documenting the optical sounds of '60s pop, Acid Punk & Psychedelia

Acid Visions: Volume 2 (Voxx) 1988

Almost half of the fourteen cuts are previously unreleased including The Fanatics, Thursday’s Children, Space Cadets and others

The Fanatics, the fabulous Houston band opens side 1 with a terrific bang! Just wait’ll you hear the incredible ‘running bass’, the primal screams and all the rest on “I Can’t Believe”.

It’s hard for me to comprehend why such an outstanding performance was not released at the time it was recorded (1966).

Sometimes I read that The Fanatics’ “I Will Not Be Lonely” was their only psych recording, and that it remains one of the all-time best. I bet you’ll agree that “I Can’t Believe” is even better.

The group began as Neal Ford & the Ramadas in 1962, a name they adopted from playing so many Ramada Inns and the like. The first two releases were on Philips, followed by several more during 1963-65 on Wheel Records, New World and Pablo labels, one of which was included on Volume One.

Then in ’66, Neal re-organised the band with Lanier Gregg, appropriately changed the name to The Fanatics, and cut about six psych sides, and faded into oblivion after several more releases.

Thursday’s Children were one of the forerunners of the movement. They formed in 1964 as The Druids, changed their name in ’65 after the nursery rhyme that says, “Thursday’s child has far to go . . . “

Their releases on the Paradise and International Artists label did well, and they invariably won top honours in the battle of the bands contests which were all the rage at the time.

Leader Charlie Helpinstill told me that by 1968 the draft and drugs had claimed some of Thursday’s Children, so they re-organized as The Pointed Hand Group.

Space Cadets open side 2 with the false start and the finished take of the song, “Nothing’ll Stand In My Way”. Followed by “Love-Itis” , both are great examples of late-60s material and both are previously unissued.

The group was from San Antonio but came down to Houston to record.

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