The Jackie Fountains were an obscure beat group from a small rural town in Sweden. They released two singles for the tiny Dollar label in 1966, and several more tracks from 1965-66 also appeared on an oddball spoken word album by a farmer named M. Swingberg, which was released by Dollar in 1969 and, needless to say, sold very few copies.
Now Feathered Apple have rescued the group from obscurity with this LP, collecting most of the above-mentioned tracks (one B-side excepted) plus previously unreleased live and demo recordings. Fans of mid-60s Euro-beat will not be disappointed. The band´s first single, "You Better Look Around" is a mournful beat number decorated with some stirring 12-string guitar. "Listen Girl" (from the Swingberg LP) is another excellent number, with a slow swaying rhythm and a revolving guitar riff, while "Your Love" kicks up the energy level with a wild double-time break. "Why Did You Leave Me?" -another original composition- is a snotty, harp-wailing R&B mover, and they also beat out smashing renditions of "Buckle Shoe Stomp" (live in very raw fidelity), "I´m Talking About You" and "Brand New Cadillac." The album signs off on a surprisingly smooth and melodic note with "Bad Girl," a lovely commercial pop song, complete with Bacharach-style horns: it would´ve been perfect for somebody like Dave Berry, circa 1966.
The Jackie Fountains broke up in 1967, but several years later lead guitarist Hasse Wärmling was in an early line-up of the Stranglers. He left the group before they became successful, but they held on to a song he had co-written with Hugh Cornwell, "Strange Little Girl," the music of which dated back to Wärmling´s Jackie Fountains days. The Stranglers demoed the song with Wärmling as early as 1974 (it can be heard on the Early Years Rare & Unreleased 1974-76 CD, and it´s wonderful), but it was not until 1982 that they re-recorded it and it became one of their biggest hits.
Feathered Apple have put together a very strong package here, with extensive liner notes by Peter Wärmling (Hasse´s brother and the group´s manager) and a glossy insert loaded with old press clippings and set lists.
Mike Stax, The Loons (Ugly Things #22, December 2004)
You Better Look Around
Club A Go-Go
Buckle Shoe Stomp
Brand New Cadillac
Why Did You Leave Me?
Bye Bye Johnny
I'm Talking About You
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