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The Fraternity Years [Vinyl] Import
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The Traps made a name for themselves throughout the south with some incendiary performances and scored several regional hits, with the Dylan-laced Execution making the national charts in 1966. Signed to the venerable Cincinnati indie Fraternity, with a dozen singles under their belt, there were rumors among collectors for years that a Mouse And The Traps LP existed.
There never was an album, but now Big Beat has decided to condense the contents of their well-received Mouse & The Traps CD anthology The Fraternity Years into one all-killer vinyl edition. It's the kind of power-packed disc fans would have hoped for back in the day. As a special bonus, it includes a previously unissued alternate version of the act's 1968 single Sometimes You Just Can't Win.
Top Customer Reviews
Mouse is Ronnie Weiss, a singer whose normal singing voice is a dead-ringer for Dylan's nasal delivery. "A Public Execution," Weiss' 1966 kiss-off to an ex-girlfriend, found the sort of disjointed regional radio success that never gained the critical mass needed to chart nationally. The band developed fans in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Ohio and Kentucky, but never graduated beyond their contract with the Cincinnati-based Fraternity Records. The single's B-side, the horn-lined "All for You" is perhaps more indicative of the R&B material the band turned out in live performances across oil patch towns in East Texas. Still, this was the mid-60s, and like Jim Sohns of The Shadows of Knight, Mouse lent a cocky edge to the band's blues.
The follow-up single, "Maid of Sugar, Maid of Spice," sounds even more like the Shadows of Knight, with bedspring-twangs of fuzz guitar punctuating the mile-a-minute vocals and R&B band rave-up. It's a truly sweltering piece of mid-60s garage rock. The flipside, "I Am the One" introduced the band's proclivity for folk-rock, which also included the Byrds styled buzz and jangle of "I've Got Her Love" and the Dylanesque "Like I Know You Do.Read more ›
To be sure, other influences abound, the CD is like a musical "Where's Waldo." Doors keyboards, psychedelic Donovan, lush pop arrangements ("Requiem for Sarah") and a James Brown treatment of "You Are My Sunshine" (!). The title "Fraternity Years" refers to the record label on which these originally appeared, not the maturity level of the performances.
Lots of material here, enjoy!!!
I remember hearing on the radio a guy named Mouse, the lead singer on this album, singing his song Public Execution which owes a lot to Dylan's Like a Rolling Stone, to many, Dylan's signature song. I only heard Public Excecution once on the radio but I was taken with it. My comment was that Mouse out-Bob Dylaned Bob Dylan. Mouse had every Dylan nuance down pat, accent, his soaring sharp, wailing refrains which defied musical convention, so distinctly Dylan. If you can imagine Dylan with a strong pop voice, this is it.
The album is of great historical significance. It features the guitar virtuosity of Bugs Henderson who, in my mind, is one of the top guitar players that ever lived. After all these years he's filling up some club and blowing minds. The record was cut at Robin Hood Brian's famous studio in Tyler, where everyone in or near Texas that was ever anybody recorded. James Brown, Ike and Tina Turner, ZZ, Stevie Ray and many others.
I bought it for historical value and play it often for friends who don't know about Mouse. I always enjoy it. There are several voices dwelling within Dylan himself, from the brash Like a Rolling Stone Dylan to the tender Just Like a Woman Dylan. Mouse has them all down.
I wonder... There are many Elvis impersonators, some of whom I presume make a good living. Why weren't there ever any Dylan impersonators? You could say some like Petty, Knopfler, the Byrds made their bones by channeling Dylan. But no one did Dylan as well as Mouse.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Those with at least some familiarity with 60s music know of “A Public Execution” by Mouse and the Traps. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Jersey Kid
This band wrote several good songs, but the rest are so-so at best. The best songs on this album are: "Maid Of Sugar,Maid Of Spice", which is the best rockin' song on this whole... Read morePublished on January 16, 2013 by JW
Two Texas bands, Mouse and the Traps and Kenny and the Casuals were huge in Texas in the 1960's. It is a shame neither band broke nationally. Read morePublished on July 12, 2012 by wonder boy
Ronnie Weiss should have gotten more exposure for his group Mouse & the Trapps, who had 3 really excellent originals, among others, but I think only one made it to the national... Read morePublished on February 17, 2010 by Daniel Brookshire