Various Singapore A-Go-Go

Sublime Frequencies has done such a great job highlighting various strains of Western pop influences in the Far East that it's hard to pick highlights of its catalogue. But, if you prefer your Eastern grooves somewhat Western, this is a good place to start. On the whole, the recording quality of these swinging '60s numbers is excellent, and would mix seamlessly with fraternal examples of go-go garage pop from the U.S. of the same era. This disc is truly the sound Dengue Fever are going for, even though they are inspired by Cambodian sounds over a thousand miles away. That said, the vocals are rarely noteworthy on these tracks ― by about halfway through, they become a bit annoying, for the most part. Fortunately, enough novelty shines through. "Mimi Cat" by Chew Yan and the Stylers affects an amusing feline vocal, and "Funny, Funny" by Lim Ling and the Silvertones would be humorous in any language. I prefer the more psychedelic aesthetic and indigenous instrumentation found in SF's Thai and Cambodian collections, but others may find the pure pop here irresistible. (Sublime Frequencies)