Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Roky Erickson - 2007 - You're Gonna Miss Me

Roky Erickson 
You're Gonna Miss Me

01. The 13th Floor Elevators You're Gonna Miss Me
02. The 13th Floor Elevators Fire Engine
03. Roky Erickson Starry Eyes
04. Roky Erickson And The Aliens Bloody Hammer
05. Roky Erickson Two Headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer)
06. Roky Erickson For You (I'd Do Anything)
07. Roky Erickson And The Aliens Mine Mine Mind
08. Roky Erickson Unforced Peace
09. Roky Erickson You Don't Love Me Yet
10. Roky Erickson And The Aliens The Wind And More
11. Roky Erickson And The Aliens It's A Cold Night For Alligators
12. Roky Erickson Goodbuy Sweet Dreams

Soundtrack for a film about Roky Erickson. Tracks 6 and 12 are previously unreleased.

You're Gonna Miss Me is an American documentary film by Keven McAlester. It focuses on Roky Erickson, the former frontman for the rock band The 13th Floor Elevators. The band is cited as pioneers of the psychedelic rock genre. The film covers Erickson's rise to fame, his excessive use of LSD, struggles with schizophrenia, and his 1969 marijuana arrest that led to stays at Austin State Hospital and Rusk State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. Erickson was irrevocably changed after the onset of his illness and he went long stretches with little interest in making or performing music. The film opens with Erickson, who had been living as a total recluse for over a decade. What follows is a closer look at how "the great lost vocalist of rock and roll" came to live in poverty and isolation, struggles to receive effective treatments, and how he manages to return to music and life. The film takes its name from the debut single by The 13th Floor Elevators.

The documentary was nominated for a 2007 Independent Spirit Award for Best Documentary.

In the annals of spooked rock, Roky Erickson is a legend. When you hear his wobbling, impassioned, vocal yowl, you have to admit: He could've been a sort of psychedelic, proto-punk, American Van Morrison. Alas, history has been less kind to Roky. Kevin McAlester's documentary discloses precisely why (and how) Roky's early status as an icon--a maverick rock genius as demonstrated by his band, the 13th Floor Elevators--went sadly awry. At the center of You're Gonna Miss Me are some crucial dramatic tropes: a terribly broken family; a pressing, age-old "Am I my brother's keeper" predicament; and a relatively simple case of schizophrenia. The film opens in a courtroom, Erickson's aging and awkward mother, Evelyn, and his youngest brother, Sumner, locked in a battle for guardianship over the then-53-year-old, mentally imbalanced singer. The film captures Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Patti Smith, and Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top), among others, testifying to Roky's non-pareil genius. Also present, however, are tales of Roky's singular madness--extended acid and heroin binges and, alas, his then-present-day condition, living in cramped, decrepit quarters with an array of transistor radios, stereos, TVs, and keyboards, all cranked fully as he placidly reclines or wanders aimlessly.

The film painstakingly shows the Erickson family's longstanding fissures, contextualizing Roky's schizophrenia and, disarmingly, putting his mother's own awkward idiosyncratic behavior on display. Lee Daniel's cinematography brilliantly captures the desolation and desperation of Roky's life, camera shaking and panning and finding hidden angles to show the strange, seemingly endless schizophrenic signs around the singer--dozens of antennae, stacks and stacks of mail strewn throughout his apartment, and Evelyn's complicated obsession with Roky's history--from his highpoints as a rocker to his tragic three-year stay at the Rusk State Hospital for marijuana possession (where, for example, he played in an ad hoc band with a couple of murderers, a rapist, and, improbably, a hospital counselor) to her own, eerie film project where she casts Roky as "the king of the beasts" in a home-movie she undertakes as a "legacy" for the family. The film is all about otherworldly dimensions, centering in large part on youngest brother, Sumner--himself an accomplished musician playing tuba with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra--and his legal battle to become Roky's guardian and get Roky "simple medical care" and medication for his schizophrenia. This is an important chapter in the history of rock, without the underlying humor that made Dig! an indie film hit in 2005 but with a much larger historical purview. --Andrew Bartlett

From San Francisco to London, the youth of the 1960s were turning on, tuning in and dropping out like flies on a mudslide. A cultural upheaval set the establishment on its collective ear, announcing loud and clear that a new generation was on the rise and about to change the world. As with any sociological shift came a slew of casualties — burnouts on the corner of Haight and Ashbury, the heart of Piccadilly, and hundreds of lofts and crash pads from New York to Los Angeles — jam packed with a gaggle of esteemed trend setters, socialites and rock stars — Edie Sedgwick, Tara Browne, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, among the ever after.

Time, Newsweek and the major networks had their eyes fixed on the metropolitan miscreants, but a psychedelic scene of its own was festering deep in the heart of Texas. A wayward group of musically gifted, chemically enhanced hooligans called the 13th Floor Elevators were making noise in Austin, notorious for their LSD-fueled performances. Unbeknownst to many is a tale of lunacy and misfortune that marred the Elevators’ chance at widespread appeal.

The charismatic Erickson was arguably the only Elevator with any real musical promise, yet his sanity and bouts with the authorities grabbed the headlines. As the book reveals, Erickson would soon overcome his demons, get the proper medical help he needed, and return to the mainstream as a performer and functioning member of society.

Tommy Hall is credited as the leader and driving force behind the 13th Floor Elevators. With no musical training whatsoever, Hall blew into a jug and somehow incorporated its pulsating, almost desperate discharge into the fabric of the Elevators’ sound. He stood out as a highly intelligent, well-read, somewhat conservative iconoclast of the first order whose appetite for LSD was fast and furious. Acid, he claimed, enabled him to tap deeper into any number of subjects and ideologies — philosophy, religion, history, astrology, science — as sources of inspiration for his lyrics. Now living as a hermit tucked away among the row houses of San Francisco, Hall came close to realizing his vision as an LSD guru, but he lacked the ability to roll with the changes to push his cause forward. For all of his contributions to the psychedelic movement, Hall may be forever immortalized as the only guy ever to get away with blowing a jug in a rock and roll band.

Stacy Sutherland was the resolute guitarist whose misfortunes led to an early demise. His legal problems and loose affiliations prevented the Elevators from touring beyond the Texas border (after their infamous trips to San Francisco). Although he singlehandedly gave the band their edge, drugs and alcohol plagued Sutherland his whole life, along with near-poverty living conditions (something all of the 13th Floor Elevators dealt with) and a wife who accidentally stabbed him to death in 1978.

Like Syd Barrett and Brian Wilson, Roky Erickson’s drug experiences took him away from his music.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2014 - Live Evolution Lost

The 13th Floor Elevators 
Live Evolution Lost

01. (I've Got) Levitation 3:33
02. Roller Coaster 5:31
03. Fire Engine 3:28
04. Reverberation (Doubt) 4:10
05. Don't Fall Down 3:38
06. Tired To Hide 4:12
07. Splash 1 4:49
08. You're Gonna Miss Me 4:26
09. Monkey Island 3:20
10. Kingdom Of Heaven 4:19
11. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) 3:28
12. Jam Intro 1:18
13. Jam 1 - Roll Over Blue Suede Blues Jam 7:08
14. Jam 2 - Backwards Evolution Jam 4:49
15. Jam 3 - Ed's Esoteric Jazz Jam 10:06
16. Jam 4 - (It's All Over Now) Baby Blue Jam 6:47
17. Jam 5 - She Lives Jam 5:28
18. Jam 6 - Hamburgers & Acid 4:13

Bass, Backing Vocals – Ronnie Leatherman
Bass, Organ [Farfisa], Flute, Woodwind, Vocals [Conqueroo] – Ed Guinn (tracks: 13-18)
Drums – John Ike Walton
Drums [Conqueroo] – Daryl Rutherford (tracks: 13-18)
Jug, Backing Vocals – Tommy Hall
Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals – Stacy Sutherland
Lead Guitar, Vocals [Conqueroo] – Charlie Pritchard (tracks: 13-18)
Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar, Lead Guitar, Harmonica – Roky Erickson
Rhythm Guitar, Vocals [Conqueroo] – Bob Brown (tracks: 13-18)
Tambourine, Vocals [Conqueroo] – Wali Stopher (tracks: 13-18)

Live Evolution Lost: The 13th Floor Elevators Live at the Houston Music Theatre is the first ever release of the complete performance of the band's legendary show in Houston on 18th February 1967.

