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Thread: 60/70's "Psychedelic" lps with that single dud track

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    Senior Member The Deacon's Avatar
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    Default 60/70's "Psychedelic" lps with that single dud track

    I'm not saying it was obligatory, but, as a collector, the thing that does vex me about collecting psych is the chance of you being landed with a good lp marred by that one bum track.

    These tracks would be of the gay music hall/jugband/Charleston-vocoder/kazoo-laiden/novelty variety. Sticking out like a sore thumb.

    It seems to have been mainly an American plague but , of course, it happened in UK as well. Take, say, the last pub-sound track on Cream's "Disraeli Gears".) Of course Paul McCartney was a main promoter of this - I believe Lennon himself in one song derides Paul as composing "granny music". Deacon would surmise that Paul was heavy into sappy 50's music. You have lps(okay EP) like "Magical Mystery Tour which are ruined by old-timey, throwaway tracks like "When I'm 64" (which Lawrence Welk covered - for the Geritol crowd - more than the once - alongside atrocities like "Winchester Cathedral".
    Yep , Beatles had a lot to answer for.

    And it wasn't just this music hall dross. Even more often a psych-ish lp was ruined by the blues track.

    I think that - especially in America - with the vast success of bubblegum like Winchester Cathedral, bands that wanted to remain true to the emerging psychedelic vision/trend/wotever would be pressured by devil-producers to include that one straight pop/blues ACCESSABLE track.

    I first noticed this happening on the East coast with the "Harvard"-sound - say the political chant on the Freakscene lp, but it quickly spread to many a West coast band.









    So lets see if any of you can come up with these crap songs/fillers ruining an otherwise strong psychey lp.


    At this juncture, Deacon Beaker will offer up just the one example: the first Electric Prunes lp. (Well, maybe this is not that good an example because they were not overtly psych. When they got to their standout psych lp ,"Mass in Wotsit Minor", they did not really want to venture into that genre.The sea-change was more a producer David Axelrod prodding than Electric Prunes.)

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    Senior Member SixFootScowl's Avatar
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    Nearly every LP is marred by one bum track because bands for some reason tend to feel like they have to have one slow song on every album. I maintain it is extremely difficult to make a good slow song; hence bum tracks. Fast songs are much easier to make good, just like as an analogy, it is hard to make a good photograph in black and white photograph, but easy in color.

    Only psych albums I recall would be like the Electric Prunes or something like that but I don't recall what tracks there were. I have been out of that since the 1970s pretty much. I think there was an Atomic Rooster album that did not have a bum track. Someone else who knows this area of music can help me out.
    Last edited by SixFootScowl; Jan-06-2020 at 18:46.
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    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    Grateful Dead's What's Become of the Baby (from Aoxomoxoa) is one track I always find eminently skippable. Eight minutes of what sounds like nothing but a disembodied recitation put through a Leslie speaker? No thanks.
    '...a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps, a man who has just closed half a century without a single claim on the gratitude of his country or the respect of posterity...' - Leigh Hunt on the Prince Regent (later George IV).

    ὃν οἱ θεοὶ φιλοῦσιν ἀποθνῄσκει νέος [Those whom the gods love die young] - Menander

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    Senior Member starthrower's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fritz Kobus View Post
    Nearly every LP is marred by one bum track because bands for some reason tend to feel like they have to have one slow song on every album. I maintain it is extremely difficult to make a good slow song; hence bum tracks.
    Pink Floyd made a career out of slow songs. They did it better than anybody else.
    “Music makes you feel feelings. Words make you think thoughts. But a song can make you feel a thought.”

    - Yip Harburg

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    Senior Member The Deacon's Avatar
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    Fritz: The Deacon is not talking about slow songs - although a ballad track on a hardrock lp certainly would stick out.


    ................

    Here are some psych lps "damaged" by a single track:
    Aggregation
    Common People
    H.P.Lovecraft - first lp
    Glass Family
    Troll - Animated Music
    Fredric
    Ultimate Spinach - first
    United States of America
    Kaleidoscope - first (the US band)


    and then there are those ruined by a blues track:
    Savage Ressurection
    20th Century Zoo
    Bow Street Runners


    .....

