Monday, April 19, 2010

Fallen Angels - It's a long way down / The Roulette Masters (1968)

The Fallen Angels hailed from Washington, D.C., an area that in the mid-'60s was a breeding ground for rock bands and where such artists as Jim Morrison (the Doors), Roy Buchanan, Mama Cass Elliot, EmmyLou Harris, and many more got their start. The Fallen Angels were formed in 1966 and recorded two LPs for the Roulette label. Both of the albums have been re-released on separate CDs as The Roulette Masters, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. The music of the Fallen Angels was aimed for a pop audience as the label was trying to repeat the success of its major act, Tommy James & the Shondells. It proved that the Fallen Angels were much to "far out" for the commercial radio audience, and despite good sales of the first album, the band was dropped by their label after recording a second album entitled It's a Long Way Down. Both albums remain prime examples of psychedelic pop music which many band's in the late 90s are trying to copy.

Released 1968 on Roulette

Reviewed by Dave Furgess
Over the years there have been a few different groups who have recorded under the name The Fallen Angels, ex-Byrd/Burrito Gram Parsons dubbed his solo backing group The Fallen Angels, then there was a unit fronted by ex-Pretty Things lead singer Phil May, finally there was an 80's group which had ex-members of Hanoi Rocks & The Vibrators. The group I will be talking about here were probably the first to use the name Fallen Angels and they were arguably the best.

These Fallen Angels were a great psychedelic group who were based in the Baltimore, Maryland-Washington D.C. area and recorded two full length albums for Roulette Records. I'm not certain if this group is in any way related to the superb garage punk outfit responsible for the legendary "Bad Woman" 45 for the Eceip label in 1966 (I don't think the groups were related because both the vocalists and the group's musical styles vary dramatically.) Does anyone know for certain?
1. Poor Old Man (3:41)

2. A Horn Playing On My Thin Wall (4:25)

3. Something New You Can Hide In (3:59)

4. Tell You A Story (:22)

5. Silent Garden (1:54)

6. Look To The Sun (3:46)

7. One Of The Few Ones Left (2:50)

8. I Really Love My Mother (1:07)

9. Look At The Wind (4:04)

10. Didn't I? (2:55)

11. It's A Long Way Down (2:45)

12. I'll Drive You From My Mind (4:19
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