Let's talk about the presentation first as it's not every day that such a lavish box of colourfully presented psychedelic and mystic grooviness makes itself physically known. The cover itself is like one of these magnetic tape reel boxes as used by recording studios, and here they've stuffed it full of goodness: a giant reproduction poster of the Houston Music Theater gig from whence the actual audio tracks on the grooves originate, a cool photo and memorabilia-packed book with yet another essay lovingly put together by ace chronicler Paul Drummond, and a tasty trio of individually wrapped coloured vinyl records: pressed up in red, green and blue.
Actually, however , there are only five sides of music come to think of it as the sixth side - on the red vinyl - is like an etched out affair embossed with one of the images from the poster; the hand with captions etc... Some, or most of these sounds are already known to many long-term fans of the Elevators; a few were also included on the super-surreal "Sign Of The Three-Eyed Men" CD, and later vinyl, box sets. The actual concert itself took place on 18th February 1967 and would mark the end of an era for the original Elevators line up of John Ike Walton, drums, Bennie Thurman, bass, Tommy Hall, electric jug and backing vocals, Stacy Sutherland, lead guitar and Roky Erickson, rhythm guitar and lead vocals. On this particular occasion too they were also joined by the Conqueroo - and, collectively, are the owners of some pretty long jam-outs that are peppered throughout.

Psychedelic pioneers the 13th Floor Elevators had a sterling reputation as a live act during their years in Austin, Texas, but there are only a few scraps of recorded evidence to back up the legend of the Elevators' fiery shows. Tapes exist of early radio and television performances by the band, and an oft-bootlegged 1966 show at San Francisco's Avalon Ballroom captured them at the height of their powers, but the Elevators' lone attempt at a live album was well short of a success. International Artists Records arranged for a remote crew to record the group's February 18, 1967 show at the Houston Music Theater, but as was their habit, most of the bandmembers dropped acid before the gig so they would be tripping once they hit the stage; the LSD was more powerful than expected, and guitarist Stacy Sutherland suffered a very bad trip. As he described it in an interview, Sutherland imagined "All of a sudden, here was a vision in light that we were wolves and we were spreading drugs and Satanism into the world and I never realized it because of an Antichrist influence...I couldn't talk to Tommy (Hall) or Roky (Erickson) that night, see, because they were the wolves. I was a wolf, too." As you might expect, the opening number, "(I've Got) Levitation," was a shambles, as were several other tunes that evening, and while the bandmembers found their footing later that night, the show was a severe disappointment and IA shelved the tapes. Live Evolution Lost marks the first authorized release of the complete Houston Music Theater recordings, and ultimately the show is better than its reputation, but only by so much. Sutherland wasn't the only performer having trouble that night, as Roky Erickson often either forgets vocals or neglects to sing into the mike, and the chemical troubles and uncomfortable vibe of the large venue seem to throw the Elevators off their stride, as this show lacks the taut energy and keen focus of the Avalon Ballroom tapes. Drummer John Ike Walton, however, works hard to keep the band on track and wins the MVP trophy for the night, and despite his condition, Sutherland reels out a few impressive solos when he can collect himself. And when the pieces fall into place on "Reverberation (Doubt)" and "Roller Coaster," the band impresses despite it all. Along with the Elevators' 11-song set, Live Evolution Lost includes a 40-minute jam session between the Elevators and Conqueroo, friends of the group who opened the show, and like most open-ended jams, the performances tend to meander and are mostly of interest to hardcore fans. Since it's one of the only professionally recorded 13th Floor Elevators shows in circulation,

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2010 - Headstone The Contact Sessions 1966

The 13th Floor Elevators 
Headstone: The Contact Sessions

01. You’re Gonna Miss Me 2:31
02. Tried To Hide 2:23
03. Everybody Needs Somebody To Love 3:44
04. Take That Girl 3:00
05. You Can’t Hurt Me Anymore 3:43
06. I’m Gonna Love You Too 1:57
07. Monkey Island 2:56
08. Roller Coaster 3:47
09. Now I'm Home (Splash 1) 3:41
10. Where Am I? (Thru The Rhythm) 3:15
11. Fire Engine 2:16
12. You Can’t Hurt Me Anymore(Take 1, Backing Track) 3:09
13. Fire Engine (Take 8) 2:37
14. You're Gonna Miss Me (Take 6) 2:43
15. Tried To Hide (Take 7) 2:47
16. I’m Gonna Love You Too (Single Version) 1:58
17. All Night Long 2:21
18. You're Gonna Miss Me (Vocal Track) 2:35

Tracks 1, 2, 14 & 15 were recorded January 3rd 1966 at Andrus Studio, Houston, Texas.
Tracks 3 to 13 were recorded circa February 1966 at Andrus Studio, Houston, Texas.

Bass – Benny Thurman
Drums – John Ike Walton
Jug [Electric], Backing Vocals – Tommy Hall
Lead Guitar – Stacy Sutherland
Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar, Harmonica – Roky Erickson

he first studio recordings by the 13th Floor Elevators from January and February 1966 made in Texas for an album which never saw the light of day in those heady drug-filled days.
Mono versions of the eleven original tracks including the groundbreaking “You’re Gonna Miss Me” and “Fire Engine” plus four remastered stereo alternative takes.

In addition to the studio material this package includes four live recordings from La Maison in 1966, including “We’ve Gotta get out of this place” and two other previously unreleased tracks.

Recordings remastered and remixed in 2007 by the original producer Walt Andrus.
On one hand, the Texas group the 13th Floor Elevators were like the hundreds of other garage bands from the 1960s, and on the other hand, of course, they weren’t. There was that constant electric jug sound from Tommy Hall running through everything the band recorded, for one, and with Roky Erickson’s edgy, aggressive vocal style poured in over the top, the Elevators always sounded like they were about to become completely unhinged, if indeed they weren’t already. The group, thanks to label mishandling and the oppressive Texas drug laws, never really got a chance to truly evolve past that initial chaotic sound, but their legacy remains a strong one. The Elevators were an outlaw band before that concept became merely a marketing strategy. This set collects the mono tracks for what would have been the group’s first album, Headstone, had it actually been released (it was recorded for Gordon Bynum’s Contact Records), which it wasn’t. Things are rounded off with a handful of the Headstone sides mixed for stereo, and four hit-or-miss live performances recorded at La Maison in Houston in the summer of 1966. Highlights include the single version of Erickson’s signature garage classic “You’re Gonna Miss Me,” a wacky take on Buddy Holly’s “I’m Gonna Love You Too” (imagine Holly with an electric jug player), and a credible live version of the Animals’ “We’ve Gotta Get Outta This Place.”

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2009 – 7th Heaven: Music Of The Spheres, The Complete Singles Collection

The 13th Floor Elevators
7th Heaven: Music Of The Spheres, The Complete Singles Collection

01. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:30
02. Tried To Hide 2:22
03. Reverberation (Sic) (Doubt) 2:47
04. Fire Engine 2:37
05. (I've Got) Levitation 2:36
06. Before You Accuse Me 2:37
07. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) 2:56
08. Baby Blue 5:12
09. Slip Inside This House 4:06
10. Splash 1 3:52
11. May The Circle Remain Unbroken 2:42
12. I'm Gonna Love You Too 1:58
13. Livin' On 3:24
14. Scarlet And Gold 4:59
15. Reverberation (Sic) (Doubt) 2:53
16. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:30
17. Fire Engine 2:37
18. Tried To Hide 2:48

Backing Vocals – Danny Thomas (tracks: 8, 9, 13, 14), Ronnie Leatherman (tracks: 3 to 7, 14, 15, 17), Stacy Sutherland, Tommy Hall
Bass – Benny Thurman (tracks: 1, 2, 10, 12, 16, 18), Danny Galindo* (tracks: 8, 9), Duke Davis (tracks: 11, 13), Ronnie Leatherman (tracks: 3 to 7, 14, 15, 17)
Drums – Danny Thomas (tracks: 8, 9, 13, 14), John Ike Walton (tracks: 1 to 7, 10, 12)
Jug [Electric] – Tommy Hall
Lead Guitar – Stacy Sutherland
Lead Vocals – Roky Erickson (tracks: 1 to 13, 15 to 18), Stacy Sutherland (tracks: 14)
Rhythm Guitar, Harmonica – Roky Erickson

"The complete mono 45 RPM singles mixes plus the rare Riviera Records Stereo 4-track EP
Strictly limited edition of 5000 copies"

Comes in a book-style centerfold digipak with a 16-page booklet covering the Elevator's single discography in detail. Also contains an Imperial Artists catalog.

