Psych! British Prog, Rock, Folk, And Blues 1966 – 1973: Vinyl 2LP + 3CD Review

Psych! British Prog, Rock, Folk & Blues 1966 – 1973’ – A Journey Through Time
This a new compilation album that brings back the Golden Age of compilation albums, reminiscent of classics like Bumpers by Island Records and Nice Enough to Eat. This new release, ‘Psych! British Prog, Rock, Folk & Blues 1966 – 1973’, on The Decca /Deram label, takes us on a nostalgic journey through some of the best music from the late 60s to early 70s.

Released on both vinyl and CD, this compilation offers something for every music fan. The vinyl version is a double album with 24 tracks, presented in a beautiful gatefold sleeve featuring iconic images like Al Stewart and Timebox. The inner sleeves are adorned with pictures of singles and albums from the era, and there’s a short essay by Mike Barnes, the author of ‘New Day Yesterday’.

The CD version, however, is where this compilation truly shines. It’s a 3CD set with a whopping 64 tracks, including many that even seasoned music fans might not be familiar with. The CD package includes a foldout booklet with extensive essays and memorabilia, providing detailed information about each track and band featured. The essay by Mike Barnes is a highlight, offering insightful commentary and historical context.

Upon its original release, the music from this period was a significant part of the UK and US charts. Albums from the late 60s and early 70s often climbed high, reflecting the era’s vibrant and exploratory music scene. The fascination with pyramid power, the influence of bands like Pink Floyd, and the general cultural curiosity of the time are all captured beautifully in this compilation.

The tracks on ‘Psych! British Prog, Rock, Folk & Blues 1966 – 1973’ cover a wide range of styles and genres, from the supernatural mood of ‘Voyager’ to the glowing intensity of ‘What Goes Up’. The compilation includes some music by well-known artists like Genesis, Caravan etc but it’s the lesser-known bands that steal the show such as Tintern Abbey, Crocheted Doughnut Ring, T2 that are particularly noteworthy.

One of the most exciting aspects of this compilation is the discovery of new music. Despite my extensive music collection, nearly all of the tracks were new to me. This compilation is full of hidden artists and obscure tracks from the period.

The sound quality of both the vinyl and CD versions is excellent. The recordings have been remastered to sound as if they were recorded last week, providing a fresh listening experience. The sequencing of the tracks by Mike Barnes ensures a smooth and enjoyable journey through the music, with each CD offering almost 80 minutes of listening pleasure.

‘Psych! British Prog, Rock, Folk & Blues 1966 – 1973’ is a must-have for any music fan interested in this era. Whether you choose the vinyl or CD version, you’re in for a treat. The CD set, with its extensive track list and detailed booklet, is particularly recommended for those who want to immerse themselves fully in the music and history of the period.

From the psychedelic explorations of the late 60s to the progressive rock innovations of the early 70s, this compilation captures the essence of an era when musical boundaries were constantly being pushed and redefined.

Phil Aston | Now Spinning Magazine

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