Sky Cries Mary; 2000 Light Years From Home (1993)

 |   |  1 min read

Sky Cries Mary; 2000 Light Years From Home (1993)

A tip? Eat your acid drop right now . . . and . . . and waiting and waiting and  . .. now?

Shall we around this point try to be serious?

Let us try. 

At the same time as grunge was emerging in Seattle there were other things going on in that city, it wasn't all lumberjack shirts and flailing emotional intensity.

The quite exceptional Green Pajamas were delivering superbly melodic, post-Beatles pop (grounded in a rather more Romantic and visionary offshoot of Rubber Soul and Revolver).

And the large ensemble Sky Cries Mary -- which took its name from an angled version of the title of Hendrix's song -- was creating sprawling, trippy trance rock with heavy psychedelic and dance overtones.

SKMary formed around Rod and Anisa Romero (husband and wife, he a multi-instrumentalist/singer and she the powerful, slightly ethereal voice) and a revolving door of members which early on had Ken Stringfellow and Jon Auer of the Posies, and drummer Scott Mercado (later of Candlebox). Later it included keyboard player Gordon Raphael who went on to produce the first couple of Strokes albums and who gave Regina Spektor her first studio sessions. Gordon is interviewed about all that here.

Their sound was pure '68 (specifically Grace Slick as if she was fronting a band made up of members of Country Joe and the Fish, the Grateful Dead, Pink Floyd and workers from Owsley's acid factory). It was filtered through raga-rock and late Eighties/early Nineties DJ programming and turntabling.

They released seven or eight albums -- labelling hopping upward from indie to Capitol and then Warners --- but broke up in '99, only to reform a few years later. The Romeros still front another version of Sky Cries Mary, a band that needs to be sampled as much as heard, if you get my drift.

This spaceflight-on-acid version of one of the best Stones song from their only LSD album Their Satanic Majesties Request ('67) is but a hint of what they could do. It is on their album A Return to the Inner Experience, which wasn't grunge by a very long shot.

Tune in, turn on . . . and play loud, in the dark.

But play. 

And we are going uuuuuuuuppp . . . 

For more oddities, one-offs or songs with an interesting backstory use the RSS feed for daily updates, and check the massive back-catalogue at From the Vaults.


Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes: Hearts of Stone (1978)

Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes: Hearts of Stone (1978)

With his big band the Asbury Jukes (a 10-piece), Southside Johnny out of New Jersey could only ever run a distant second to his friend Bruce Springsteen as the Seventies unfurled. Springsteen... > Read more

Larry Williams: Bad Boy (1959)

Larry Williams: Bad Boy (1959)

In his exceptional study of the Beatles All These Years; Tune In – the first of three intended volumes, this only taking us to the start of '63 – Mark Lewisohn confirmed (via... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE BARGAIN BUY: Whiplash (Blu-Ray)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Whiplash (Blu-Ray)

When this gripping drama about an aspiring young jazz drummer and his emotionally abusive tutor was released in cinemas last year Elsewhere warned that "jazz people" -- protective of... > Read more

Ry Cooder: Election Special (Warners)

Ry Cooder: Election Special (Warners)

With the Republicans calling up arch-conservative Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney's monied-up running mate and the gob-smacking misspeak by Missouri congressman Todd Akin about "legitimate rape"... > Read more