Quality: 4 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4.25 out of 5
Unfortunately for the Pretty Things, they weren't quite in the top tier of moneymaking British rock bands and had to moonlight recording film soundtrack music under the psuedonym The Electric Banana. Fortunately for us, this means that there are a bunch of other songs recorded by the band around their S.F. Sorrow prime. If S.F. Sorrow is the Pretty Things' Sgt. Pepper, then this is their Magical Mystery Tour. This collection doesn't hold together as an album the way S.F. Sorrow does, nor does the production sparkle quite as much, but it doesn't really need to. You can take these on a song-by-song basis, and on that criteria you'll find quite a few gold sonic nuggets.
I love the tribal pounding "Alexander," which repurposes a short bass riff from "Defecting Grey," and build onto that to make a first rate psychedelic rocker. "Blow Your Mind" and "Rave Up" do just what they promise to do, with the band a full tilt and giving the Yardbirds a run for their money. Elsewhere, "Eagle's Son" is a great anthemic sounding track which the band probably could of used as a single. "If I Needed Someone" is not a Beatles cover, but a horn-laced ballad that shows off the band's softer side (which is good, but admittedly not as awesome as their balls-out rocking side). "I See You" is a rerecording of the S.F. Sorrow track - it's not as good, but it's still an interesting take of a great song. They do drift a little too close for comfort into pop cheesiness on the twee "What's Good For the Goose," while "Danger Signs" goes for the Motown sound and misses the mark. But since there's not really much flow to this collection to start with, they are easily ignored.
You'll hear some of the Pretty Things at their best and worst as the Electric Banana, but the balance definitely tilts to the positive side and this serves well as a companion disc to S.F. Sorrow. I only recently became aware of this set recently, and it was certainly a very groovy surprise.