søndag 19. oktober 2014

19102014 - Larry Norman "Upon This Rock"

Continuing on the list of the 101 strangest records on Spotify (or, in my case, on WiMP), here's the debut solo album of Jesus rocker Larry Norman! This album was released in 1969, after Norman left the group People!, which he fronted, when the rest of the band gave him and fellow lead singer Gene Mason the ultimatum of joining them as scientologists or getting out. They left, People! disappeared after a few years and Larry Norman went on to more or less singlehandedly invent Christian rock and release more than 100 albums, getting hate from evangelists like Jimmy Swaggart and love from people like Pete Townsend and Frank Black along the way! The music is pretty catchy, perfectly hippie-friendly rock that fans of other acts from that era, such as Van Morrison, Neil Young or The Band could easily embrace, as he mixes folk, rock, country, sugar sweet balladry, trippy psychedelia and more. And with the rest of the band consisting of Wrecking Crew members Joe Osborne, Hal Blaine, Mike Deasey and Larry Knechtel you know that it's gonna sound just right! As for the lyrics - well, they're there, but unless you are as uptight in your anti-Christianity as the previously mentioned evangelists are in their aversion of rock you shouldn't let that get in the way of enjoying some really good and catchy tunes! However, calling this the "Sgt. Pepper" of Christian rock might be a stretch. But then again, who am I to judge, not really knowing (or even planning to find out) everything else there is to compare with within the genre…

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