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What On Earth: Rarities 1967-69

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When Blossom Toes' sole two LPs were known only by a small cult of late-'60s British psychedelic rock collectors, whoever would have guessed that well over two additional albums of material would eventually gain official release? Yet that's what Sunbeam has done by adding a wealth of bonus cuts to CD reissues of the two Blossom Toes long-players; putting out a two-CD set of live recordings; and now, with the What on Earth: Demos & Outtakes 1967-1969 compilation, pouring on yet another anthology of mostly hitherto unavailable material (though a half-dozen of the demos did previously appear as bonus cuts on those Sunbeam reissues of the two albums). Taken from home tapes and acetates, mostly these 17 tracks are demos done in the period between 1967's We Are Ever So Clean and 1969's If Only for a Moment, with a few late-'60s studio outtakes included as well.

The Brian Godding-penned home tape-sounding cuts (the liner notes aren't specific as to the origins of each track), including an acoustic demo of the non-LP single "Postcard," show a much lighter side than either of the two official LPs — even than We Are Ever So Clean, which itself was on the whimsical side of 1967 psychedelia. Sometimes skirting vaudeville or breezy folk-jazzy pop, they're nice wistful pieces — "Looking Up I'm Looking Back" even faintly recalls the early Bee Gees — but it's ultimately not as strong as, or even too similar to, the two proper Blossom Toes long-players. Things get heavier, though hardly bombastic, on the later-sounding and more fully arranged recordings on the second half of the disc, including alternate versions of a couple If Only for a Moment songs ("Peace Loving Man" and "Wait a Minute"), with one of the better tunes ("New Day") getting redone slightly later by Blossom Toes' spin-off band B.B. Blunder. Some of these later efforts are obviously undeveloped sketches, but "First Love Song" is intricate psychedelia that could have fit onto If Only for a Moment without a problem, though it wouldn't have been one of the standouts.

Overall, this compilation is very much what collector-oriented sets should be. That is, material that's peripheral to the main body of work of an interesting band, but nonetheless of considerable interest to fans of that band, well packaged with good sound quality, and liner notes reprinting a lengthy 1969 article on the group in International Times. And even if it's not a Blossom Toes starting point, you can still hear many of the elements that made them one of the best late-'60s British rock acts never to find commercial success, particularly in the blend of harmony pop with ambitious, thoughtful lyrics, and unusual, complex melodies and song structures.


Gegründet: 1965

Genre: Rock

Jahre aktiv: '60s

They never had any commercial success in the U.K. or the U.S., but Blossom Toes were one of the more interesting British psychedelic groups of the late '60s. Starting as the Ingoes, just another of thousands of British R&B/beat bands of the mid-'60s, the group hooked up with legendary impresario Giorgio Gomelsky (early mentor of the Stones and manager of the Yardbirds and Soft Machine, among others) in 1966. Gomelsky changed their name and put them on his Marmalade label. Their 1967 debut LP...
Komplette Biografie
What On Earth: Rarities 1967-69, Blossom Toes
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