Album review: Dreamboats And Petticoats Four

Can the latest outing for the West End musical tie-in pass muster, or is it an exercise in barrel-scraping?

Few compilation series mining the golden decades after the birth of popular music have lasted as long and been as successful as this one.

No doubt the marketing exec responsible for the West End musical tie-in will be enjoying a bumper Christmas.

So this fourth volume sticks to formula, cannily sprinkling the familiar with the widely – sometimes justifiably – forgotten.

Classics such as The Ronettes’ Be My Baby and Chuck Berry’s raw Roll Over Beethoven make appearances, amid picks from the ‘50s and ‘60s canon of early rock’n’roll, pop, jazz and skiffle including Neil Sedaka’s Little Devil, which hides its cheeky subject matter under treacly tones.

The lesser-known material is a hit-and-miss affair; Kenny Ball’s trad jazz Sukiyaki twinkles next to The Coasters’ underwhelming take on Poison Ivy, for example. A passably enjoyable mixed bag.

3 stars