The 13th Floor Elevators* ‎– The Psychedelic Sounds Of The 13th Floor Elevators

International Artists ‎– IA-LP-1, International Artists ‎– L.P. - 1A - No.1
Vinyl, LP, Album, Stereo

Tracklist Hide Credits

A1 You're Gonna Miss Me
Producer – Gordon BynumWritten-By – Rocky Ericson*
A2 Roller Coaster
Written-By – R. Ericson*, T. Hall*
A3 Splash 1 (Now I'm Home)
Written-By – C. Hall*, R. Ericson*
A4 Reverberation
Written-By – R. Ericson*, S. Sutherland*, T. Hall*
A5 Don't Fall Down
Written-By – R. Ericson*, T. Hall*
B1 Fire Engine
Written-By – R. Ericson*, S. Sutherland*, T. Hall*
B2 Thru The Rhythm
Written-By – S. Sutherland*, T. Hall*
B3 You Don't Know
Written-By – John St. Powell*
B4 Kingdom Of Heaven
Written-By – John St. Powell*
B5 Monkey Island
Written-By – John St. Powell*
B6 Tried To Hide
Written-By – S. Sutherland*, T. Hall*

Companies, etc.



Also released in mono with the same catalogue number.
First on label, second on back cover.
Credits differ slightly between the cover and the label: these are taken from the cover.
Engineered at Summit Sound Studio - Dallas, Texas"
"All tunes in this L.P. Published by: TAPIER MUSIC CORP. B.M.I. - Houston, Texas"


In the runout etching on side B appears a crossed-out character after the ''A''.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Matrix / Runout (Runout etching side A): (S) 1-A #1 B1 SIDE 1
  • Matrix / Runout (Runout etching side B): (S) 1-A #1 B1 SIDE 2


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April 24, 2013

The tragic irony behind Roger Kynard "Roky" Erickson's vaunted legacy as the father of psychedelic rock is that the very things that make him so important to so many fans and that keep him prominent in so many listeners' memories also ensured him a hard life spent in sanitariums and studios. Granted, for many that hard life is an integral part of his cachet: Arrested in 1969 and charged with possession, Erickson pleaded insanity rather than face jail time, and was committed to Rusk State Hospital. As legend has it, his mind was so devastated by the shock therapies and medications that he spent the rest of his life battling serious mental illness that left him easy prey for unscrupulous record promoters (who had him sign away his royalties for numerous reissues) and sabotaged almost every attempt at a comeback.There are, of course, scores of 1960s cautionary tales, but the music Erickson helped to make and the lifestyle he promoted with the 13th Floor Elevators explicitly advocated drug use as mind expansion, as true spiritual freedom-- a bunk idea he shared with Jim Morrison, although even at his most obtuse, Erickson never descended to the empty-headed blathering and lounge-act crooning that were the hallmarks of the celebrated Lizard King. Erickson's psychedelia was not passive aural wallpapers-- all pretty shapes and colors to listen to while tripping-- but an active force of social, musical, and psychological change. Aside from the infamous album starter "You're Gonna Miss Me", which Erickson wrote for his previous band the Spades before rerecording with the 13th Floor Elevators, The Psychedelic Sounds is awash in narcotic philosophy. And in case you miss it, Tommy Hall explains it all in his original liner notes.
However, what makes The Psychedelic Sounds powerful 40 years later isn't its questionable philosophy but, as the title makes clear, its psychedelic sound. The 13th Floor Elevators were a remarkable band: Erickson's wild-man vocals create an atmosphere where unfettered mayhem reigns. Stacy Sutherland's piercing guitar puts a dark mood on "Roller Coaster" and "Reverberation (Doubt)", while drummer John Ike Walton ties it all together. It's a dynamic that's even more pronounced on the eight live tracks on this UK reissue, which were recorded in San Francisco following the album's release. Their covers of Solomon Burke's "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love", the Beatles' "The Word", and even their take on that '60s live staple "Gloria", are anything but placid drugs trips or by-the-numbers re-creation; instead, the songs get the full psychedelic treatment as the Elevators play them like they're handling snakes.
As with any historical legacy, however, Erickson's reputation as the father of psychedelia is largely oversimplified. He was a late addition to the 13th Floor Elevators, which was the brainchild of Tommy Hall. Hall's acid poetry informs every song on The Psychedelic Sounds (aside from "You're Gonna Miss Me", Erickson's lone contribution). And, perhaps most important, it was Hall who plugged in his jug and provided the psychedelic sound that evokes the chemical weightlessness of a trip. It's the wiggedly-wiggedly of a dream sequence, the sound of your hands melting or of a dimensional door squeaking open. That the 13th Floor Elevators could translate that concept into an aural sensation is perhaps the root of their reputation and would have been impossible without Hall.
Erickson, however, undoubtedly was a creative force in the band, as a vocalist on Psychedelic Sounds and also as a songwriter on the follow-up, Easter Everywhere. Selections from those two albums, as well as from subsequent aborted comebacks, are collected on the two-disk I Have Always Been Here: The Roky Erickson Story, which is, unbelievably, the first overview of his long, strange career. Erickson's is a long career to capture on only two disks, but Shout! Factory makes judicious use of the space not only to provide a chronology of Erickson's development over four decades, but also to paint him as a sort of outsider artist rather than as a victim.
Emphasizing Erickson's solo output over his reputation-making Elevators material, the collection includes only a handful of tracks from The Psychedelic Sounds and Easter Everywhere. "Slip Inside This House" is a masterpiece of psychedelic inventiveness, a spacey blues jam that circles back on itself and eats its tail. On "I Had to Tell You" and the heartbreaking same-session outtake "Right Track Now", Erickson foregoes his usual hysterical vocals for a much more direct, reflective approach.
But I Have Always Been Here is more interested in Erickson's less-explored post-Elevators period, roughly from the mid-70s to the present. Whether solo or with the Aliens, he churned out potent and patently weird Texas blues rock similar to Stevie Ray Vaughn or early ZZ Top and often mimicked the vocal hiccups of fellow Texan Buddy Holly. In the 1970s, Erickson became fascinated with science fiction, re-creating B-movies with songs like "Creature With the Atom Brain" and "Stand for the Fire Demon". What makes these songs so kick-ass is that it's the sound of someone going right off the page of the rock script-- like so many B-movie auteurs of the '60s (Ray Dennis Steckler and Hal Warren, ill-fated director of Manos: The Hands of Fate, come to mind), he's doing whatever he wants with no one to tell him that's not how it's done.
As a result, very few of the songs on I Have Always Been Here Before depend for their impact on the listener's knowledge of Erickson's mental health at the time. This is perhaps the singer's true achievement, which this compilation generously spotlights: even when he was suffering, his strange music sounds wholly idiosyncratic and spiritually curious, the sound of a man who won't let the world's ugliness diminish his enjoyment of life or hinder his search for something solid and secure..