Tracks 1-14 mono single mixes
Tracks 15-18 from French Riviera EP

Rock & roll history is full of casualties, but the story of the 1960s Texas psychedelic folk-rock group the 13th Floor Elevators, led by guitarist and singer Roky Erickson and lyricist and electric jug player (and sometimes Svengali) Tommy Hall, reads like a slow motion cultural train wreck as the band battled record labels, local police, various inner demons, and several judges and courts while gobbling LSD like so many tic-tacs -- all of which culminated in Erickson proclaiming he was a Martian in order to avoid prison on drug charges, a move that landed him in an asylum for the criminally insane until 1972. It’s a wonder any music was made at all. But it did get made, and this was a very unique band, if never a commercially successful one -- maybe because their often unhinged recordings sounded like Captain Beefheart playing folk-rock while insanely drunk and pissed off in the basement. The 13th Floor Elevators released seven singles in all between January of 1966 and December of 1968, each of which, along with the B-sides, is preserved in this set in its original mono 45 rpm version, and hearing them back to back is a glorious piece of garage band heaven. Sides like the group’s signature “You’re Gonna Miss Me,” the queasy but perfect cover of Bob Dylan’s “Baby Blue,” the LSD treatise “Slip Inside This House,” and the beautiful and eerie “May the Circle Remain Unbroken” could only have been created by this singular band of sneering and evaporating Texas musicians -- they did sound at times like they came from Mars. Also here are the stereo mixes of four tracks the band recorded for a limited-edition French EP, which just spreads the wonderful chaos that was the 13th Floor Elevators across two channels.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2008 - Live In Texas

The 13th Floor Elevators 
Live In Texas

01. Monkey Island (2:54)
02. Roller Coaster (4:51)
03. Gloria (8:26)
04. You're Gonna Miss Me (3:16)
05. Interview (0:57)
06. Fire Engine (2:44)
07. You Really Got Me (4:36)
08. Roll Over Beethoven (3:10)
09. Gloria (4:00)
10. Fire Engine (2:32)
11. You're Gonna Miss Me (3:01)
12. Roller Coaster (4:19)
13. Mercy Mercy (3:33)
14. Tried To Hide (2:40)
15. I'm Down (4:40)
16. Satisfaction (5:01)
17. I'm Gonna Love You Too (1:43)
18. I Feel Good (2:00)
19. Gloria (6:44)
20. Everybody Needs Somebody To Love (5:59)

Tracks 1-3 from Live KAZZ FM broadcast 16/3/1966
Tracks 4-14 from Sumpin' Else TV Show: 4-6*, 10-12 broadcast, 7-8*, 13-14 aftershow, 9 audience warm up * from first appearance 25/3/1966, others from second appearance 9/3/1966
Tracks 15-20 Live- La Maison Jan-June 1966

*Roky Erickson - Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
*Stacy Sutherland - Lead Guitar
*Tommy Hall - Amplified Jug
*Benny Thurman - Bass
*Ronnie Leatherman - Bass
*John Ike Walton - Drums, Percussion

A Survey Of Existing Elevators Live Recordings 1966-68

by Patrick Lundborg

Previously published in Shindig magazine, 2008

While much of the 13th Floor Elevators’ popularity today rests upon their studio albums and 45s, this wasn’t always the case. Especially not in Texas, where the Elevators first became famous as an outstanding live act, with a combination of ferocious drive and dark mystique that was unlike anything seen before. When the Psychedelic Sounds LP was released in late ‘66, some fans in their hometown Austin felt it was missing a bit of the captivating energy they associated with the band. Even Tommy Hall, the band’s lyricist and intellectual nexus, stated in a 1989 interview that “our real show was live”.
Before getting on to the true live recordings, a word about the infamous, fake Live LP on International Artists. This odd concoction was put together by I A producer Fred Carroll in the Summer of ’68, after months of studio sessions with the band had failed to produce anything release-worthy. Pulled together from old outtakes, the Live album is decidedly non-live, despite Carroll’s attempts to create a concert atmosphere via dubbed-in crowd noise. Much venom has been thrown upon this record over the decades, but fake live LPs were common in the ‘60s – much more so than real live recordings – and as far as the actual music goes, it’s a very good album, including a couple of songs unavailable elsewhere. Any fan of the band needs it. ‘Nuff said.

Except for the three core members of vocalist Roky Erickson, guitarist Stacy Sutherland and jug player/lyricist Tommy Hall, the Elevators underwent several line-up changes during their 2.5-year life span. A commonly held opinion back then was that as a live act, none of the later configurations could match the earliest line-up, with bassist Benny Thurman. Thurman, who was a formally schooled violinist but not a “real” bass player, contributed to the strange and exciting aura around the group during the first half of 1966. According to Bill Miller of Cold Sun, who saw the early Elevators several times, “Benny was just as important as Roky” to the band.

At that time, the Elevators’ official recordings were limited to the “You’re Gonna Miss Me” 45 (released January ‘66), and except for some demo tracks, this first line-up was not preserved on any other studio reels. The three live tapes that exist from the Spring ‘66 are thus important documents of the band’s early days, and better yet, they confirm the praise heard from the original fans. The energy level is breath-taking, yet the band finds room to spread their psychedelic message via complex drug songs like “Roller Coaster” and “Fire Engine”.

The earliest known live recording of the 13th Floor Elevators is the KAZZ-FM Tape. This was a live, 30-minute broadcast from a concert at the New Orleans club in Austin, Texas, March ’66. The Elevators had been the house band at the club during recent weeks, and this was to be their final performance before embarking on a tour of the Dallas/Fort Worth area. KAZZ-FM was one of Austin’s two radio stations, and unlike KNOW (who banned the Elevators) they had given “You’re Gonna Miss Me” plenty of air play. The KAZZ father and son team of Bill Josey Sr & Jr would continue to support local Austin rock music via their Sonobeat label in coming years. The KAZZ-FM tape features Bill Josey Jr, under his DJ alias “Rim Kelly”, giving enthustiastic intros to the songs, and occasionally ad libbing small talk while the band took their time tuning. Josey’s on-air description of the show as a “farewell performance” later caused confusion, as poorly informed writers and bootleggers assumed it meant the band was headed for the westcoast – which didn’t happen until five months later.

At least one hardcore Elevators fan I know rates the KAZZ-FM tape as the best live recording of the band in existence, and it’s easy to see why. The band is absolutely frantic, the crowd (possibly fuelled by the free LSD handed out by the group) is ecstatic and loud, and the compressed, somewhat overloaded nature of the recording becomes an advantage. Songs include “Roller Coaster”, “Monkey Island”, covers of two early Beatles numbers, and an absolutely blazing 7-minute version of “Gloria”. An edited version of the tape can be found on the Original Sounds and Demos Everywhere vinyl bootlegs from the late 80s, and the complete 30-minute version has gone around in tape trading circles. There are indications of two more KAZZ-FM broadcasts from the same era preserved on tape, but nothing has surfaced so far.

Although the subsequent sojourn to Dallas/Fort Worth was generally unsuccessful for the band, they got to appear live twice on the local Sump’N Else TV Show. The audio portions of their appearances were preserved, and have been officially released on Fire In My Bones (LP) and Psychedelic Microdots, vol 2 (CD). Although the TV studio setting removes a bit of the live atmosphere, the Elevators blow through their shortened set lists with tight, high-energy performances. The March ’66 show includes a brief interview with Tommy Hall, who also delivers a long jug solo on “You Really Got Me”. The May ’66 appearance is even more interesting, featuring not less than six songs, among them unique items like Don Covay’s “Mercy Mercy” and a manic “Roller Coaster”, which has Sump N Else’s host exclaim “wow!”. Unfortunately, the transfer from original tapes, done in the mid-‘80s, caused several tracks to appear at too fast speed; some are off by as much as 10%. As good as the Elevators were, they weren’t quite capable of the shrill, inhuman tempo heard on “Fire Engine”, as an example.

