|Tom Hayes||14-Oct-2006||Chapter 2|
Dragonwyck, at their peak in the early 70s, were once considered Cleveland’s rising rock stars, having earned a weekly spot at one well known local club for two years straight. Their 1970 debut, in reality only a demo recording in hopes of landing a label deal, and pressed only in a quantity of 85, was a hard psych affair similar to the 1967 Doors sound. Three years on, with many more shows under the belt and a whole new keyboard play-kit including organ and mellotron, demonstrated the band’s professional progression and a move towards more complex compositions. Still, in keeping with their three years behind the times M.O., Dragonwyck had only progressed to the Moody Blues circa 1970. That is, a psych influenced progressive sound, with plenty of vocal harmonies and large scale orchestrations (as emulated by the new expansive keyboard setup). The guitar, however, is more aggressive than anything the Blues ever did. Included were re-recordings of two tracks from the debut, still sounding oddly like the Doors and out of place with the newer material. Despite a fully produced recording, the album was never formally released (excepting bootlegs) until 2006. After the “Chapter 2” recordings, the band began to move towards more commercial songwriting, which is reflected on the two 1974 bonus tracks contained on the World in Sound reissue CD. Interestingly enough, their sound at this point represented what most “Midwest Progressive” bands were to sound like – Starcastle, Ethos and Albatross for example. In the end, a very much recommended purchase for psych and prog heads, with the caveat that the album was dated even in its own time.
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