Trace back half a different sub-strains of alternative music, and The 13th Floor Elevators were lurking their at the beginnings. A group of Austin, Texas teenagers doped up to their eyeballs on péyote and LSD, they coin the term 'psychedelic rock' to describe their swirling, heavily-reverberated, electrified take on jug-band blues, thereby giving name to a whole new musical ideology.Yet, the legacy they leave behind from their short, troubled tenure is the eternal single "You're Gonna Miss Me," which earns pride of place in Nuggets lore, and becomes a staple of garage-rockers for the next half-century. Those searching for the earliest vestiges of punk-rock have often turned to "You're Gonna Miss Me," hearing in the urgent, insistent, ready-to-explode screams of frontman Roky Erickson a voice so rough and raw that it distilled the entire punk spirit in its hoarse bleatings.Erickson's voice shall forever be the Elevators' defining instrument, but his spooked wail wasn't the only element of their sound rewriting the tropes of rock'n'roll. Where their peers —if they really had any— were clinging to skiffle riffs, Elevators guitarist Stacy Sutherland played a dark, gnarly guitar, ran through swathes of reverberation and crackling with a peaking, snarling, sinister tone. And then there was Tommy Hall and his 'electrified jug,' in which he made spooky mouth noises inside a mic'd up jug, these amplified echoes creating bizarre patterns of unquantifiable arrhythmia across 13th Floor Elevator songs. And then there was everything Hall stood for, and all that he hoped the band to be.
Trip the Life Fantastic

Like The Monks, fellow genre-minting trailblazers of the mid-'60s, The 13th Floor Elevators benefited greatly —whilst simultaneously being destroyed by— conceptual guidance. Hall was a philosophy undergrad from the University of Texas who, awakened to the mystical yearnings of the era, became a fervent proponent of seeking enlightenment through LSD use. Hall served as the band's ideas man, and his wife Clementine Hall wrote the band's lyrics; which, at their simplest, are simple plays on drug culture, comparing rides on Fire Engines and Roller Coasters to getting high.
"After your trip life opens up," Erickson hollers, like Little Richard lost in a hall of mirrors, during "Roller Coaster"'s wild five-minute ride, "you know more than you thought you knew." Like, woah! Generations of musicians taking drugs to make music to take drugs to —from Television to the entire paisley underground, Spacemen 3 to Black Lips— have fallen under the influence of these Psychedelic Sounds. Not because of a sense of mindless, age-of-Aquarius optimism, but because, if you listen closely, there's darkness and danger in every note.
The Halls were interested in creating a mental utopia, about freeing the American mind from the bondage of McCarthy-era thinking, but they were forever mindful of what they were rebelling against, the feelings that were pushing them in that direction. The 13th Floor Elevators were dab hands at teenaged ennui, sarcasm, self-loathing, and —not surprisingly— a feeling of dislocation bordering on paranoia. In short, the lyrical building-blocks of so much alternative rock..