Flight F-I-N-A-L (no label 5087 LP) 1965
“A dramatic comparison to death.” “Most unusual sacred record ever recorded.” “Dramatic! Scriptural! Believable!” These are some of the phrases adorning this incredibly strange hunk of plastic born from the hyper-conservative ‘60s gospel mindset, yet at the same time yearning to stretch out of the ordinary to attempt something creative and completely different. The seed was planted as coat-and-tie evangelist Forrest McCullough was making a return plane trip following his father’s funeral. A light bulb went off in his head — the idea for an allegory of an airliner’s ﬂight and the journey of the Christian soul following death. Thus was born Flight F-I-N-A-L, “non-stop supersonic service to the New Jerusalem”. Announcer/narrator Paul Evangel provides running commentary in classic newsreel fashion, noting the “baggage of grace and godliness” the passengers carry onto the plane. The stewardess then uses a two-edged sword to cut off all earthly burdens from their bags. “You will ﬁnd your seat belt in Psalm 23” she soothingly announces on the intercom while jet engines rumble in the background. Next over the PA is the Captain (“the Lord Jesus Christ”), pointing out various sights to the passengers and addressing them with King James thees, thous and thys. Joyous souls and angelic choirs are encountered along the way; apparently heaven is dominated by organs, harps, Nazarene choirs, Handel, and deep-voiced George Beverly Shea types (sorry rockers). Closes with a brief ﬁery challenge from the evangelist himself. I could go on and on, but bottom line is you gotta hear this thing. It ain’t rock and roll, but it sure is fascinating. I think I’ll call it fundamentalist prog. Later picked up by the Word label. (The Archivist, 4th edition by Ken Scott).
I have not acquired this album yet. Thank you Donald and rear cover.
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