"Weird" albums that Rolling Stone dug in the 1970s


Rolling Stone's Gavin Edwards posted a list of ten experimental, outré, outside, or otherwise curious albums that the magazine's critics raved about in the 1970s. I know and love most of them, especially John Cale and Terry Riley's "Church of Anthrax" and "The Art Ensemble of Chicago With Fontella Bass," but several of the selections are totally new to me.

From "10 Weird Albums Rolling Stone Loved in the 1970s You've Never Heard:"

"Cybernaut" from Tonto's Expanding Head Band, 'Zero Time':

"After all, a Moog theoretically can produce any sound, and produce it instantly, so that a clarinet might scale three mellow ascending notes and then on the fourth note play the sound of the sea giving up her dead. Like taking acid and discovering that your mind has the power to stop your heart, the realization that this instrument can do all sorts of things to you, now that it has you, is unsettling." — Timothy Crouse, RS 88 (August 5, 1971)

"Arkansas" from Terry Melcher, "Terry Melcher":

Melcher. . . has released an eccentric work that suggests he's given up not just on optimism but even on despair. With a vocal delivery somewhere between a sarcastic howl and a wounded moan, he gets to the heart of his desolate feelings in two successive cuts — his own existentialist lament, 'Beverly Hills,' and the Penn-Oldham country song, 'These Bars Have Made a Prisoner out of Me.'" — Bud Scoppa, RS 162 (June 6, 1974)

"Another Friday Night" from David Ackles' "American Gothic":

Ackles is an important artist whose work eludes categorization. It has almost no relation to rock & roll and a lot more to do with musical theater. . . The musical materials of the album are brilliantly eclectic and ordered with such formal precision as to warrant concert hall production of the song cycle just as it is on record. Chief among the many influences on Ackles' music are Kurt Weill and Aaron Copland, who for Ackles respectively represent brazen actuality and mythic search." — Stephen Holden, RS 117 (September 14, 1972)

"10 Weird Albums Rolling Stone Loved in the 1970s You've Never Heard"