Horizons is the Debut Album by the British Psychedelic/Progressive-Rock Band The Greatest Show On Earth. The Greatest Show On Earth couldn't have been more different when they started. A Soul band with a Black Vocalist was more fit for the ranks of Motown than the Progressive grooves of Harvest Records. When they ditched Ozzie Lane (The Vocalist) and embraced Colin Horton Jennings, the Soul began to fade away, giving space for Jennings to bring him his new ideas of what a Band of that period should be doing. They had already been signed to Harvest Records since 1968. The Label wanted to make them a new Blood, Sweat & Tears, with more focus on the Woodwind sections apart from the normal Organs and Electric Guitars. Both their Albums came out in 1970, Horizons and The Going's Easy, with their Covers being made by the Artist Collective Hipgnosis. Despite their hard work and fantastic Albums they were completely ignored prompting the dismembering of the Band the next year, 1971, with half the members going to other Bands and others leaving the Music Business forever.
Best Tracks - "Sunflower Morning", "Angelina", "Real Cool World", "I Fought For Love" and "Horizons". I still maintain that their Follow-up was their best effort, but nonetheless this are two Albums definitively worth listening, for hard Psychedelia, driven by Heavy Organ and Guitar playing. They were already a bit to far from their ideal period, had them been released earlier, maybe they would have had a different fate.
The Greatest Show On Earth:
- Colin Horton Jennings - Vocals, Flute, Guitar, Percussion.
- Garth Watt-Roy - Vocals, Guitar.
- Norman Watt-Roy - Vocals, Bass.
- Mick Deacon - Keyboards.
- Ron Prudence - Drums, Congas.
- Dick Hanson - Horns.
- Tex Phillpots - Saxophone.
- Ian Aitcheson - Woodwinds.
A Sign Of Changes is the Debut Album by the American Jazz/Folk-Rock Band Lamb.
Fillmore: The Last Days (A Music Documentary showing the last concerts performed in one of the most famous Venues at the time, the Fillmore West in San Francisco), features footage of Lamb performing, among such big acts as Quicksilver Messenger Service, Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead, which have granted them a way to still be remember to this day. Their story begins when they opened a show for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and were spotted by Bill Graham (owner of the Fillmore West) who promptly became their manager. They also got the hang of Producer David Rubinson, who had been working with West-Coast Psychedelic Acts since the beginning of the Movement. A Sign Of Change, their Debut, was released on Graham's Label, Fillmore, and received little to no attention. For their follow-up they would go on to a different Label, and a Sound less based in experimental Jazz.
Best Tracks - "Traveler's Observation", "In Dreams", "Barbara's Soul II", "The Odyssey Of Ehram Spickor" and "Preacher's Holiday". Barbara Mauritz Vocals are absolutely beautiful and fit the Music perfectly. Mostly peaceful and calm compositions, with Acoustic instruments and Jazzy atmosphere. An incredible free and beautiful recording.
- Barbara Mauritz - Vocals, Guitar, Tambourine.
- Bob Swanson - Guitar.
- Bill Douglass - Double Bass.
- Walter Papaport - shepherd
- Diva Goodfriend-Koven - Flute.
- Robert Hubbard - English-Horn.
- Douglas Blumenstock - Cello.
- Ed Bogas - Viola.
The Other Half is the First and Only Album by the American Garage/Psychedelic-Rock band The Other Half.
Formed in Southern California, The Other Half were in San Francisco at exactly the right time. Haight-Ashbury was full of Hippies and the Summer Of Love was alive and kicking. They were one of the main attractions in the Family Dog shows, promoted by Chet Helms, which took place in the Avalon Ballroom, and in which played some of the biggest acts of the age (Country Joe & The Fish, The Mothers Of Invention and The Doors, to name a few). Their Guitarist, Randy Holden (who would later play with Blue Cheer) had been invited to play in the Yardbirds, but refused and joined The Other Half instead, who also had a big Yardbirds influence. Their only Album has become a very known Garage Gem, worshiped for its intensity and strength. Holden would leave the Band right after the release in a search for other Sounds.
