Wednesday, July 9, 2008

classic albums: The Millenium- Begin

"The Island Is Calling"
The brainchild of Curt Boettcher and Gary Usher, The Millenium were a California super studio group affiliated with the Association and Sagittarius. The band only recorded one record, Begin, and were immediately dropped by Columbia Records. Ironically, Begin had been the most expensive album Columbia ever produced at the time. Too pop for the psych kids and too psych for the pop kids, The Millenium had trouble finding an attentive, commercially viable audience. In retrospect, its this juxtaposition of accessible pop and far out psych that makes them so wonderful.

A warm, enlightening mix of sun washed harmonies, glockenspiels, sky high production and even a harpsichord pounding loopy beat that could easily be sampled (and I'm surprised it hasn't been) by any number of retro-leaning electro-hop producers, The Millenium sounds like the Beach Boys doing acid with Sufjan Stevens' band (wings et all), or Tower of Power killing some day-glo drenced, Aquarius living hippies with kindness. For instance, every time I hear "The Island" I literally drift off to a deserted island where seagulls poop mescaline on my head and transform me into an all seeing, all knowing, all nude shaman capable of healing tree's and understanding dolphin speak.

When they aren't tripping out the happiest harmonies I've heard in a long time, they craft poignant bossa-nova influenced pop like "5 AM", which is the quintessential song about not being able to sleep, realizing that it's 5 am and that the world is about to wake up. And just so you're not misled by the pop, peep "Karmic Dream Sequence #1", which sounds exactly like you'd think "Karmic Dream Sequence #1" should sound...siiiick. See for yourself, then head over to Sundazed and buy this immediatly and make sure you listen, constantly, for the rest of the summer (and beyond).

The Millenium- The Island

The Millenium- 5 am
The Millenium- Karmic Dream Sequence #1

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

An incredible album, very well produced. A true classic sunshine pop-feeling good sound. Just relax and let the harmonies bring you to the kingdom of love and flowers. "To Claudia on thursday" is a pure delight. One of these secrets treasures of the '60 music scene.
Pat B., Canada