Jake Garcia of The Black Angels explores the sounds and history of the golden era of 1960s psych and rock & roll in 13 FROM THE 13TH FLOOR.
Listen + read Jake’s thoughts on each of his picks for this month’s edition of the series below:
Kookie Cook- Working’ Man
A real American garage monster from Danville, Illinois on the Milky Way Records label circa 1965. The track was recorded at Midnite Sound Studios also in Danville where their recordings were typified by an “outer space” vibe using a lot of echo and reverb. 100 percent wild!
Pierre Henry- Jericho Jerk
Michel Colombier and Pierre Henry collaborate on this psychedelic gem of a song that was written for Maurice Bejart’s avant garde ballet “Messe Pour Le Temps” circa 1967. Pierre Henry is the master of tape manipulation.
The Everly Brothers- Hard Hard Year
It would seem only natural in 1966 for The Everly Brothers to have experimented with the psychedelic sound in the UK. I would’ve never guessed that the backing band for this song would be The Hollies!
This is probably the shortest and poppiest song that Can ever recorded. After Ege Bamyase, Can had a much needed break in the summer of 1973 which helped to refresh the band and put them at ease enough to create possibly their greatest coherent work yet. That album would be “Future Days” and it’s a favorite.
Gal Costa- Namorinho de Portao
From her self-titled record circa 1969, Brazil. Listening from the intro sounds like everything is about to freak out and then it parachutes into a groovy Tropicalia whistling paradise along with Gal Costa’s beautiful reassuring voice. Os Mutantes were also guest musicians on this record.
Love- A House is Not a Motel
From the epic album “Forever Changes” circa 1967. An all time favorite, I never get tired of this song or record. Writer and leader Arthur Lee borrowed the lyrics “blood mixing with mud turning grey” from an actual Vietnam War veteran.
The Free Design- Bubbles
Psychedelic Pop from New York City circa 1970. The perfect song to chew gum to. Though The Free Design didn’t achieve much commercial recognition during their main recording career, their work has influenced so many great groups today.
Alain Goraguer- Le Bracelet
From the incredible soundtrack “La Planete Sauvage” circa 1973. This one’s a groovy psychedelic floater. The animated film was a winner at the Cannes Film Festival in 1973.
Park Avenue Playground- The Trip
Wild Midwest garage from USA Records circa 1969. The title says it all!
Ngozi Family- Hi Babe
Zamrock was happening in 1976 and the Ngozi Family were at the forefront along with Musi-O Tunya, Witch and Amanaz. Love that trashy AM radio guitar sound!
Silver Apples- Ruby
A 2-piece from New York City circa 1969. Allegedly Andy Warhol wanted them in his factory group but they declined. They recorded with home-made oscillators operated by the knees and elbows and the drummer also played banjo! One of the most original sounding groups from the 1960s that had a sound way before their time.
Pugh Rogefeldt- love, love, love
A favorite from his debut record circa 1969, Sweden. Unlike most other Swedish pop musicians who wanted to achieve international success at the time, he sang in Swedish, and it’s amazing.
Jean Claude Vannier- La Horse
An epic orchestral psychedelic masterpiece in collaboration with Serge Gainsbourg. The recording budget must have been unlimited and its sounds like it!
– Jake Garcia