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Charles Manson

Unplugged 9.11.67 Volume 1

Release Date:
Record label: Full Service Record Label
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.


Be Not Afraid
by: scott muenzler

This cd is worth having simply for its candid historical value, particularly in light of the fact that these recordings have been unavailable (in fact, not really known to have existed) until just recently. Although the record company that released this was a bit stingy (this "volume" clocks in at just over 29 minutes, about a third of which is comprised of good ol' Charlie being very high, nervous, and forgetful) and clearly out to squeeze every cent it can out of these recordings (there are 2 other "volumes" out or due to be released soon), they do have a rather unique product to offer.

Recorded two years before his twisted family did its ultimate acts, it has a remarkably clean production. It does not sound like some old Sabbath bootleg from '71, but rather like it was recorded yesterday. I understand that this is quite a step up from the various bootlegs of Manson that have been floating around for years as well.

As for the music itself, it is fairly typical of late 60's one-man acoustical acts. It ain't bad (when he can remember a song in its entirety) but it ain't something you'll wanna hear again and again either. The lyrics are chock full of cliches and rather dumb concepts and innuendos, but at least no one can say there's a lack of variety in this department.

Listening to this stuff, I can't help but see the similarities between it and a lot of the cheesy, simple alternative trash that's so popular on MTV, etc today. If this stuff were done with electric guitars, drums, etc, it would probably sell quite well. With songs like Clang Bang Clang (one of his prison songs), "Lock & Loll" (about a "Chinaboy who digs lock & loll"), and "She Done Turned Me In," it would certainly give an alternative (hehe) to all of that fake whining angst that infects most of mainstream music today. This is definitely entertaining and worth owning, but I feel cheated with only a half hour's worth of it. I won't be chasing after the other two "volumes"