Friday, March 11, 2011


THE COCKTAIL CABINET-Puppet On A String/Breathalyser U.K. Page One POF 046 1967

Here's one of those bizarre records that bridges the very narrow peninsula between "mod" and "kitsch/easy" like other records by The Reg Guest Syndicate or The John Schroeder Orchestra.  Unlike any of these previously mentioned artists this one is a one off studio concoction (brainchild of Bill Martin and Phil Coulter, the latter known for his dreadful Celtic muzak) that has been a popular record on the mod scene since somebody unearthed it in the early 90's.  It first came to my attention on a tape my friend Haim made me in '94 or so and I was lucky enougn to score a copy a few years later.

The "A" side was the hit for Sandie Shaw, in instrumental form, released a good six months after Sandie's hit version (which I believe won the Eurovision song contest in 1967). But if you read the comment below I'm wrong, but to be honest I probably only played it once before deciding i didn't like it it!  Flip it over and you've got a brilliant organ groover.  Kicking off with some screechy fuzz guitar and some wiggy escalating Hammond organ it's one of the most solid U.K. 60's B-3 instrumentals out there.  From it's over the top fuzzed out guitar solo and moody/moddy Hammond brilliance the track is a gas from start to finish.

"Breathalyser" was reissued on the CD compilation "Instro Hipsters A Go-Go".

Hear "Breathalyser":


23 Daves said...

I've been trying for years to find a copy of this damn record I can actually afford - it really does go for some insane prices now.

Top choice, though, I agree it's a peculiar piece of work!

Cockney Rebel said...

The A side was a comedy parody about then UK prime minster Harold Wilson recording a version of Miss Shaw's Euro winner. Released around Oct '67 and it was played on Radio Caroline at the time.