Rhino Handmade is about to tempt fans of vintage rock with a four-disc box (two studio, two live) devoted to the history of heavy/psych/prog mindbenders Vanilla Fudge. For those who aren’t familiar with the name, Vanilla Fudge got their start by taking pop and soul singles and turned them inside out, radically restructuring the songs into epics and then dipping them into a molten psych-metal brew driven by heavy guitars, thudding drums and swirling organ fantasias. As time went on, they branched out into original material. They had a short shelf life but hung in there long enough to record a string of albums that were huge influences on the development of Yes and Deep Purple (their debut was also a favorite with the Beatles). Read on for the full details and track listing of this psychedelic overload…
VANILLA FUDGE – BOX OF FUDGE
Four-Disc Boxed Set Spotlights Vanilla Fudge Live And In The Studio With An Extensive Collection Of Album Tracks And Rare Singles, Along With An Unreleased 1969 Concert Recorded At The Fillmore West And Unissued Studio Jams
Pre-Order Next Week Exclusively At Rhino.com, Ships In Late April
LOS ANGELES – For a brief moment in 1967, Vanilla Fudge stood at the swirling center of the pop-music universe, satisfying fans searching for transformative musical experiences with its symphonic psychedelic rock. Sweetened by intricate vocal harmonies and classical flourishes, The Fudge’s innovative mix of rhythm and blues shone brightly as a new era of heavy music was dawning at the start of the 1970s.
Organist Mark Stein, bassist Tim Bogert, lead guitarist Vince Martell, and drummer Carmine Appice recorded five albums in two years. They toured relentlessly, winning converts with radical reworkings of hits like The Supremes’ “You Keep Me Hanging On” while “raising” the bar for after-show escapades. Rhino Handmade devotes equal time to The Fudge’s influential studio and live legacies with a four-disc boxed set that combines album tracks and rare singles with unreleased recordings. Due to ship in late April, BOX OF FUDGE is available next week for pre-order exclusively at Rhino.com. Presented in an elaborately designed, foil-wrapped package, the set is offered for a price of $79.98 and also comes with an 11×17 replica Family Dog poster from one of the band’s shows.
The first two discs flow mostly in chronological order, beginning with Vanilla Fudge’s earliest recordings, including the band’s first single with Atco, “Take Me For A Little While.” It continues with selections from the group’s self-titled debut, The Beat Goes On (1968), Renaissance (1968), Near The Beginning (1969), and Rock & Roll (1969), plus two songs from Mystery, the band’s brief 1984 reunion. Along with gathering a number of singles, the collection also marks the debut of the previously unreleased “Heartache Jam,” originally recorded in 1969.
The final two discs spotlight Vanilla Fudge onstage in its prime with an unreleased recording of the band welcoming the arrival of 1969 with a New Year’s concert at the Fillmore West. Recorded shortly before the quartet’s fourth album was released, the show draws on The Fudge’s early days for “People Get Ready” and “Ticket To Ride” as well as its forthcoming album Near The Beginning with “Shotgun” and an epic version—more than 20 minutes—of “Break Song.”
The collection concludes with “Love Jam,” “Movin’On,” and “VF Studio Jam,” a trio of previously unreleased tracks recorded in New York at Atlantic Recording Studios just months before the original quartet splintered.