Best Tracks - "Introduction", "Feathered Fish", "Flight Of The Dragon Lady", "I Need You", "Morning Fire" and "What Can I Do For You (The Other Half)". The Cover is just amazing, the colors and the hair are vibrant and can almost show what is expected on the inside. The songs seem to be running, quick and strong, like a sudden storm, blowing away everything. Hard-Psychedelia at its best.
Underground is the Second Album by the American Psychedelic-Rock Band The Electric Prunes.
As The Collectors, The Electric Prunes were run by Manager David Hassinger, who lead them as if he was the leader of the Band himself. When he got hold of them, Hassinger told them that they could not continue with their name (Jim and The Lords), and as such they picked up the name The Electric Prunes, the last name on a long list of possibilities and only featured in it as a Joke. Let's skip some years and go to 1967 when they released their Second Album. As the Debut it reached the lower levels of the Billboard Charts and launched the Band in a fairly successful Tour, and more Line-Up changes due to internal conflicts over royalties and recognition. During their European Tour they Recorded a concert in Stockholm, Sweden, which was widely Bootlegged by fans of the Band, only to be finally released on the 90's with a 1,000 copies Edition. Underground was something very different from their other works, mainly because it was the one that allowed them to have complete artistic freedom, as Hassinger seemed to be busier with other things.
Best Tracks - "The Great Banana Hoax", "Children Of Rain", "Wind-Up Toys", "Antique Doll", "I Happen To Love You", "Dr. Do-Good", "I" and "Long Day's Flight". It seems that most Psychedelic Albums has one or more songs that are similar to any other Psychedelic Band (except for the really big classics), and Underground also has that kind of Music. However there are some exceptionally good tunes and compositions, enough to make the Album worth the listen (much more than worth, actually).
The Electric Prunes:
- James Lowe - Vocals, Autoharp, Harmonica.
- Mark Tulin - Bass, Organ, Piano.
- Ken Williams - Lead-Guitar.
- James 'Weasel' Spangola - Vocals, Rhythm-Guitar.
- Mike Gannon - Vocals, Rhythm-Guitar.
- Preston Ritter - Drums.
- Michael Weakley, 'Quint' - Drums.
Flying Teapot is the Fifth Album by the Canterbury Scene/Psychedelic-Rock Band Gong.
With Flying Teapot, Gong and Daevid Allen, started a Trilogy, under the name Radio Gnome Trilogy, based on a vision Allen had had in 1966, where he saw the Future right in front of him. References to characters and episodes where already present in all their previous Albums, but it was only here that the story would be fully explored. Mista T Being, an Egyptologist, is gets his hands on a Magick Ear Ring (antique teapot street vendor and tea label collector) sold by Fred the Fish. The Ear Ring can pick up a Pirate Radio Station from Planet Gong. Together (Being and Fish), they roam off to the hymnalayas in Tibet, where they meet a Guru who gets drunk on Australian Alcohol. While this is going on, Zero the Hero, has a vision and starts worshiping Cock Pot Pixie, one of numerous Pixies that travel the Planet Earth with Flying Teapots. They are Pot Head Pixies. When he gives a cat his Fish-and-Chips the cat (in reality Good Witch Yoni) offers him back a Potion. The Story ends here and is continued in their follow-up Angel's Egg.
Best Tracks - "Radio Gnome Invisible", "Flying Teapot", "The Pot Head Pixies", "Zero The Hero And The Witch's Spell" and "Witch's Song/I Am Your Pussy". An insane Album, binding compositions and Fantastic Instrumental work, Guitars and the Saxophones especially. The story is as clear as it gets, the next Albums will really complicate it a lot, even more numbers and more references to Drugs and Buddhist Ideals than this one, but no one can deny how funny and interesting it is on itself, not counting with the extremely good Musical qualities.
