Sunday, September 10, 2006

85. The Monkees - Headquarters (1967)

Track Listing

1. You Told Me
2. I'll Spend My Life With You
3. Forget That Girl
4. Band 6
5. You Just May Be The One
6. Shades Of Gray
7. I Can't Get Her Off My Mind
8. For Pete's Sake
9. Mr. Webster
10. Sunny Girlfriend
11. Zilch
12. No Time
13. Early Morning Blues And Greens
14. Randy Scouse Git


The Monkees are better known as one of the first fabricated bands, where the members were mainly actors and didn't even play their own instruments. In Headquarters, however, they do play their own stuff, and write their own music and become a real band. Strangley enough it is not that bad. Yes, it is derivative and I am sure that they all were listening to a lot of Beatles, Kinks and one or two Mothers of Invention albums.

Basically this album sounds a bit like a not very talented Beatles-Zappa hybrid. There's lots of sounds of the Monkees monkeeing around and there's even a kind of a cappella experimental non-sensical track called Zilch, that is worth the price of admission by itself. However they also make some very nice and listenable straight up pop music.

This is not however a brilliant album, you feel very much that you've heard all this before, drawing from the easier listening Beatles tracks. The experimental element that is here is never really taken far enough or done expertly enough to be anything above average, although it is a lot of fun to hear the Monkees trying to do it.

It is also something that I won't be listening too many more times by my own volition, but I wouldn't be offended if it came on on the radio or someone put it on. It's not bad, and it is particularly impressive that is is in actuality their first effort at music making... but still. Check it for yourself by streaming it from Napster or buying it from Amazon UK or US.

Track Highlights

1. You Just May Be The One
2. Zilch
3. Shades Of Grey
4. Randy Scouse Git

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

1. Had the top-selling American single of 1967 ("I'm a Believer").

2. First rock band to extensively use the Moog Synthesizer on a pop album.

3. First rock band to extensively use the pedal steel guitar on a pop album.

4. Outsold The Beatles and Elvis Presley combined in 1967.

5. Hold the record for most #1 albums in one year. Four of their albums (The Monkees, More of the Monkees, Headquarters, and Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, & Jones, Ltd.) hit #1 in 1967.

6. First TV sitcom to make political and social comments defending the youth of America.

7. First use of solarisation in a major motion picture.

8. First television series to show teenagers living on their own.

9. First rock band to use a multimedia live concert show.

10. Gave the Jimi Hendrix Experience their first US concert appearances.

11. First "manufactured" rock band (The Pre-Fab Four).

12. First American band to play in Thailand.

13. First rock band to win two Emmy awards.

14. First male leads in a television series to have long hair.

15. The Monkees reunion tour was the largest grossing tour of 1986.

16. Re-charting various albums simultaneously during 1986 is an accomplishment shared only with The Beatles, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.

17. Last music artist to win the MTV Friday Night Video Fights by defeating Bon Jovi 51% to 49%.

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