I haven’t heard or even thought about this album in so long I can’t remember. For some reason, it popped into my head and I said to myself, Gotta dig that one up. It’s a great gob of late ’60’s bluesy-rock. And if it sometimes has that Stones feel, well it was produced by Jimmy Miller and engineered by Andy Johns. If those names don’t mean anything to you, go back to rock school.
Wikipedia: “Spooky Tooth is an English rock band originally formed in Carlisle in 1967. Principally active between 1967 and 1974, the band re-formed several times in later years. Prior to Spooky Tooth, four of the band’s five founding members had performed in the band Art (formerly known as The V.I.P.’s).
Following the dissolution of Art, the members of that band’s final line-up (guitarist Luther Grosvenor, vocalist Mike Harrison, drummer Mike Kellie and bassist Greg Ridley) joined forces with American (from New Jersey) keyboardist/vocalist Gary Wright in October 1967 and formed Spooky Tooth. Wright was introduced to the members of Art by Chris Blackwell, founder of Island Records.”
I never saw this band (that I can recall) but back in the day, there wasn’t much better of a band to smoke a J to. Mostly everything on the album was written or co-written by Gary Wright. And yes, the same Gary Wright who later did “Dream Weaver,” and “Love Is Alive.” Wright also played on George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass and was a frequent collaborator with Harrison.
Here’s the kickoff tune, “Waitin’ for the Wind.”
Of this album, AllMusic said, “Spooky Two is this British blues-rock band’s pièce de résistance. All eight of the tracks compound free-styled rock and loose-fitting guitar playing, resulting in some fantastic raw music.”
The song “Evil Woman” – why are there so many evil woman songs one wonders? – wouldn’t have been out of place on an early Zep album. Except this time you get two vocalists. You don’t hear shit like this anymore.
For a band that – relatively speaking – isn’t all that well known, these guys had a few famous (in addition to Wright) guys come and go. Henry McCullough who played guitar with Wings was with them at one point as was Mick Jones later of Foreigner.
The last song I’ll play has a fair amount of ’60’s heaviosity. It’s called “Better By You, Better Than Me.” Judas Priest later covered this tune and got embroiled in a lawsuit. A kid committed suicide and the family said that the band had inserted the subliminal words “Do It!” in the tune. Rightfully it was thrown out of court.
Lastly, here’s an oddity. I can find no evidence whatsoever that this band is still together. And yet their Wikipedia page says “Current Members” include Chris Stainton and Andy Summers! Not only does Summers’ website not mention this band but neither does his autbio which I own. Maybe somebody’s fucking with us.
Here’s the album on Spotify. The original album ended with “Hangman Hang My Shell On a Tree” so the rest of is, I guess, part of a re-release “Deluxe’ album.