Troubled (AlphaOmega no #) 1969? Canada *
Totally home-made radical “real people” masterpiece from Canadian threesome exploring jangly electric garage folk-rock/beat/psych environs. Much of the appeal comes from their creative amateur presentation: stereo-separated echoey slightly off-key quasi-sedated male/female vocals with a heavy “lostness” quality; brisk garagy out-of-tune electric guitar strums; and a thick Shaggs-esque drumbeat that stumbles here and there like a skipped heartbeat. But in no way is any of this negative – instead, one gets the sense of ordinary folks being highly imaginative and having a good time, all the while being completely sincere and honest in their approach. What a wonderful record this is! Musically there’s a strong British ‘60s edge, further brought out by the fact that one of the girls is from the UK. Lyrically they’re frank and up-front with the Jesus message, as well as in tune with the culture around them. Opens with a bizarre experimental sound collage called ‘Countdown To Revolution’ about the corrupt state of the world, the trio exchanging brief spoken phrases, slogans, Bible verses, hymns and what not, enhanced by psychy spaced-out sci-ﬁ vocal effects and background explosions and gunﬁre. It’s a stunning piece that stands with the best of Sounds Of Salvation or John Rydgren. More spacey vocal effects on ‘Dig (The Origin Of Man)’, an anti-evolution ditty containing priceless lyrics like “Dig, dig, dig that Piltdown Man”. I love how ‘Sodom And Gomorrah’ couples its lyrics about abomination and lust with a crisp zesty upbeat jangly melody. The two closing tracks are among the best: the speed-up slow-down ‘All Is Well’ and the big-beat ‘Where Are You Going’ (with references to marijuana, beer, LSD and STP alongside exhortations to come to Jesus’ paradise party instead). ‘Wind’, ‘The Status Quo Song’, ‘No Excuse’, ‘Eternity Ahead’, ‘Yet Still Time’ – all twelve cuts are aglow with the same aura. Mega-primitive cover art to match: the back is completely blank, while the front has Troubled spelled out in crude hand-drawn bubble letters. Only one hundred made (ouch!), but a professional digipak CD re-issue by Companion Records was made available in 2003. (The Archivist, 4th Edition by Ken Scott).
This was also re-released again in 2013 on CD. diakoneo
I have not acquired this album yet. Thank you Brian for pointing me to the rear photo.
|Song #||Song Title||Time|
|1-1||Countdown To Revolution !||7:27|
|1-2||Songs To Sing||1:45|
|1-3||Sodom And Gomorrah||2:51|
|1-5||The Status Quo Song||4:29|
|2-2||Dig ! (The Origin Of Man)||2:55|
|2-4||Yet Still Time||3:24|
|2-5||All Is Well||3:20|
|2-6||Where Are You Going ?||3:16|