The Elevators returned to Austin, and in the late Spring they hooked up with the Houston-based International Artists label. “You’re Gonna Miss Me” began to make waves outside Texas, which led to I A bringing in Lelan Rogers to help with national promotion. Only one live recording exists from the Summer ’66, and that is the La Maison Tape. Sourced from a live broadcast from the La Maison club in Houston, this 20-minute stereo tape first appeared on the Elevator Tracks album from 1987. Although it was an exciting period for the band, the show isn’t among their finest moments. The predominance of covers is disappointing, but the “Roller Coaster” version is one of the best. It was also around this time that the first line-up change occurred. Partly due to his wild, unpredictable lifestyle, Benny Thurman was replaced by the more placid Ronnie Leatherman, who was also considered a better bass player.

The new line-up toured California during the second half of ’66 and, at the height of their success, appeared twice on Dick Clark’s national TV shows. Evidence suggests that as a musical engine, the Elevators may never have been better than in the early days of their west coast stay. In his fanzine Mojo Navigator, a teenage Greg Shaw reported on seeing the band live at the Avalon Ballroom in San Francisco, obviously impressed: “The most interesting group musically was the 13th Floor Elevators. They are a really freaky group. They look strange, they sound strange, and they are all good musicians, doing all original material. The lead singer, whose voice is truly odd, also plays lead guitar pretty well. The drummer is excellent. They have one guy who does nothing but boop-boop-boop with a jug. The songs they do are new and different.”

The Elevators never felt entirely at home in San Francisco, although fellow Texan Chet Helms offered them many chances to play at the Avalon. Compiled from those gigs, the Avalon ’66 Tape gives terrific proof of the band’s prowess. Ronnie Leatherman’s bass adds a steady, almost majestic power to newly added numbers like “Before You Accuse Me” and (arguably the high-point) “You Don’t Know”. Compared with the fire-breathing r’n’b drive of the Spring ’66 recordings, updated covers of “The Word” and “You Really Got Me” show the band moving towards a more mature, acid-rock sound. The tape shows, quite simply, a great 60s rock band at the peak of their powers.

All copies of the Avalon ’66 Tape seem to derive from the same source, a broadcast on the SF Bay Area KSAN radio station in late 1977. Listeners would record KSAN’s shows of archival 60s live music, and those tapes made their way to vinyl bootleggers. The first Avalon ’66 boot came out in Italy 1978, and many have followed since. Unfortunately, the most well-known of these, Live SF ’66 on Lysergic Records, has the worst sound quality of all. It was produced by well-known LA collector Dave Gibson, whose Moxie reissue label was infamous for its shifting audio quality. Later Avalon releases such as Flivver and Rocky’s Horror Show are superior to Lysergic’s weak, muffled sound. The best-sounding version may yet be to come, as the Elevators box-set currently in production will utilize a great-sounding tape copy of the old KSAN broadcast that surfaced recently. Incidentally, “Roller Coaster” was aired separately from the rest of the Avalon tape, and is missing from some of the bootlegs. A live recording of “Reverberation” from (probably) the same source tapes is also known to exist, but has never been released.

As a footnote to the Avalon ’66 Tape, there is known to exist another live tape from the west coast tour, from Fresno in inland California. The people in possession of this tape like to keep it to themselves, and are unwilling to divulge even track list info. Perhaps it will see the light of day some time.

Despite their commercial success, it was in California that problems began developing around the Elevators in general, and Roky Erickson in particular. After returning to Texas around Christmas, the band played a large number of gigs during early ‘67, but their performances were getting uneven and unpredictable.
Nothing illustrates this better than the notorious Houston Mustic Theatre Tape, from February ‘67. Through a twist of fate, this is the best documented concert in the entire Elevators annals. Apart from the professional live recording, there exists a poster, old ticket stubs, detailed comments from band members, and personal reminiscences from audience members. How unfortunate then, that the Elevators decided to drop more LSD than usual before the concert, and went on stage zonked out of their skulls. While the crowd was yelling and IA:s tape deck was rolling, lead guitarist Stacy Sutherland entered a profound hallucinatory stage, which he described years later as: “...Everybody turned into wolves, and I thought that our band was evil, because of some of the things we had advocated. And I was tryin' to escape the room, I didn't know what I was gonna do, but I was gonna get out of there. I didn't want anything to do with it, because everybody was turning into animals...”. While on stage, Sutherland entered a dissociated spiritual space wherein an angel gave him three “prophecies”, all of a negative nature. This vision would continue to haunt the guitarist, and informed some of the lyrics he later wrote for the band’s final LP, Bull Of The Woods.

On top of these heavy acid vibes, the revolving stage of the venue contributed to the musicians’ confusion. On the live tape, you can hear drummer John Ike Walton desperately trying to hold the gig together, while Roky forgets his lines or his vocal mic, Stacy’s guitar leads abruptly come and go, and the whole thing is pretty much out to lunch. As a freak document of a very freaky night, it has its moments, but for the Elevators legacy we would have been better off without it. To add insult to injury, when the recording was made available in the late ‘80s, the clueless people involved simply put it out with zero corrections of the raw mix, which means that it sounds even more bizarre than it had to. Furthermore, it was incorrectly listed as coming from La Maison, which didn’t even exist by early ’67. For the bold or curious, the concert can be found on Big Beat’s I’ve Seen Your Face Before – Live LP/CD, as well as the Magic Of The Pyramids bootleg CD. A chaotic post-concert jam with the Conqueroo from the same night has also been released.

Problems mounted within in the band, and in mid-‘67 the rhythm section was entirely overhauled – for a brief period, the Elevators didn’t even exist anymore – and “the two Dannys”, Galindo and Thomas, took over on bass and drums, respectively. The main project for this line-up was the Easter Everywhere album, which was successfully completed by October ‘67. The new line-up played a few stray gigs early on, before getting into a steady flow of work around the time of the album release in November.

The fragmentation of the band continued, and the concerts were getting increasingly erratic, as were the antics of both Roky and Tommy. Of the many dozens of gigs performed during ‘68 (Galindo having moved on), no recordings have surfaced. Rumors of an Easter Everywhere-era live tape with “Slip Inside This House” have circulated, but appear to be untrue. Although the final year of the 13th Floor Elevators was perhaps the most unusual of all, their days as an awe-inspiring live act were no more.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2008 - Live In California

The 13th Floor Elevators
Live In California

01. Everybody Needs Somebody To Love (5:46)
02. Before You Accuse Me (2:42)
03. You Don't Know (How Young You Are) (2:56)
04. Splash 1 (3:41)
05. I'm Gonna Love You Too (2:10)
06. You Really Got Me (6:37)
07. Fire Engine (3:12)
08. Roll Over Beethoven (2:54)
09. The Word (2:55)
10. Monkey Island (2:52)
11. Rollercoaster (5:42)

Recorded between sept and nov 1966 somewhere in the Bay area, California. Re-broadcast on KSAN radio circa 1978

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2008 - Death In Texas

The 13th Floor Elevators
Death In Texas

01. (I've Got) Levitation (3:26)
02. Reverberation (3:27)
03. Don't Fall Down (3:33)
04. Kingdom Of Heaven (Is Within You) (3:46)
05. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) (3:27)
06. Rock'n'Roll jam #1 (7:40)
07. Instrumental jam #3 (4:50)
08. Baby Blue Jam (6:27)
09. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) (4:52)
10. Maxine (3:32)
11. (I've Got) Levitation (3:29)
12. Shake Your Hips (4:39)
13. Roky on KAUM Radio 1973 (0:10)
14. Stumble (Smoke The Toilet) (2:45)
15. You're Gonna Miss Me (4:20)

Tracks 1-9 recorded 1967 Electric Grandmother Show
Track 10 Mother Earth 11/2/1973, Austin
Tracks 11-12 Last Bash On The Hill 19/3/1973, Austin
Tracks 13-14 La Bastille 1-3/4/1973 Houston
Track 15 Liberty Lunch 16/6/1984 Austin Texas

The 13th Floor Elevators - 2008 - A Love That's Sound

The 13th Floor Elevators
A Love That's Sound

01. Wait For My Love 3:28
02. It's You 2:44
03. May The Circle Remain Unbroken 2:38
04. Livin' On 5:34
05. Never Another 3:54
06. Dr Doom 3:24
07. Sweet Surprise 3:41
08. Moon Song 3:42
09. Livin' On 3:29
10. Never Another 3:36
11. It's You 2:37
12. Moon Song 3:07

Track 1 - unreleased 6th single
Track 2 acetate
Track 3 - original mix
Track 4, 5 Full take with original vocals
Track 7,8 UNreleased backing track
Track 9 Take 1, edited & overdubbed vocals
Track 10-12 rehearsal takes

The third 13th Floor Elevators album, "Bull of the Woods," has always been somewhat of a disappointment. The band had pretty well disintegrated from legal troubles, insanity and various other pressures. With vocalist Roky Erikson and lyricist/electric jug player Tommy Hall pretty much out of commission, guitarist Stacy Sutherland did the best he could and he did manage to pull off a pretty good psych rock album. The problem was that it didn't really deliver as an Elevators album. This collection gives us a much groovier view of what a real third Elevators album could have been. Rocky Erikson sings on all of the tracks that feature vocals, even if a few of them are likely just guide vocals, and the band rocks a lot closer to their signature sound. The monoural sound quality is somewhat muddy, but us longtime Elevator fans should be used to that from years of substandard versions of their first two albums. The electric jug only shows up on one track, but let's face it - the jug was always a bit of a novelty and the band does pretty well without it. Also, we get to lose those damn horn overdubs which marred "Bull of the Woods."

