THE BARGAIN BUY: The La De Da's

 |   |  1 min read

The La De Da's: On Top of the World
THE BARGAIN BUY: The La De Da's

New Zealand may not have much of a lineage of purely politcal rock music, but there has always been a strong thread of social dissent. Punks certainly didn't invent songs about boring people living in the suburbs (there were dozens in the psychedelic era of course) and any number of mid-Sixties bands stood in opposition to whatever normal life might have beckoned.

Among the greatest songs were Social End Product by the Blue Stars, but Auckland's La De Da's also tossed out two great singles, one a cover and the other an original -- and both raged against social norms.

How is the Air Up There, the cover, contained the great line "next time I'm in prison row", the implication being the singer has already been in the slammer. Their original was equally tough.

Don't You Stand in My Way -- also driven by fuzz guitar -- was a warning plain and simple: back off.

Right from the start of their career, the La De Da's -- notably guitarist Kevin Borich, keyboard player Bruce Howard and bassist Trevor Wilson -- wrote for the band, although their sets and albums were typically made up of covers (Small Faces, tough r'n'b and garageband rock).

But even their covers were done with their own edge. Their version of Crispian St Peter's Pied Piper was hardly an invitation to follow and they also dug into Little Red Book (a surprising song from Burt Bacharach), Land of a Thousand Dances, Parchman Farm, I Got My Mojo Working and so on.

Later in their career they went a bit hippie (Thank You For the Flowers, their rock opera) but this single 28-song disc pulls together all their hits, better album tracks and raw power (well, raw and powerful for its era).JB_HZ_CHEAP_long

In the absence of the Rolling Stones, the La De Da's on a good night sometimes seemed a very adequate substitute.

And that this good value collection comes in at a tidy $12.99 from JB Hi-Fi store here ensures that it is this week's Bargain Buy -- and a bit of a history lesson at the same time.

Share It

Your Comments

Bryan - May 3, 2011

The literal soundtrack to my teen years.
fyi. I started a La De Das Facebook group a while ago http://is.gd/pQsxAG

Cheers.

post a comment

More from this section   The Bargain Buy articles index

THE BARGAIN BUY: Various Artists: Undercover Brother; The Badass Blaxploitation Collection (Metro)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Various Artists: Undercover Brother; The Badass Blaxploitation Collection (Metro)

One of the funniest films of the past few years has been Black Dynamite, a parody of blaxploitation flicks which is so astute that you could be forgiven for thinking it was straight out of '73 (see... > Read more

THE BARGAIN BUY: Bad Company; Original Album Series

THE BARGAIN BUY: Bad Company; Original Album Series

The dinner table conversation turned to Bad Company because one of the guests announced he was going to see them in the States and, despite some agists jokes, we agreed that they were a damn... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Lowell Fulson: Trouble Trouble, The Definitive Early Years Collection (Fantastic Voyage/Southbound)

Lowell Fulson: Trouble Trouble, The Definitive Early Years Collection (Fantastic Voyage/Southbound)

Sometimes the singer-guitarist Lowell Fulson (1921-99) recorded as Lowell Fulsom and even Lowell Fullsom, but he was born Fulson although the liner notes to this three CD set suggest where the... > Read more

Harry Partch: And on the Seventh Day, Petals Fell in Petaluma (excerpt, date unknown, possibly Sixties)

Harry Partch: And on the Seventh Day, Petals Fell in Petaluma (excerpt, date unknown, possibly Sixties)

When Tom Waits swerved left from his barroom piano ballads and into using new or found sounds on his clank'n'grind albums in the mid Eighties, he was hailed as an innovator . . . but conspiciously... > Read more