Gone Digital: The Fallen Angels, Kensington Market, Mandala, Boz Scaggs, and Quill
If it’s Tuesday, then it must be time for Gone Digital, our weekly look at five albums in Rhino’s digital catalog that you may not even realize were out there for your listening enjoyment. As ever, the types of music we’ll be covering will be all over the place, but that’s Rhino for you: we’re all about variety!
• The Fallen Angels, THE FALLEN ANGELS (1967): This band started out in Washington, DC in 1966, having evolved out of a folk-rock group called The Disciples. The band’s first two singles, “Everytime I Fall in Love” and “Have You Ever Lost a Love,” were released on Laurie Records, after which they signed with Roulette Records to release this debut album. Although it was not a huge commercial success, the LP is a psychedelic classic that shouldn’t be forgotten, so give it a spin, won’t you?
• Kensington Market, AVENUE ROAD (1968): This Toronto band came together thanks to Bernie Finkelstein, who hadn’t yet – but was just about to – found his famous label, True North Records. Produced by Felix Pappalardi of Mountain, the album climbed to #39 on the RPM Canadian Albums chart, but it failed to make an impact in the States, and after one more album – 1969’s AARDVARK – Kensington Market closed up shop and called it a day.
• Mandala, SOUL CRUSADE (1968): Although they originally called themselves The Rogues when they first formed in Toronto in 1965, their manager changed the band’s name and also convinced them to switch up their image. It was a solid idea, and the newly-christened Mandala soon began to build a following in the States, too, thanks to playing at the Whiskey-a-Go-Go and being part of one of Murray the K’s concert events in New York City. In fact, their deal at Atlantic Records came about as a result of Phil Spector tipping Ahmet Ertegun to them. Unfortunately, in the wake of releasing their debut album, SOUL CRUSADE, one band member left and another was involved in a debilitating car accident, and by the middle of 1969, they were no more. Still, the album’s pretty great and leaves you wondering what might’ve been.
• Boz Scaggs, BOZ SCAGGS (1969): Not the debut album by the man who would later bring us “Lido Shuffle” and “Lowdown,” but his second LP, one which was particularly notable for having been recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio and being produced by Jann Wenner. Yes, that Jann Wenner. At the time, it didn’t even chart, but these days it’s considered a blue-eyed soul masterpiece.
• Quill, QUILL (1970): If you’ve ever heard of these guys and don’t own a copy of their album, then it’s probably because you remember hearing somewhere that they played at the original Woodstock festival. It’s very quirky, all over the place musically, but it’s a cult classic that’s worth a listen...even if it turns out to be the only one you ever give it. (No, seriously, it really is pretty eccentric.)