Psych-Out (1968 soundtrack album)

The soundtrack LP of the 1968 movie Psych-Out features Strawberry Alarm Clock, the Seeds, Boenzee Cryque, and the Storybook performing a nice selection of psychedelic pop songs. Strawberry Alarm Clock has no otherwise unavailable songs here, except for a shorter edit of “The World’s On Fire”. The album is a great collector’s piece but not strictly necessary apart from that.

There are in fact four Strawberry Alarm Clock-related songs on the album. “The World’s On Fire” appears in its full-length original form as it did on the band’s debut LP Incense And Peppermints, and in a shorter edit; “Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow” (also from the debut LP); and the sparklingly excellent “Pretty Song From Psych-Out”, which SAC included on their second LP Wake Up… It’s Tomorrow, but which is performed by the Storybook on Psych-Out. The latter is basically a note-for-note copy of Strawberry Alarm Clock’s version — good but not as great as the original.

The Storybook

The Psych-Out soundtrack is usually described as a Strawberry Alarm Clock/Seeds album, but that is a bit of historical revisionism reflecting the greater reknown of those groups; the album in fact focuses on the Storybook, who are mostly unknown otherwise and who have some really great psychedelic music here. The movie may be a psychsploitation flick enabling the producers to make a fast buck, but the music is high quality nonetheless. From such dull origins come great things.

I actually recommend this LP, if for the hilariously blatant (but legally a-ok) “Purple Haze” ripoff called “Ashbury Wednesday” by Boenzee Cryque, shown in the movie as being played by Jack Nicholson’s psychedelic band.

Track listing

Side 1
“Pretty Song From Psych-Out” – by The Storybook
“Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow” – 3:03 by Strawberry Alarm Clock
“Two Fingers Pointing On You” – by The Seeds
“Ashbury Wednesday” – by Boenzee Cryque
“The World’s On Fire” – 3:29 by Strawberry Alarm Clock (edit from the middle section of the regular version)

Side 2
“Psych-Out Sanctorum” – by The Storybook
“Beads Of Innocence” – by The Storybook
“The Love Children” – by The Storybook
“Psych-Out” – by The Storybook
“The World’s On Fire [long version]” – 8:24 by Strawberry Alarm Clock (full version from Incense And Peppermints)

4 thoughts on “Psych-Out (1968 soundtrack album)

  1. As the lead singer for the Storybook I can say that we all enjoyed performing for this album. We were a San Fernando Valley garage band performing at different valley venues, battle of the bands and on the UCLA fraternity circuit. The group broke up when I had to serve my time in the service during Viet Nam.

  2. Böenzees take on “Purple Haze” is so amazing! I first thought that it was a guitar and i wondered how he got it to pitch so up so high, but then i found out that it was Rusty (future Poco member) playing a pedal steel guitar. Amazing anyways!

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