The Kitchen Cinq undoubtedly have one of the best “bad pun” names in rock ’n’ roll. A five piece garage/pop band from Texas, their name plays off the French word for five “cinq,” which of course is pronounced approximately the same as “sink.” The title of their only LP takes it a step further, but is really a misnomer as the album is hardly eclectic, offering instead straight-ahead ’60s pop similar to the Beau Brummels and the New Colony Six (there’s that number thing again!).
The story of the Kitchen Cinq begins in the early ’60s in Amarillo, Texas, when Mark Creamer asked Jim Parker to replace a recently departed rhythm guitarist in his band, The Illusions. Shortly thereafter, a single was recorded and released by Dot Records, featuring Parker’s “Brenda” as the A-side. In search of a more memorable name and one more in line with group’s regional sense of humor, the Illusions became the Y’Alls. Another single, a cover of the Beatles’ “Run for Your Life” was released in 1966 on Ruff, shortly before the band relocated to Los Angeles and began work with legendary producer/songwriter Lee Hazelwood. Once signed to LHI (Lee Hazelwood Industries), Hazelwood and then girlfriend and record producer Suzi Jane Hokom insisted the band change their name once more, hopefully to something a little hipper. Thus, the Kitchen Cinq. The personnel for all three groups, however, remained the same: Creamer and Parker on guitar and vocals, Dale Gardner on bass, Dallas Smith on guitar and Johnny Stark on drums.
Though Hazelwood was certainly involved, it was Hokom who actually produced the Kitchen Cinq for LHI (as she would, just a few weeks later, produce Safe at Home for The International Submarine Band). The sessions for Everything But . . . were held at Gold Star Studios and featured some of the famed Wrecking Crew (including Glen Campbell, Hal Blaine and Carol Kaye). And right down the hall, the Buffalo Springfield were working on sessions for their second album.
As noted above, Everything But . . . is straight-ahead ’60s pop. The opening track, “You’ll Be Sorry Someday,” is a raga rock song with a nearly single note melody and several dramatic pauses between “you’ll be sorry” and “someday.” One of the highlights of the record is the fuzz-guitar rave-up “Determination,” which sounds like a cross between the famous Monkees Kellogg’s jingle and very early Merseybeat (fuzz guitar notwithstanding). “Please Come Back to Me” is a solid pop song matching an upbeat verse with a more reflective chorus in a style similar to San Francisco’s Beau Brummels. “Young Boy” is a bluesy folk rock song with very traditional folk harmonies.
“If You Think” is reminiscent of the Lewis and Clark Expedition and, while catchy, seems incomplete with a bridge that sounds, frankly, out of place. The closing track, “Need All the Help I Can Get” is Hazelwood’s contribution and bears his trademark spooky pop sound. The album is rounded out by covers of Neil Diamond’s “Solitary Man,” Buffy Ste. Marie’s “Codine,” Gene Pitney’s “Last Chance to Turn Around,” the Beau Brummel’s “Still in Love with You Baby,” and the Hollies’ “I Can’t Let Go.” All credible; none really essential.
LHI released three singles from Everything But . . .: “You’ll Be Sorry Someday” backed with “Determination” and “If You Think” and “Still in Love with You Baby” both backed with the non-album track, “(Ellen’s Fancies) Ride the Wind.” All three singles had limited regional success, but neither charted nationally. Three additional singles followed (one on LHI and two on Decca) and that was it for the Kitchen Cinq. Creamer, Parker and Stark then formed the much heavier band, Armegeddon., who released a single LP on Jimmy Bowen’s Amos label. Parker and Stark then went on to play on Them’s self-titled 1970 album and the follow-up In Reality. In the second half of the ’70s, Parker shifted to country music, most notably writing two big hits for John Anderson.(popgeekheaven.com)
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This is a very fine psych pop album. It's a contribution by Mark, a very friendly guy from the Boston area. Thanks for that Mark.