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Lazy Smoke - Corridor Of Faces (1967)

Lazy Smoke - Corridor Of Faces (1967)

An obscure Massachusetts band of the late 1960s, Lazy Smoke offered a sort of Transatlantic psychedelic sound with roughly equal debts to American and British influences. Their biggest debt was to the Beatles, and although they were hardly exceptional in that regard, the resemblance commanded more attention due to the fairly close similarity of leader/chief songwriter John Pollano's vocals to those of John Lennon. Pollano's compositions bore a heavy Lennon stamp as well, often sounding like callower derivations of Lennon's more sedate White Album-era tunes. They pressed a few hundred copies of one album for the tiny Onyx label in 1969, Corridor of Faces, before splitting. The record has since attained a modest cult following, and was reissued on CD with a dozen bonus demos.

Like the Velvet Underground and Big Star, Lazy Smoke has become more famous in death than life. Basically a local phenomenon during its existence, the Massachusetts band's Corridor of Faces LP has become one of the most revered collectables among '60s enthusiasts. Included on this CD are 12 previously unheard demos produced a few months prior to the recording of the album. All music has been transferred from the original mastertapes.

In Vernon Joynson's book "Fuzz, Acid, & Flowers", he states that Massachusetts band, Lazy Smoke's ultra rare album "Corridor of Faces" is to some the ultimate psychedelic album ever recorded. With so many classic psych recordings out there begging for that very title this is quite the statement. However, psychedelic music is certainly not a dead genre, it is alive and well and the very fact that these ultra rare 60’s albums are being reissued proves my point.
No more than 500 copies of the Lazy Smoke album were originally released back in late '68. Original vinyl copies of "Corridor" can fetch somewhat near $1,500! Now, some 35+ years later, the Arf Arf label has presented us with this golden nugget plus numerous unreleased demos from 1967. "Corridor of Faces" is a superb period piece with fantastic, and at times beautiful guitar work, and flowing Beatles-esque harmonies (that even come with affected English accents). From the backward guitars of the luscious opening track “All These Years”, to the poignant lyrics and tight orchestration of “There Was A Time”, this is clearly a classic undiscovered work of beauty.
The demo half of this CD actually reminds me a bit of the Skip Spence album “Oar” or, better yet, of the more gentler songs by the contemporary lo-fi band, Sparklehorse.
Thank you Arf Arf for making this gem available again!

1. All These Years 3:31
2. How Was Your Day Last Night 1:52
3. Come With The Day 2:51
4. Salty People 4:42
5. Jackie-Marie 3:01
6. Under Skys 4:18
7. Sarah Saturday 2:49
8. There Was A Time 2:04
9. Am I Wrong 3:39
10. How Did You Die 3:21
11. I Don't Need The Sun 1:22
12. Changing The Time 1:36
13. I Could Fall Asleep 1:17
14. Wait Till You See 2:59
15. Scarecrow 2:10
16. All These Years 2:49
17. Come With The Day 2:17
18. Salty People 3:18
19. Jackie-Marie 2:58
20. There Was A Time 1:41
21. Sarah Saturday 2:17
22. Am I Wrong 3:24