Record of the Day: The Pleasure Seekers – What A Way To Die

This Mother’s Day, my boyfriend gifted me with a few records I’ve been wanting, including The Pleasure Seekers – What A Way to Die, a comp of the 60s garage band released by Sundazed a few years back. With speckled white vinyl and ace liner notes that offer a detailed history of the band, I’ve already had the platter in heavy rotation around here.

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Straight out of Detroit, the Pleasure Seekers was Suzi Quatro‘s first band, formed by her sister Patti when they were just 15 and 17 years old, respectively. Two more Quatro sisters eventually joined the band, and the group released their first album in 1965.

They found success pretty quick, though being young girls, they were often seen as a novelty act. But despite that, their talent showed when they took they stage, and they became one of the first touring acts to come out of Detroit. By the late 60s, they were playing big gigs, rubbing elbows with the MC5, the Stooges and Alice Cooper.

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A garage-rock band from the get-go, the Pleasure Seekers put out several solid, rocking tracks in their relatively short career. As you listen to their songs in chronological order, you can hear as they progress into a heavier, more psychedelic sound.

The liner notes on this comp, describe Suzi’s vocals as “Joplinesque,” and you can really feel that in some of their bluesy, wailing later tracks.

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Their best known song is a strong one — it shows off their talent, their ability to work together as a group, and the outrageous cutting-edge sound that was coming out of Detroit in the 60s — In the shadow of Motown, many bands rebelled with a move to more heavy, hard-hitting songs that really launched the 70s rock revolution. You hear a lot about the MC5 and the Stooges when you’re talking about the beginnings of garage rock, but the Pleasure Seekers deserve to be mentioned in the same breath, heck, in any conversation about Detroit rock n roll. Don’t be the person that leaves them out.

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Dacia lives in Austin, Texas, where she writes, drinks & listens to records.

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