Maze, The


Band members               Related acts

C Boyd -- 

- Richard Eittreim -- vocals, keyboards

- Wayne Gardner --

- J Jensen -- 

 

 

- The Donnybrookes

- Stone Henge

 

 

 


 

Genre: psych

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  Armageddon

Company: MTA

Catalog: MTS-5012

Year: 1969

Country/State: Fairfield, California

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: wrinkled lower left corner; small drill hole top right side

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 4978

Price: $375.00

 

 

This is one of those albums that critics have routinely savaged, yet remains an in-demand high priced collectable.  So that leads me to believe that there are a lot of critics who are wrong, a lot of people with too much money for their own good, or perhaps a combination of the two ...

 

The Maze traces it's roots back to 1966 and the Fairfield, California based The Donnybrookes (not to be confused with the Bakersfield-based The Donnybrooks ).  Formed in 1966, the group included Richard Eittreim, who subsequently went on to play with Stone Henge, which evolved into The Maze.

 

1969's "Armageddon" was recorded at Leo Kulka's San Francisco based Golden State Recorders, with Kulka and Larry Goldberg co-producing. Musically these guys weren't the most original 1960s San Francisco-based quartet you'll ever hear.  That said, they played with considerable acid-soaked enthusiasm and in spite of the absence of a great lead singer a couple of their songs were quite memorable.  Largely written by Wayne Gardner (he was credited with penning five of the seven selections), a lot of reviews drew comparisons to The Doors and Iron Butterfly.  Yeah, a couple of the mid-tempo numbers had a vague Jim Morrison feel to them, but for the most part such comparisons didn't register, but then what do I know ...  Largely abandoning their earlier Stone Henge folk-rock roots, starting out with the extended molten title track the album offered up an engaging mix of organ and fuzz guitar-propelled doom and gloom psych (this ain't no sunshine pop set).  That tougher sound was carried over through most of the collection including an interesting channel swapping fuzz solo on 'Kissy Face' and Eittreim's acid soaked 'Dejected Soul' (which would not have sounded out of place on The Beatles' "Revolver").  Highlights included 'Whispering Shadows' and the extended group meltdown 'I'm So Sad'.  Won't change your life, but far better than the critics would have you think ...       

 

"Armageddon" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Armageddon   (Wayne Gardner) - 7:12

2.) I'm So Sad   (Wayne Gardner) - 6:58

 

(side 2)
1.) Happiness    (J Jensen - C Boyd) - 2:05

2.) Whispering Shadows   (Wayne Gardner) - 4:35

3.) Kissy Face   (Wayne Gardner) - 2:58

4.) Dejected Soul   (Richard Eittreim) - 2:37

5.) As For Now   (Wayne Gardner) - 2:36

 

Eittreim went on to enjoy success in the business world, developing a couple of music training software packages and helping Sprint to develop and launch voice based phone ring tones.

 

 

 

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