Procol Harum

the Pale 

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Psych Out!

Procol on a cover disc (2006)

The April (!) issue of Mojo Magazine, out 1 March 2006, has a CD affixed to the cover with the above title. It has '15 Nuggets from the scene that spawned Pink Floyd'. The CD sleeve, front and rear, is a pastiche of Pink Floyd's 1967 début album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn with the same Gary Brooker mugshot three times. Apart from PH, other tracks feature Donovan, The Move and The Zombies. The contents are likely to appeal to PH fans of that age and era. Cover price of the magazine is £3.95. (thanks, John Greenway)

Click the pictures!

"It’s impossible to identify the exact moment when British pop transformed itself into something altogether freakier.  Certainly the release of The Beatles’ Revolver in August 1966 (and specifically the inclusion of tripped out Tomorrow Never Knows on the album) marked a musical shift away from post-war pop’s teen appeal into more experimental, more adult territory.  The arrival of LSD in the UK the year before added further to the sense that a new, enlightened world was being shaped through art, film and music, effectively ushering the dawn of what became the psychedelic era.  Unlike its American equivalent, however, British psych was more whimsical, romantic and entrenched in national identity.  While Americans sought to spread their lysergic doctrine globally, the likes of Small Faces, The Move and Tomorrow developed a sense of internalised  revolution, harking back to the values of Olde Albion rather than plotting a truly international course. This compilation is a reflection of several aspects of the British psychedelic scene that spawned Pink Floyd and that, after burning brightly for 18 months, transformed itself further, shedding its inhibitions, to become the globe-straddling behemoth that became progressive rock.  And that, of course, is another CD altogether…"

13 Procol Harum
Cerdes (Outside The Gates Of)
Available on:  A Whiter Shade Of Pale, reissued in 2006
The first verse alone features lyrical nods to “a two-pronged unicorn”, “a rhinestone flugelhorn”, “mermaids”, “Neptune” and “Salome”, but Keith Reid’s oblique lyricism aside, Cerdes is an example of psychedelia’s shift into richly progressive vistas.  The track’s soulful power further confirms Procol Harum as a band with more than one era-defining track to their name.

Thanks, Jill, for the typing

Procol history in print

Procol and the Progressive scene

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