lördag 16 april 2016

TOUCH DML 1033 (-69) UK MONO

There's so much to this album I just can't do it justice and at the same time fit the blog format in a smooth way. After dozens of re-write trials I hereby give up, skip the flow and hope it'll get through anyway. "Forgotten gem", "prog forerunner", important one-off" or "psych masterpiece" are just a few of all possible tags. Group evolving out of r&b garage band "Don & The Goodtimes", led by then 19 y.o. keyboardist Don Gallucci (who prior to D&TG had played with The Kingsmen on their "Louie Louie" hit). As the story goes - when hearing Sgt. Pepper the band felt stuck in their old ways and decided to try something new. First signed as backing group (named "Band Of Thieves") to Elyse Weinberg's LP "Elyse", recorded at Sunset Sound, Los Angeles. That done they stayed put and continued to record this album with "Elyse" engineer Gene Shiveley as producer. Sessions have been described as party-like and acid-drenched with many celebrities attending - e.g. Mick Jagger, Jimi Hendrix and Grace Slick - some of which may have contributed uncredited. The music is hard to describe. Imagine an unevenly pulsating blend of rock, jazz and psych coupled with strange noises - part hard core proto-prog but sometimes surprisingly melodic and catchy. A good trip for the adventurous listener, but it'll take you to odd places so be prepared. Way ahead of its time 1969 and even if the broad public didn't care or bought it back then it's now acknowledged as a forerunner and inspiration to many successful seventies bands - like Yes, Kansas, Uriah Heep and Genesis. Hard to pick a favorite track, it's the whole ride or nothing. This mono sounds like a fold. Audio ok, but partly a bit unbalanced frequence-wise. Premiere US on Coliseum "20-20 Sound" label (DS 51004). 2012 CD on Esoteric (ECLEC 2310) came with five bonus tracks. First UK mono had label as shown here and laminated fold/out cover with large poster and "red rim" inner. (DÄRR*) (YMÖ*)

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