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4.6 out of 5 stars
Over Under Sideways Down
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
on June 2, 2004
"Over, Under, Sideways, Down" or "The Yardbirds" or "Roger the Engineer" was the Yardbirds` first real album released in 1966. They had released two albums in America in 1965 "For Your Love" and "Having a Rave Up", but they were merely a compilations of singles, EP`s , live-recordings or obscure recording which were included to fill up the albums to reach an acceptable playing-time.

For the first time they were given the opportunity to record a real album. The were not given unlimited studio-time; on the contrary; the album was recorded during a very short time-period; I believe it was about 2 weeks. This makes the result even more impressive. It`s no exaggeration to call this album one a the greatest of the mid-sixties. Very tight playing by everyone, impressive and innovative guitar-work from Jeff Beck, solid vocals and great songs.

In my opinion there is no doubt that it`s Jeff Beck who makes the difference. I love the sounds he can get out of his guitar. It`s not difficult to imagine how he stunned people listening to his guitar back in 66. The great mixture of traditional blues and the new psychedelic sounds has never been surpassed.

Even classic 12 bar blues tracks like "Lost Woman","Over, Under, Sideways, Down", "The Nazz Are Blue", "Rack My Mind", "Jeff`s Boogie" and "What Do You Want" sounded (sounds) new; and these recordings still sound uplifting and full of energy today.

On songs like "Ever Since The World Began", "Turn Into Earth", "Hot House" and "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" showed a purer progressive side of the band. In fact "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" was not originally included on the album, as it was recorded shortly after, at a time when Jimmy Page had also joined the group. "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" was released as a single with "Psycho Daisies" as the b-side. These two songs have been featured on most re-releases of the album, and can almost be considered as originals. The moving "Farewell" is a another favourite; makes you think of the sad destiny of Keith Relf who died electrocuted in 1976 by his own guitar while practising at his home.

Unfortunately this 2 lead-guitarist period would last very short, as Jeff Beck soon left. As far as I know, they only recorded 3 songs; with "Stroll On" from the movie "Blow Up" as the third.

The bonus tracks make the CD an even better buy. The Keith Relf solo tracks a all solid; in fact they are really the Yardbirds backing singer Relf. "Mr Zero" is not far from later Yardbirds recordings like "Little Soldier Boy".

If you`re even the least interested in the music that came out of the 1960`s this milestone is a must buy!
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on February 24, 2006
if, like me , you realize how the 60's were like no other time, and the window has closed, this is an album full of songs that opens that window on the best era of music to come along scince the classical time. the yardbirds defined a type/style of the time. blues, rock, and psychedelic swirling around in one grand mix to create a unique stew. jeff beck shines on this album, as does the entire group. if at first listen, it sounds dated, give it a little time. it's raw and full simultaneously. if you are into the 60's, this is essential.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2008
Pick any of the Best of the Best ever. I mean the all time greats: Court of the Crimson King, Dark Side Moon, Quadrophenia, Exile on Main St, Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Days of Future Past, Freak Out, Safe as Milk, Spirit #1, Pet Sounds, Village Green Preservation, Aqualung, Velvet Underground and Nico. Eric Dolphy Out to Lunch, whatever... This one is up there with any of them. Amazingly, for a band basically known for their singles, there is not one hit single on this whole album, yet any one of these tracks could have been one, it's that tightly put together. Wow!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on April 18, 2009
My brother bought the original album at a record convention in 1979 when the album was nearly impossible to find anywhere. Now 30 years later, he is enjoying the CD to relive the memories of a 45 he bought in 1967 with "Over Under Side Ways Down" on side A and "Jeff's Boogie" on side B on the Epic label.

