, Holland compositions, 'Heatwave' and 'Lovelight'. Soulful background vocals further establish the bands Motown roots on 'My Sunday's Gone' and 'The Deeper The Longer'. At times, the band evokes memories of other bands from the late 1960's, including Detroit-based 'Rare Earth' on 'Born To Love', and even the darlings of psychedelia, 'Iron Butterfly' on 'Cry of the Lonely'.
While 'SRC' was a band that existed under the radar for most of America in the 1960's, it's hard to believe that thousands of Michigan teens, who considered the band to be on the cusp of stardom, could be all that wrong. The reality is that the band was missing one key ingredient to national success: a break-out hit song. Dressed in their Carnaby Street style outfits, the SRC had a distinct stage persona, and their music was replete with solid, tuneful melodies and frequently possessed imaginative and catchy guitar riffs. Most of their music was up-tempo, savoring toe-tapping rhythms. If you're looking for some overlooked but not undercooked late-1960's pop-rock, look no further than 'Lost Masters'."