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Up, Up and Away (The Definitive Collection - 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.

Customer Reviews

The iTunes Reviewer has got this CD mixed up with the groups 1st LP

This is a 2 CD "Best Of" that was released in 1997 and was basically the only 5th Dimension material available until their individual LP catalog was re-issued on CD a couple of years ago. This specific offering takes songs from a variety of the 5th Dimensions albums. The iTunes reviewer has this mixed up with the groups first LP from the mid-1960's "Up, Up and Away".... totally different. And, he reviews several songs that aren't even on the groups 1st LP. This is a nice compilation for the casual fan of the group as it covers all the hits + additional filler material from the catalog. The serious fan can now get their entire catalog on CD which is a nicer option for those who want the individual LPs on CD. The group was indeed looked upon as an Africian-American version of the Momas and Papas.. as the sound was so similar. And obviously the 5th Dimension covered several John Phillips songs over the years. That said, they had a kickier and brighter sound overall and some great producers, such as Johnny Rivers and Jim Webb to help in the effort. All-in-all, for the casual fan that may not have gotten any of their re-issued LPs in the past couple of years, this collection is about as good as it will ever get and worth the investment.

Childhood Memories

These were the songs that my mother used to play, when it was time to clean the house. Everytime I hear Stoned Soul Picnic, Paper Cup, Save The Country, and One Less Bell To Answer, I think of her. She was a wonderful Mom and I still miss her terribly!

The iTunes reviewer is writing about the 5th's 1st

While all of these songs are a bit much for me, I do have to say that Up-Up and Away, Stoned Soul Picnic, Go Where You Wanna Go, and a few others, are FANTASTIC. The sound that, I'm going to check my lp's for producer info, Johnny Rivers and Marc Gordon got on the early cuts are astonishing. Engineer Bones Howe too. Up-Up And Away sounds like it was recorded yesterday. Of course they don't make records like this anymore. And that's too bad.


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 In."...
Full Bio
Up, Up and Away (The Definitive Collection - Remastered 1997), The 5th Dimension
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Customer Ratings


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