Saturday, 4 June 2016

Art of the Cover - The 13th Floor Elevators "Easter Everywhere" (1967)

It's the 1967 psychedelic classic, Easter Everywhere by Roky and the boys; the band's second album.

Easter Everywhere came packaged with lyrics printed on the inner sleeve, gold ink on the cover (which flaked off on your fingers) and full colour pictures on the reverse. The packaging was quite expensive at the time.

Clementine Hall

On Easter Everywhere, the 13th Floor Elevators managed to refine their sound without sacrificing the things that made their first album so great. Roky Erickson still sounds like a madman, but here he also comes across as much more intelligent and focused. Additionally, while still a little on the low-fi side, the production of Easter Everywhere is much clearer and helps to accent the band's interplay (although the rhythm section on this album is different from the first). 
Although they still qualify as garage rockers, the 13th Floor Elevators have a much more noticable folk rock sheen on Easter Everywhere. They even go as far as to include a damn good Dylan cover with "Baby Blue." On "Slide Machine," "Nobody To Love," "Dust," and "I Had To Tell You," the Elevators find a happy middle ground somewhere between the Byrds crystaline sound and Forever Changes-era Love. Fortunately for the garage rock afficianado, the Elevators pull out on the stops on "She Lives (In A Time Of Her Own),"Earthquake," and "Levitation." These helps to give Easter Everywhere a lot of diversity and make it an interesting listen from beginning to end.

In 2009, the original mono version and a new, alternate stereo version were released as part of the Sign of the 3-Eyed Men box set. Both versions featured different bonus tracks, some that were previously unreleased.

The liner notes for the 2009 Charly re-release state on the differences between the two mixes that "[t]he mono edition of this album is ridiculously rare - surviving IA paperwork suggests only very few were pressed as white label promos for AM radio, and even fewer as mono stock copies (the paperwork suggests as few as 120 copies) that were probably only sold to order. 

The mono mix offers a more solid sound throughout, with a notably heavier bass mix compared to stereo. 

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