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Up, Up and Away (The Definitive Collection - Digitally Remastered 1997)

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Album Review

Released in 1967, the first album release from the often maligned though talented and singular group the 5th Dimension was also a feature for Jimmy Webb, who contributed to one track and arranged and conducted the whole effort. The most well-known song remains one of the finer songs of the decade; "Up-Up and Away" matched the group's gorgeous harmonies, with a great and ethereal yet full-bodied production. Despite that groundbreaking song, Up, Up and Away is mostly the group finding their sound with mixed results. Their cover of the Mamas & the Papas' "Go Where You Want to Go" is such a carbon copy, Billy Davis, Jr. probably wore one of John Phillips' big hats for the session. Their cover of "Poor Side of Town" is pointless, and the Motown-inspired "I'll Be Loving You Forever" comes off forced and as phony as a sack of three dollar bills. Up, Up and Away was certainly commendable for the style forged here, but even better work was ahead for the group.

Biography

Formed: 1966 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The Fifth Dimension's unique sound lay somewhere between smooth, elegant soul and straightforward, adult-oriented pop, often with a distinct flower-power vibe. Although they appealed more to mainstream listeners than to a hip, hardcore R&B audience, they had a definite ear for contemporary trends; their selection of material helped kickstart the notable songwriting careers of Jimmy Webb and Laura Nyro, and their biggest hit was a medley from the hippie musical Hair, "Aquarius/Let the Sunshine...
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Up, Up and Away (The Definitive Collection - Digitally Remastered 1997), The 5th Dimension
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