some see but I don’t see…

Moon Duo Mazes. It’s like the bastard child of Can, Hawkwind and Chuck Berry.

There’s a groove that could never end. A riff. It’s the essence of jam band music, not that Phish or Allman Bros noodling but head down locked in the groove chugging like a freight train pulling a load uphill. Forget the lyrics and just groove.

my only weapon is my pen, and the frame of mind I’m in…

What can it all mean?

It’s been a long time since I wanted to just get out of my head, the news however is a constant onslaught of hypocrisy and spin doctory and shithousery. I have wanted to dull my senses, take a break, not pay attention any more, just for a couple of hours.

So the round up. Bad health care for most, rampant homelessness, social services that don’t even raise to the level of a joke and we are apparently okay with our politicians allowing our children to be murdered while at school because they don’t have the backbone to do what’s right for fear of losing their seat at the trough that is the senate and congress feeding the pigs.

Now that what I call a run on sentence.

I don’t have any solutions. Well I do but you probably know what they are so I’m not going to spout my liberal nonsense.

Take the time to see who is making the money in this, that’s where the finger should be pointing.

No I never got out of it. Apart from in the musical sense.

I ain’t afraid to say I tried on your skirts…

I am trying not to be judgmental.

I really am.

The other morning I was driving to what I sometimes call work, I got to a school zone and slowed down to 20 or less as required, suddenly I was being tailgated by a raised full size pick up, he put on his bright lights and the row of super bright LED lights over the cab and started swinging from side to side. Then he decided to move into the turning lane and pass me while still in the school zone, an illegal move at the best of times. All I could think was where are the police as he drove his Police Lives Matter flag waving oversize diesel smoke belching behemoth accelerating through the school zone.

As I drove to work I was thinking to myself, do the ends ever justify the means? This is the excuse the Christian Nationalists and the GOP make for Trump, he won the election, he or his like will probably win the next. I saw a commercial for a local politician here in the Pacific North West, his tag line was if business can build a wall to keep looters out why can’t we build a wall on the border. We are entering another season of the politics of fear, fear the Russians(since the 40’s), may be good reason for this, fear the Christians, fear the Muslims, fear the young, the old, those who look different than us, fear men, women, liberals and conservatives, fear the educated, the uneducated, the elite, the poor, the working man, the unions. At what point do we say enough of this.

We don’t want to educate people, critical race theory may creep in, be careful what math you teach, control, dictate and do as you are told.

We have managed to control the population by keeping them stupid and unhealthy, anything that threatens this is a communist plot.

Aaaahhhhhhhhh. The answer Blitzen Trapper.

I was struggling with the new album when I first talked about it. After spending time with it and eventually getting to attend a live show I have now decided that it is a psychedelic masterpiece. Also Requiem may be the great lost Lindisfarne song.

Altogether it’s a bit of a strange album moving from weird to middle of the road via folk-rock and all out psychedelic oddness.

Live the band were a bit nervous. There have been some changes new members etc. Eric Earley is still there being enigmatic. About twenty minutes into the show there was a big smile and off we were back into familiar unfamiliar territory.

It’s been a long time since I was at a show. There were masks, bare faces smiles and swaying. It’s good to be at shows again.

At least after the anger of the start of the day there was a good end to the day. In the words of Neil Young.

“Live music is better, bumper stickers should be issued.”

See now I feel better.

Rant over for now.

A tree felling happened as well.

Don’t care what the others might say. As far as I’m concerned they can all fall apart and fade away…

So for the last few weeks as the world collapses around us I’ve been attracted to two types of music.

The melancholic and the psychedelic.

This was after my brief foray into the world of hard rock for the weekend.

I think the melancholic and psychedelic has been on one side a natural reaction to the state of the world in the melancholic and the attempt to escape into my own little headspace in the whimsy of psychedelic.

I passed outrage sometime in 2018 on my way to plain old rage. Then I had a moment of sanity that has been interrupted into a modicum of acceptance of the sheer fucked upedness of the world. This is the way it is the weak strong men are going to rant and drool, the creek will rise, the ice will melt, the people will suffer and somewhere someone hopefully will decide it’s a nice day for a sulk or at least it could have been a brilliant career.

