This is what music geeks want from a boxed set. After all, what casual fan would splurge for a 120-song, four-CD collection of girl groups from the early- to mid-1960s? Hits are fine, well-known artists welcome (Shirelles, Supremes, Shangri-Las), but it’s the obscure revelations — the stuff that fulfills the late-night TV ad claim that it would cost hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars to assemble this collection yourself — that make for rewarding listening, that urge the obsessive, amateur and pro musicologist alike to hunt. Whether it’s Cilla Black with George Martin’s orchestra working through Randy Newman’s "I’ve Been Wrong Before" or The What Four being aided by Teo Macero’s production and orchestration for "I’m Gonna Destroy That Boy," the feeling of discovery is powerful and, in this case, frequent.
Rob O'Connor writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.