The bonus tracks only enhance a fine collection of songs that could arguably be called the beginning of an evolution. If you enjoy Led Zeppelin, you should listen to this album as the influences for the New Yardbirds (later Led Zeppelin) are more than coincidence.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on April 24, 2003
The original EPIC vinyl LP has the original 10 tracks. Most of the 20 + CD tracks are a RAID into the YardbiRds Gomelskey catalog. I'd say that 'there are too many extra song tracks'. If you like original YardbiRds, try 'Roger The Engineer', and the 'RHINO' 2CD Ultimate Collection. Both CDs' should be available here at amazon.com. Many tracks are 'Re-channeled'STEREO, In 1963-64 most Yardbirds and Rolling Stones tracks were recorded in natural mono.
I usually rate the YardbiRds HIGH, their innovations still sound great, even now, 30 + years after their original release dates! I'd say 'Buy' this CD.
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on September 1, 2014
The Yardbirds never seemed to know whether they wanted to be a crack psychedelic pop outfit or blues-rock the way Cream leaned and Led Zeppelin would. Turns out they were excellent at both, which makes for rather messy albums but full of delight all the way. They were much more than the sum of their three guitar giants, Clapton, Beck, and Page. Keith Relf, Jim McCarty and the rest made the Yardbirds inimitably themselves. Roger the Engineer, it turns out, was one of the very few studio albums ever released in England. In the U.S., Epic took their myriad great singles and EP tracks and made five albums out of them, also using some material from the Clapton-led British album Five Live Yardbirds along the way. In the U.S., Epic released this album as Over Under Sideways Down, after the smash single, minus two tracks that appeared on the British version(both are here). Here, though, you get a lot of extras: The follow-up single Happenings Ten Years Time Ago, a super psychedelic piece with both Beck and Page playing, its B-side Psycho Daisies, and two interesting singles (four songs) by Relf in which he covers and then writes like singer-songwriter Bob Lind, and then one reminiscent of Procol Harum with a bluesy B-side. A little harder to understand are the "7 inch" versions of OverUnderSidewaysDown and Jeff's Boogie which for the life of me don't sound any different from the already included album versions. The only difference might be that they are in mono. Stereo and mono weren't all that important in much of sixties pop, at least before Revolver and Sgt. Pepper. There is a "Hot House of Omagararshid" that is just a little different from the Lp version, and an alternate take of one of the Relf songs. A nice collector's item all around, if you are a fan as I am and recall when music like this was making the top 40. Nothing comparable does now.
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on March 8, 2013
Mid-60s British group never established a signature style, in part because of crazy management changes; in part because they changed lead guitarists over the years (but always had great ones, including Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page); and in part because founder and lead singer Keith Relf was wildly inconsistent in his performances and not at all well-suited to all styles he tried. They actually were the best of the early British "white boys blues" cover bands - far better than early Rolling Stones or Small Faces, for example, and Clapton was a key reason, but Relf sang lives blues very, very well and he coordinated his strikingly strong harmonica playing very well with the lead guitar. The group's middle years - with Jeff Beck now on lead guitar - represent the group's best commercial success, but keep in mind that Graham Gouldman wrote some of their best hits, including For Your Love and Heart Full of Soul. Critics have recognized an Eastern-sounding, minor chord melancholy to these Gouldman tunes, but I suggest they listen to some Eastern European/Jewish music for a better understanding of what's really going on. Gouldman grew up in a fairly traditional Jewish family in the north of England, with strong East European roots, and that's where his "soul" was coming from. All in all, the Beck/Gouldman years were the best. Nothing on this album comes from the Jimmy Page years, which were the more psychedelic years, but I strongly believe Led Zeppelin owes a lot to both Beck and Gouldman. The greatest moments in this collection? Listen to the 20 second guitar solo from Beck on "Shapes of Things." Arguably the greatest guitar solo in rock music history.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 11, 2008
An absolute must-have for Yardbirds enthusiasts.
Original U.S. Epic label 10 tracks of the Jeff Beck era lineup.
at ten original tracks, Over Under Sideways Down seems a bit too short, but in 1966 when 45rpm singles were about $1.00 up, ten tracks with Jeff Beck on lead guitar was and remains an outstanding musical experience.
The next year, 1967, Jimi Hendrix returned to America and his very experienced guitar stylings and unbeleivable live performances slightly put the damper on many British acts, the Yardbirds seemed to have run out of the best of the British guitarists from Eric 'slowhand' Clapton, 'slowhand'- ha through Jeff Beck then Jimmy Page, and some era dual lead guitar with Jeff Beck with Jimmy Page. A great 10 tracks here, no 'The Nazz Are Blue' or other 'hits' with Jimmy Page on Bass.
This is a great recording, you can't miss with this record.
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on December 7, 2013
This was the fourth album of the Yardbirds, and the third with Jeff Beck on lead guitar. Beck replace Eric Clapton, and was later replaced by Jimmy Page. Some roster! This album was a transition from British blues to psychedelic, Keith Relf, the lead singer went on to form Renaissance with Jim McCarty, and then Armageddon, a heavy metal band. The Yardbirds did some live BBC gigs with Clapton, Beck and Page on stage together. Their first album, with Clapton on lead guitar, was a double album with Blues great Sonny Boy Williamson.
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on April 29, 2013
Still Fantastic for me as i am the age of the Yardbirds and got every album when they were originally released. Just replacing older disc plus this had extra tracks....
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