“Psychedelic Resurrection” is a classy return for the veteran ‘60’s group, a plodding anthem like Deep Purple’s “Perfect Strangers” or Roxy Music’s 45 RPM version of “Manifesto” – a glorious statement of return. The guitar chugs along taking a nod from the Beatles “I Am The Walrus” – perhaps the quintessential psychedelic groove tune. The Blues Magoos know their audience, the “nuggets” crowd, and the emphasis on the erection part of the word “resurrection” is both about reconstruction as well as being sexual in nature.
Equally anthemic is There’s a Chance We Can Make It with more sludging guitarwork and a moving headphone mix. It’s every bit as delicious as the opening tune and just as effective.
The p.r. sheet gives us the update on the group so here it is:
The legendary psychedelic band from the Bronx, have returned with the release scheduled for October 14 on Kayos. Original members, lead vocalist/keyboardist Ralph Scala and vocalist/guitarist Peppy Castro, along with drummer Geoff Daking, who joined prior to the recording of the band’s hit debut album, Psychedelic Lollipop, were joined by newest additions, Mike Ciliberto on guitar and Peter Stuart Kohlman on bass. The album also features cameos by original bassist Ronnie Gilbert and lead guitarist Mike Esposito, who also became part of the band before releasing their debut album, which went to #21 on the Billboard Top 200, thanks to the massive Top 5 single, “(We Ain’t Got Nothin’ Yet),” re-recorded for the new album.
Ten of the dozen tracks are under the four minute mark, quick indulgences that dip in and out of your psyche’ …with terrific packaging that we who appreciate this genre from the era that gave us Janis Joplin, Strawberry Alarm Clock, Jimi Hendrix, Cream (RIP Jack Bruce) and more exiles from Lenny Kaye’s Nuggets.
“Pipe Dream” is a nice throwback to the time, marching drums and Syd Barrett influences. With new releases from The Fifth Estate (famous for “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead”,) the Standells (love that “Dirty Water”) and Gunhill Road releasing its first new release in 40 years, an interesting parallel to 50 years young Blues Magoos also releasing their new disc after a 40 year span.
“Gotta Get Away” is Bo Diddley psychedelicized by way of the Beach Boys, kinda sorta, oozing backing vocals and brittle guitar and rhythms that fit the authentic groove.
Track 11, “Psyche Delight,” is a real treat. A slippery riff commuting through the laser and aluminum – “lava lamps were all of the rage.” It’s the Beastie Boys all grown up, a dayglo (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party) – Very clever and as close to rap as this group is going to ever get…which is to say it’s not rap at all, just the great style from the era some of us adore.
“Tobacco Road” gets revisited. John D. Loudermilk’s epic and a favorite of everyone from Spooky Tooth, Eric Burdon & War, Jefferson Airplane and the Blues Magoos in their youth. The guitarlines sizzle on the new rendition and Blues Magoos come out with an unexpected and surprisingly good new addition to their catalog. From the sounds of this they must really cook with renewed exuberance onstage.
Joe Viglione is the Chief Film Critic at TMRZoo.com. He has written thousands of reviews and biographies for AllMovie.com, Allmusic.com, Gatehouse Media, Al Aronowitz’s The Blacklisted Journal, and a variety of other media outlets. Joe also produces and hosts Visual Radio, a seventeen year old variety show on cable TV which has interviewed Jodie Foster, director/screenwriter David Koepp, Michael Moore, John Cena, comics/actors Margaret Cho, Gilbert Gottfried, Gallagher, musicians Mark Farner and Don Brewer of Grand Funk Railroad, Ian Hunter of Mott The Hoople, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, Felix Cavaliere of The Rascals, political commentator Bill Press and hundreds of other personalities.