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Iron Butterfly - In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida CD (album) cover


Iron Butterfly



3.42 | 235 ratings

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Chris H
Prog Reviewer
5 stars There is nobody on this planet that has not heard or at least heard of the song "In-A- Gadda-Da-Vida", and there should be no musician that doesn't know the world's greatest and most recognizable guitar riff that goes along with it. Can you say groundbreaking? I sure put the words "groundbreaking" and "Iron Butterfly's second album" together in sentences a lot these days. But that doesn't mean you can write off Side 1, which is equally, if not more amazing.

Side 1 is really all about that late-60's psychedelic flare. "Most Anything You Want" is an excellent album opener, and the guitar and organ mixtures of sound create the perfect template for Doug to belt out his amazing (and unique) vocals. "Flowers and Beads" (as the title suggests) has more of a hippie flare to it, with less of that guitar edge that Eric Brann likes to add to things. Some nice lyrics, but without the edgy guitar tones there is nothing really special to be found in it. "My Mirage" brings the album back to life 1,000 times over however. The excellent chopped up, rough guitar work returns and creates a jaw-dropping background for Doug to step in and lay down some particularly eerie sounding vocal parts. "Termination" has the same musical style as its predecessor, what with the driving organ riffs and sludgy guitar. The lyrics are well-thought out, but since the whole song is just a balance of edges, musically speaking, the vocals don't flow as nice as they would on any other songs. "Are You Happy?" is undoubtedly one of the greatest psych-rock songs to ever come out of a speaker. The closer to Side 1, the fuzzy guitar banging and the organ stomping create and eccentric sound that I'm sure everybody was jamming to, and everybody still is. The music is just so incredibly infectious, it's almost impossible to do something with your time.

Side 2, the most famous side of an album ever released in rock history, is the crowning achievement of the Iron Butterfly's commercial success, even though it is far from their best song. Even though it isn't their best, there is not a single person out there that has picked up a guitar that can say they haven't been inspired by the riff from "In-A- Gadda-Da-Vida". This is also the first time on the album that we really hear the amazing drumming power of Ron Bushy, and the pounding bass of Lee Dorman. Not to mention, it is one of the very first side-long songs on a vinyl, very groundbreaking in both aspects!

There is really not much more to say that hasn't already been said. "In-A-Gadda-Da- Vida" is often looked at as the building block for all things psychedelic rock, but it is much more than that. Sure it is the psych-rock Bible, but it is also one of the most groundbreaking albums in rock n' roll history. Every rock fan must have this album in their collection, no two ways about it!

Chris H | 5/5 |


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