“Unwind With The Clock” is the final track on the 1967 album Incense And Peppermints by Strawberry Alarm Clock. Mostly instrumental (until a verse sung towards the end) and similar in title to the filler track “Pass Time With The SAC”, “Unwind With The Clock” is actually the second-longest song on the album and a very groovy, enjoyable end for an interesting album.
The song is led first by a trilling organ, spitting out notes all over the place and sounding like the backing music to a 1960s psychedelic movie dancing scene. The drums and an unusually-melodic bass bob along merrily, and a classic SAC-buzz electric guitar line gives way to a xylophone solo. The whole effect is one of a psychedelic lounge piece, cheesy and cool at the same time. The drummer gets a short solo, and then the singer gets his turn. The lyrics were obviously written to be the last on the album:
“Now we’ll say goodbye to you
The watch says we must go
It’s been great fun to be with you
And we all want you to know
That without your loving thoughts of us
We’d not be here today
It’s over now but we’ll be back
And just for now we’ll say:
So long! So long!”
Reminiscent of The Rolling Stones’ kiss-blowing “On With The Show” from their own 1967 venture Their Satanic Majesties Request. Each of the band having had his own hammy moment in the spotlight, “Unwind With The Clock” ends with a weird, loud, dissonant keyboard clang that drops quickly and fades out of sight. Those few seconds are actually not a bad bridge to the band’s next album, Wake Up… It’s Tomorrow — which features some stranger instrumentation and odder sounds than Incense And Peppermints.
This track’s title also suggests a ‘The’ for the band’s name, but the overwhelming evidence is that the proper appellation is simply ‘Strawberry Alarm Clock’.
“Unwind With The Clock” was the main inspiration for the name of this website, UnwindWithSAC.com.
LP: Incense And Peppermints (1967)