The first six tracks here are first rate, if a bit rough, 13th Floor Elevator rockers and stand up pretty well in comparison to the classics on the first two albums. "It's You" is a fine display of the poppier side of the band with a chorus that will end up stuck in your head forever, while "Livin' On" and "Never Another" serve up a tighter version of the psychedelic guru vibe that the group pursued on "Easter Everywhere." Erickson's version of "May the Circle Be Unbroken" is one of the group's absolute masterpieces, although it does admittedly come across a little better in its stereo version on "Bull of the Woods." Since the first six tracks only clock in at about 22 minutes, the disc is filled out with some instrumental takes called "Sweet Surprise" and "Moon Song." They're relatively dispensable, with the former coming across like a blues based jam and the latter sounding like a rocked up version of "Postures (Leave Your Body Behind)." Still, they're a nice momento of the prime Elevators sound just before it was lost forever.

I typically shy away from recent releases, but I imagine many of you may stay away from this release due the somewhat poor reputation of "Bull of the Woods." Surprisingly, this document of the band is almost as essential as the first two albums. If you have any doubts, note that this is actually the first disc of the set while "Bull of the Woods" is relegated to the second disc. There are some pretty interesting liner notes included as well. Buy it - Roky deserves the royalty checks.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1978 - Out of Order (Live at the Avalon Ballroom, 1966)

The 13th Floor Elevators
Out of Order (Live at the Avalon Ballroom, 1966)

01. Somebody To Love 5:40
02. Before You Accuse 2:40
03. You Don't Know 2:45
04. Splash 1 2:02
05. I'm Gonna Love You Too 6:31
06. You Really Got Me 3:41
07. Fire Engine 3:10
08. Roll Over Beethoven 2:54
09. The Word 2:53
10. Monkey Island 2:47
11. Roller Coaster 4:12

Recorded at the Avalon Ballroom, September 1966

*Roky Erickson - Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
*Stacy Sutherland - Lead Guitar
*Tommy Hall - Amplified Jug
*Benny Thurman - Bass
*Ronnie Leatherman - Bass
*John Ike Walton - Drums, Percussion

This quasi-legal production has shown up in other packages (and titles) since its original issue. It's a fair-quality tape of a 1966 concert that's a decent document for fans. The versions don't differ a heck of a lot from the ones on the records, though "Splash I," given a more forceful and full-bodied folk-rock arrangement, is a notable exception. There are also a few somewhat unexpected covers, like "Roll Over Beethoven," "You Really Got Me," Buddy Holly's "I'm Gonna Love You Too," and the Beatles' "The Word."

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1968 - Bull Of the Woods

The 13th Floor Elevators
Bull Of the Woods

01. Livin' On 3:25
02. Barnyard Blues 2:58
03. Til Then 3:23
04. Never Another 2:28
05. Rose And The Thorn 3:36
06. Down By The River 1:53
07. Scarlet And Gold 5:00
08. Street Song 4:55
09. Dr Doom 3:12
10. With You 2:15
11. May The Circle Remain Unbroken 2:44
12. Livin' On 3:25
13. Scarlet And Gold 4:59
14. May The Circle Remain Unbroken 2:42
15. Livin' On 3:24
16. Bull Of The Woods (West Coast Radio Spot) 1:03

Tracks 1-11 remastered
Tracks 12-13 IA#130 A&B sides
Track 14 IA#126 B side (mono)
Track 15 Alternate Horn Arrangement

Roky Erickson – vocals on tracks 1, 4, 9, 11, rhythm guitar
Stacy Sutherland – lead guitar, vocals on tracks 2-3, 5-8, 10
Tommy Hall – electric jug
Ronnie Leatherman – bass on tracks 2-3, 5-8, 10
Duke Davis – bass on tracks 1, 4, 9, 11
Danny Thomas – drums, horn arrangements

“Bull Of The Woods” was The Elevators last album, and despite the near absence of Roky Erickson (His appearance here marked by a mere four out of eleven songs) it is a remarkable album. It does stand in complete contrast to their first two Lelan Rogers-produced albums, “The Psychedelic Sounds Of” and “Easter Everywhere,” but due to its limited production the bass is confined to a crawlspace muddling midrange and the drums crackle with overdone treble while liberal applications of delay are applied to the guitars. This causes the band (already in an inspired state of cacophony) to orbit the clattering drums into a diffused, poor recording where the instruments are all merged into a fraction of the audio field while a great space hovers above it. Ray Rush, the aptly named producer, made the record sound like he WAS in a major rush to get these tracks down -- presumably before the Texas Rangers came knocking on the door one more time.

But even he and three engineers couldn’t contain or mute this album as The Elevators’ playing is so wobbling in its tracks yet vibed-up it shines through the dark forest of lo-fi, anyway. Caught as they were within the post-psychedelic meltdown in the wake of their lead singer and songwriter Roky Erickson’s incarceration at Rusk Mental Hospital for possession of marijuana, as well as the eventual departure of their older folk-generation svengali, Tommy Hall (he of the ‘doot-doot-doot’ electric jugging), it’s a wonder they were even alive. At this point, their previous release, “The Thirteenth Floor Elevators Live” (which was nothing of the sort: it was studio outtakes with “Got Live If You Want It”-type audience overdubbing) was IA’s way of at least keeping up the appearance that The Elevators were still a functioning group. But “Bull of The Woods,” issued that December from similarly assembled outtakes and re-recordings of earlier tracks, featured not only the 1967 lineup of Erickson, Sutherland, Hall, Thomas and Galindo but also Ronnie Leatherman (brought in to fill in a few tracks on bass) as well as a ridiculous amount of echo, reverb and an utterly non-dimension horn section that was used to flesh out an album that was largely in part the effort of guitarist Stacy Sutherland who carried the weight of the songwriting credits (five tracks, co-writing a further four with Tommy Hall) and swinging his guitar through multiple uses of delay that dissolve and scatter within the freewheeling looseness of this album. Unfortunately, the lyrics are by and large as mysterious as the cover itself as they are all supremely echoed. And even when they’re not they’re sung in a such a lazy, Texan drawl through echo that they could be singing it in Martian and it would be just as discernable. But the freewheeling feeling is highly charged and grounded; striking out all over the place like lightning over a dark, Texas field peppered with tall, polished aluminum rods.

“Livin’ On” opens up the album with Erickson’s ever-sonorous and yearning vocalising madness over a derailed “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” Sutherland rhythm guitar riff, the drums clatter and the half-assed horns make the panels of sound shift even more so, creating a rhythmic holding pattern of no real definition. Sutherland is playing like Duane Eddy in an echo chamber with undulating ripples. “Til Then” (a re-write of the early Elevators number “Wait For My Love”) continues the crazy quilt with Don Galindo on bass, although you can barely hear him because the drums are so OVERRECORDED that they wipe out everything with a near distorted trebly tweak out. And Sutherland’s guitar is similarly taken into another dimension with all the extreme amounts of reverb that they emit more like laser beams that report and roll on for far too long. “Never Another,” an Erickson/Hall composition, sees the Elevators screaming out in spades. Hall backs with electronic jug riffs, and the guitar on the coda after Erickson’s vocal on the second chorus (you know, the SCREAMING one where he even outdoes James Brown) is all Sutherland deep tissue penetration, third eye escalating guitar structure that is endlessly unfolding and lotus-like as guitar playing got in 1968. "Never Another," man: even if the rest of the album was filler, this song alone would make it an essential listen. The Sutherland compo “Rose And The Thorn” houses a strange, hovering electronic echo in the back of the speakers, a ghostly choral and even an explosion (!). “Down By The River” ends the side with an almost Grateful Dead “Doin’ That Rag” feel, but murkier, darker and more mysterious.

