Teen Beat, Vol. 1

30 instrumentals from the late '50s and early '60s, the era when instrumental rock was at its peak. Most of these were hits, though a few of them didn't make the Top 20, and some didn't even make the Top 100. Hence the selections are often more obscure than what you'll find on Rhino's Rock Instrumentals series. The Rhino series, however, remains not only a much better introduction to this nifty genre, but considerably higher in overall quality. The best songs on Teen Beat are often on the Rhino series as well (the Ventures' "Walk Don't Run," Preston Epps' "Bongo Rock," Link Wray's "Rumble"); the lesser-known ones, though a boon to collectors, simply aren't as good or imaginative. It's a serviceable supplement, though, if you're looking for more of the style, and the best cuts are certainly dynamite. ~ Richie Unterberger

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