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Author Topic: Other 60's bands' takes on Sgt. Pepper's  (Read 1301 times)

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Other 60's bands' takes on Sgt. Pepper's
« on: June 19, 2013, 05:26:30 PM »

We all know about the huge influence of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band on rock music, even changing what other 60's bands were doing at that very moment. Personally, I love this classic Beatles album, but I think that the way it changed rock music forever was not all positive. Nevertheless, it's interesting to see its instant influence on other major 60's bands, from the epic spirit to the deep psychedelia to the songs without spaces between them. Here are some albums by favorite 60's bands released few months after the releasing of (and obviously inspired by) Sgt. Pepper's.

The Who Sell Out (The Who). This is a great record, but I don't think it reaches the level of the very best albums of the Who. However, this third album was a big advance from their previous two. Like Sgt. Pepper's, here the concept is not strong, but everything was unified by the inclusion of silly radio spots between the songs. The big track is the well known masterpiece "I Can See For Miles", and diversity is a key word of the album, including acid rockers, gentle ballads and nice pop songs.

After Bathing At Baxter's (Jefferson Airplane). Easily the weirdest album of an usually weird band. Perhaps the definitive Acid Rock album. The record is divided in suites conformed by two or three songs. Heavily distorted guitars, thunderous bass, unusual vocal interplay, a mix of virtuosity and imagination. There's even some brief sound collage that predated "Revolution 9". Love or hate it, the record is far from a common place.

The Notorious Byrd Brothers (The Byrds). This is the most psychedelic album by these pioneers of psychedelia. However, I don't find this record to be as strong as the first four albums of the band. The sound is interesting, and Sgt. Pepper's influence can be heard, for example, in the use of weird orchestration in songs like "Artificial Energy" and "Draft Morning". But I think that the main efforts were put on production values in detriment of songwriting, which is a negative influence that I've always found from the Beatles album.

Their Satanic Majesties Request (The Rolling Stones). Probably the most obvious psychedelic answer to Sgt. Pepper's; there's even a reprise of the silly "Sing This All Together". The result was a mess, even though some good songs can be found here. The album is loved or hated by different Stones fans. Personally I like it though I'd put it far behind the best albums of that time.

All these records have their merits (I like better the first two), but none of them reached the level of Sgt. Pepper's in my opinion. I consider that the strongest albums recorded soon after the releasing of Sgt. Pepper's were Forever Changes by Love and Odessey And Oracle by the Zombies, but the influence of the Beatles album on them is just superficial, they weren't as derivative as the previously analysed albums. Actually these Love and Zombies albums seem to be more directly influenced by the same main source of inspiration of Sgt. Pepper's: Pet Sounds by the Beach Boys. This last album seems to have worked better as a generator of new masterpieces.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 10:39:03 PM by Hombre_de_ningun_lugar »
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Re: Other 60's bands' takes on Sgt. Pepper's
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2013, 02:03:03 PM »

I think both 'Who Sell Out' and 'Their Satanic' are parodies more than anything, concept-wise.
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