Best Of The Batch: Electric Prunes
Artist: Electric Prunes
It is that time of year again; time to hunker down and getcha some PruneTwang or some Feedback. I know, you are thinking-what in the hell is this guy talking about anyway? Well it’s about one of the most influential and underrated bands in the history of recorded music, the Electric Prunes.
Their new CD, Feedback, is another classic slice of vintage EP PruneTwang, filled with enough psych, tremolo, and feedback to blow the dust off your sleepy under-worked cranium. They are serious and spiritual on a track like “Innerlight Transcendence.” They rock on “Hello Out There” and “Tulip Between The Eyes.” There is the intensity of “Itzomad” and “Flying Blind.” Then, as only they can, they come at you with something really outside like “African Bees” where they sing, “African bees, they look in your windows and pee in your trees.” Is this drug induced psychedelic imagery? A flashback from bad LSD trip perhaps? Hardly. This current incarnation of the band just knows how to have fun and are damned good musicians to boot.
“Morphine Drip” is the best track on the album; the music and the lyrics are a killer combination. As you are listening, you will be rocking and tapping your feet and laughing all the way through. A requirement to “get it” is a demented sense of humor (and I do qualify in spades). Be warned, their combination of rock, psych, fuzz guitar, and blues is different from anything you have ever heard. You will love it. After five or six spins, I am not sick of it yet. I never tire of this music. Feedback is the real thing from those who were there at the beginning. This is as precious as the last brick of gold on earth. I really appreciate originality, a sense of humor, and a bunch of dudes who never forgot from whence they came. That is something to hold close to your heart.
Sadly, there is an arbitrary boundary in the world of music, one that few are courageous enough to cross over…the age line. Music, however, is timeless and anyone who makes it for all the right reasons, from their heart and soul, remains eternally young. The Electric Prunes are a band that lives on without a care for any timeline; they have a built in self-propulsion system, or something that defies all logic. They just keep on going. But, unfortunately, if “lust in a long line” in the liner notes is a misprint (last in a long line) it is looking like this may be their final trip to the studio.
This band puts time, money and effort into their recordings but the return on that investment is getting to the point where it makes no sense to continue. Even with the Internet and all its wonderful abilities to market a band through either word of mouth or link generated viral marketing, this great band has gone unnoticed. This has to change or we diehard fans will never see another Electric Prunes album! It is my goal to help change the direction of this band’s fortunes.
Every release they put out is a limited edition so grab your copy of Feedback because when they run out, that will be all she wrote. I will give you an idea how difficult it is to find the last two releases for this band; I had a conversation with lead singer James Lowe and he told me he does not even own a copy of the 2002 release Artifact. I am lucky enough to have a copy of the CD and an autographed copy of the vinyl LP. Blessed are the few, but its only rock ‘n’ roll when the story is over. When I am worm food, someone else will covet the musical treasures I have been collecting over the years. You will not find my special items on Ebay, my connection to music and the people I have come to know that make it, has no price tag.
All this band asks is that you give their music a listen, whether on disc or at one of their live shows. Go to their website and check out their jukebox and sample some tunes for yourself then start grabbing your wallets and credit cards to buy all the Electric Prunes swag you can get your rock ‘n’ roll luvin’ hands on. You will be so glad you did. The band always delivers more than you asked for I promise you that. Rock on, peace, this Feedback session is officially over.
01. Hello Out There (4:25)
02. Circus Freak (5:05)
03. Flying Blind (3:18)
04. I'll Give You Feedback (5:16)
05. Innerlight Transcendence (4:15)
06. Morphine Drip (3:54)
07. Tulip Between The Eyes (3:43)
08. African Bees (5:01)
09. Batch of Violins (4:52)
10. Itzomad (5:54)
James Lowe: vocals, feedback, harmonica, percussion
Mark Tulin: vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards
Ken Williams: guitar
Joe Dooley: drums
Harley Feinstein: drums (Circus Freak, Hello Out There)
Walter Garces: drums (African Bees, Morphine Drip)
Dan Gerass: drums (I’ll Give You Feedback)
Ian Van Der Molen: drums (Tulip Between The Eyes)
Peter Lewis: 12 string (Innerlight Transcendence)
Jeff Evans: guitar 7 b.g. vocals (Hello Out There, Morphine Drip)
Ken Eros: Kalimba (African Bees) b.g. vocals (Hello Out There, Morphine Drip, Batch of Violins)
Barbara “Bandshee” Meeks: b.g. vocals (African Bees)
Pamela Lowe: Buzzing (African Bees)
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