The Animals - House of the Rising Sun (1964)
So gifted and ahead of the times! In my humble opinion, Newcastle's Animals circa 1964 were vastly superior to their chart contemporaries, the Beatles and the Stones. The Beatles were loveable moptops then, and the Stones were still a few years away from their songwriting peak, but The Animals were raw, gritty and, in Eric Burdon, they had one of the all-time great blues/rock voices.
The Animals' take on "House of the Rising Sun" sounded wholly new, if you weren't there in 1964 it's hard to imagine today how big a deal this new and gritty sound was, "House of the Rising Sun", was dark, brooding and very, very cool, it had an edge that was lacking from the other Brit-Beat groups and it broke new ground. American music critic and writer Dave Marsh described it as: "the first folk-rock hit," sounding "as if they'd connected the ancient tune to a live wire," while writer Ralph McLean of the BBC agreed that: "it was arguably the first folk rock tune," calling it "a revolutionary single" after which "the face of modern music was changed forever."
Viva The Animals for the fantastic sound they had!
Eric Burdon - vocals
Alan Price - keyboards
Hilton Valentine - guitar
Chas Chandler - bass
John Steel - drums