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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Rain Parade : Emergency Third Rail Power Trip 1983 - Explosions in the Glass Palace 1984 (EP)



Originally called the Sidewalks, the band was founded in Minnesota by college roommates Matt Piucci (guitar, vocals) and David Roback (guitar, vocals) in 1981, while they were attending Carleton College. David's brother Steven Roback (bass, vocals) joined the band shortly thereafter. David and Steven had been in a band called The Unconscious with neighbor Susanna Hoffs (who went on to lead The Bangles, the most famous of the Paisley Underground bands). The band soon added Will Glenn (keyboards and violin) and later Eddie Kalwa (drums). They self-released their debut single, "What She's Done to Your Mind" on their Llama label in 1982.


In 1983, they released their debut album, Emergency Third Rail Power Trip, on the Enigma/Zippo label. Critic Jim DeRogatis would later write in his book Turn on Your Mind: Four Decades of Great Psychedelic Rock (2003) that "Emergency Third Rail Power Trip is not only the best album from any of the Paisley Underground bands, it ranks with the best psychedelic rock efforts from any era", with uplifting melodies offset by themes that were "dark and introspective." According to DeRogatis, the album showcased "the Robacks' ethereal vocals, Eddie Kalwa's precise drumming, Will Glenn's colorful sitar, violin, and keyboard accents, and an intricate, chiming, but droney two-guitar attack that picks up where the Byrds left off with 'Eight Miles High.'"


Rain Parade fashioned traditional, gentle psychedelic pop on Emergency Third Rail Power Trip, including the dreamy "What's She Done to Your Mind" and the Byrds-ish "This Can't Be Today" (with the Dream Syndicate's Kendra Smith). They were clearly way ahead of their time, and it would take years before sleepy music (a la founding Rain Parade member David Roback's Mazzy Star) would catch on. This record sounds no more made in the '80s than in the '60s or '90s.


\After David Roback left to form a new band, Opal, the rest of the band continued to record as a four-piece, releasing the mini-LP Explosions in the Glass Palace in 1984. NME would later write, in praise of Explosions in the Glass Palace: "Sound cathedrals? We got ‘em ... mind-meltingly beautiful guitar sounds, employed sparingly and dynamically amid dark, dizzy tales of murder, madness and drug paranoia." The song "No Easy Way Down" was cited as a "mantra for an altered state of mind, and testament to a band who, however fleetingly, made music that sounded like the best drugs ever."



 Emergency Third Rail Power Trip 1983
 Explosions in the Glass Palace 1984

TRACKS

01. Talking in My Sleep   03:49         
02. This Can't Be Today (feat: Kendra Smith)   04:36         
03. I Look Around   03:07         
04. 1 Hour 1/2 Ago   04:14         
05. Carolyn's Song   04:05         
06. What's She Done to Your Mind   02:56         
07. Look at Merri   06:34        
08. Saturday's Asylum   03:45         
09. Kaleidoscope   05:35    
10. Look Both Ways   03:10
11. You Are My Friend   03:04    
12. Prisoners   03:49    
13. Blue  02:51    
14. Broken Horse   03:40    
15. No Easy Way Down   06:50 

 "No Easy Way Out"  LYRICS

They call
And told me this again
But all I know is inside out
I can't believe it

A room
Holds a thousand ghosts
Each bridge burned before the words
Are even spoken

[Chorus]
No easy way down (down)
No easy way down (down)

No easy way down
 No easy way down

You give
And you take then you give
'Till the day you know it's timeTo stop the counting

[Chorus]
 

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