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The United States Of America - The United States Of America  CD (album) cover

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

The United States Of America

 

Proto-Prog

4.12 | 39 ratings

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Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars Who are this guys and how they did it?

After having moved to a new house,and placing my vinys in order, found an LP from the days I used to help in the radio, the self titled album by THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, probably one of the weirdest records ever released, even when their music is daring but not perfect, and defies Rock history, I can't stop listening it on my old turntable..

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, has always been a mystery to me, even when essentially they are an Acid Psychedelic band, they add everything available in that moment and create a cocktail as explosive as their political ideas, the listener can find soft ballads, dissonant passages unlike any band of the era and clear touches of Avant Garde.

When most of he USA bands were using Farfisa Organ in the vein of The Doors, the keyboardist Joseph Byrd was adding electric harpsichord, organ, calliope, piano while Gordon Marron added violin as integral part of the music, and a couple of surprises more like electric drums and the lack of lead guitar.

In other words, this guys were really advanced for their era in USA and even for UK, the sweet voice Dorothy Moskowitz makes a strong contrast with the lyrics (hey, she dares to sing a track for Ché Guevara in USA), and the sound effects almost in pure Space Rock. Even when all the songs are really radical, the real impression comes near the end, with the almost Gregorian introduction of "Where is Yesterday" followed by an extremely elaborate vocal work and oriental leanings. something I would had never expected before the early 70's.

Also transcendental is the almost Baroque intro of "Stranded in Time"immediately turns into some sort of Classical oriented Vaudeville, this time with male vocals, but this isn't all the song keeps morphing through several genres but they only reach the peak of the weirdness in "The American Way of Love" where they blend dissonant Big Band Jazz passages with USA military hymns in the style of John Philip Souza and music from musicals of the 1940's.

If there's a band that fits perfectly the definition of Proto Progressive Rock, it's THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, they were natural iconoclasts who broke all the schemes long time before the vast majority.

Just read that a CD with 9 bonus tracks has been released in 2004, so I'm starting the musical safari to find it........Ahhh the rating.................Not important, but 4 Stars, because they dared to do what few even dreamed.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 4/5 |

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