Spooky Tooth
A & M - 1970

Music - 1 stars

Spooky Tooth - Ceremony - front cover

front cover

Spooky Tooth - Ceremony - rear cover

rear cover


Spooky Tooth was one of the great bands of the late sixties - early seventies. They produced two great albums, "Spooky Two" and "The Last Puff". In between them they produced this strange opus, an electronic Christian mass.

They were not the first rock band to attempt something like this. That honor belongs to the Electric Prunes with their 1968 efforts "Mass in F Minor" and "Release of an Oath" assisted by composer David Axelrod and with personnel that resembled the original band in name only.

Gary Wright, Spooky Tooth's keyboardist, convinced the band to make this album with French Avant Garde composer Pierre Henry. What resulted is a strange mix of Mike Harrison's soulful blues based vocals, the heavy, solid Spooky Tooth sound and synthesizer washes, noises and strange vocal sounds.

I can see this working for listeners of 20th century composers like John Cage but for rock listeners expecting something along the lines of Spooky Tooth's other music this album must have been a total shock. Gary Wright left the group after this outing.

Anyway, this album stands as a testament to the anything goes environment of early seventies rock music.