Repertoire Records' Honeybus Story
is the alternative for listeners who aren't comfortable springing for Castle's 2002 vintage double-CD set: all of their Deram Records sides are here, along with their Bell Records single "She Is the Female to My Soul" b/w "For Where Have You Been" and their Warner Bros. single "For You" b/w "Little Lovely One." The sound quality is excellent throughout -- you can practically hear the vibrating on the oboe reeds on "I Can't Let Maggie Go," and listening to this CD it's easy to understand the comparisons constantly made between this group and the Beatles
, and the Bee Gees
-- the group had a similar knack for mixing gorgeous melodies, strong playing, and pretty harmonies on some of their material, and loud, psychedelic guitar and pounding, driving textures recalling Jimi Hendrix
and the Creation
on other songs, and the best of both sounds are here. The annotation isn't all that it should be, but considering the sheer attractiveness of the music, that's a minor problem, and better histories are available elsewhere for anyone who cares.