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1411 tracks from USA have been recommended.
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Flowers And Beads  performed by Iron Butterfly  1968
Recommended by john_l [profile]

Not everybody remembers this, but the "other" side of the famous "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" album featured five rather terrific songs. And this one has "cool passion" written all over it, because the lyrics are straight-ahead I'm-in-love-and-I'm-almost-tongue-tied-about-it but within a medium-paced 6/8 framework rather than a frantic groove. Meanwhile the organ and the choir-like backing vocals give it a lot of warmth. So it sounds like what I'm saying is that it manages to be both cool and warm at the same time. That may not make sense, but it's a great song off a classic LP.

Incidentally, rock writer Dave Marsh in one of his reviews said "It's now garbage" about this LP. Bullfeathers! It's still a classic. It makes me wonder what Marsh thinks is not garbage these days -- misogynous rubbish about ho's and bitches perhaps?

from In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida, available on CD (Atco)


Everything That Touches You  performed by The Association  1968
Recommended by john_l [profile]

This is the sound of ecstasy, the most joyful song to ever hit the charts! Quite unlike the mope-rock of recent decades (although I like the Smiths too). It just rings out, I think because it has a very heavy emphasis on the "dominant" musical tone.

The Association, of course, had several huge hits in the 1966-68 period, like "Cherish", "Windy", and "Never My Love", and the also-wonderful "Along Comes Mary" (their debut), but in my opinion "Everything That Touches You" is definitely their best.

from Greatest Hits, available on CD (Warner Brothers)



  22 May 03 ·konsu: Yes indeed! Birthday is such a great album. I think this one was a minor hit for them, but the rest of this record is just as worthy of exhaltations. Check out the tune "Like Always" as well. Pure genius!!
  24 Jun 03 ·tinks: i heart birthday. but then again, i heart the association. even stop your motor.
  22 Dec 04 ·ronin: Their interweaving vocal harmonies still blow me away, especially on songs such as this one, my personal fave. "Insight Out" was 1st album we ever purchased independent of parents. "Requiem for the Masses" is another powerful harmonic tour de force. Who sings (not yells) like this anymore? Every member of the group (even Brian!) sang.
  14 Apr 05 ·Goes Up To 11: My then-girlfriend (now wife) and I had breakfast with the Association at about 2 am in the Atlanta Hyatt-Regency's coffee shop after a concert at Georgia Tech in 1969 or 1970. Nice guys! Although the Association took a lot of critical heat in the years since, I remember them as extremely professional musicians, able to precisely recreate their complex studio vocal harmonies live in concert. Part of the reason may have been that they were the first band I remember employing a mixing board out in the audience during a concert, something that became standard practice in the industry within a few years afterwards.
Home Of The Brave  performed by Bonnie & The Treasures  1963
Recommended by john_l [profile]

The best of the lesser-known "wall of sound" productions from ace producer Phil Spector in the early 1960s. Many people think it's Veronica singing, and indeed it does sound most like the Ronettes, although it's not quite as awe-inspiring as their strongest track "Baby I Love You". I do love the rising strings in the background on the way into the chorus. Lyrically, it's in the "He's A Rebel" vein.


available on CD - Phil Spector's Flips And Rarities



  19 Jul 04 ·kwan_dk: Indeed a great song and a terriffic production. The only problem is that it's supposedly not produced by Spector, but by a young aspiring songwriter/producer named Jerry Riopelle who was assigned to Philles Records at the time. Riopelle himself has acknowledged this and other evidence seems to indicate he's right. As for Veronica singin lead, it has been established that the girl in question was a singer called Charlotte O'Hara, as far as I recall...
Me About You  performed by The Mojo Men  1967
Recommended by john_l [profile]

A dramatic arrangement of a often-covered song by a couple of guys whose names I see elsewhere on this site in several places. Lenny Waronker was the producer.

The band, from San Fran, was best known for its hit cover of Stephen Stills "Sit Down I Think I Love You", which is described as "a whirring music box" in the CD liner notes and indeed it blew away the dull original. "Me About You" meanwhile was covered by the Lovin' Spoonful among others.


available on CD - Sit Down It's The Mojo Men (Sundazed)


e.s.p.  performed by giant crab  1969
Recommended by shaka_klaus [profile]

fuzzy phased out version of the standard e.s.p. if you heard pretty things version, l.s.d., and if you liked it, you'll like this one too.


available on CD - psychedelic archaeology 5


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