The Golden Dawn - Power Plant CD
The Golden Dawn- Powerplant (1968)
Sunspots (Italy 2002)
This band shared the same geographic and sonic landscape as labelmates Red Krayola and the 13th Floor Elevators, without being as bizarre as the former nor having the sometimes annoying jug sound of the latter. Apparently Roky Erickson was in the Golden Dawn prior to this record's release. The singer (I'm guessing, George Kinney, as he's all over the songwriting credits) does a fair Roky impersonation, especially on songs like A Nice Surprise and I'll Be Around, where he goes for the high notes despite his vocal chords shredding. There's no new liner notes here so the "...five young men with a powerful message" aren't named. For all we know they could be dead or selling insurance in Fort Worth. There's a website which isn't much help. They quote Jimmy Page fave, Aliester Crowley in their liner notes but how far this took them in 1968 Texas is probably better left unsaid.
But the music is very, very good. Things kick off with Evolution, where chimes are battered endlessly and we're invited to "listen to the sounds of evolution". followed by This Way Please, the longest and most tedious song on the record but Seeing is Believing has a nice, sing along-group therapy-quality about it. By Everyday the hallucinogens have fully kicked in and they're finally able to work in some backwards guitar.
My Time is the record's standout track, with blistering guitar, an arrangement the Stones would envy and the singer sounding like he's taking the off-ramp at about a hundred. It's simply the gem we buy so many shitty compilations, hoping to unearth.
Towards the end they get a bit silly with Tell Me Why and Reaching Out To You, firmly in freshman poetry territory but they're both short and, given the right mood, amusing.
This record was originally released on CD on Eva in the early '90s but is apparently out of print. The Sunspots’ release is an import and a limited run of 1500 copies so it's a bit pricey but well worth it. Trade in Bull of the Woods if you need to.
Published in Ugly Things Magazine