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The Peanut Butter Conspiracy Spreading From The Ashes (CD)

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(Big Beat) 26 tracks with 20 page booklet. The Conspiracy Keeps On Spreading With Gems From This... more

The Peanut Butter Conspiracy: Spreading From The Ashes (CD)

(Big Beat) 26 tracks with 20 page booklet.

The Conspiracy Keeps On Spreading With Gems From This Consummate West Coast 60s Combo's Vault 1965-67, Including Rare Singles And Some Fabulous Unreleased Material.

Wafting in on a warm Californian breeze comes this magical collection of rare tracks, previously unheard demos and out-takes from one of Los Angeles' prime exponents of psychedelic folk rock, the PEANUT BUTTER CONSPIRACY. Spanning their career 1965-67, from pre Peanut Butter outfit the Ashes through to their Columbia Records era, this collection is an Aladdin's cave of priceless musical gems from one of the most prolific song writing teams of the time, John Merrill and Alan Brackett. Add the intoxicatingly beautiful vocals of Barbara "Sandi" Robison to the mix, and you have a perfect blend that produced some of the most outstanding music to emerge from the mid-60s Sunset Strip scene.

Having cut their musical teeth in the early 60s folk scene, Merrill and Brackett were able to bring sophisticated vocal harmonies to the burgeoning psychedelic sound when they teamed up with Barbara Robison and formed the Ashes (who also featured future Jefferson Airplane drummer, the late Spencer Dryden). This collection marks the first appearance of the Ashes' rare Vault label 45s on CD, allowing the pleasure of hearing the original recording of the Peanut Butter Conspiracy's Dark On You Now, as well as the showcase of Barbara's vocal talent, Roses Gone. Among the previously unreleased Ashes cuts is a marvellous interpretation of the traditional folk song Hangman, which neatly represents the groups origins, whilst giving an indication of things to come with it's extended instrumental jam.

In addition to the early Ashes material, the Vault Peanut Butter Conspiracy recordings are also included, among them the standout Big Bummer with its myriad time changes and acid-toned guitar. Some other highlights are demos for songs that didn't make it to Peanut Butter Conspiracy albums; not because they weren't of a sufficient standard, but because the group was coming up with so much high quality material they couldn't fit it all on. Tracks like Enchanted World and Naturally (Wintry Ways) are wonderful, even in their stripped-down form, while the fully realised recordings of Eventually, Light Bulb Blues, Moment Of Happiness and the amazing, flower-powered Flight Of The Psychedelic Bumble Bee would have been quite at home on either of their Columbia albums.

The disc closes with a live version of You Should Know recorded in 1967 which demonstrates what an impressive live experience the Peanut Butter Conspiracy must have been, with tight vocal harmonies and an instrumental break that shows the group stretching out beyond the boundaries of the studio recording. With the usual copious liner notes courtesy of Alec Palao, and rare, never before seen photos, this is an essential addition to the Peanut Butter Conspiracy catalogue and a must have CD for any aficionado of West Coast psychedelia.

By Gray Newell

Article properties: The Peanut Butter Conspiracy: Spreading From The Ashes (CD)

Peanut Butter Conspiracy, The - Spreading From The Ashes (CD) CD 1
01 Time Is After You
02 Love's Last Ground
03 Is There Anything I Can Do
04 Eventually
05 Dark On You Now
06 Winds Up High
07 Free
08 Big Bummer
09 Light Bulb Blues
10 Let's Take Our Love
11 Enchanted World
12 I'm Falling
13 Flight Of The Psychedelic Bumble Bee
14 Foolhearted Woman
15 Shirley Can You Come Out & Play
16 1-9-6-7
17 So Lonely
18 Floating Dream
19 Shuffle Tune
20 Moment Of Happiness
21 Hangman
22 Roses Gone
23 Make Someone Happy
24 Naturally (Wintry Ways)
25 Taste Of Something New
26 You Should Know (live)
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Tracklist
Peanut Butter Conspiracy, The - Spreading From The Ashes (CD) CD 1
01 Time Is After You
02 Love's Last Ground
03 Is There Anything I Can Do
04 Eventually
05 Dark On You Now
06 Winds Up High
07 Free
08 Big Bummer
09 Light Bulb Blues
10 Let's Take Our Love
11 Enchanted World
12 I'm Falling
13 Flight Of The Psychedelic Bumble Bee
14 Foolhearted Woman
15 Shirley Can You Come Out & Play
16 1-9-6-7
17 So Lonely
18 Floating Dream
19 Shuffle Tune
20 Moment Of Happiness
21 Hangman
22 Roses Gone
23 Make Someone Happy
24 Naturally (Wintry Ways)
25 Taste Of Something New
26 You Should Know (live)