Forgotten series: The Walker Brothers – Images (1967)

This was the last 1960s album by the Walker Brothers, released just as they initially broke up to pursue solo careers. The obvious Spector-like Wall of Sound orchestration influence is definitely in place.

“Everything Under the Sun” is the perfect example. An uplifting Gary Knight/Bob Crewe-written ballad, this should’ve been the original title of this album. It sounds like an answer to their worldwide hit “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore,” while Scott Walker’s “Experience” would’ve fit in perfectly in the musical and movie West Side Story. The ballad “Orpheus,” penned by Scott Walker, is yet another example of the stage musical-type sound at work here.

Of the covers included on Images, I enjoyed the faithful version of “Stand By Me,” done Walkers style. John Walker rocks out with some fuzztone on his “I Wanna Know.” The lush Michel Legrand-written ballad “I Will Wait For you” almost borders on middle-of-the-road balladry, but Scott Walker heroically rescues it with his own unique sensitivity. Meanwhile, the Walkers’ anthemic version of Petula Clark’s “Just Say Goodbye” sounds like a fond farewell from the group — and how could it not be, considering the circumstances? What a way to go out! The non-album single “Turn Out The Moon,” included in a 2008 reissue of Images, works just as hard at saying so long. With lines like “the torch is dying; I’ve carried it for too long” and “turn out the moon and the stars in the sky, for it ended too soon” one could not think otherwise.

“Baby Make It the Last Time’ might be third contender, but it really does feel more like a typical boy/girl love-lost tune than a group’s final goodbye in disguise. Meanwhile, the Walker Brothers’ faithful cover of “Walking in the Rain” doesn’t make me forget Jay and the Americans’ superior hit version, but all is not lost: Also tagged on at the very end of the reissue are two other 1967 non-album singles in “Stay with Me Baby” and “Turn Out the Moon.”

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Steve Elliott

Steve Elliott has written for Shindig, Twist and Shake, Garage & Beat and Ugly Things. A big fan of all things rock and roll - especially the British Invasion, garage rock, psychedelic, new wave, folk rock, surf and power pop - he was a consultant on Sundazed Music's reissue of 'The Best of Butch Engle & The Styx: No Matter What You Say' in 2000, and has also provided liner notes for Italy's Misty Lane Records. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.