THE WHAT'S NEW - 'Early Morning Rain' / 'Driving Wheels' / 'Huckleberry Finn' / 'The Last Thing On My Mind' (Number One LOU 2013) 1966
The What's New are relatively unknown in their homeland of USA and compilers have only recently unearthed their 45s but most of their cuts still remain uncompiled. They hailed from Orlando in Florida but had their records released only in France on the small Number One label after being offered a deal to record in Paris.
Their first four track EP release is very much standard folk rock fayre. All are cover versions and are polished efforts but none really stand out, a kind of 'play by numbers' to my ears. Maybe they were playing safe for the French market
THE WHAT'S NEW - 'Get Away' / It's Over Now' / Up So High' / 'Daisy' (Number One LOU 2014) 1967
The second and last EP is far superior in every way. Firstly all four cuts are original compositions written by Colin Scot and all are great except the throw away 'Daisy'.
'Get Away' is a cool raga psych offering with what sounds like a sitar but infact is probably a vox guitar making 'Eastern' sonics. It's also got some intriquing psychedelic lyrics in one of the verses:
'Like a tiny grain of sand
I go swimming through your hand.
Reaching out to hold the sky,
Birds with silver wings can fly'
'It's Over Now' is a wondrous slow paced Byrdsian slice of moodiness with trippy ringing guitar..
Maybe the best song The What's New ever wrote is 'Up So High' notable for a menacing fuzz intro and more raga psychedelia. It's a killer song and highly regarded in garage circles.
I don't have a clue what they were thinking about with 'Daisy'. It's awful. Just like a very bad Hermans Hermits type ditty.