Release Info: The Golden Dawn - Power Plant (Great Psychedelia US 1968)
Size: 63.7 MB
Ripped By: ChrisGoesRock
Source: Japan 24-Bit Remaster
Nowhere near as well known as Roky Erickson and The 13th Floor Elevators, to our ears fellow Texans The Golden Dawn are actually the more impressive band. 'Course those sentiments are bound to upset Erickson fans and will do little to rectify the fact that outside of hardcore collectors' circles these guys remain criminally overlooked.
Living in Austin, Texas, singer George Kinney grew up with Roky Erickson, attending the same schools. While in high school the two played together in a local garage band The Fugitives. With The Fugitives collapsing, Kinney moved on to join The Chelsea (along with future 13th Floor Elevator guitarist Powell St. John). When that group called it quits, he was invited to join fellow high school friends guitarist Jimmy Bird, bassist Bill Hallmark, guitarist Tom Ramsey and drummer Bobby Rector in The Golden Dawn.
Kinney's friendship with Erickson also proved handy in terms of career development. Erickson was largely responsible for getting Leland Rogers' International Artists label to sign the band in 1967 (coincidently Erickson and the Elevators were already signed to International Artists).
Produced by Rogers (yes, Kenny's brother), 1967's "Power Plant" actually bares a strong resemblance to The Elevators' catalog. The two bands certainly share the same mid-60s; low-tech Texas-psych roots, though to their credit these guys don't sound as strung out as The Elevators and (at least to our ears), Kinney's a better singer (though his fragile and occasionally shrill voice stands as an acquired taste). With Kinney and drummer Rector responsible for the majority of the 10 songs, musically the set's quite diverse. Tracks such as the opener "Evolution" and "The Way Please" boast a pleasing mix of pretty melodies and surprisingly complex and intriguing lyrics. Even better are the harder rocking numbers. Propelled by Bird and Ramsey's fuzz guitars, "Starvation", "I'll Be Around" and "My Time" are simply killer. Going out on a limb, we'll say this is a must-own psych classic and should be on most folk's top-40 psych lists. (Ignoring the illicit cannabis/mushroom subject matter, the LP's granted an extra star for the cool day-glo cover art.) (Bill Hallmark)
01.) Evolution (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 3:28
02.) The Way Please (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 5:08
03.) Starvation (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 2:52
04.) I'll Be Around (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 3:00
05.) Seeing Is Believing (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 2:21
06.) My Time (Jimmy Bird - Bill Hallmark - George Kinney) - 3:50
07.) A Nice Surprise (Bill Hallmark - George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 2:51
08.) Every Day (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 3:59
09.) Tell Me Why (George Kinney - Bobby Rector) - 2:07
10.) Reaching Out To You (Bill Hallmark - George Kinney) - 2:37