Rampant Psychedelia From An Unlikely Source

It’s often repeated that the 1983 Labour Party election manifesto was the longest suicide note in history.

This might be true of British politics but in the area of popular entertainment an argument could, instead, be made for the film Head from which the song I’m featuring comes and which was, perhaps, deliberately designed to alienate the following the band which recorded it had accrued. Along with the bad publicity for apparently not playing instruments on their hits, it more or less did for their pop career, though over-exposure also had a lot to do with it. Head as a title, of course, has many resonances and connotations I needn’t go into and which no doubt contributed to their demise.

The film itself is now, of course, regarded in some quarters as something of a masterpiece. In the time since their heyday the group has also been critically reappraised. They did bang out some cracking pop tunes in their time (including a disguised ditty about the Vietnam War.)

Though apparently out of their normal oeuvre the film’s theme, Porpoise Song, was written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King. It has overtones of the Beatles – naturally – but also of the 1960s Nirvana and manages to prefigure some of the prog rock which was to come in the 1970s.

On You Tube The Wondermints have a (reasonably faithful) cover over a sequence from the film while this does have the single but someone talks for a while before playing it.

Below is a clip from the first eight or so minutes of the film itself. Porpoise Song does not appear till some way into the clip and finishes about three minutes in.

This is rampant psychedelia.

From the Monkees no less:-

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