The other hits this week.

There have been others but this has been where my head has been when the 24hour news cycle played.

Or as Roy Harper said at the start of one of the many oil wars.

“Left right, left right, the war came home by satellite.”

Hopefully sanity returns.

They’re just children…

And though they were sad they rescued everyone…

Maybe we all need to be rescued. Swept up by our astronaut fathers and taken to the new pastures above. I keep trying to connect with the excitement and joy I felt as I entered the new world. It’s hard to connect with these days. As the flag wavers collected their gas heaters and barbecue from the Main Street intersection after their weekly outing of intimidation and public outcry.

On lazy afternoons and evenings I would sit and absorb this album. It’s lazy rhythms and obscure lyrics wafting over me. We lived in south east Portland and the whole strange world would pass my window as I gazed out in the afternoons/evenings, gangsters, moms pushing strollers, strippers, dealers, old folks, young folks, hippies, punks, hookers, students and busy workers. They all passed by because the Dairy Queen was at the end of our road.

Some days I miss the vibrancy of that neighborhood. They called it “felony flats” for good reason. I never however felt afraid there.

Maybe I just miss the Dairy Queen.

you felt invincible…

I spent a lot of time with side 1. The Regulator.

There are however three other sides.

They are not the chopped up psychedelic Krautrock piece of the first side, they are definitely the Crazy Horse unleashed version. It’s more spacey though. Saxes warbling in the background as the guitars phase around them.

It’s stretched out and fulfilling

The Universe Inside has become my favorite album in a short time, constantly evolving and changing as you listen. It’s a whole lot of fun and never dull.

I’m really glad I managed to get past side 1.

Side 4. The Slowest Rendition Is another extended piece that bookends the album nicely.

Then I plowed on with their first reunion album.

When the album is too shiny to photograph.

I have decided to declare February psychedelia month.

whoooooooossssshhhhh…bleep…ping…

Okay I love this album. Everything about it. The cool cover with the yellow stars. The overly academic essay on the inner sleeve. The fact it has a CD I will never play attached to it.

Every great psychedelic album released since 1972, the year this masterpiece was released owes a debt to this album, or this is playing behind the other music.

Listening to this will change your brain permanently. You will be happier and more content.

It sounds like the inner workings of the multiverse.

Tomorrow I am taking on the first album again. I feel ready.

Yes most people will not enjoy this particularly. However that’s their loss and I don’t care that as I play this I am probably causing horrific dreams for everyone else in the house.

No I am not joking. This has been revelatory.

in a crowded room near the box of boom…

The collision between country and psychedelia is as old as well the first time Jerry Garcia picked at a pedal steel or Gram Parsons donned his first Nudie suit. It probably is something to do with the myth of American rugged individualism.

My Morning Jacket take it a step further along. All the aggression of rock, the weirdness of psychedelia and a little country thrown in. It’s an all American melange, and they play forever, another classic america trait a la Springsteen and the Dead.

Okonokos recorded at the Fillmore in San Francisco where they probably found some Dead fans in the basement hoping for a miracle. They have a nice dose of reggae as well always a favorite sound for all the best festival bands.

I’m not good at song by song stuff. I tend to get lost in the feel. So if you want a little Crazy Horse in your life now that Neil left the building/well the virtual Spotify building that is give this a go.

Also let’s face it Okonokos is a cool title whatever it means.

you just smiled and gently shook your head…

I remember being so excited about finding this record. The guy next to me at the store told me it was a fake.

Discogs arbiter of all things vinyl related lists it as “unofficial.” Again I’m not sure I know what that means.

What I do know is that it is a slice of super English whimsy and psychedelia in the strangely off kilter Canterbury style. Again whatever that means.

It’s also very pretty pink vinyl with grey splatters that my crappy pic does no justice to.

I’ve always liked Caravan. Their album titles often appealed to the juvenile me and still make the aging me smile so they have that. They always seemed a little less elitist with their prog leanings than some other progsters. Again that may have been the obvious sense of humor.

It’s also good on headphones.