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Various Artists

A Psych Tribute to the Doors

Review by Gary Hill

Doing a psychedelic compilation of Doors songs seems an obvious choice. It has also yielded a great disc. This is excellent stuff. The range of sounds here is pretty wide and some pieces work better than others. Everything works pretty well, though. This is definitely good stuff.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Elephant Stone - L.A. Woman

Noisy, white noise sounds weave a short melody. Then they move into the song proper as the other instruments join. This is echoey, noisy and great. The mellower, trippier section mid-track is classy. The “Mr. Mojo Risin” section takes on almost a metallic vibe, feeling a bit like stoner metal.

The Black Angels - Soul Kitchen
I love the noisy yet dreamy psychedelic approach to this. It’s somewhat mellow, but distorted guitar lends a more rocking edge. This arrangement really works very well for this song. The multiple layers of vocals are a great touch, too.
Psychic Ills - Love Me Two Times
In some ways this is closer to the Doors version than anything else here so far. Still, some distortion and echoey textures changes things up a bit. The mid-track instrumental section is a big difference, too.
Dark Horses - Hello, I Love You
The opening section is echoey and trippy. From there it launches into a more rocking, but still quite dreamy kind of arrangement. This really has a dream-like quality to it and some of the overlayers lend space rock to the mix. Some smoking hot psychedelic jamming emerges later.
Camera - People Are Strange
An instrumental rendition, this maintains all the familiar melodies but pulls it in completely different directions. There is even some surf music built into this thing along with some Hawkwind-like space.
Dead Meadow - The Crystal Ship
Surf music and other sounds merge on this number. It’s definitely trippy and noisy, but also rather mellow. There is even some Spanish music built into this thing. The instrumental section later in the piece is especially tasty.
Sons of Hippies - The Soft Parade
I reviewed the CD from this band and I like them a lot. A bit of noisy effects laden sound with a spoken sound bite opens this and holds it for a time. Then they take it to some understated, but very cool space music for the first distant, echoey vocals. The cut grows in that direction for the first verse. Then it fires out into a funky kind of progressive rock meets psychedelia jam from there. The changes continue in fairly rapid succession as this continues. It’s the most unusual and coolest cut of the whole set. I still love this band. This does get a definite parental advisory. There are so many different moods and sections here that it is a bit hard to keep track of as a reviewer. Let me just say that I think Jim Morrison would have loved this.
Dead Skeletons - Riders on the Storm
Noisy and a little freaky, this is very trippy, rather tribal psychedelia. It does get some crunch that brings it near the realm of stoner metal.
Wall Of Death - Light My Fire
This is one of my favorites of the set. It’s a bit more faithful than some of the rest, but still has a more trippy element than the original did. In addition, the instrumental section is a big change up and gets into some pretty crazy rocking territory.
Clinic - Touch Me
With a trippy noisy electronic music backdrop and more or less whispered vocals, this is strange. It makes me think a little of some of the trippier music from Cradle of Filth.
VietNam - Roadhouse Blues
Although this is a much more rocking tune, it still has plenty of feedback laden echoey psychedelic music built into it. It’s noisy, dreamy and quite cool.
Geri X - Love Her Madly
A lot of this song is pretty faithful, but with more of a pure psychedelic rock vibe. Still, the instrumental section is a bit of a change. The overtones here lend some intriguing textures.
The Raveonettes - The End
Dreamy trippy psychedelia, this is a pretty version of the cut. Frankly, I was hoping for more of an extended, pure psychedelic trip out. This is quite an entertaining version, but I think it’s a little less than what the song deserved.
 
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