Monday, June 13, 2016

The Beat Of The Earth - 1967 - This Record Is An Artistic Statement

The Beat Of The Earth
This Record Is An Artistic Statement

01. Beat of the Earth 21:30
02. Beat of the Earth 20:52

J.R. Nichols
Karen Darby
Morgan Chapman
Phil Pearlman
Phil Phillips
Ron Collins
Sherry Phillips

Private press 500 copies Produced by Phil Pearlman Assorted Beats: Karen Darby, Morgan Chapman, J R Nichols, Ron Collins, Bill and Sherry Philips, Artisic statement by Phil Pearlman

Man, the surf came crawling in and swept all of the hobos, junkies, and heads into a brick-walled Venice Beach basement infused with the scent of a dying star.  These California weirdos, led by surf-rocker Phil Pearlman, is exactly what Andy Warhol could've used for his west coast happenings.  Like Pearlman's Electronic Hole, the vibes of the Velvet Underground are clearly chiming through, but with the sensibility of wild hair flowin', bongo beatin' nighttime beach bonfire in place of Lou Reed's Chelsea gutter.  With wall-to-wall psychedelic reverb, primordial flute, and the occasional vocals presenting the unholy demon child of Lou Reed and Jim Morrison, this improvised strangeness delivers the psychedelic music promised on the back cover.

Back in my review of the Electronic Hole, I noted that the band oddly didn't function well on the more conventional tunes, while they shine on the jams.  Fortunately, that's all we're getting here, with each side making a blurry, rambling artistic statement.  At least when you consider that the tunes are named "This is an Artistic Statement Parts I and II."  Y'know, I'm not a fan of jam bands in rock.  The hallowed Grateful Dead tend to try my patience, especially after 30 minutes of "Dark Star."  Some rock bands earn their licence to jam (guess we've got to mention Can again).  I don't know if the Beat of the Earth quite earns the certificate, but this record is at least under serious consideration at the City Office of Psychedelia.

Switch the brain off of "focus" and let it all come down.  This is the west coast connection for all of the nutcases who want to connect the Velvet Underground, the 13th Floor Elevators, and the Beat of the Earth into a U.S. national nutcase of the sometimes uncomfortable beyond.  I mean, the Beat of the Earth doesn't have the songwriting or vocal presence of those admittedly better bands, but they do match them in scummy, trippy grooviness.




  2. Wow...thanks for this..i picked up a re-issue copy on 'Radioactive' years ago (a boot perhaps?)..absolutely loved it,still do. It was this as much as anything that made me listen closer to what Sunburned Hand of the Man and others started doing at the turn of the noughties.Great stuff.
    Thanks for the link too..nice to have a bit of, if anyone has the second album...
    As usual,in your debt for some fine music (still recovering from the awesome Takayanagi post)...many thanks.