The End

Introspection

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Although Introspection bombed due to a belated release, collectors have since heralded it as one of the finest albums from the brief British psychedelic wave. Produced by Rolling Stone Bill Wyman in early 1968, the spirit of the era (or maybe that of the previous summer) is sonically created, with sumptuous results. Giffin and Graham's gentle harmony vocals tread a similar path to Odessey and Oracle-era Zombies, while sessionman Nicky Hopkins' harpsichord, a pumping Hammond, Terry Taylor's searing Cream-like fuzztone guitar leads, psychedelic duel-ragas, and floating Mellotron recreate the colors of a rainbow. The overall effect is psych-pop rather than acid-inspired mayhem, although the drifting ambience of the production, lyricism, and instrumentation could not be anything else than a product of psychedelia. A majority of the numbers were clearly influenced by the Satanic Majesties' Request sessions that Wyman had been undertaking -- and indeed Wyman co-wrote two songs -- although the the End's more commercial pop edge forges a sound distant from the Rolling Stones. With an abundance of moods, tones, and a gloriously over the top production, Introspection is a superb period piece, and rightfully deserves it's near-classic status.

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