“Scarlet And Gold” opens side two with a riff reminiscent of “Bad Moon On The Rising” over the muddy midrange bass with wooden cymbal tapping and wayward drums fills that stretch a canvas behind a battered yet heroic choral in the back over the chorus, interpreting the meaning of the words, lost as they are through Stacy Sutherland’s Texas drawl. “Street Song” is where the whole shebang really verges on falling apart at any moment: the guitar is distorted, the rhythm acoustic just click-clacks down the railroad tracks and everything is echoed out to sheer fuck with no excuse and no clarity whatsoever. Until...that heroic, tripping Morricone spaghetti Western theme that hijacks the song into a fantastically trippy, lurching mini-epic, like Stacy and the boys perched upon horses on a Texas ridge overlooking Rusk Mental Hospital, ready to swoop down and bust Roky out. And when they do, it’s a clatter of hooves --sorry, drums -- And all hell busts loose in a Sutherland-led rave-up of unparallel proportions, even for The Elevators. It does find it way back to the main theme of “Street Song,” but how...I still can’t figure out. The music is on such a high and wonderful flow for most of the album you don't hear songs per se, but only feel them pass.

“Dr. Doom”, opens with the broken down horn section, but Roky’s gentle vocals sooth and smooth it into place for most of the time -- at least, until the chorus, where the vocals get crowded into a botched double-track that barely holds on long enough to operate as harmony vocals, sounding all the world like a three-way conversation. “With You,” a song by bassist Ronnie Leatherman, is a brief, hopeful folk-rocker shot through with another elegant Sutherland staccato guitar burst.

“May The Circle Remain Unbroken” is a quiet Erickson song with a building, echoed guitar riffing a constant thread over Erickson’s whispering of the title, this darkly psychedelic track’s sole lyrics. The poignant sentiment is rendered into lightly tapped and echoed bells reaching over strands of organ while the helplessly echoed rhythm guitar strum delay continues onwards until the fade as a last bell is struck…the early morning holding promise after a particularly revelatory and colourful night. Unbelievably, it was issued as a single -- on the “A” side, no less. And with it, The Elevators passed into history as one of the best, and perhaps the first truly psychedelic bands of the sixties. But to quote a classic radio spot done for the promotion of this album: “...The spirit of the Elevators is LIVIN’ ON!”

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1968 - Live

The 13th Floor Elevators

01. Before You Accuse Me 3:55
02. She Lives In A Time Of Her Own 3:08
03. Tried To Hide 3:07
04. You Gotta Take That Girl 3:15
05. I'm Gonna Love You Too 2:15
06. Everybody Needs Somebody To Love 4:03
07. I've Got Levitation 2:52
08. You Can't Hurt Me Anymore 3:55
09. Roller Coaster 5:09
10. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:30

Roky Erickson – vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica
Tommy Hall – electric jug
Stacy Sutherland – lead guitar
Dan Galindo – bass guitar
Danny Thomas – drums

Live is a 1968 studio album by the American psychedelic rock band the 13th Floor Elevators. In an interview the band cited that the album was essentially made up of studio outtakes that were overdubbed with phony cheering and applause. The album is held in low regard and was put together by the International Artists label to make extra money with little to no input from the band.

In 1968, the 13th Floor Elevators were dealing with legal troubles and personal strife that prevented them from touring, but they still had a reputation in Texas as a powerful live act, and their label, International Artists, wanted to capitalize on that by releasing an album of the group in concert. However, IA's attempt to record a live Elevators album in 1967 proved little short of disastrous -- the group was booked into an unfamiliar and uncomfortable venue in Houston and guitarist Stacy Sutherland had a bad reaction to the LSD he customarily took before a show, and the results were well recorded but musically ragged. So the folks at IA decided to simply invent an Elevators live disc -- Live is an often laughable collection of unreleased studio recordings and album cuts overdubbed with crowd noises (reportedly taken from a boxing match) kicked off by an announcer declaring "We're all gathered together here for psychedelic music! We all are a family!" with the sincerity and hippie fervor of a used car salesman. Despite all this, Live is not without interest for serious Elevators fans. Beneath the sound effects, there are several excellent early performances that otherwise appeared only on B-sides or bootlegs, including some fiery covers (great versions of "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love," "Before You Accuse Me," and "I'm Gonna Love You Too") and little-heard group originals ("You Gotta Take That Girl" and "You Can't Hurt Me Anymore"). However, the versions of "You're Gonna Miss Me," "Tried to Hide," and "She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)" are the same ones that appeared on The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators or Easter Everywhere, albeit in curious stereo mixes with the canned audience bobbing up and down throughout. The 2010 collection Headstone: The Contact Sessions features the rare material on Live in its original form (no crowd noises and in considerably better fidelity), rendering Live pointless for most listeners, though the kitsch factor of this obviously phony concert makes it entertaining for folks with a taste for arcane psychedelic artifacts.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1967 - Easter Everywhere

The 13th Floor Elevators
Easter Everywhere

Mono Edition

01. Slip Inside This House 7:55
02. Slide Machine 3:39
03. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) 2:57
04. Nobody To Love 2:57
05. (It's All Over Now) Baby Blue 5:09
06. Earthquake 4:44
07. Dust 3:58
08. Levitation 2:40
09. I Had To Tell You 2:26
10. Postures (Leave Your Body Behind) 6:21

11. I've Got Levitation 2:37
12. Before You Accuse Me 2:37
13. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) 2:57
14. Baby Blue 5:12
15. Slip Inside This House 4:06

Remix Stereo Edition

01. Slip Inside This House 8:05
02. Slide Machine 3:42
03. She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own) 2:57
04. Nobody To Love 3:00
05. (It's All Over Now) Baby Blue 5:18
06. Earthquake 4:50
07. Dust 3:58
08. Levitation 2:44
09. I Had To Tell You 2:29
10. Postures (Leave Your Body Behind) 6:32
11. Fire In My Bones 2:05
12. Dust 3:58
13. Right Track Now 3:02
14. Splash 1 3:05
15. Before You Accuse Me 3:27
16. Levitation (Take 1) 3:09
17. Levitation (Take 2) 4:17

Track 11-12 IA#113 single A&B sides
Track 13-14 IA#121 single A&B sides
Track 15 IA#122 single A side

Stereo Remix
Tracks 1, 4, 5, 6, 9,10, 11 Remastered
Tracks 2, 3, 7, 8, 12 alt unreleased mixes
Track 13, 14 Roky solo session

Roky Erickson – vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica
Tommy Hall – electric jug
Stacy Sutherland – lead guitar
Dan Galindo – bass guitar
Danny Thomas – drums
John Ike Walton – drums ("She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)", "Levitation")
Ronnie Leatherman - bass guitar ("She Lives (In a Time of Her Own)", "Levitation")
Clementine Hall - backing vocals ("I Had to Tell You")

The Elevators’ second album, “Easter Everywhere” showed the band’s progression light years away from their first one but a year earlier. Indeed, they had transmuted beyond their Lightnin’ Hopkins’n’Hooker heated acid blues; delving further inward to the cosmic eye, mind and beyond.

“Easter Everywhere” is an album that exhibits group chemistry at its ultimate unification. The Elevators had already arrived at a place where they had the songs, lyrics AND feel to animate both into a consciousness-delving manner, but now they took their explorations even further out and beyond the crust, the mantle and the white-hot core of the psychedelic experience into a place where existence can be seen as an eternal dance: a play between time and space, of push and pull (it’s hard to describe without using the language it demands, but here goes) of the whole exchange of thingy-inny to thingy-outty and all that implies…of the spaces between yourself and your existence, as the rollicking rhythm that is life steams full on ahead into the future.

