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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Mephistopheles - In Frustration I Hear Singing (1969 us, remarkable classic acid tinged psych rock, 2009 issue)

Taking its name from 16th century Faustian legend—Mephistopheles was the devil to whom Faust sold his soul—this six-piece outfit emerged from the psychedelic underground and recorded one album, the strangely titled In Frustration I Hear Singing. This 12-song lp, lost and found from the vaults of Reprise Records, is prototypical late ‘60s psychedelia, a musical exercise in odd song titles (“The Cricket Song,” “The Girl Who Self-Destroyed”), bizarre lyrical content (“Listen to the crickets/listen everyday/listen to the crickets/tell me what they say”) and awkward rock instrumentation (“Do Not Expect a Garden” features a trumpet; “Vagabond Queen” is saddled with a flute). 

Mephistopheles features an expert ensemble of skilled musicians with a strong sense of melody. The guitar work, especially on songs like “Dead Ringer” and the title track, is particularly impressive. Guitarist Fred Tackett has been a member of Little Feat since 1988. 

1. Take A Jet (Mephistopheles) - 2:37
2. Collections (Steven Simone) - 2:18
3. Dead Ringer (Steven Simone) - 3:17
4. Vagabond Queen (Fred Tackett) - 2:48
5. Do Not Expect A Garden (Steven Simone) - 3:46
6. In Frustration I Hear Singing (Fred Tackett) - 2:39
7. Make Up Your Mind (Fred Tackett) - 3:08
8. Searching In The Night (Fred Tackett, Gordon Grant) - 2:08
9. The Cricket Song (Daryl Burch, Fred Tackett) - 3:01
10.Sleeping Deeply (Steven Simone) - 3:20
11.The Girl Who Self Destroyed (Bob Siller) - 3:27
12.Elizabeth (Bob Siller, Gordon Grant) - 4:00

*Daryl Burch - Drums
*Gordon Grant - Organ, Piano
*Skip Mosher - Bass, Flute
*Bob Siller - Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
*Steven Simone - Guitar, Vocals
*Fred Tackett - Guitar, Piano, Trumpet, Vocals

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