1967, Music

Easter Everywhere (1967) by The 13th Floor Elevators

The 13th Floor Elevators’ debut album is viewed as a trailblazing psychedelic masterpiece by people who have apparently never heard Revolver but I can’t say I’ve ever been that impressed by it; vaguely psychedelic folk rock to my ears, significantly abetted in its psychedelic vibes by that electric jug, an utterly unique instrument, but only one instrument, and the lyrics, which are as hippy as they get.

But this record is different: far more ambitious than its predecessor, it actually kind of sounds like psychedelic rock music to me, even if it’s rather conventional compared to so much other music of its era.

And I like the songs a lot more. Some of them have dated as so much psychedelic music has, but some of them hold up really damn well, more so in my mind than most of the songs on the debut. Admittedly, the best songs sound the least psychedelic, but I’ll take a less focus on being “freaky” if it means the songs are better.

But that’s not to dismiss the jammier tracks which are a lot more interesting this time out. (Though, if memory serves, there aren’t a lot jammy songs on the earlier album.) The influence of Indian music is more pronounced on these tracks than on the music of any other American psychedelic band outside of The Byrds, to my ears. (More focus on a jam than out and out virtuosity.)

I think the playing of the band is more assured too. That or the production is just better at capturing that.

Anyway, I like this better than the debut.

7/10

  1. “Slip Inside This House” Roky Erickson, Tommy Hall 8:03
  2. “Slide Machine” Powell St. John 3:43
  3. “She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)” Erickson, Hall 2:58
  4. “Nobody to Love” Stacy Sutherland 3:00
  5. “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” Bob Dylan 5:17
  6. “Earthquake” Erickson, Hall 4:51
  7. “Dust” Erickson, Hall 4:02
  8. “I’ve Got Levitation” Hall, Sutherland 2:41
  9. “I Had to Tell You” Erickson, Clementine Hall 2:28
  10. “Postures (Leave Your Body Behind)” Erickson, Hall 6:30
  • Roky Erickson – vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica
  • Tommy Hall – electric jug
  • Stacy Sutherland – lead guitar
  • Dan Galindo – bass guitar
  • Danny Thomas – drums
  • John Ike Walton – drums (“She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)”, “Levitation”)
  • Ronnie Leatherman – bass guitar (“She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)”, “Levitation”)
  • Clementine Hall – backing vocals (“I Had to Tell You”)

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