Friday, September 17, 2010

Country Joe & the Fish - I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die (1967)

The Fish's second album is quite similar to their first in its organ-heavy psychedelia with Eastern-influenced melodic lines, but markedly inferior to the debut, and much more of a period piece. There's more spaciness and less comic energy here, and while the bandmembers were undoubtedly serious in their explorations, some of these songs are simply silly in their cosmic naпvetй. To be crueler, there is no other album that exemplifies so strongly the kind of San Francisco psychedelia that Frank Zappa skewered on his classic We're Only in It for the Money.

The weeping, minor-key melodies, liquid guitar lines, and earnestly self-absorbed quests to explore the inner psyche — it's almost as if they put themselves up as a dartboard for the Mothers to savage. For all that, the best songs are good; "Who Am I" and "Thursday" are touching psychedelic ballads. But more notably, the title cut — whose brash energy is atypical of the album — was a classic antiwar satire that became one of the decade's most famous protest songs, and the group's most famous track.

1. Country Joe & the Fish - The Fish Cheer & I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die Rag (3:44)

2. Country Joe & the Fish - Who Am I (4:05)

3. Country Joe & the Fish - Pat's Song (5:25)

4. Country Joe & the Fish - Rock Coast Blues (3:57)

5. Country Joe & the Fish - Magoo (4:43)

6. Country Joe & the Fish - Janis (2:36)

7. Country Joe & the Fish - Thought Dream (6:39)

8. Country Joe & the Fish - Thursday (3:19)

9. Country Joe & the Fish - Easter Jam (4:29)

10. Country Joe & the Fish - Colors for Susan (5:59)
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