Friday, 15 April 2011

Futilist's Lament

High Tide were not only one of the most remarkable bands of their era, but of any era. One of the many groups that chronicled the come-down from the Summer Of Love, they were the doomed-est of the doomed, the damnedest of the damned.

Combining the Breugel-esque, churning riffage of Black Sabbath with the cosmic sense of loss of The Doors, their debut album "Sea Shanties" saw them setting sail from the war-torn, napalm-drenched shores of the 20th century on a course to the edge of the world, the rotten timbers of their ship infested with rats, scurvy and syphilis.

Although at the very forefront of the musical innovations of the late-60's and early 70's, their music conjures up a hauntingly ancient sense of melancholy - one thinks of the fishermen's widows, the terrified, press-ganged sailors and the abandoned hulks littering the shores of Olde Englande.

There's no place crueller than the cold, grey sea.

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