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ROKY ERICKSON 'I Have Always Been Here Before - The Anthology' Shout D2K32556

This singer and guitarist was really at the forefront of the 60s psychedelic scene, fronting the 13th Floor Elevators. With haunting vocals and firey guitar, there was a touch of west coast.

With many other collaborations and solo work over the years, thereís plenty of scope for an anthology featuring gems, rarities and history, and here we have it.

Kicking off with a track by The Spades and 10 by the aforementioned Elevators, itís good psychedelic rock at the rockíníroll end; not the trip stuff.

With typically 60s hollow and tinny production, the songs come over well and the guitar work more so. There are some gentle songs too, and some are more acoustic too.

On to collaborations with Clementine Hall and Bleib Alien; the former a folk number and the latter a harder edge, in fact a touch of Hawkwind on one of them.

The solo 'Bermuda' features a nod towards John Du Cann, as the 70s were in flow.

By now Roky had done time and had had treatment for mental deterioration from drug use (something that would reoccur on and off over the years).

Teaming up with the Aliens we get to 1980 and Disc 2. More straight rock with a slight pub rock edge. More collaborations and solo work take us to the mid 90s. Most is very pleasant if not too striking. Pretty enjoyable, as it all nods back to the 60s, whether psychedelic or twangy.

Itís a well packaged set in a digipak with a full (if a little rambling) essay, and details / dates of every track.

***½

Review by Joe Geesin

Album reviews

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly


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JOE GEESIN

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