18/8/15 – Linda Perhacs – Parallelograms – 1970

Song Of The Day

Linda Perhacs - Parallelograms - 1970 - Cover ArtA lost gem from real Psych Folk Californian, Linda Perhacs that made no impression at the time despite its contemporary sound, Perhacs appealing voice and the lovely songs. When you look at Kapp records roster at the time you can imagine that they had no idea what to do with a record like this – eclectic is fine, but they were stylistically all over the place – Fred Astaire to Budgie, Mel Tillis to Ruby And The Romantics, Miriam Makeba to Rod Mckuen, Louis Armstrong to Cher. Although a lot of these artist were inherited in licensing deals, it seems that Perhacs was signed directly to the label. Who signed her? Who allowed her to make a record and who was responsible for ignoring her when it was completed? The albums lack of success had her return to her day job – Beverly Hills dental hygienist.

Thirty five years after its release Michael Piper (one of the visionaries behind the latter years vinyl resurgence) contacted her and secured a deal to release the record on his Psychedelic Folk label The Wild Places. I visited Michael when I lived in Brooklyn, he was a great guy, passionate, he lived for music, his apartment was just shelves full of amazing records. Sadly he died in 2008 and is sorely missed by everyone that knew him.

Like most records of this period the album is beautifully recorded, warm acoustic tones with captivating melodies exquisitely sung, a cross between Joni Mitchell (Delicious) and Laura Marling (Porcelain Baked-Over Cast-Iron Wedding) and in Paper Mountain Man there’s something of Heart’s Dreamboat Annie, although I can’t imagine that they had heard this album when they released their self-titled platinum debut in 1975. But I hear lots of classic artist in this music and it is unimaginable that no one got to hear this album until more than three decades after its initial release.

I’m hesitant to single out tracks because there’s so many good ones, the album’s opener Chimacum Rain, Morning Colours, Sandy Toes. Perhacs harmonizing with her self over arpeggio guitars is truly beautiful. But then on the title track, out of nowhere the weirdness comes in, probably shocking you out of your reverie with the drum flourish that introduces the spacey section, but it’s stoned fantasy returns to Earth for the end of the song in a sparkling arpeggio backing those gorgeous harmonies.

A forgotten classic, an essential purchase, the album has been reissued twice, once on The Wild Places and then on Sunbeam records in 2008. Both reissues have extra tracks, demos and outtakes. Apparently the original vinyl version suffered from being a bad pressing and the reissue sounds much better. Forty four years after her debut Linda Perhacs released her second solo album, The Soul Of All Natural Things on Asthmatic Kitty records in 2014.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linda_Perhacs

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallelograms_(album)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Soul_of_All_Natural_Things

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kapp_Records

1.- Chimacum Rain 00:00
2.- Paper Mountain Man 03:25
3.- Dolphin 06:39
4.- Call Of The River 09:34
5.- Sandy Toes 13:20
6.- Parallelograms 16:18
7.- Hey, Who Really Cares 20:52
8.- Moons & Cattails 23:30
9.- Morning Colours 27:35
10.- Porcelain Baked Cast Iron Wedding 32:08
11.- Delicious 36:10

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