Fat Mattress is the Debut Album by the English Psychedelic, Folk-Rock Band Fat Mattress.
When Fat Mattress was formed, by the end of the year of 1968, Noel Redding, The Jimi Hendrix Experience's Bassist, was already in divergence with the Band. Neil Landon, had just had his Solo project cancelled, and as he already had the material composed and ready, he decided to form the Band with Redding, who already had participated in the preparations for his Solo effort. By the time their debut was released, Redding was already out of The Jimi Hendrix Experience. On Fat Mattress, Redding got the Lead Role, he composed, he wrote, he sang and played the Guitar, he was finally free to do as he pleased. Martin Barre was chosen as the Band's Lead Guitarist, but he left soon enough to join Jethro Tull, in which he is still to this day. Fat Mattress came to prominence as the opening act of TJHE, which was fundamental to the moderate success they had upon the release of the Album, on the 15th of August, 1969.
Best Tracks - "All Night Drinker", "I Don't Mind", "Bright New Day". "Mr. Moonshine", "Magic Forest", "Walking Through A Garden", "How Can I Live", "Which Way To Go" and "Future Days". Not a definitive Album of the Decade. In the midst of the 15 songs, there are some fantastic tunes, landmarks of 60's Music, but there are also some very meek Tracks, boring psychedelic tunes. Nonetheless it is a very important part of 60's history, and they have been remembered as such.
- Neil Landon – Vocals.
- Noel Redding – Guitar, Vocals.
- Jimmy Leverton – Bass, Harpsichord, Organ, Vocals.
Eclection is the First and Only Album by the British Folk-Rock Band Eclection.
The Band came to know eachother when Michael Rosen saw Georg Hultgreen playing in Bayswater, a London area where there are big foreigner communities. Together they decided to start a project and contacted Trevor Lucas (who would later play in Fotheringay, ran by his Girlfriend Sandy Denny), who in turn brought in Kerrilee Male. Joni Mitchell who, at the time, was playing the Folk Circuit in England, gave them the name Eclection, referencing the Eclectic nature of the Bands influences and style. The Band managed to contact Elektra Records (home of The Doors, The Incredible String Band and Phil Ochs, apart from Mitchell herself) owner, Jac Holzman, who immediately gave them a Record deal upon hearing them rehearse in London. The Album was released in August, 1968, and was not that well received (Holzman stated that it was due to them being in England). They played for a couple months before the first Members started leaving, and only in the end of 1969, would Lucas and his remaining comrades finally drop the project and chase other ambitions.
Best Tracks - "Nevertheless", "Violet Dew", "Will Tomorrow Be The Same", "Still I Can See", "Another Time, Another Place", "St. George And The Dragon (Up The Night)" and "Confusion". It is not my cup of tea, however it was fairly easy to listen to it, very smooth and even sometimes enjoyable. Fans of Orchestral arrangements will find this more to their liking. Give it a try.
- Georg Hultgreen - Vocals, Guitar.
- Trevor Lucas - Bass, Vocals.
- Gerry Conway - Drums, Vocals.
- Kerrilee Male - Vocals.
- Michael Rosen - Vocals, Guitar, Trumpet.
Folk, Blues & Beyond is the Second Album by the English Folk Singer/Guitarist Davy Graham.
As the Album Title states, this Album is a mesh of Folk, Blues and Jazz Sounds, meshed by the genius playing of Davy Graham, establishing the sounds of the new Musical Generation, the Folk Revival, who would be 'officially' brought into existence next year, 1965 (with the releases of Bert Jansch's and John Renbourn's Debut Albums). Graham would pick-up the Best Folk Material Available and re-interpret it all, with his unique Middle-Eastern approach to his instrument (the famous DADGAD guitar tuning). Leadbelly, Bob Dylan, Willie Dixon and Reverend Gary Davis all were covered. This Second Album by Graham is now seen as Folk's Seminal recording, which has even influenced the likes of Jimmy Page. He never managed to achieve mainstream fame, outside the Folk circle, not only because of his lack of will to show himself but also a strange unpredictable and instinctive decisions made him an unreliable figure, never trusted by his Publishers.
