My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears was recorded in 1965 and released in 1966. This is the debut album from the group.
What I think: If you Can Believe… is at it’s best when the group are doing originals, in fact the songs “Go Where You Wanna Go”, “California Dreamin” and “Monday, Monday” are all originals and were the biggest hits of the bands career. It’s also in these originals that I get a bit of a feeling of sadness, which gives the songs some depth. The covers on the album become to sickly sweet and tend to ruin the overall experience. “Do You Wanna Dance?” and “Spanish Harlem” are perfect examples of this. The shining tracks are the previously mentioned singles, as well as, “Straight Shooter” which has a sound lifted straight from Rubber Soul, but is still fresh enough to be a great Mamas and Papas song.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? The mix of pop hooks with folk sounds on this album is sometimes really exciting, but other times just seems like filler for the singles. I think as a singles group is the way I would like to hear the Mamas and Papas. In other words, I wouldn’t include this album in the book.
Rating (Out of 5): 3
Amazon Review (Out of 5):4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (51/69)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 74%