This is another record which I consider that deserves its own Microscope: Forever Changes by Love, released at the end of 1967. A lost gem of the 1960’s, though it has got considerable appreciation over the years. The album is slightly psychedelic, it has an acoustic spirit but the electric guitars are still very present, and the lyrics are usually non-sense but still interesting. Arthur Lee was certainly a genius. It's said to be the American Sgt. Pepper's, and I tend to agree with that.
Alone Again Or. The virtual hit of the album if it would have had one. Everything is great here: from the gentle acoustic guitar parts to the crescendo singing to the wonderful orchestrated middle. Well done, Bryan MacLean.
A House Is Not A Motel. Probably my favourite song on the album. Love the line "the news today will be the movies of tomorrow". Bass and drums sound great. I especially love the instrumental end of the track, with an amazing dialogue between two electric guitars.
Andmoreagain. The great ballad of the album. The general feeling reminds me a bit to the Beatles' "Girl", with that Greek acoustic guitar playing. A highlight.
The Daily Planet. Yet another marvelous song with a marvelous intro. Apparently this track was mostly recorded by session musicians. Nevertheless, they did a great job. Guitars, bass and especially the drums sound wonderful. Can't help but playing air drums at the end of the song.
Old Man. The second and last MacLean's track. It's a nice ballad and I have nothing really bad to say about it, though somehow it loses some of the magic of the album.
The Red Telephone. Perhaps the most psychedelic track on the record. It's an interesting song though a bit silly and even more non-sense than the rest of the album. The line "count me out (in)" at 2:48 (at least that's what I hear) makes me wonder if John Lennon listened to it and got the idea to use that on "Revolution".
Maybe The People Would Be The Times Or Between Clark And Hilldale. A long non-sense title for a song that doesn't seem to have anything to do with it. The interesting thing about this song is that it's made of unfinished lines that are continued on the next section of the track. All those trumpets give the song a Latin feeling. At 1:43 it seems that Arthur sings sounding like a trumpet at the same time with a real trumpet, nice effect. Very good song.
Live And Let Live. Another favourite of mine. Love the long lead guitar playing, it deserves every second dedicated to it. I guess it was John Echols, good for him.
The Good Humor Man He Sees Everything Like This. Another long non-sense song title. The tune is quite beautiful and the orchestration suits very well. The end is quite weird, as if fragments of the orchestration were cut and then played without those parts.
Bummer In The Summer. Some have said that this may be the first rap song ever, but it actually sounds a lot like Jefferson Airplane's "Plastic Fantastic Lover", released earlier the same year. The song is good enough, though it's not one of the best of the album in my opinion.
You Set The Scene. The epic end of the album, built of several different sections, and it would be fair saying that it's the best song of the record. If Forever Changes is the American Sgt. Pepper's, this song is the American "A Day In The Life". I especially like the line "you think you're happy and you're happy, that's what you're happy for", quite silly but still true. The end of the song with those triumphant trumpets is magnificent. A masterpiece.
Nothing more to say about this masterpiece, just to recommend it to those who haven't listened to it yet.