This review is from: Outsideinside (Audio CD)
In the summer of 1968, as a youth not yet grown (apoligies to George RR Martin) i exceeded, on a daily basis, the limitations of my late father's lovingly built stereo system blasting the first Blue Cheer record... in retrospect, either my folks had unbeleivable confidence in my ability to work my way through baneful influences in life or they had just decided to ignore the signs that there could be storm clouds ahead for their son (whose hair was getting longer than they might have prefered)... at the time i sure wasn't worrying about how Mom might have been interpreting the lyrics to BC's version of "Rock Me Baby"... My musical interests up to this had been a Monkies album, Sgt Pepper, Surrealistic Pillow, etc... the usual suspects for that era... all that was fine and certainly i was groovin' on "Within You, Without You" and "Omaha".... but, truely, when i heard Blue Cheer's take on psychedelic music it was like the heavens opened up and testosterone-fueled sludge rained down to inspire my still forming youthful inclinations. This was a whole new approach to mind expansion, what with the lyrics focused on decidedly ungroovy topics...B.J's, prison time, addiction, etc... I LOVED IT!!! a few months later I'm flipping through the album section at the local Penny's store and low and behold... yikes, the most wacked out album cover I've ever seen!! Dickie Peterson sittin' on a mushroom looking decidedly ungloomy!! Whaley and Stephens also looking uplifted...miniature biker road crew guys scurrying to supply Dickie's THC requirements.... Wheeee.... I KNEW WHAT ALL THAT WAS ABOUT!!! I either shoved that disc under my beat up army surplus jacket or actually paid the $3.50 or so and high tailed it home... from the first piano/guitar psycho noodlings to last thumputeethump of Paul Whaley's drums at the end of "Babylon" i was reborn into the twisted, high volume vision of BC!! This record sounds like the mics the engineers used were clogged with grass and dirt... was Eddie Kramer doing lawn work on the side to supplement his income!!?? Perfectly not perfect. Flawed in all the right ways. A bloody mess, indeed. In 1977 i lived briefly (wasn't everything brief in those days?) with a one armed guitar player (he won the Gong Show just prior to moving into our L.A. cockroach infested apartment!!) who claimed to have attended high school with either some or all of the members of BC and was wont to say, "those guys got a band together cuz they were so horrible that no one would play with them!!" well, horrible or otherwise is in the ear of the behearor but in the wake of 40 years of technically adeptness and the overtaking of music by dry and flattening studiocraft, this music still screams "MADE BY CRAZED HOODLUMS WHO KNOW NO BOUNDS ON THE INGESTION OF GLUE, BANANA PEELS, THE COTTON FROM BENZEDRINE INHALERS and WHO, DESPITE THEIR INABILITY TO FIND THE STAGE AT THE AVALON BALLROOM DUE TO THE CRAWLING GEOMETRIC PATTERNS (NO MATTER EYES CLOSED OR OPEN) WILL NAIL YOU TO THE WALL WITH A HAIL OF AGGRESSION AND FEEDBACK!!" probably, at some point in my musical snail trail of the past 4 decades i may have lost the faith and briefly decided, along with my one armed friend that BC was moronic, inept, etc... but that was mere posing to appear sophisticated on my part and since i've grown into a intelligent, sensitive, knowledgable 57 year old and come back to the fold... BLUE CHEER DUSTS EVERYONE!! BUY THIS WONDERFUL SUNDAZED REISSUE AND THE VINCEBUS ERUPTUM REISSUE (glorious mono!!) AND YOU TOO CAN BE NOT ONLY MOLDED INTO A BETTER PERSON BUT PRIVY TO THE ANCIENT KNOWLEDGE HIDDEN WITHIN EVERY FEEDBACK DRENCHED BLEET AND BLAST FROM THE WALL OF MARSHALL AMPS OF THE MIGHTY BLUE CHEER CIRCA 1968- we'll never hear anything like them again. more's the pity.