Week of August 17, 2003


Joe Dechristopher - Guitar
Bo Fox - Drums
Ken Price - Keyboards
Mike Robison - Bass, Guitar, Vocals
David Rose - Keyboards, Violin, Guitar, Vocals
Gary Rosenberg - Lyrics, Percussion
Peter Eggers - Drums, Piano

Fred (World In Sound RFR-007) 2001
(also issued on CD (World In Sound WIS-1003) 2001)

A Love Song/Salvation Lady (Arpeggio 1057) 1971

The Fred album encapsulates the band's 1971-1973 period. Gathering together the 45 and seven unreleased tracks, Joe DeChristopher recounts the history of the band within the lavish heavy-duty gatefold. A brief precis: 

DeChristopher had met Price in 1967 at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA and joined Price's band, Still At Large. Over the next three years, the band picked up other students and evolved into Fred. Classmate Gary Rosenberg was the band's No.1 fan, a college radio DJ and sometime poet - he occasionally performed with them on stage and became their lyricist. He was also their guide to other sounds around, introducing them to the likes of Procol Harum, Jethro Tull, Frank Zappa and The Mahavishnu Orchestra whose songs they would cover. 

In 1970, the band graduated (or left) B.U. and moved into a couple of farms near Lewisburg. They continued to perform at local clubs and schools. The first recordings, which make up the bulk of the LP, were done the following year and their debut 45 was released. In 1973, occasional member Peter Eggers joined the band permanently and marked the end of their formative chapter, with the departure of Gary Rosenberg. The liners announce that later recordings are forthcoming. 

There's some fine fuzz solos and acidic leads with occasional wah-wah but despite being tagged as psychedelia elsewhere, there's a strong aura of mellowed, slightly trippy, pastoral rock that's coming from folk roots and gently drifting off in a prog/hippie direction. The violin adds to the non-urban vibe but is more like Curved Air than Mahavishnu

'A Love Song' previously appeared on the 1982 compilation 'Pennsylvania Unknowns' (LP). 

There may be a further 45 on the Arpeggio label which includes a track called 'Killing Confusion', but its existence remains unconfirmed. 

(Max Waller)

Taken from: Fuzz, Acid & Flowers - American Garage, Psychedelic & Hippie Rock 1964-1975

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