Friday, 26 March 2010

Song Of The Day No.14


by Moby Grape (Moby Grape, 1967)

This is one of two songs on the debut album from the San Francisco outfit written by the now infamous Alexander Lee 'Skip' Spence. Formerly with Jefferson Airplane, playing drums on their first album, he got sacked from the band along with their manager. The two of them then went on to form Moby Grape, with Skip Spence trading the drums for a guitar and the manager, well being their manager. The five members of Moby Grape all shared songwriting duties and the three guitarists even shared the lead role at times.

The three guitars are notable on this track as seemingly disorganised ruptures of guitar shrieks constantly jockey for position. The lead guitar always takes centre stage however, with a crazily electrified energy that combines wild blues rock with often wilder psychedelia. Backing vocals are a constant also giving a typical sixties sound using a shout and reply method to get their message across. The rapid rate of rat-a-tat-tats from the drums maintains the sense of purposeful confusion throughout until the abrupt end. Voted number 95 in Rolling Stone's “100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time” and deservedly so.


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