The arrangements on “Easter Everywhere” are extremely psychedelic as The Elevators were both absorbing and channeling the highest illuminations, informed by the raising of their respective consciousnesses through not only LSD dropping, but by FEELING it and converting those experiences into songs coherent for the intake of more rational, less far out states of mind. The massive opening track, “Slip Inside This House” (running anywhere between 10 minutes and an infinity of guises of time lengths) often appears to be quite longer than it actually is due to its strong and steady rolling drums, bass rumblings from Don Galindo and the ecstatic high-ness that is “Slip Inside This House”: an ever-evolving, being into becoming, like an endlessly unfolding lotus of infinite layers as the panels of consciousness shift this way to that in a constant flow of change and motion. It’s like wandering around wasted in suburban springtime sunshine after gulping 10 grammes of hashish and the sheer body buzz of it makes the houses you pass into faces, the doors smile at you as they slowly recede behind you in a curved horizon all stylised late-60’s faux-Peter Max pop art that constantly rotates as though set in motion by your feet. The houses appear, grow larger then smaller and recede -- to be replaced by a constant row of houses in an uninterrupted scene of non-diminished and unchanging returns. And “Slip Inside This House” details all this with its changing static-ness that’s gotta be one of the highest plasma marks of American psychedelic rock and roll ever. The constant Tommy Hall “doot-doot-doot”-ings on jug working alongside the near-constant shifting of sonic patterning that is as ever-returning as the classic Roky vocal bridge of “There is no season/When you are gone/You are always risen/From the seeds you’ve sown.” And when it all finally and subtly fades on a Stacy Sutherland near-surf guitar coda that The Rolling Stones would cop for the main riff of “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” you wish it didn’t end so soon (The Stones would later appropriate elements and stylings from The Elevators’ own “Monkey Island” for their own proto-hominid rant’n’roll piece, “Monkey Man.”)

The album wriggles on through into “Slide Machine,” opening as it does with a handful of sharp acoustic pickings, only to submerge into the pervious wash of sound where everything merges into a single torrent and it melts into itself, the sky and forever. Roky Erickson’s sweet intonations of “tryin’ to/tryin’ to/tryin’ to get back to you...” grounds the piece into human experience as the rest of the lyrics and music is sheer Cosmic-Speak through the rhythms, buffeted by Sutherland’s searing, fuzz/reverb guitar scatter shots.

“She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own)” sees Roky vocalising about a very special woman, shared by booming harmony vocals that sing the parenthetical title as once more Sutherland’s throws in his proto-“Jumpin’ Jack Flash” riff in the middle section, amidst the clatter of drums and the overall organic yet willful and organised cacophony. And the above-mentioned, nameless ‘special woman’ whose “time does not spin outside her/It’s in every breath she breathes” is forever immortalised in this devotional portrait.

Next, The Jefferson Airplane’s “Somebody To Love” is inverted as “Nobody To Love” with Sutherland intoning a dry, love-jonesin’ supreme as his spiky though sticky-as-molasses guitar riffing streaks across the track with uncontrollable yet barely-reigned in looseness as the sheer sustain of his guitar’s reverberation bleeds through just BARELY in time, zigzagging and ricocheting astonishingly free all over the place. But you’ll need the insanely rare lyric sheet that accompanied the original IA pressing of this mystic aural platter to make 100% coherence out of Sutherland’s sonorous Tex-Mesc drawl. The album finally simmers with a cover of Dylan’s folk/protest elegy, “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” here elongated with a length and tempo completely gentle, relaxed and gracefully sad; especially with Roky’s barely detectable whispering of the title near the end that reinforces the sense of rebirth that hovers over the entire album.

“Earthquake” opens side two, and the previous wash of sound from side one is upon us once again as the staunch repetition of the drumming, jug blowing and bass clumping keeps the track with high tension wire humming, only to be interrogated by Sutherland’s hollow-bodied guitarus interruptus in the quick action breaks. So ragingly slinky is this song (what with the ever-steady hi-hatting’n’snare of Danny Thomas and the overwhelming snarl of Sutherland’s fuzz guitar like a mass of black seaweed that mats the surface of this particular roaring river rapids -- halting only for solo feedback and grinding fuzz counter-pointing), hinted at by Roky’s sung lines of pulling through ‘flesh and bone’/’earth and stone’ seems nothing less than cunnilingus of the Mother Earth Herself, all quivering quim and aching rim prompted along by Roky’s ecstatically freaking tonguing whine of ‘mmmmmmmmmmm...!’ And Sutherland’s fuzzed/shearing/searing guitar solo at the end may be one of his best. Although it’s practically the same notes he always utilises throughout the album, somehow THIS arrangement of them are particularly effective.

From here on in, “Easter Everywhere” has almost nowhere to go but to hunker down and take stock quietly, as they do with the plaintive Roky-sung “Dust.” Although primarily acoustic, Sutherland e-guitar prowls the perimeter with wisps of gentle vibrato, but wouldn’t you know it -- The Elevators come charging out full tilt with the last brash explosion on the album: “I’ve Got Levitation.” Here Roky is calling out for the Music of the Spheres over low-end surf guitar fills and an overall clattery blow-out that sees a weird edit right before the fade, failing to dissipate the energy or blow its spell one whit. But with its fiery passing, The Elevators take things way down with “I Had To Tell You,” sung softly by Roky and harmonized with jug-player Tommy Hall’s wife, Clementine. Their voices weave with acoustic guitar hi-hat, tambourine and harmonica as Roky comments on the chaos all around him, soothing to a degree, but none so more so than “Postures (Leave Your Body Behind).” Only here, the undulating rhythm lightly charge the scene, and it’s an ever-returning one that mirrors the album’s opener “Slip Inside This House” in terms of Roky’s reiterated lyric passages that are constantly re-inserted as soon as you’ve forgotten them. “Remember…remember…” he’ll sooth one minute, then onto a different line that gets repeated, like “etches that flow from your energy” or “keep on climbing.” And the more-hypnotic-than-Sam Andrews guitar keeps on lightly nudging your mind and body to “remember...remember” -- for there are “evolutions everywhere.”

A broader expanse was never mapped out by a rock’n’roll band of its time.

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1966 - Reverberation

The Thirteenth Floor Elevators

01. Reverberation (Doubt) 2:47
02. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:09
03. Fire Engine 2:35
04. Tried To Hide 2:46

Label: Riviera – 231 240 M
Format: Vinyl, 7", 45 RPM, EP
Country: France
Released: 1966

Licensed From – International Artists
Printed By – Imprimerie Glory-Carpel

*Roky Erickson - Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
*Stacy Sutherland - Lead Guitar
*Tommy Hall - Amplified Jug
*Benny Thurman - Bass
*Ronnie Leatherman - Bass
*John Ike Walton - Drums, Percussion

Check out  the mega rare 13th Floor Elevators French EP! This was Riviera 231-240 1966 with a You're Gonna Miss Me/Tried To Hide/Reverberation/Fire Engine track listing. Not only that but it is different takes than anything released in America! This is a world-class rarity!

The 13th Floor Elevators - 1966 - The Psychedelic Sounds Of The 13th Floor Elevators

The 13th Floor Elevators
The Psychedelic Sounds Of The 13th Floor Elevators

Mono Edition

01. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:31
02. Roller Coaster 5:05
03. Splash 1 3:53
04. Reverberation 2:47
05. Don't Fall Down 3:01
06. Fire Engine 3:20
07. Thru The Rhythm 3:08
08. You Don't Know 2:56
09. Kingdom Of Heaven 3:09
10. Monkey Island 2:41
11. Tried To Hide 2:49

12. Reverbaration (Doubt) 2:48
13. Fire Engine 2:37
14. Reverberation 2:59
15. Fire Engine 3:19

Stereo Edition

01. You Don't Know (How Young You Are) 2:57
02. Through The Rhythm 3:25
03. Monkey Island 2:55
04. Roller Coaster 5:05
05. Fire Engine 2:38
06. Reverberation 2:53
07. False Start/Tried To Hide 0:27
08. Tried To Hide 2:49
09. You're Gonna Miss Me 2:31
10. I've Seen Your Face Before (Splash 1) 3:56
11. Don't Fall Down 3:19
12. The Kingdom Of Heaven 3:11

13. You Don't Know (How Young You Are) 2:45
14. Roller Coaster 4:21
15. Don't Fall Down 3:03
16. Don't Fall Down/Band Introduction 4:07

mono bonus tracks
Track 12,13 from IA#111 mono single
Track 14 unreleased acetate
Track 15 Alt mono mix

stereo bonus tracks
Tracks 13-15 alternate backing tracks
Track 16 from Larry Kane Show 27/5/1967

*Roky Erickson - Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
*Stacy Sutherland - Lead Guitar
*Tommy Hall - Amplified Jug
*Benny Thurman - Bass
*Ronnie Leatherman - Bass
*John Ike Walton - Drums, Percussion

The 13th Floor Elevators were one of the pioneering bands of psychedelic music; many have cited them as the first true psychedelic rock band, and if they weren't, they certainly predated most of the San Francisco bands that gave the sound a global audience. The Elevators played a bracing fusion of garage rock and genre-defying musical exploration powered by Roky Erickson's feral vocals and rhythm guitar, Stacy Sutherland's concise but agile lead guitar work, and Tommy Hall's amplified jug playing, the latter of which gave them a sound unlike any other in rock. The Elevators were also exploring the outer limits of both consciousness and rock & roll in Texas in the early to mid-'60s, a time and place that wasn't quite ready for them, leading to the myriad problems that at once fueled their legend and cut down the band before their time.

