Friday, October 24, 2008

6 Feet Under - In Retrospect 1969-70

Biography by Richie Unterberger
An average psychedelic band featuring a prominent organ, female vocalist and distorted hard rock guitar, 6 Feet Under released a couple of flop 1970 singles on Scepter before disbanding. Influenced by the Doors, Iron Butterfly and Jefferson Airplane, they favored gloomy minor melodies and naively earnest songs reflecting the state of social unrest and psychedelic exploration in the counterculture circa 1969-70. Their legacy was greatly expanded by a CD reissue on Arf! Arf! in 1998 that included previously unreleased material that approximated what their debut album might have sounded like, along with some unissued home, live and rehearsal recordings. Prior to recording for Scepter, their drummer, Tico Torres, had been replaced on the grounds that he wasn't good enough; he became the only member of 6 Feet Under to make it in the music business, as part of Bon Jovi.
01. Inspiration in My Head02. Freedom03. What Would You Do? 04. Baby I Want to Love You 05. In Retrospect 06. Fields 07. Running Around in the Sun [Reference Mix] 08. Black Movies[Instrumental] 09. Six Feet Under Theme 10. Suzy Q 11. City Blues 12. In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida 13. Basement Jam 14. Sonix Commercial 15. Inspiration in My Head [Alternate Take][Instrumental] 16. Freedom [Live] 17. What Would You Do? 18. Fields [45 Version] 19. Boogie Man Bash
There were teen garage groups in the late '60s and early '70s, playing material that was far more psychedelic and heavier than the garage punkers of the mid-'60s. They're not nearly as well documented by reissues, however, since they have not been judged by history to be as hip and worthy as their predecessors. For that reason, this disc stands out from the usual '60s teen rock reissue. It's not that good or that bad; it's just representative of how suburbanites of that time emulated the rock sounds of the day, with the organ of the Doors and Iron Butterfly, the guitar of Hendrix and the vocals of the Jefferson Airplane being some of the audible inspirations. Most of this disc, consisting of studio recordings, home recordings, and odds and ends, is original material in a minor-key, ominous-but-innocuous vein.

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