USA, 1972, psychedelic folk
Bobby Brown – The Enlightening Beam of Axonda: This album is so much a product of its time, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s got a wide-eyed naivete that’s charming and actually rather refreshing. Although I don’t agree with his premises or conclusions, I admire his sincerity. The experimental, psychedelic vocals on this album remind me somewhat of Tim Buckley, but it’s more like a guy who sees the rabbit hole Buckley jumped down but hasn’t entered it yet. This is a heavy-handed concept album about Hawaiian-born Johnny who leaves his beloved home, soul searching his way all the way to New Orleans, where his religious experimentation leads him from the city into the forest to find the “truth”. There he becomes one with the forest, with everything, as the album progresses along a theme of unity and ego loss across slowly unfolding psychedelic folk songs. Is it the lost gem the dark corners of the internet make it out to be? Perhaps not. But it’s curious.