Earth Opera were a Boston based outfit fusing psychedelic rock, folk, bluegrass and prog, but they weren’t your average rock band, though their sound was similar to The Doors.
Written by: gdmonline
ARTIST: Earth Opera
ALBUM: Earth Opera
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
LINEUP: Peter Rowan – vocals, guitar, saxophone * David Grisman – mandolin, mandocello, keyboards, saxophone, vocals * Bill Stevenson – piano, harpsichord, organ, vibraphone * Paul Dillon – guitar, drums, vocals * Billy Mundi – percussion, drums * John Nagy – bass
TRACK LISTING: 01 The Red Sox Are Winning * 02 As It Is Before * 03 Dreamless * 04 To Care At All * 05 Home Of The Brave * 06 The Child Bride * 07 Close Your Eyes And Shut The Door * 08 Time And Again * 09 When You Were Full Of Wonder * 10 Death By Fire
WEBLINKS: Wikipedia Page
Not the usual fare we feature on Glory Daze, but I thought it was about time to flesh out some really old releases from before the 70’s. Here’s one that is as quirky, as it is psychedelic, folky and prog, all rolled into one. They were the Boston based combo Earth Opera, who definitely came from left field.
The band released two albums in their brief tenure, and before you knew it, Earth Opera had concluded their run before the 1960’s had even clocked off! Maybe they found that they couldn’t topple Apollo Eleven and the July 1969 moon mission in the popularity stakes.
Earth Opera’s formation came from the likely pairing of Peter Rowan and David Grisman, who gave birth to EO back in 1967. Both men were active folk musicians, and the combination of similar ideals led to the band’s debut on Elektra Records a year later.
The album is the complete folk rock meets bluegrass meets psychedelia, though I think it leans more to the folk side of the road. Their homage to their hometown is reflected in the lyrics to opener ‘The Red Sox Are Winning’, and then there’s the harpischord madness to ‘Dreamless’. Very strange, lol!
‘Home Of The Brave’ is very wacky and whimsical, ‘The Child Bride’ brings the vibraphone to the fore. Time And Again’ is probably the album’s heaviest moment, while closer ‘Death By Fire’ is a sure copy-cat to labelmates The Doors, of whom EO used to support quite a bit during this timeframe.
The album doesn’t reach any great crescendo in terms of upbeat action and tempo, preferring instead to command the middle ground. Both their albums received CD reissues from Wounded Bird during 2001 and 2002. If you’re feeling slightly adventurous, Earth Opera might be a band to check out.