Listen/Download – The Giant Crab – ESP Listen/Download – The Giant Crab – Hot Line Conversation
I hope you all have your go-go shoes laced up and a snootful of Owsley’s finest rocket fuel, though if you don’t, pouring today’s selection into your earholes should suffice.
Though I haven’t written about the Giant Crab before, I have played their tunes on the Iron Leg Radio Show more than a few times.
I first heard of the band many, many years ago, when I saw their album covers in an old coffee table book.
I didn’t actually hear their music until a few years ago when I was lucky enough to come into possession of their ‘Cool It…Helios’ album.
That record was a very pleasant surprise indeed.
Though it opened with a bizarre interlude that suggested full-on psychedelic transit, what the grooves of the album revealed was in fact a very soulful group.
When I did a some research I was blown away to discover that the Giant Crab weren’t a bunch of crusty hippies, but in fact two sets of brothers (Orosco and Friscia) from East LA.
They got their start in a band called Ernie and the Emperors, and after some of the members went off to the Army, reconstituted as the Giant Crab in 1967.
Their two albums move between garage, psyche pop, soul and heavier rock, with the band’s sound evolving along the way.
So much so, that by the time they dropped today’s selection in 1969 they had gone all the way over into Blue Cheer-ville.
What is especially interesting, and you may already have dug this if you clicked on the link, is that ‘ESP’ is in fact a thinly disguised rewrite of the Pretty Things 1966 single ‘LSD’.
‘ESP’ is crazy heavy, flanged, organ and guitar driven madness. It’s hard to listen to it without imagining one of those pulsating psychedelic light shows pushing you to the brink of a seizure.
As much as I dig the Pretties OG, I’d go as far as to say that the Giant Crab win this contest hands down.
The flipside, ‘Hot Line Conversation’ is also quite heavy, and pretty far out as well, with the sound effects. There is definitely some Vanilla Fudge in the mix here.
This is some serious shit right here, and ought to be much better known.