Best Tracks - "Leavin' Blues", "Cocaine", "Sally Free And Easy", "Black Is The Colour Of My True Love's Hair", "Seven Gypsies", "Moanin'", "Maajun", "My Babe" and "Better Git It In Your Soul". An amazing Album, with pioneer guitar playing, and even though it is not that much appreciated, i like his Vocals. It is a landmark not only in Folk Music but in the History of Music itself. It showed a whole generation a new array of sounds they could pick up and transform into Rock Sounds.
Bless The Weather is the Third Solo Album by the English Folk Singer/Guitarist John Martyn.
Joe Boyd came in contact with John Martyn when he married Beverley Kutner in 1969. Beverley was part of Boyd's Label Witchseason and Martyn was brought along to help the project, which then ended up becoming the first of two Duo Albums between the two (Stormbringer and Road To Ruin). Woodstock was the chosen place for the recording of those Albums, allowing the late Levon Helm (The Band) to participate on both. When the Duo failed and Boyd's Witchseason stopped their activities, they were both advised to pursuit Solo careers. Island Records gave Martyn 600 bucks and told him to record an Album, without telling him anything more than that. Most of Martyn's Songs on this Album were written and composed on the day, while in the Studio, as he felt the spontaneity it provided was exactly what he was looking for. Danny Thompson, Richard Thompson and Tony Reeves (from Colosseum) all participated on the Album.
Best Tracks - "Go Easy", "Bless The Weather", "Walk On The Water", "Just Now", "Let The Good Things Come", "Glistening Glyndebourne" and "Singin' In The Rain". An Album of extremely beauty and numerous times seen as one of the best released during the Early 70's. It reminds me a lot of Joni Mitchell, in terms of the Musical Composition and Rhythm. Bless The Weather was a career starter for Martyn, and he would start Releasing Albums consistently until his death.
John Martyn (Bless The Weather Personnel):
- John Martyn - Vocals, Guitar, Harmonica, Keyboards.
See The Morning is the Debut Album by the English Acid-Folk Singer-Songwriter Mick Stevens.
Mick Stevens is another one of those Musicians who are now seen as being pioneers, but were completely ignored by the Public at the time they were active. Nick Drake is a good example of this. Stevens was not solely dedicated to Music at any point in his life, he was also very involved with the literary arts, in which he had a degree. He was involved with some Local Bands while growing up in the areas around London, nothing to serious though, and he left the Chelmsford Circuit as soon as he went to college (Nottingham University, studying Languages). During this period he recorded See The Morning on a Reel-to-Reel Tape Recorded. The Album consist mostly of Stevens Vocals and Guitar playing, with the exception of a Flute played by his friend Della Thompson. It was released on a very small Label, Deroy, with only 30 copies being pressed. When he left College, he went to Malta to play in a Band, but it ultimately failed and was the inspiration to his follow-up which would only come in 1975.
Best Tracks - "Smile Again", "Ashers Song", "Beech Tree", "Catherine", "Burning", "Judianna", "Song Of The Riverspirits", "The Wheel" and "Salotan Cinonrever". Some of the harmonies remind me a lot of Crosby, Stills And Nash's Debut, the Back-Vocals and even the Guitar playing Style. It is a very good Album and one of the rarest available from the genre (Acid-Folk is prone to a scarcity of Records). It has been re-issued a couple years ago, not only See The Morning but also his whole discography. Mick Stevens (See The Morning Personnel):
- Mick Stevens - Acoustic and Electric Guitar, Vocals.
- Della Thompson - Flute.
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