Q’65 – Nothing But Trouble: The Best of Q’65 (Rev-Ola Records)

Although not a particularly well known garage-rock outfit, at least not in America, Dutch group Q’65 were responsible for some of the most savage songs to emerge from the mid-’60s. Anyone with the Nuggets II box-set remembers their contributions “The Life I Live” and “Cry In The Night” – both top-notch numbers – and those songs are included here, but they’re just the tip of the iceberg. The band had plenty of other hard-hitting garage ragers like the beastly “I Despise You” or the jaw-dropping “It Came To Me”, and they also dabbled in psychedelia, as heard on “World Of Birds”, the eastern-tinged “Just Who’s In Sight” and the tellingly-titled “So High I’ve Been, So Down I Must Fall” (the band’s English was sometimes flawed). Twenty-four of the best songs from their 1965-1968 prime are collected on Nothing But Trouble, and while many of them have already seen the light of day on prior CD releases, they’ve never sounded as vibrant, thanks to remastering. Add informative liner notes and a bevy of rare photos and you’ve got an essential garage rock release.

1. Cry In The Night
2. From Above
3. I Got Nightmares
4. The Life I Live
5. I Despise You
6. World Of Birds
7. You’re The Victor
8. Just Who’s In Sight
9. It Came To Me
10. 80% O
11. Spoonful
12. Ann
13. So High I’ve Been So Down I Must Fall
14. Sour Wine
15. I’m A Man
16. Summer Thoughts In A Field Of Weed
17. Down In The Bottom
18. Middle Age Talk
19. And Your Kind
20. No Place To Go
21. Fairy Tales Of Truth
22. Where Is The Key
23. I Was Young
24. Ridin’ On A Slow Train

Q’65 by Pim Scheelings (Ugly Things)

1960s garage rock bands are frequently rated according to how wild and savage their look, attitude, and, of course, music were. There were dozens claiming they were “wilder than The Stones”, or that they had “longer hair than The Pretty Things” (which is very important when listening to a record), but perhaps the only band that lived up to these claims was Dutch beat group Q’65. The group were barely known outside of Holland, so it’s surprising to see an entire book dedicated to them over 40 years after their dissolution.

Author Pim Scheelings originally wrote this 200-page book in Dutch, using interviews with band members and people from their inner circle. The English translation is messy, with an unacceptable amount of spelling mistakes and choppy grammar. The reader has to put so much effort into simply decoding the writing, that following the narrative, which frequently changes perspective and chronological order, is a chore. Even though the book crashes into the language barrier at high speed, you can still get a sense of the chaotic rock’n’roll lifestyle The Q’65 was leading, with members thriving on a diet of drugs, intense recording/gigging schedules and girls, all of which they embraced with a reckless abandon that would become the norm when punk emerged 10 years later. Until this book gets a better translation you’re better off gleaning the band’s history from the liner notes of their excellent Nothing But Trouble compilation.