Check out an exclusive stream of the entire 1970 Tully album now via Rolling Stone!
Chapter Music is thrilled to present the first ever reissue of the self-titled debut album by Sydney’s famed prog-psych giants Tully. Tully is released on 5 Sep 2014 on gatefold LP, CD and digital by Chapter.
Originally released in June 1970, Tully is the final release in Chapter’s series of official Tully reissues, which takes in surf soundtrack Sea Of Joy (1971), final album Loving Is Hard (1972) and Peter Sculthorpe-composed rock opera Love 200 (released on 2010 CD Live At Sydney Town Hall 1969-70).
In 1970, Tully had the Australian music world at their fingertips. Their live show was legendary – US-born keyboardist Michael Carlos played a Hammond organ with two huge Lesley speakers, while drummer Robert Taylor used two kick drums for extra percussive drama. Richard Lockwood experimented restlessly on clarinet, flute and saxophone, eventually developing an amplified clarinet set-up, deepening and distorting his tone through an octave pedal and a massive Lenard amplifer.
Tully sold out repeated concerts at Sydney Town Hall through 1969, became the house band for love-rock musical Hair, and had their own six part ABC TV series named Fusions. They headlined Australia’s first musical festival Pilgrimage For Pop, and outraged the classical establishment with their performance of Peter Sculthorpe rock opera Love 200 .
Their self-titled 1970 debut is one of Australia’s most forward-thinking and ambitious of the era. Opening track You Realize You Realize bursts through the speakers with all the fabled power and exuberance of the band’s live shows, while La Nave Bleu follows with delicacy and restraint. A full church choir uplifts Love’s White Dove, whilePhsssst is five minutes of submerged organ drones, chanting and studio games. Lace Space must be one of the few drum solo tracks on a 60s/70s psych album capable of holding a modern listener’s interest, and the album finishes with thunderous concert favourite Waltz To Understanding.
The album made it to number 6 in the national charts, but within months of its release, Tully had changed into something almost unrecognisable from their original form. They merged with folk-psych sirens Extradition, lost singer Terry Wilson and drummer Taylor, and decided to continue on drummer-less. Their subsequent records were serene, solemn and impossibly beautiful, but without the incendiary power of their first incarnation, audiences deserted them in droves. By the end of 1971, Tully were no more.
Reissued for the first time in 44 years, Tully documents a moment when anything seemed possible, and the band made music that perfectly summed up this sense of wonder and infinite potential.