Ace has two volumes of vocals by the Fireballs that cover most of the combo's output, but recent investigations into the Norman Petty vaults have uncovered a slew of unissued material, the cream of which is gathered on This CD. It CD focuses on the tougher side of the Fireballs studio career during the mid-1960s, as they came to terms with the impact of the British Invasion, and made some fine beat group-styled recordings of their own. Featured are rockin' covers of items by the Knickerbockers, Paul Revere & The Raiders, Beach Boys and others. As an added bonus, the enhanced portion of the CD features color footage of the Fireballs performing three songs from a Texas TV pop show circa 1968, including "Bottle Of Wine."
Fireballs vocalist Jimmy Gilmer is to the fore, indulging his love of folk rock on superb versions of 'Codine' and 'Thunder & Lightnin'', not to mention an alternate version of the group's swansong hit 'Bottle Of Wine'. Original Fireballs frontman Chuck Tharp also weighs-in with 'Tough Times', a 1964 session where he is backed by his former bandmates. Most tracks on "Firebeat!" are making their debut on CD, and the sound quality on all is second-to-none, showcasing the masterful production skills of Norman Petty. Also features punchy, guitar-fuelled workouts on 'Kansas City' and 'Summertime Blues', and strong British-flavoured original material such as 'Never You Mind' and 'Come To Me'.