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20 Jan 2017

Bob Jacobs "Ray Bradbury’s Dark Carnival" 1968 US Psych Folk Rock

Bob Jacobs  "Ray Bradbury’s Dark Carnival" 1968 US Psych Folk Rock
Here's how Bradbury's own liner notes describe the album: "This record is the result of a thank-you note which Bob Jacobs sent me from Europe in the form of the turn October Country. I liked it so well that Bob wrote an entire album around various stories in my book, in less than a month. Now, some while late, I am happy to find that Tower Records is releasing this album under the title of Dark Carnival. And I am happy for two reasons. First, it means that Bob Jacobs, a fine writer and performer, is on his way. Second, I am pleased that this young man has reached out to capture my stories in song. I have no convenient tag or label to pin on the kind of music you will find in this collection. Just as each of my stories in October Country lived their own particularly lives and truths in their own particularly way, the songs based on these stories ranger from folk ballad to hard rock and the emotions moved from light to dark, from humor to terror. Bob Jacobs is even harder to label. He writes poems, songs, stories, sings, acts, and directs, but above all, even amidst such songs of mystery and fright as these is, like myself, optimistic about Mankind's future. In any even, here he is, for you to judge on your own. I hope he scares you. I hope he delights you." 

So that told you absolutely nothing about what it actually sounds like ... Truth of the matter is that this is simply hard to described. Imagine The Alan Parsons Project ten years earlier crossed with a pop-psych outfit and you might begin to get a feel for the album's sound. Produced and arranged by Jacobs, musically this was heavily orchestrated 1960s pop with sound effects and occasional slugs of fuzz guitar and feedback. As lead singers Jacobs and Dennis Pfister were consistently entertaining, though they got a little too theatrical on songs like 'The Wind' and the goofy 1920's-styled 'There was An Old Woman'. While the music was certainly interesting, the set's real claim to fame rested with some of the strangest lyrics you'll ever hear on a rock album: 

'The Emissary' is described as "A bed-ridden boy named Martin who sens his dog out to bring bad his friend, Miss Haight ... who was killed in a car wreck!" 

'The Small Assassin' is about "A tender lullaby about a six week old baby who murders his mother and father." 

'Homecoming' "About a little boy named Timothy who is the only normal human being in a family full of vampires, mummies and other crawly things" 

Certainly not for everyone, but bizarre enough to warrant tracking it down.....Bad Cat Records..........

A1 Introduction 0:45
A2 October Country 2:52
A3 The Emissary 4:12
A4 The Wind 2:51
A5 The Small Assassin 2:46
A6 Homecoming 2:26
B1 The Illustrated Man 2:29
B2 The Dwarf 2:55
B3 The Jar 3:23
B4 There Was An Old Woman 2:30
B5 October Country 1:13 

johnkatsmc5, welcome music..