Saturday, March 31, 2007

Space And Time: A Compendium of The Orange Alabaster Mushroom (1991-1998)

This is some of my favorite psych-pop of the 90s. The Orange Alabaster Mushroom is a one-man band created by Greg Watson of Ottawa. While a member of the garage rock band the Fiends, Watson began recording his own psychedelic-inspired music. This collection of his work has a fairly authentic psychedelic sound through the use of keyboards, vocal harmonies, backwards guitar, and overall solid songwriting.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"Your Face Is In My Mind"
"(We Are) The Orange Alabaster Mushroom"
"Tree Pie"
"Another Place"
"Mister Day"

"(We Are) The Orange Alabaster Mushroom"

Here's a video for "Your Face Is In My Mind" using clips from the movie Girl on a Motorcycle. I don't really know what the deal is with this, but it at least gives you an idea of what the Orange Alabaster Mushroom sounds like.

Download Space And Time

Thursday, March 29, 2007

July (1968)

In my opinion, this is one of the best British psychedelic albums ever recorded. July didn't last much longer than a year as a band, but during that time they managed to record this classic album. In addition to this, a compilation of demos would also be released called The Second of July, which I'll post sooner or later. It's also a really good listen, especially since you can see how much the songs developed prior to the official album. I highly recommend this album because I think that many of the tracks really capture the essence of the 60s psychedelic sound.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"My Clown"
"Jolly Mary"
"You Missed It All"
"The Way"
"To Be Free"

"My Clown"

Download July

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Alchemists of Sound: The Story of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop

Check out this excellent documentary on the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop. This is related to my previous post about the group White Noise, although they are never mentioned. A little over half-way through, there is an entire section devoted to Delia Derbyshire who was a member of White Noise. This is a must-see for anyone interested in early electronic music techniques. Also, take notice of the weird dude lurking in the shadows of the background during the interview segments.

Watch it here.

White Noise - An Electric Storm (1969)

David Vorhaus, the son of a blacklisted film director, started White Noise after moving from America to the U.K. to avoid the draft. While studying electronic music, he was inspired to combine electronic and pop music after seeing a lecture by a group called Unit Delta Plus. This group was a part of the BBC's innovative Radiophonic Workshop and included Delia Derbyshire (creator of the Dr. Who theme), Peter Zinovieff, and Brian Hodgson. Vorhaus convinced Derbyshire and Hodgson to work on a record with him and so White Noise began. The album is truly unique for it's combination of early electronics and odd, psychedelic music. Because it was created before the Moog synthesizer, they used homemade equipment and tape recorders to create the amazing sounds on this record. The songs are overall very good too, making it all the more interesting.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"Love Without Sound"
"Here Comes The Fleas"

"Love Without Sound"

Go here to read more about White Noise on

Downlad An Electric Storm

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Bread & Circuses: The Story of Os Mutantes

I can't figure out if this is playing in theatres yet or if it will even be in theatres at all. Can't wait to see it though.

Go here for more info.

Vibrasonic (1995)

Vibrasonic is by far one of the most authentic sounding psychedelic bands to come out of the 90s. At first listen, you'd swear they were from the 60s. The band is from Sussex, England and is primarily just two members by the names of Victor K. Fitch and Simon Paul Jones. The music is incredibly dense with psychedelic effects, to the point that it's hard to keep track of all the sounds. They also have a heavy surf influence, which dominates their second album Instrumental Vibrations.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"The Sea of Stars"
"The Perpetual Motion Machine" (14 minutes of psychedelic greatness)
"Kingsley J" (One of my favorite psychedelic tracks ever)

"Kingsley J"

Here's a weird video for "Kingsley J"

Go here for an interview with Vibrasonic.

Download Vibrasonic

Monday, March 26, 2007

Idle Race - Birthday Party (1968)

This is the debut album from another really great British psych-pop band from the 60s. Members from this band would eventually go on to form Electric Light Orchestra, the Move, and some other bands I know nothing about. I was just recently turned onto this album and can't get enough. Most of it is a pretty lo-fi recording but it still has really interesting arrangments, vocal harmonies, textures, speaker pans, etc. Also, it probably has one of the funniest album covers I've ever seen in my entire life.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"The Skeleton & The Roundabout"
"I Like My Toys"
"Follow Me Follow"
"On With The Show"

"On With The Show"

Download The Birthday Party

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Dead Meadow - Live at the 9:30 Club in Washington DC, April 5, 2006

This is Dead Meadow live at their hometown opening for Dinosaur Jr. Dead Meadow is definitely one of the greatest things going on these days and one of the best live acts I've ever seen. If you've yet to hear them, their music is typically a mix of indecipherable, haunting vocals, fuzzy riffs, and wah-wah drenched solos that often break out into extended jamming. They definitely step outside of that formula quite often, but that's how I generally think of their sound. This live recording has three new songs that may wind up on their new album entitled Old Growth.

Stand-Out Tracks:
All three new songs
The staple set-closer, "Sleepy Silver Door"

"Babbling Flower"

Download Dead Meadow live at the 9:30 Club in Washington D.C.

Blossom Toes - We Are Ever So Clean (1967)

This is one of my favorite British psych-pop albums from the 60s. It's really innovative and dense for being released in '67, especially considering Sgt. Pepper came out the same year. Not only does it have impressive psychedelic textures, but the songwriting, arrangements, musicianship, and vocal melodies are all solid. It has a whimsical and often times bizarre sense of humor that is very British.

Stand-Out Tracks:
"Look At Me I'm You"
"I'll Be Late For Tea"
"Telegram Tuesday"
"When The Alarm Clock Rings"

"Look At Me I'm You"

Download We Are Ever So Clean