The Damnation of Adam Blessing

The Damnation of Adam Blessing

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The Damnation of Adam Blessing's debut LP was a fairly worthwhile, though inconsistent, record bridging the late psychedelic and early hard rock eras, with occasional strong traces of blues-rock, psychedelia, folk-rock, and pop. The group's strongest ace in standing out from what was, by 1969, a huge deck of new hard rock bands, was singer Adam Blessing, whose full-throated, husky vocals were -- unlike those in so many other similar outfits of the time -- powerful without being bombastic. The original material was often built around jagged riffs that were more blues-rock-influenced than bluesy. "Le Voyage" is a fairly good Midwestern spin on the kind of proto-psychedelic Yardbirds' songs that had haunting choruses and background vocals, and sort of like some of the best efforts in that regard by the likes of, say, the Amboy Dukes: "Hold On" is similar, though not as good. On "Dreams," though, they could almost be an entirely different band, sounding more like the Strawberry Alarm Clock than anyone besides the Strawberry Alarm Clock themselves. As another change of pace, the harpsichord-speckled "Strings and Things" is almost a hard rock-Baroque rock fusion. The covers were indicative of the group's lack of consistent direction, though, with a pretty well-done cover of "Morning Dew," joined by a routine run-through of the blues standard "You Don't Love Me," and an odd, heavy, funk-rock version of the Monkees' "Last Train to Clarksville."

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