“Long Days Care”

“Long Days Care” is a song by Thee Sixpence, later Strawberry Alarm Clock. It is from the first single ever released by the band, on the All American label, with a cover of Love’s “Can’t Explain” as the b-side. The “Long Days Care” single was released in 1966.

As a mid-60s garage punk number, “Long Days Care” is pretty good; the band is genuinely out there and sweaty on this two-minute raveup. Even at this early stage there is a psychedelic edge to the number, more so than many other garage punk sides from the era. (This is apparent from the opening seconds, which feature a crudely shimmering guitar chord before the song proper gets going.)

Of particular note are the booming drums and the frantic tambourine. Hey, every punk raveup needs a good beat, right? Also sticking out in the listener’s ear are the unexpected key shifts throughout the song, a weird collection of modulations where modulation isn’t really called for. “Long Days Care” establishes Thee Sixpence as a daring and self-assured unit.

Appears on

45: “Long Days Care” b/w “Can’t Explain” (All American 303) (1966)
LP: Step By Step (1998 compilation)

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