Thursday, October 1, 2009

Psychotic Reaction

Flipping through the XM Channels this afternoon I stopped when I heard this song by the Count Five. Curious to learn more about the band I discovered that they were a true 1960's garage punk outfit. Psychotic Reaction was their only hit to ever make the charts, peaking at No. 5 on the Billboard Top 100 for 1966. According to an article on

Count 5 never went on to achieve anything more than cult status, and as the sordid story goes, Byrne insisted on putting his college studies above the band. The group made a famous appearance on American Bandstand with Dick Clark but reportedly turned down a million smackeroos from the William Morris Agency to go out on tour, opting to remain in college with hopes of avoiding the draft.

Band leader John (a.k.a. Sean) Byrne granted an interview shortly before his death. It can be found here.

The Count Five holds alt-cult status with many artists of their generation. Indeed, modern bands like the Arctic Monkeys and the Strokes bear a striking resemblance. Altogether, the music remains surprisingly vibrant and fresh today.

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