And More Again...

From the remark quoted earlier, it seems obvious that Miller had definite ambitions and when those ambitions failed to materialise he kept tinkering with the formula in the expectation that success would come eventually. 

That’s fine in its own way but it isn’t likely to produce something that works on an artistic level the same way that Recall The Beginning... did, and it’s fairly obvious that, given a choice between artistic success and dollars, Mr Miller will go for the latter rather than the former. In other words, if Children Of The Future and Sailor didn’t race to the top of the charts then it was time to change things around until you came up with something that did.

So, what about those early albums? How do they measure up in the cold hard light of the twenty-first century, even if there is a hint of misty-eyed nostalgia in there?

After the flurry of effects that opens Children of the Future you might be expecting that you’re in for something mind-blowingly psychedelic, but given Miller’s remarks quoted earlier, it shouldn’t be too much of a surprise to discover a fairly short, snappy up-tempo three-minute title track with the vocals cutting back and forth between Miller and Scaggs that crossfades into snippets of Pushed Me In To It (0:39) and You’ve Got The Power (0:53). Those two tracks are no longer than they need to be, based on a single repeated pattern, pure pop without psychedelic trimmings, simple and simple, elegant and accessible. 

Another crossfade, and the tempo drops back with strings behind Peterman’s keyboards on the Miller-Peterman In My First Mind, seven and a half minutes that may well have been meant to be listened to with the aid of artificial enhancements, but works well without them. There are incomprehensible voices in the background, a door closes, and we’re into blues guitar that fades into crashing waves and layered vocals in The Beauty of Time Is That It’s Snowing (Psychedelic B.B.), a sound montage with the lyrics from the title track coming back in layered vocals to end Side One of the vinyl version.

One imagines these tracks performed in live performance with turn on a pin accuracy, and the set-list from 27 April 1968 show at the Carousel Ballroom reveals:

Children Of The Future - Prelude > Children Of The Future > Pushed Me To It - Vamp > Pushed Me To It > You Got The Power > In My First Mind (part 1) > In My First Mind (part 2) > Children Of The Future (reprise) > Beauty Of Time Is That It's Snowing (psychedelic B.B.)


B© Ian Hughes 2012