The 13th Floor Elevators story began in Kerrville, TX, where in 1963, Stacy Sutherland (born 1946) was hanging out in the parking lot of a diner and met John Ike Walton (born 1942). Walton was a banjo picker who was playing for anyone who cared to listen, and Sutherland, already an accomplished guitarist, struck up a conversation. The two became friends, and when they met Benny Thurman (born 1943), a classically trained violinist who could also play bass, they formed a band. The Lingsmen featured Sutherland and Max Range on guitars, Thurman on bass, and Walton on drums, and soon landed a steady gig in the resort town of Port Aransas, TX. Meanwhile, Tommy Hall (born 1942) was a student at the University of Texas, studying chemical engineering and psychology. Hall was keenly intelligent and had a philosophical bent, and he fell in with a group of Austin bohemians who were experimenting with peyote. In 1964, Hall claims to have been part of LSD experiments which took place at UT; no records exist which confirm such experiments, but however he became interested in the drug, Hall was a quick convert, and believed it was a tool to reaching the next level in psychological and spiritual evolution. As pop music grew more sophisticated with the emergence of Bob Dylan and the Beatles, Hall believed that rock & roll could be used as a medium to advance his ideas about psychedelics and philosophy. Sutherland, who had developed a powerful taste for marijuana and downers, began hanging out in Austin, and through mutual acquaintances met Hall; after seeing the Lingsmen play, Hall recruited Sutherland, Walton, and Thurman for the new band he hoped to form.

Hall was a gifted lyricist but no singer, so the group needed a lead vocalist. Roger Kynard Erickson (born 1947), known to his friend as Roky, was the frontman with a popular Austin band called the Spades, who had scored a local hit with "You're Gonna Miss Me." Hall and Sutherland believed Erickson's raw, powerful voice was just what their band needed, and in late 1965 they lured him away from the Spades to join the newly formed 13th Floor Elevators (the name a reference to the floor on a skyscraper that usually goes unnamed). In early 1966, the Elevators re-recorded "You're Gonna Miss Me" for a local label, Contact Records; the new version was in every respect more powerful than the original, and it looked to have the makings of a hit. By the spring, the record had been snapped up by an upstart label in Houston, International Artists Records, and IA was able to turn "You're Gonna Miss Me" into a small nationwide success.

While on the surface the Elevators rise to fame seemed ordinary, underneath things were anything but. Under Hall's leadership, the Elevators did every rehearsal, performance, and recording session under the influence of LSD (except for Walton, who after a bad trip refused to have anything to do with the drug), and while their single was climbing the charts on AM radio, the bandmembers were becoming the heroes of a Texas community that had not yet become known as hippies. When the band released their debut album, The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators, in the fall of 1966, Hall insisted on including bizarre liner notes charting man's efforts to alter his consciousness. And while LSD was not yet illegal when the group began using it, the marijuana they habitually smoked certainly was, and around the time "You're Gonna Miss Me" was released, Erickson, Hall, Sutherland, and Walton were busted for possession. While the group attempted to keep up a busy schedule of performances, they did so knowing they could end up in jail at any time. Despite this, the Elevators went out on tour and even appeared on American Bandstand, where Dick Clark innocently asked Hall, who was the head man of the group, to which he replied, "Well, we're all heads."

After an extended stay in San Francisco, where they made a strong impression on the budding local rock scene (and reconnected with an old Austin friend, Janis Joplin, who was beginning to make a name for herself in California), the Elevators ended up back in Texas in 1967 as they began work on their second album, Easter Everywhere. While the album was a masterpiece, it didn't spawn a hit like "You're Gonna Miss Me," and it was recorded as the band was beginning to splinter; Walton, unhappy with the band's business affairs and their relationship with International Artists, left the group, and Thurman followed. Danny Galindo became their new bassist, and Danny Thomas signed on as drummer. The band's fragile legal situation prevented them from touring and they played only limited local shows in support of the album. When an attempt to record a live album at a concert in Houston went awry after Sutherland sunk into a bad trip on-stage in 1968, International Artists released The 13th Floor Elevators Live, a ludicrous LP in which old studio demos were overdubbed with crowd noises taken from a boxing match.

The Elevators' use of drugs was beginning to catch up with most of them, and Erickson in particular began to buckle under his constant use of LSD and speed, ending up in a hospital for a while. At the same time, Hall grew tired of his role as the band's overseer, so Sutherland became the de facto leader of the group for the recording of their third and final album, Bull of the Woods. With Erickson and Hall making only token appearances on the album, and Galindo replaced by Ronnie Leatherman, it was the most stripped-down and elemental Elevators album, despite IA's insistence on adding horn overdubs to several songs. When Erickson was busted for marijuana again in 1969, it spelled the end of the group for all practical purposes, especially when Erickson, pleading insanity on the advice of a lawyer, ended up in an Austin mental hospital. Hall and some friends attempted to liberate Roky, who had tried to escape several times on his own, and eventually he was sentenced to the Rusk Prison for the Criminally Insane, where he was subjected to repeated shock treatments and powerful psychoactive drugs.
Various handfuls of Elevators alumni played periodic reunion shows during the '70s after Erickson was finally released from Rusk, but those came to an end in 1978, after Sutherland was shot to death by his wife during a domestic dispute. Since then, only Erickson has continued to make music on a regular basis, finally overcoming frequent bouts of physical and mental illness to make a comeback album in 2010. With time, the legend of the Elevators grew, and in 2007, author Paul Drummond published a richly detailed biography of the group, Eye Mind: The Saga of Roky Erickson and the 13th Floor Elevators, The Pioneers of Psychedelic Sound. In 2009, Drummond helped compile Sign of the Three Eyed Men, a ten-disc box set that finally brought together the Elevators' recorded legacy in its definitive form.

Did the 13th Floor Elevators invent psychedelic rock? Aficionados will be debating that point for decades, but if Roky Erickson and his fellow travelers into inner space weren't there first, they were certainly close to the front of the line, and there are few albums from the early stages of the psych movement that sound as distinctively trippy (and remain as pleasing) as the group's groundbreaking debut, The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators. In 1966, psychedelia hadn't been around long enough for its clichés to be set in stone, and Psychedelic Sounds thankfully avoids most of them; while the sensuous twists of the melodies and the charming psychobabble of the lyrics make it sound like these folks were indulging in something stronger than Pearl Beer, at this point the Elevators sounded like a smarter-than-average folk-rock band with a truly uncommon level of intensity. Roky Erickson's vocals are strong and compelling throughout, whether he's wailing like some lysergic James Brown or murmuring quietly, and Stacy Sutherland's guitar leads -- long on melodic invention without a lot of pointless heroics -- are a real treat to hear. And nobody played electric jug quite like Tommy Hall...actually, nobody played it at all besides him, but his oddball noises gave the band a truly unique sonic texture. If you want to argue that psychedelia was as much a frame of mind as a musical style, it's instructive to compare the recording of "You're Gonna Miss Me" by Erickson's earlier band, the Spades, to the version on this album -- the difference is more attitudinal than anything else, but it's enough to make all the difference in the world. (The division is even clearer between the Spades' "We Sell Soul" and the rewrite on Psychedelic Sounds, "Don't Fall Down"). The 13th Floor Elevators were trailblazers in the psychedelic rock scene, and in time they'd pay a heavy price for exploring the outer edges of musical and psychological possibility, but along the way they left behind a few fine albums, and The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators remains a potent delight.