Ultimate Spinach — Live at the Unicorn, July 1967
(Keyhole KHCD9006, 1967/2013, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-03-30Ultimate Spinach was a Boston based band from the late-60s psychedelic era (five or six-piece, depending on which incarnation) that lasted from around 1967 through 1970 and possibly beyond, producing three albums on the MGM label, the first two of which sold quite well in their day. This set, which has circulated in bootleg form for years, shows the band in early form a good six months before their first LP, and underscores the band’s more folky leanings as they cover some of the more popular folk, rock and gentle pop tunes of the day (“Get Together,” later made popular by The Youngbloods, and “Hey Joe” covered by seemingly everybody and their brother are both here, along with other songs). Particularly nice in that regard is “Follow Me,” with harmonies between singers Ian Bruce-Douglas and Barbara Hudson. Interestingly, only three songs from the band’s recorded repertoire are included here – “Funny Freak Parade,” “Ballad of the Hip Death Goddess,” and “Mind Flowers,” the latter two representing the most intense psychedelic side of their sound. The recording is about par for any live albums of that era (Think The Airplane’s Bless Its Pointed Little Head or The Stones’ Got Live If You Want It for a general comparison), and certainly better than any of the nth generation boots in circulation. But the novice would be better served by checking out the band’s eponymous 1967 debut, or their second album Behold and See that followed it before going here.
Related artist(s): Ultimate Spinach
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more