Animals of Change

There’s a tattered book on the cover of Winds of Change to indicate that Eric Burdon & The Animals are moving in a more literary direction, I guess. This is a transitional album as Eric tries to push beyond the blues, r’n’b, format into new territory. He was probably hearing the progressive work being done by the Yardbirds, Cream, Jimi Hendrix & the Moody Blues.

caddilac snow bound caddy 

I remember borrowing this from someone when it was first released. The fold out cover, reading the text on the front and thinking ‘heavy, man.’ The inside cover was a more of the same with some fuzzy b/w pictures of the new band. I was expecting something special and was let down. Just what I hoped for I can’t recall – San Francisco Nights was on the radio & nothing else on the lp sounded like it. The music goes from this radio friendly stuff to adult r’n’r.

There’s an excellent booklet in the cd re-release, and some bonus tracks too. All originals except for a great cover of the Stones Paint It Black. Eric is stretching as a writer & singer with spoken word here & there, the moody The Black Plague. The ‘hit’ San Franciscan Nights works but, to me, is a bit soft.

plant snow bound plant

Man – Woman & Motel Hell are two dynamic, aggressive tracks with a real sense of experimental thought. The trumpet work is perfect, uncredited but I think I read some where it was Hugh Masekela (contract reasons kept his name off the lp). The Hendrix influenced ‘Yes I’m Experience’ lacks the explosiveness of Jimi but if a good effort.

church snow bound church

The Animals don’t quite shake off the solid bar band blues basics even as they try to transition into the psychedelic sixties, which is a good thing. That doesn’t happen until there next lp – Never the Twain – more about that next week.


June 6-8 – attending – Bloody Words


June 23-27 – attending – Manuscript to Book – Loyalist Summer Arts – Belleville, Ont


set sail for Loyalist

August 28-31 – attending – FanExpo Canada




my folks

had this Reader’s Digest

box set of famous composers

or was it the Longines Symphonette

up to ten lps

each side devoted to a different composer

Brahms Beethoven Debussy

that I remember

the box had Monet’s water lilies

on the cover

 each slip case a different pastel shade

all orchestrated by

Eugene Ormandy

and played by The Boston Pops

I have to be honest

most of them bored me

except for Debussy

today I know he was an impressionist

like Monet the painter

then I had no notion of those connections

I don’t even recall all the pieces

on his one lp side of

or who was on the other

but it started with Gardens in the Rain

and ended with In a Submerged Cathedral

Cathedral submerged my Beatles mind

every time I heard it

a more complex trip

than anything psychedelic could manage

with a choir

bells undulating harps

watery wavering violins

that drowned me in longing

for another era

for another place

where a boy’s dreams of poetry were possible

not discouraged

because his spelling wasn’t good enough

for him to be a writer

that box set had disappeared

which is odd

because my folks were budding hoarders

keeping the bulk of my books

Tom Swift Jr. Hardy Boys

lots of their original lps

were stashed away

I’ve gone through that stuff

with my sister

who inherited the house

the contents

tossed lots

recycled some

reclaimed some

I was hoping to find that box set

so I could hear that Debussy once more

bought other versions

I’ve searched on line too

record stores with no luck

looking to get back to that

boy in the submerged cathedral

one more time

river03 this way to the cathedral

2 thoughts on “Animals of Change

  1. “Winds of Change” is one of my favourite all-time albums.
    I have the original LP and the CD of it.
    One night I played it for Brandon Pitts and he was blown away by it (as he had never heard the whole album before.)

    “Anything” is one of the best love songs ever written.
    And the psychedelics of the song “Winds of Change” and “Poem by the Sea” were way ahead of their time, incorporating electronic atmosphere.

    I’m going to go play it right now.

    Thanks Duncan


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