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Various Artists : Blue Explosion - Tribute to Blue Cheer

I suppose that this compilation has been out long enough that we can call it a "classic". It certainly merits that title based on the quality of the tuneage, if nothing else. And based on the relative dearth of reviews, I'd say that way too many people, especially in North America, passed on this one when it was first released, perhaps because it was on an Italian label and the distro was not the best over here. Who knows?

One thing I know is that its never too late to correct such a sad oversight, because as comps go, this is one of the very best. West coast Hells Angels-style proto-metal rockers Blue Cheer, dubbed "the loudest band in the universe" back in the late 60s, fit the very definition of "stoner forefathers". Many of the best bands stoner/doom bands in circulation back around 2000 were happy to pay homage to these pioneers. The disc is bookended by doom overlords Pentagram, the only band to appear twice. "Long live the legend who are!" sez Bobby Lieblieng, whose right upfront about his feeling about the 'Cheer. Pentagram's covers are two of the very best, most faithful versions on the CD. Maryland doomsters Internal Void provide a respectful cover of the classic 'Parchment Farm'. In fact, the entire comp is filled with superb covers, most of them faithful, but a few "updated" by such means as more modern vocals or tempo changes. I would put the tunes by Natas, Wicked Minds, and Drag Pack into the latter category. It really doesn't matter, as all the bands seem to have a serious case of "'Cheer Love", and it's mighty infectious.

At 78 minutes, this comp is a stone bargain, especially when you consider the fact that there is not a bad song on the whole thing. If you are unaware of what a serious influence Blue Cheer is on the present stoner/doom community, then it`s time for you to find out. Just listen again to Bobby: "Joe's and my reason for continuing on heavy forever!" Yeah, Blue Cheer muthafukka!

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. 'Doctor Please'
Internal Void:
2. 'Parchment Farm'
3. 'Magnolia Caboose Babyfinger'
4. 'Out of Focus'
5. 'Ride with Me'
Fireball Ministry:
6. 'Fortunes'
7. 'Pilot'
8. 'Fresh Fruit & Iceburgs'
Rise and Shine:
9. 'Sun Cycle'
Wicked Minds:
10. 'Just a Little Bit'
11. 'Sandwich'
Space Probe Taurus:
12. 'Second Time Around'
Drag Pack:
13. 'Come and Get It'
Vortice Cremisi:
14. 'I'm the Light'
15. 'Peace of Mind'
16. 'Feathers from your Tree'

Duration : Approx. 78 minutes

Visit the Various Artists bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Kevin McHugh
Hate Your Guts Records
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