Touch - We Feel Fine EP - Singles - Reviews - Soundblab

Touch - We Feel Fine EP

by Jeff Penczak Rating:6 Release Date:2018-12-31
Touch - We Feel Fine EP
Touch - We Feel Fine EP

Touch were an American psychedelic prog band from Portland, Oregon that were formed by Don Gallucci, the 15-year old keyboardist on The Kingsmen’s seminal garage classic ‘Louie, Louie’. After being kicked out of the band because he was too young to tour, he formed garage rockers Don and The Goodtimes, who released three albums before the band splintered and Gallucci, singer Jeff Hawks, and guitarist Joey Newman morphed into Touch, who released their eponymous album on Coliseum (Deram in the UK) in 1969. [Gallucci returned to his garagey roots after the band broke up, producing the Stooges’ legendary second album Fun House!]

Fruits De Mer wrap up their first decade as one of our favourite vinyl-only imprints with this scorching EP which combines the B-side of their lone single ‘We Feel Fine’ with album track ‘Down At Circe’s Place’ and an unreleased pre-LP single that gets its first vinyl airing here, having only been previously issued on an obscure, 25-year old compilation. As expected, Gallucci’s keyboards take center stage, but Newman’s hard-rockin' solos on ‘We Feel Fine’ add a down and dirty vibe throughout. Unfortunately, Hawks’ strangulated vocals leave a lot to be desired and weird time signatures and about-face arrangements make it difficult to get your head around ‘We Feel Fine’, which also suffers from the period excess that drowned many a prog rocker.

The instrumental ‘Down At Circe’s Place’ fares a little better, its barrelhouse piano opening sets the stage for more elaborate histrionics bordering on the avant-garde. The ill-fated single wraps up this challenging artifact on the plus side, a rather pleasant pop effort with a hard rock edge. Overall, it’s rather difficult listening, indeed, but may appeal to fans of Zappa and the Mothers and other outré ‘60s acts.

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