For me, I always have a love of the underground scene of the Psychedelic sounds from the late ‘60s. Whether it’s the Nuggets box set between volumes 1 and 2, it is a trip through the lanes on what, how, and why the bands were ahead of their times and never got any recognition they deserve. That and this 3-CD set released on the Grapefruit label which is a part of the Cherry Red Records family entitled; Love, Poetry, & Revolution: A Journey through the British Psychedelic and Underground Scenes 1966-1972.
There are 66 tracks on here from various bands and artists that cover through the sounds of the pop, psychedelic, and folk sounds of that time period that will make you take note on the obscure gems that are hidden treasures lost on the mountains of Sierra Madre. In the box set, there is a 35-page booklet with liner notes and histories of the scene done by David Wells and there a photos, records and promos of the groups.
Wells himself did an excellent job on the compilation and he deserves a pat on the back for this amazing set released back in 2013. Not to mention the highlights on the set that had my eyes just wide open and taken me to raise the bars up. Songs like the blistering psychedelic-pop mod sound of Deep Feeling which featured the late Jim Capaldi of Traffic on Drums, erupting into an ominous LSD trip of fascinating proportions of Pretty Colours.
There’s also the demo version of Blossom Toes’ I’ll Be Late for Tea which has a whimsical vibration as The Shame which featured Greg Lake on vocals doing Janis Ian’s Don’t Go ‘Way Little Girl sees them doing their take of The Move’s music in the style of Roy Wood and Ace Kefford’s sound. Meanwhile, The Alan Bown going into a fantasy mode through the early sounds of Prog-Rock of a haunting mode of Story Book with Brass and Mellotron while The Flies go into a ballad of a cold and harder edge to kill time for a Winter Afternoon.
And then, you go into a proto-punk momentum with Mick Farren and the Deviants for a harmonica-driven garage rock nugget for You’ve Got to Hold On. It has an early resemblance of The Sensational Alex Harvey Band’s Midnight Moses that has energy and power to it to get into a freak-out mode in the dance floor. There’s also the folk-side on here that shows more than just the Psychedelic, Progressive, and Underground garage rock sounds.
The folk-rock with a psych twist from Principal Edwards Magic Theatre with a stirring nightmare for the Lament for the Earth. The lyrics have a post-apocalyptic dystopian atmosphere and carry a touch of East of Eden while the ascending gentle swarming acoustic yet evocative touch of the Butterfly by The Fox and Beau’s Creation is eerie and menacing yet creepy.
You feel that you are inside the mind of a madman being locked up inside the sanitarium of how this person got inside and telling the stories of how he got there in the first place. There are some amazing tracks on this 3-CD set from Grapefruit Records have released two years ago and they have done a job well done capturing the obscure gems that have finally been released from the hidden gems. I can’t wait to hear of more and what will the label will come up next.