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Awol
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 6 August 2012
That's the music which has an overwhelming hypnotic power over me - at the first sound of roaring guitars and thundering drums I turn into an imbecile with uncontrolled moronic smile, and the time gates open again: the bald patch is smaller, the hair is thicker and longer, we can change the world and hard rock is newly found gospel...
The Black Orchids suddenly stepped out of oblivion and ashes to claim their rightful place in the first ranks of rock music. There is no justice in this world, because so little is known about this outfit (at least to me). The information available comes from two sources mainly: (a)handwritten notes on paper sleeve of two (or three?) LPs sold on eBay (that's where the confusion starts, because the unfound details, repeated ad nauseam on the Net, come fromeBay descriptions); (b)omnipotent Vernon Joynson - must have Fuzz Acid and Flowers Revisited.
Music of Black Orchids was based on dead sure formula of heavy distorted fuzz and suicidal drumming, it is primeval and brutal American hard rock of crudest and loudest kind (but not without poetry and refined solos). In brief, its legacy lays not with meditative and dreamy Hendrix, but with rough and raw Gun, Mountain and Grand Funk.
The sound? The only existing album was recorded in 1972 in home studio, without any niceties - it was recorded live, most probably as demo. 200 copies or so were released as private pressing. Obviously, one of the existing vinyls was converted directly into the CD (not master tapes), thus the quality - it is not great, but I've heard worse. The band plays not one lengthy track - at least ten or twelve different compositions (a first year student of musical college can tell better). The performing is not on the same level - some pieces are sure and tight, while others sound like rehearsal. No vocals - strictly instrumentals.
This power trio came from Charleston, West Virginia, and was formed originally by John Wherle
(guitar) and Robin Throwbridge (drums) in 1970 as two-man outfit - a rare, but not unheard of,
combination. The same year they were joined by Joe Stevens (replaced later by Rob Hamer) on bass for the first Earth Day Festival . The band played original compositions (except Yellow Cab Man by Gun - Gun). They lasted until 1974, and nothing else is known - which I do not believe, and don't want to accept. Someone somewhere should remember something, because a hard rock outfit of talent and potential (huge!) couldn't just vanish without leaving any traces.
Finally, they do deserve (even posthumously) a legitimate CD with a proper leaflet.
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on 3 March 2015
All as promised !!!
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