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Get Ready To Fly: Pop-Psych From The Norman Petty Vaults, CD (£11.50)
You’d better fasten your seat belts because once this flight takes off, you’ll never come down!
So you’re wondering why Norman Petty, producer extraordinaire and champion of rockabilly music in the 1950s has his name on a “psychedelic” compilation? The simple answer is that although Petty's main interest and focus was on music that may have been a little tamer, he still had a hand in just about every genre possible. If you were lucky enough to take the trek to Petty’s Clovis, New Mexico studio, Norman would make you sound… GREAT! He took his incredible production, arranging and editing skills and transferred them with amazing precision into the psychedelic realm.
With bands like the Frantics, Hooterville Trolley, Group Axis, Butter Rebellion, Intricate Blend, Apple-Glass Cyndrom and The Cords, how can you go wrong? Get Ready To Fly isn’t just a cameo collection of psychedelic tunes with Petty’s production as the common thread. And although the term “pop-psych” spans a pretty wide realm, this particular collection features a mind-boggling selection of 26 phenomenally-crafted songs with a bit of a hard-edged fuzz appeal. Get Ready To Fly truly doesn’t have a bad cut on it, and the overall quality of the selections is well… unbelievable!
Alec Palao has done it again, culling master tapes from another darkened vault and turning them into a highly polished audio eargasm, equipped with the requisite fuzz guitars, sitars, backwards tracking and haunting vocals required for a 73 minute flight like this. With full access to Petty's archives, the candidate list for this volume was immense, the net result being that about two thirds of the entire collection has never appeared on any compilation before. And about half of those were NEVER even released, just collecting dust in the Petty vaults for almost 40 years.
Get Ready To Fly has something for every lover of late 1960s psychedelic music, whether you're a grizzled collector or a novice, so don’t hesitate for a second to pick this one up. It’s been a long time since a collection this solid has been released.
By Ben Chaput
Ben is founder of the U–SPACES psychedelic discussion group: