Musician (4/96, p.90) - "...The attention to detail here is quite impressive, the songs are full of high harmonies and pristinely crafted arrangements..."
Paul Butterfield Blues Band: Paul Butterfield (vocals, harmonica); Elvin Bishop (guitar); Mike Bloomfield, Mark Naftalin (keyboards); Jerome Arnold (bass); Sam Lay (drums).
Recorded in 1964. Includes liner notes by Paul Rothchild.
THE ORIGINAL LOST ELEKTRA SESSIONS stem from the Butterfield Blues Band's attempt to record their debut album. The tapes were scrapped and a whole new album was recorded.
The songs here, recorded in late 1964 before keyboardist Mark Naftalin joined up, were intended for the Butterfield Band's first album. However, they were junked at the last minute by producer Paul Rothchild, who felt they weren't technically up to snuff for reasons that remain unclear despite his liner note reminiscences. The tapes then proceeded to languish in Elektra's vaults for 30 years, at which point Rothchild dug them out and decided they were better than he remembered.
And a good thing, too, because they capture the band raw and in its prime with no apologies necessary. The repertoire overlaps only slightly with the "official" first album (which was recorded a few months later), and musically it's apples and oranges as to which one is better, although some prefer this recording's in-your-face style.