Mar 16, 2009
ART OF LOVIN' - ART OF LOVIN' (MAINSTREAM 1968) Jap mastering cardboard sleeve
One of the best psyche treasures on late 60s Mainstream Records -- a sunny, fuzzy album that's beyond compare! The Art Of Loving have a mixed male/female vocal style at their head -- a sound that's somewhere in the Mamas & Papas mode, but a bit more stripped down -- and crafted here with leaner, darker sounds that are really great -- and almost a bit spooky at times! As with other Mainstream rock sessions, there's something magical about the way the bass is recorded -- a completely flat tone that pushes the music up from the bottom, and really makes a magical platform for rougher guitar, organ, and drums. Tracks are almost all originals by male singer Paul Applebaum -- and titles include "Paul's Circus", "Take A Ride", "Good Times", "Daily Prayer", "The First Time", "You'll Walk Away", "State Of Mind", and "And I Have Seen Them All"...[net]
The Mainstream Records production is on par for the Chicago-based blues & jazz label which tended to hold back when recording psych bands such as Big Brother & the Holding Company, Tiffany Shade, Growing Concern, Bohemian Vendetta and Orient Express.
The Art of Lovin's talented female singer Gail Winnick wasn't given a chance to develop a stronger persona, and critics have described her unkindly as a faceless Grace Slick. However her contributions here are very nice.
Interestingly highlights include the arrangement of 'Paul's Circus' which opens the album auspiciously, the powerful 'You've Got The Power'and 'State Of Mind' gets in a nice groove and feature some good guitar...[net]