tisdag 30 april 2013

FAT MATTRESS 583 056 (-69) UK

Noel Reddings first album after quitting Jimi Hendrix Experience. I got off on the wrong foot with it from the beginning. Big Hendrix fan in the late sixties and still digesting "Electric Ladyland" I wanted more of the same. There were already rumours both Hendrix and Mitchell participated on it so I expected heavy guitar psych and wild things. But it was nothing like that. Mitchell and Hendrix are only on one track - "How Can I Live" - (uncredited) handeling the rythm section and the total outcome more like Moby Grape or Byrds. Indeed good inspiration, but since it didn't fit my expectations I was grimly disappointed and put it away. Today, only recognizing it as another groups debute album, I'm enjoying it differently. Most of the songs were co-written by Redding and Neil Landon (former "Ivy League" and "Flower Pot Men") for the latters planned solo album. But with Landons former band mates as session musicians and Redding already aboard, they decided to cancel the solo project and launch it as a group effort. I'm hearing a blend of the US and UK scenes at the time - some pop, some prog, but mostly a kind of soft melodic psych. The band produced themselves, probably with some help from top engineer George Chkiantz (who also worked with Hendrix, Small Faces, Rolling Stones and Family). There's well written songs played by experienced musicians, but still a little anonymous - and apart from the single "Magic Forrest" reaching #11 in Holland it didn't do very well commercially. To my taste it has at least three top numbers - "All Night Drinker" with Traffic's Chris Wood guesting on flute, "Magic Forrest", and the dreamy psych number "How Can I Live". First US on ATCO (SD 33-309) came with other cover design. Premiere UK had label as shown here and laminated cover as a four-way f/o wich can be tranformed into a giant poster. (JHÄ*)

2 kommentarer:

  1. Nice write-up. I love this album!

    1. Thanks :) It took decades for me to connect, but now I like it a lot.