    On a slight aside: back then it was common for a rock lp to be cleaved by various styles. This is what they called experimentation. I suppose it was thought "progressive" to explore different styles.
    You see this in the concerts of the day where you'd have things like Baez next to The Who ,next to ELP.

    But nowadays, well, its a completely different story. Seems the bands are unable (or unwilling)to do this.
    Deacon can only speak for Prog cos that is my area of expertise.
    Literaly a new prog lp (or 5) is released PER DAY - often completely new bands.

    You would be hard-pressed nowadays to find one of these recent prog lps to be anything but homogeneous going from track to track.


    Very strange.

    Well, Time cannot be rewound.
    Things change.
    For improvement or worse.

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    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Dud tracks on 60s LPs were a feature, not a flaw; it was a logical consequence of psych's eclecticism. Seemingly every psych LP had the obligatory 1920s "Winchester Cathedral"-like song.

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    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    ^
    ^

    And then Toonerville Trolley by the Electric Prunes sprang to mind!
    '...a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps, a man who has just closed half a century without a single claim on the gratitude of his country or the respect of posterity...' - Leigh Hunt on the Prince Regent (later George IV).

    ὃν οἱ θεοὶ φιλοῦσιν ἀποθνῄσκει νέος [Those whom the gods love die young] - Menander

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    I look at these kinds of songs not as "duds" but as comic relief, and essential to the genre.

    XTC (modeling psychedelia as The Dukes of Stratosphere) did the song "You're a Good Man Albert Brown," which perfectly fits the mold. It's a nod to "Berkshire Poppies" on the first Traffic album.

    Another from Disraeli Gears comes to mind, "Mother's Lament."

    On Satanic Majesties it would be "On with the Show."

    The Beatles' track referred to from Magical Mystery Tour was "Your Mother Should Know."

    Moby Grape's track on WOW "Just Like Gene Autrey: A Foxtrot" with an introduction by George Goebel (which you had to change your turntable to 78 to hear) is another example.

    This kind of vaudeville 1930's reference was just part of the genre, sometimes in costume and dress on album covers. Get a sense of camp humor, Deacon.
    Last edited by millionrainbows; Jan-13-2020 at 06:54.

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    Senior Member The Deacon's Avatar
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    As the case with The Monkees, Deacon Beaker is not sure where to draw the line on camp humour - or if they were actually serious with the (Davy Jones) dross-tracks. (Just think how excellent "Head" lp would have been without that grossly out-of-place, atrocious (Nilssen?) track, "Daddy's Song".)

    Speaking of Vaudeville ,on "Magnolia Sims" ,in addition to the vocoder-sound, they added record crackle.

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    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Even heavies, Procol Harum did the vaudeville vamp with "Mabel."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay View Post
    Even heavies, Procol Harum did the vaudeville vamp with "Mabel."
    There you go, that's exactly it. Even Frank Zappa's America Drinks and Goes Home is cut from this same cloth, with its crowd noise and ringing cash registers.

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    Senior Member pianozach's Avatar
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    While I'm more of a Prog guy than a Psych guy, there was a time when Psych really intrigued me, although, for the most part it was mainstream Psych, pop bands that 'went' psych, like the Beatles, when they dabbled in Psych with Revolver, and went full guns with Sgt. Pepper and Magical Mystery Tour.

    With those two albums I always figured it was Paul (When I'm 64 and Your Mother Should Know) that cared enough to include a happy good-time song . . . even on the White album and Yellow Submarine there was Honey Pie and All Together Now, and on Abbey Road there was Maxwell's Silver Hammer, the song that broke up the Beatles.

    Even Pink Floyd, a sometimes Psych band prior to Dark Side of the Moon, would include some sort of Oompah track, Bike, Jugband Blues and the like.

    The Doors even did it: The Alabama Song (Whiskey Bar).

    But even Rock and Prog bands fell prey to this, including a novelty track every once in a while. Quicksilver Messenger Service closed out one of their albums with a goofy cover of Happy Trails. The Byrds did Mr. Spaceman.

    It might be more difficult to find a band that didn't succumb to the temptation to include a novelty track. Even John Williams (Cantina Band)
    ELP often included a honky-tonk vaudeville track on their albums: Jeremy Bender, Benny the Bouncer, The Gambler

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