Captain Beyond was the merger of two iconic bands from the late 60’s. The debut is one of the great hard rock-progressive rock albums of 1972.
Written by: gdmonline
ARTIST: Captain Beyond
ALBUM: Captain Beyond
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
LINEUP: Rod Evans – lead vocals * Larry ‘Rhino’ Reinhardt – guitars * Lee Dorman – bass, piano, backing vocals * Bobby Caldwell – drums, percussion, backing vocals
TRACK LISTING: A1 Dancing Madly Backwards (On A Sea Of Air) * A2 Armworth * A3 Myopic Void * A4 Mesmerization Eclipse * A5 Raging River Of Fear * B1 Thousand Days Of Yesterdays (Intro) * B2 Frozen Over * B3 Thousand Days Of Yesterdays (Time Since Come And Gone) * B4 I Can’t Feel Nothin’ (Part I) * B5 As The Moon Speaks (To The Waves Of The Sea) * B6 Astral Lady * B7 As The Moon Speaks (Return) * B8 I Can’t Feel Nothin’ (Part II)
WEBLINK: Site Link
Captain Beyond was the merger of personnel from two iconic bands from the late 60’s. Deep Purple and Iron Butterfly. They produced one of the great hard rock-progressive rock albums of the early 70’s. Though low flying among the critics, it wasn’t so among die-hard trainspotters of the 70’s era. The above members formed the band in 1971, along with keyboardist Lewis Gold, who left the band prior to the recording of this album.
It’s been described as a progressive rock masterpiece, a psychedelic icon, a space rock tour de force. It’s all of these really. It also has an edgy southern rock tinge, no doubt with some creative input from the suits at Capricorn I’m guessing. As you can see from the track listing, there are numerous tracks, but they all fit on both LP and CD versions. The opener ‘Dancing Madly Backward’ is a fine introduction to CB, I love the way it morphs into a full-blown southern rocker courtesy of Rhino’s guitar work and Rod Evans’ vocal.
This southern rock fusion segues nicely into ‘Armworth’, while ‘Myopic Void’ displays the progressive strains they were renowned for. ‘Mesmerization Eclipse’ is pure relentless aggression, and by now I’m quite taken with the way Englishman Evans is emulating some of the finest rock singers of the deep south. ‘Raging River Of Fear’ boils over into a collision of hard and progressive rock. Pretty damn hot if you ask me! Moving on to side two, there are some tracks grouped together as medleys. ‘Thousand Days Of Yesterday’ and ‘I Can’t Feel Nothin’ are the two of mention.
‘Frozen Over’ sounds like Glory Daze faves Ozz, no kidding, while ‘Thousand Days Of Yesterdays (Time Since Come And Gone)’ takes on a late 60’s identity. The rest of the second side is taken up by a shorter series of songs such as ‘As The Moon Speaks (To The Waves Of The Sea)’, ‘Astral Lady’, ‘As The Moon Speaks (Return)’ and the bombastic closer ‘I Can’t Feel Nothin’ (Part II)’.
For the Glory Daze audience, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better American hard rock album from 1972. I was surprised to hear elements of 70’s southern rock filtering through as much as it did. Fantastic! The band moved on to 1973 and their second LP ‘Sufficiently Breathless’, which unfortunately wasn’t a patch on this one, moving in a Latin and jazz direction instead. Captain Beyond had subsequent issues with personnel changes and weren’t able to hold the ship together when it mattered. Never the mind, if you are a 70’s fan, you’ll need no introduction to this bonafide classic.
Captain Beyond – Dancing Madly Backwards (Live Montreux 1972)