Friday Full-Length: Bulbous Creation, You Won’t Remember Dying

Bulbous Creation, You Won’t Remember Dying (1970)

Put Bulbous Creation in the same league as Jerusalem, Suck, Weed, Fresh Blueberry Pancake, Orang-Utan and countless other righteous acts who came along in the heavy ’70s, released one or two albums and succumbed to the passage of time and never wound up going further than that. Based out of Kansas City, their debut LP, You Won’t Remember Dying, was issued either in 1969 or 1970 on private press, and was the only full-length the band — its lineup comprised of vocalist Paul Parkinson, guitarist Alan Lewis, bassist James Wine and drummer Churck Horstmann — would release in their time, though Wine and Lewis would continue with a different lineup as Creation afterward. Nonetheless, with Parkinson‘s charismatic frontman presence and underlying organ on “Fever Machine Man,” Bulbous Creation and You Won’t Remember Dying stand alone, singled out by a psychedelic blues weirdness and overarching languid stoner groove that serves them well across the record’s eight tracks. With Wine‘s bass as the anchor for much of the material, Lewis‘ guitar is free to roam through darker fuzz kept in motion through Horstmann‘s swinging drums, and an organic lo-fi style only adds to the enduring appeal.

They start off somewhat proggy on “End of the Page,” but by the time they get around to the wide-open jamming of “Let’s Go to the Sea,” they’re entrenched in heavy blues groove. Parkinson, who’d go on to perform as a singer-songwriter, isn’t over-the-top as a vocalist, but he gets his jibes in and he seems all the more in command of the songs for the restraint he shows. One might dig into the paired-off “Having a Good Time” and “Satan” and hear shades of Black Sabbath‘s “Hand of Doom,” but while Sabbath‘s self-titled debut seems an atmospheric touchstone for You Won’t Remember Dying, it’s worth remembering that Paranoid wouldn’t show up until Sept. 1970, and it’s more likely both groups were taking influence from Ten Years After, of whose “Sugar the Road” Bulbous Creation are covering with “Having a Good Time.” “Satan,” on the other hand, is an original worthy of the cult rock tag with which it would be saddled if it came out today, and seems to find a druggy companion in the slower buzzsaw shuffle of “Hooked” on side B, almost Alice Cooper-esque, though Billion Dollar Babies wouldn’t surface until 1973.

That doesn’t mean You Won’t Remember Dying is the secret touchstone of ’70s heavy by any means, but it’s a badass record front to back and soaked in a vibe that many who attempt to take on the tape-recorded spirit of its era would die to capture. I’m amazed no one has taken on the Zep-blues of “Stormy Monday” as a lost-classic of heavy jams, but so it goes. If they had three soundboard-quality bootlegs of live shows out there, Bulbous Creation would be legends.

Barring that, You Won’t Remember Dying has been reissued by Numero Group and is available as a vinyl/download as of this post. As noted, half of this band would continue on as Creation, but Lewis died of esophageal cancer in 1998 and Parkinson of leukemia in 2001, so Bulbous Creation will sadly remain a group who never had their day, even despite the album’s current availability.

Hope you enjoy.

I sent notice via the social medias — the Instagrammaphone, thee Facebooks — but all next week I’ll be doing the next Quarterly Review. If you don’t know what that means, no sweat, I won’t take it personally. It’s 50 reviews over the course of Monday to Friday, broken up into five installments of 10 reviews each day. It is a massive undertaking, but the last two (three really, if you count the end of last year) have been very satisfying for me both in the actual doing and on an existential level that there aren’t just 50 records I’m ignoring because I don’t have time to cover them, so it is very much a thing that’s happening. I’ve been getting album cover images and setting up posts the last couple days so I can get down to writing this weekend. It will be fun.

Also next week: On Monday, a track premiere from Brain Pyramid, who have a new album coming out through Vincebus Eruptum Recordings, and at some point an interview with Neil Fallon of Clutch that I’m hoping to get posted before their next tour starts. Fingers crossed.

Other than that, what, 50 frickin’ reviews isn’t enough for you?


I’d like to note that today is my 11th wedding anniversary. The Patient Mrs. and I have been together for 18 years, more then half of our lives, and I am incredibly lucky and grateful that she even wants to have anything to do with me at all, let alone be married to my unprofitable, difficult-to-live-with, complains-all-the-time-and-does-nothing-to-better-his-existence, can’t-hold-a-note-but-won’t-stop-singing, doesn’t-do-nearly-as-much-laundry-as-he-used-to, consumes-way-too-much-garlic ass.

Before I go, I want to say thanks again to Doug Sherman, Darryl Shepard, Dave Jarvis and Mike Nashawaty for having me as a guest on Show Sucks on WEMF radio last weekend. If you missed it, you can listen here, and thanks if you do. It was a lot of fun to sit in with those guys and bum the room out with my opinions of local athletes and venues. I felt like a jerk later, and rightly so.

Thanks everyone for reading. I hope you have a great and safe weekend, and please check out the forum and the radio stream.

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One Response to “Friday Full-Length: Bulbous Creation, You Won’t Remember Dying

  1. jacques Laurencot says:

    Bulbous Creation…..among many others…were magical

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