Reissue of their 2nd album with the original cover art intact, plus updated liner notes & three bonus tracks added, 'All In Your Mind', 'Where Is My Mind' and a cover of the Bacharach/ David hit 'The Look Of Love'. 10 t... more »racks total. The group featured drummer Carmine Appice & bassist Tim Bogert. 1998 Sundazed release.« less
Reissue of their 2nd album with the original cover art intact, plus updated liner notes & three bonus tracks added, 'All In Your Mind', 'Where Is My Mind' and a cover of the Bacharach/ David hit 'The Look Of Love'. 10 tracks total. The group featured drummer Carmine Appice & bassist Tim Bogert. 1998 Sundazed release.
"This album was a fine example of progressive rock, and at the same time, had arguably the most heavy metal credibility out of all the band's releases. For Vanilla Fudge, the album was also the first to feature predominantly original compositions. Some of the highlights were the albums first two tracks, The Sky Cried, and Thoughts. The former featured some excellent guitar work, and is one of the most intense songs the band ever recorded. The latter started off in relaxing fashion before pounding into the bands trademark heaviness. It is the opinion of this writer that usually the best heavy metal has a density of instruments combining, as opposed to sheer volume. This statement would undoubtedly apply to the Fudge, as the organ and fuzz combine for the unparalleled density previously described. There really are not any "obviously inefficient" tracks, arguably making this the band's most consistent album. The album ends with what has to be the most intense version of Season of the Witch ever recorded, and a poem read in a most unusual voice. This version is reminiscent of Vanilla Fudge's earlier version of Eleanor Rigby, but has a paranoid energy that puts it in a class all by itself. The bonus tracks are generally good, with All In Your Mind and Where is My Mind both being effective soul/pop fusion, but the bonus cuts really do not go along with the original album's seven songs. Overall, the album is an emotional roller coaster ride with much mystery and despair. In the opinion of this writer, it is the best album by the band, and is strongly recommended."
Tony Allen | Lane Cove, N.S.W. Australia | 08/04/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"To my tastes, this is the greatest rock LP ever recorded!Renaissance has a dense, intense sound that permeates every track. It is an emotional whirlpool......the introspection of "Thoughts", the triumph of "Thats What Makes A Man", the bliss of "Paradise", the desperation of "The Sky Cried When I Was A Boy" to the utter horror of "The Spell That Comes After". Played a high volume, the overwhelming climax on "The Spell That Comes After" will plaster you to the back wall whilst the poem in the middle of "Season of the Witch" will make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck.It has a consistency of style throughout from the opening crash to the spooky whistled signature of "the beat goes on" at the end, always intense and often at the point of mental and physical breakdown. Blistering guitar (Vince Martell must surely be the most under-rated guitarist of all time) drenched in Hammond organ pumped through a wall of Leslie speakers backed by one of the best rhythm sections ever, not to mention Mark Stein's powerful emotional vocal.No other record sounds like this record, it is truely unique.I am surprised that David Loftus's review said that Tim Bogert suggested that the LP was a contractual toss-off. He was almost certainly refering to "Rock & Roll" (which was recorded whilst the band was breaking up), since I know that Vince Martell considers this LP his career highlight.The Sundazed edition has the best sound ever for this record since the original masters (complete with splices etc) were dug out of the Atlantic archives for this release. The bonus tracks are fine and useful but don't quite fit into the style of the original LP. Where Is My Mind/The Look of Love was a single from the "Beat Goes On" period and "All In You Mind" was an outtake not released until recently. These three tracks might have been on the second LP if Shadow Morton hadn't convinced them to record his "master-work" ("The Beat Goes On").If you like intense heavy music buy this!"
An underrated acid rock classic
David J. Loftus | Portland, OR USA | 03/21/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Vanilla Fudge is known -- if they're known at all -- for turgid, lumbering covers of songs other people made famous, from the Beatles' "Ticket to Ride" and "Eleanor Rigby" to "Windmills of Your Mind" and the Supremes' "You Keep Me Hangin' On," which has become a campy favorite of classic rock stations.This album is a sorely underrated gem of American psychedelic rock, however. My Dad, whose extensive collection of jazz and classical albums was rarely penetrated by any pop music that post-dated 1960, pricked up his ears when he heard the eerie, spacey cover of Donovan's "Season of the Witch" on FM in 1968 and immediately went out and bought the album. Most of the rest of this fascinating period piece are originals.Sharing top honors with the Donovan is "The Sky Cried, When I Was a Boy," which opens with a cymbal crash, a foreboding bass line on the synthesizer with higher ruminations behind, then a building crescendo into fierce electric lead guitar. The perhaps laughably dramatic vocals kick in, but when everything drops away to the quiet chorus with thunder rising behind it, your skin can't help but prickle.Except for the fairly quotidian "That's What Makes a Man," most of the other compositions have rich and interesting emotional content. "Season" closed the original LP; the final three cuts on this CD are add-ons, and I am unfamiliar with them. In the wrong mood (after toking or dropping acid, maybe), this album might sound pretty silly, but it has an emotional intensity and truth that I never got from the Fudge's other efforts.Brett Milano, a Boston rock critic acquaintance, interviewed one of the boys (Tim Bogert, I think) many years later, and I was thunderstruck that he wrote off this album as a mere contractual obligation toss-off.A jewel unappreciated even by its makers."
Great psychedelic rock
Marcel Wild | Matieland 7602 South Africa | 06/07/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I wouldn't agree with Tony Allen that this is the greatest rock LP ever made (that honour goes to "Every good boy deserves favour" of the Moody Blues), but it likely ranks among my all time top 15 CD's, and it features some of the best psychedelic music I'm aware of! I agree with other reviewers that there is no weak song on this album, my favorites being Thoughts, That's what makes a man, Season of the witch. If you like this type of psychedelic music, check out Jefferson's Airplane's "After bathing at Baxter's", or the 17 minute epic "In held twas in I" from Procol Harum."
The 'Fudge do 'Fudge
R. L. MILLER | FT LAUDERDALE FL USA | 06/28/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After starting out as Rascals clones (with the real Rascals in the way), then moving to melodramatic pre-hard rock remakes of Motown and Beatles, a concept album/ history lesson based on Sonny Bono's "The Beat Goes On", this band finally hit full stride with their very first album that was mostly originals. Here, they were Deep Purple before Deep Purple were Deep Purple. Everything here but one extended throwback to the first album in the form of Donovan's "Season Of the Witch", as well as one bonus track, Bacharach's "The Look Of Love", is written in-house. I really think that if this band had been able to stay on the course set here, they would have survived the fall of acid rock. Instead, their memory lives on to inspire gothic metal bands who might not even be aware of their debt to the 'Fudge."