Rapture! (Kids Krusade KK-GWT-110) 1976?
Gospel puppet crusaders Grace & Wilbur Thrush impress me as sort of a traveling fundamentalist folk-art show. The album cover says it all. Note ﬁrst of all that they’ve got two male dummies, along with a dog puppet and two people who are wholly contained within full-body home-made animal costumes (one is a dog, I think the other might be a sheep). Next you’ll notice Grace with a set of bells on a table according to the back her total arsenal is 32 cowbells, 32 Swiss bells and 27 sleigh bells. Then there are Grace’s large weird ﬂoppy hats, three different ones (something tells me she made them herself, along with her and Wilbur’s clothes which appear to be cut from the same material with the same loud pattern). Finally, on the back we have photos of the twosome next to various paintings with religious themes. As far as what we actually hear on the record, Wilbur’s routine with the dummy didn’t disappointment me (‘Rusty And Uncle Wilbur’). And one would be hard pressed to ﬁnd any fault with Grace’s bell skills on ‘When They Ring Those Golden Bells’ and ‘In The Garden’. Side two is wholly taken up with the title track where Grace goes into ﬁery animated storytelling mode about a boy who’s left behind at the Rapture because he thought the Bible was all “story stuff”. An intriguing snapshot of offbeat Bible Belt Americana. (The Archivist, 4th edition by Ken Scott).
I have not acquired this album yet.