The Beacon Street Union

State of the Union

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From the Italian-based Akarma Records label comes this definitive box set on psychedelic Beantown rockers the Beacon Street Union (BSU). The three discs cover the two LPs Eyes Of The Beacon Street Union (1968) and the Clown Died In Marvin Gardens (1968) which were issued as the BSU. However the real find for enthusiasts is the criminally well-hidden gem Come Under Nancy's Tent (1970). The platter featured four of the original five BSU personnel, however was further obscured when issued under the moniker Eagle and then typically under promoted. Each title is uniquely housed in respective gatefold replicas of the original vinyl jackets. Also included is a full sized eight-page booklet that features a brief history of the band from Richard Weissberg (drums), lyrics to the pair of BSU albums as well as a few vintage photos. All the contents are presented in a 12"x12" box. Unlike previous and spuriously authorised editions of these albums, the material on State Of The Union (2001) was taken from a low generation (perhaps master) tape source, rather than a vinyl transcription. This ultimately yields an infinitely clearer stereo soundscape and generally far less brittle audio. It also provided access to a few bonuses in the form of "Mayola" and "Working Man" -- two non-LP b-sides that had not been previously issued on CD. The BSU were one of the bands being exposed via the high pressure "Bosstown Sound" promotional campaign that MGM Records sponsored and hailed as the East Coast version of the San Francisco Bay Area music scene. This heavy-handed approach of launching a band was met with the double edged success that yielded two long players. However it likewise obscured the musicians legitimate talents in over production and campy pseudo-psychedelia. There are a few lost masterpieces such as the trippy "Mystic Mourning" and punkish "Sadie Said No" from Eyes Of The Beacon Street Union as well as the intricate "Now I Taste The Tears"off of the Clown Died In Marvin Gardens. The record label discarded the BSU after the promotion had run its course. They resurfaced in a slightly reconfigured manner two years later as Eagle with Come Under Nancy's Tent. This album is stripped down blues-based rock and roll. The intervening years had allowed the core quartet of John Lincoln Wright (vocals), Robert Rosenblatt (keyboards/brass), Richard Weissberg (drums/percussion) and Wayne Ulaky (bass) to mature and develop more organically. Standouts include "Brown Hair," "Kickin' It Back To You" and "Dance On Little Beauty." Interested and potential enthusiasts are encouraged to make necessary provisions to obtain this import box set.

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