Welcome to our “Psychedelic Lunch”series, where wefind out how deep the rabbit hole really goes and explore music and musicians from the 60’s to today. Enjoy the trip!
The late 1960s was a watershed era for experimentation in popular music, where the emergence of commercially-available electronic equipment coupled with a milieu of social upheaval and gratuitous drug consumption gave rise to psychedelic music: that which aimed at enhancing or replicating hallucinogenic drug use by way of elaborate studio productions, Eastern instrumentation, freeform compositions, surrealistic imagery, and so forth. Though many names of the era—The Doors, Pink Floyd, The Zombies, Love, Jefferson Airplane—have since been ingrained within Western culture, a number of stellar artists have eluded mainstream success. There are many excellent psychedelic recordings of the late 60s that have undeservingly succumbed to obscurity.
Joyride – Drake Levin & the Friendsound (1969)
Appropriately described on the back-cover as a “musical free-for-all”, Joyride is an extended, improvisatory psychedelic jam session that thankfully refrains from excessive self-indulgence, instead creating a veritable aural collage of heavy acid-rock grooves and musique concrète-inspired studio trickery (overdubs, field recordings, and reverse playback are just a few elements employed). It’s no wonder that this album, firmly on the vanguard of rock experimentalism, failed to capture a wide audience.