Dick’s Picks: This week our high priest of vinyl ‘Mr A’ has chosen to shine his multi-coloured spotlight on a little known psychedelic curio by Timothy Clover.
Timothy What? Who? Check the LP sleeve, nope still not clear…
….so is it Timothy Clover? The Cambridge Concept? Or even The Bean Town Sound? A little bit of research confirms the artist name as Timothy Clover, whilst Discogs lists only this LP and one solitary 7″, which featured two tracks both culled from the album above. So, we’ve established that it’s a confusingly titled record and that the artist in question left behind only this slim volume of work, what else is there?
Firstly, it helps to view the album in context. Released in 1968, this was one of many records that attempted to grab a little bit of that magic, psychedelic fairy dust that the Beatles sprinkled so liberally over the previous years Sergeant Pepper’s. So, as with Sgt. Pepper, you have a record that is masquerading as something else complete with collage type sleeve, Mr Clover, however, was not the only one….
What about the record? Whilst it definitely doesn’t fit into the lost classic/buried treasure type bracket it does have a certain period charm, with most tracks featuring a baroque Association type vibe, for the sake of argument, let’s call it ‘sunshine-soft-pop-psych’ and be done with it.
Delving a little deeper it would appear that the record was indeed an attempt to cash-in on the love generation, just check the far-out sleeve notes; ‘Come now – with Timothy Clover – one of them… into this world of strangeness and beauty – with words you have never heard – in a place that is now beyond your understanding.. but, perhaps. . . if you listen with an open mind. . . and without prejudice . . . the ethereal meaning of it all will become majestically and realistically clear to you’ . . .Like far out man, sadly the album doesn’t quite live up to these majestic claims; think banana skin hit rather than industrial strength LSD.
In fact, the album was created by Larry Jaspon, Bruce Patch and Lenny Petze who had previous form writing for super-cult Boston garage rockers Teddy & the Pandas……
The rather wonderful Scratchy Buckles blog also notes the involvement of a certain Alan Lorber from MGM, who’d hatched a plan to create a ‘scene’ around the Boston area called ‘The Bosstown Sound’ (hence the Beantown on the front of the LP). Lorber hoped that a quartet of bands (Ultimate Spinach, Beacon Street Union, Orpheus and Timothy Clover) would rival the super-hot psychedelic scene on the West Coast, whilst that was not to be we can thank him for leaving behind this wonderful little psychedelic curio, here’s a taster, for more info be sure to check eil.com