Since there are several fine bios that tell the tale of The Zombies quite well (the box set Zombie Heaven is essential stuff with a fabulous booklet/ history), I'll spare the history here and just present these amazing 45 sides for your listening pleasure.
The Zombies' first two US singles became massive smashes in '64-'65 ("She's Not There" and "Tell Her No") and the group's moody, organ-driven sound charted far higher in the US than their English home. Organist Rod Argent penned both of these classics, yet when the group was approached in the summer of '65 with a two week deadline to provide two songs for a film called Bunny Lake Is Missing, Argent's pen ran dry. Vocalist extraordinnaire Colin Blunstone was given his first shot as a compsoer for the a-side, and he penned the jaw droppingly incredible "Just Out Of Reach". The track is classic Zombies through and through, with an aching Blunstone vocal, hard driving beat sound and an organ break that show off the instrumental brilliance of Rod Argent. Sadly, the song made only the bottom rung of the US charts, and the film also tanked.ar after its initial UK release. As public opinion of the Vietnam War was souring by the second in 1968, the strong anti-war statement of the avant-garde "Buthchers Tale (Western Front 1914) was released as the first single. Sang with strong emotion by bassist/ writer Chris White, this haunting song failed to chart but, just like the LP, is one of the most revered cuts in the Zombies catalog. The 45 presents the mono mix, as does "This Will be Our Year", a far more commercial track that may have been a better choice commercially for the a-side.
This Will Be Our Year (mono)
"Time Of The Season", pulled from Odessey became a massive US hit in 1969. The session for
the record found tempers within the group flaring, as Colin Blunstone stormed out of the session due to Rod Argent directing his vocals (Colin returned and cut the amazing vocal as directed by Rod for the released take). For all intents and purposes the Zombies were finished after the sessions were completed, bar for a few final live gigs at the end of '67. However, thanks to the massive belated success of "Time Of The Season", CBS UK and Columbia US wanted more Zombies product, and the single release "Imagine The Swan" was released. Essentially drawn from the earliest sessions of the group Argent (featuring Zombies Rod Argent and Chris White), the record certainly has the "feel' of a Zombies record with lovely Blunstone-esque vocals from Chris White. The amazing instrumental b-side "Conversation of Floral St" strikes me as being one of the last gasps of a swirling mod fantasy land that flashes images of Carnaby Street and well dressed folks dancing and clapping along with this track that, once again, highlights Rod Argent's superb musicianship and just generally sets an incredible mood.
While "She's Coming Home" followed up 'Tell Her No' in early '65 and is a lovely song in its own right, it failed to chart as high as the previous two records. It was issued with a cool picture sleeve in the US, and the b-side "I Must Move" is one of my favorite Zombies tracks. The Zombies were fortunate enough to have three superb writers in the band, and Chris White takes on a subject that's not easy to deal with on this track that shows off the groups' sophistication, class and grace in such a beautiful way.
"Friends Of Mine" was released as the lead-in single for Odessey And Oracle in the UK, where it never made the charts. The track is a favorite among Zombies fans, and with its sweet sentiment of love and friendship it has become a staple song heard at many a mod wedding! Columbia records wisely chose to release the track as the (US) b-side to "Time Of The Season", making the mono mix of the track easy to find for us mono-minded folks