TONY McPHEE/TWO SIDES OF TONY (T.S.) McPHEE WWA 001 (-73) UK
Solo project recorded after the relase of Groundhogs "Split" album. This is all him. Not only doing all instruments and vocals, arrangements, production and songwriting. The lyrics are also introspective dealing with his own thoughts on religious matters, society, relations and ageing. As the title implies the LP is divided into two different parts. Side one just vocals and guitars - acoustic or electric - first four tracks with lyrics on lost love and divorce and last a raw slide instrumental. The entire side two - "The Hunt" - builds on a poem dealing with the stratified British society and his contempt for the upper classes, instrumentally supported by synthesizers. I'm not much for synths mimicking other instruments, but that's not the case here. You get the pristine "moog" sound with effects in the vein of early ELP or late sixties Moody Blues. Themes woven together with sometimes unexpected twists and turns placing it somewhere on the borderline between prog and psych. So it's like two albums, musically miles apart yet held together by the personal lyrics and sincere performance. Better devoured in two separate listenings, each equally rewarding. To my knowledege never released in US. First CD issue 1992 on UK Castle Communications (CLACD 267). Japanese 2004 remastered CD on Air Mail Archive (AIRAC-1072). First UK had label as shown here, thin matt die-cut "tear"/"punched card" cover symbolizing the two sides, and four page lyric/picture inner (image there probably from his last wife with kid thus part subject for side one).