Wednesday, 8 April 2020
Jefferson Airplane - Volunteers (1969)
The fifth album from this US band.
The band was a sextet on this album with a lineup of drums, percussion, bass, guitars, piano, organ and vocals.
Some guest musicians helped out on congas, percussion, organ, guitars, steel guitars, piano and vocals.
The band still had the classic lineup with Balin, Kaukonen, Kantner, Slick, Casady and Dryden. This is indeed the final album with this lineup. Balin left the band after an unpleasant experience at the Altamont Festival.
This album was written, recorded and released in the middle of the Vietnam war. Jefferson Airplane was one of the many bands bitterly opposed to this war and they wanted to name this album Volunteers Of America. Their record label vetoed this idea.
The album art-work and the lyrics very much get the ideas across, though. This is a war album, an anti-war album.
The music on this album is a blend of west coast psych and music in the vein of Crosby, Stills & Nash.
There is a lot of vocal harmonies and biting vocals here. The vocals are underpinned by some guitars and good rhythms. The music is biting sarcastic at times.
The overall quality of the songs are really good. There are a lot of good details here and the vocal harmonies are really great. This is an album well worth checking out.