Band of Bees second album Free the Bees is a rollicking, breathtaking romp through the '60s, calling to mind classic band after classic band but also conjuring up a modern and original sound of their own. "These Are the Ghosts," the CD's opening track, gives us echoes of the psychedelic-era Small Faces, the Kinks circa Village Green Preservation Society, and even, at times, Pink Floyd circa Piper at the Gates of Dawn. There are moments on "No Atmosphere" where they sound like the Small Faces quoting the Beatles obliquely from Rubber Soul, and elsewhere it suddenly sounds as though the ghost of George Harrison has stepped into the studio to throw in some licks from a White Album jam. And incidentally, the studio in question where this album was cut was, indeed, EMI Studio No. 2, the very same that the Beatles used, so the Bees re-creating elements of the Beatles' sound is no accident. "Chicken Payback" sounds like some discovery from the vaults of Stax Records, except that it's not – it's an original, and it is original, and could pass for some 40-year-old Northern soul discovery. "The Russian" comes off like a piece of soundtrack music in search of a movie, circa Blow-Up, like for a chiller (The Deadly Bees, perhaps?) or spy picture where the producers couldn't afford John Barry.
In 1967 and 1968, Hearts and Flowers stood at the intersection between folk, country, and rock. The band recorded two albums, Now Is the Time for Hearts and Flowers in 1967 and Of Horses, Kids and Forgotten Women in 1968, and then disappeared. The Complete Hearts and Flowers collects both of these albums and enough extras (13 songs) for another album.