Thursday, May 27, 2021

Great Unsung U.K. Pop Psych/Freakout's: Shere Khan


SHERE KHAN-Little Louise/No Reason U.K. TeePee TPR 1007 1969

Occupying the #1 spot on my 45 rpm want list is today's subject, a one off U.K. single by a studio only concoction called Shere Khan. I don't own the original but I own a bootleg copy (pictured above) and seeing as a beat to hell copy went for $422 on Discogs awhile back (after being up for grabs for less than 24 hours) I think it unlikely to ever own an original pressing.  Shere Khan was the vehicle of Frank Aiello, a former member of the U.K. duo The Truth (who split in 1968 after issuing their last single, a cover of The Rascal's "Seuno" as Decca F 12764 in April 1968). Interestingly Aiello has no recollection of the record or the session!

The Truth

"Little Louise" was first unearthed by Rob Bailey on one of his "Le Beat Bespoke" CD's (Volume Two to be exact). It's fairly mundane, though the interesting backing of heavy kitschy sounding brass mixed with fuzz guitar is fairly intriguing and the arrangement is catchy the song itself does nothing for me.

The gold, for me, is on the flip. "No Reason" is a full on fucking mind blast! Cloaked in an array of horns that sound straight out of the soundtrack of some late 60's British film they are also reminiscent of the brass on The Pretty Thing's "Emotions" LP, but on speed!! Roll that up in blistering fuzz guitar and a frantic pace the whole thing comes off as a freaky version of Paul & Barry Ryan with the trumpets/sax darting in and out of the complex arrangement. The double tracked vocals are both soulful AND trippy creating a wall of psychedelic pandemonium! 

Both sides were collected on a Truth CD compilation "Who's Wrong: Mod Bedlam 1965-1969". 

Hear "Little Louise":

Hear "No Reason":

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