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June 5th, 2009

Pretty Things – Death

Allow me to go out on a limb for a moment and say that I think The Pretty Things album S.F. Sorrow is the best psychedelic album of the 60’s. If you dig Grizzly Bear, I think they took a page or two from many of the innovations the Pretty Things created.

Exhibit A

The Pretty Things sing “Death” from their album S.F. sorrow in France in 1968:


  1. Damn right, Devin, there’s no psych album that stands up so well to repeated listening and still knocks you cold each time. And there’s some pretty stiff competition, after all.

    Great vid!

    Comment by Jeremy — June 5, 2009 @ 9:06 pm
  2. I agree. While I do enjoy Grizzly Bear, (as they are talented musicians and decent song-smiths) they certainly don’t match up to the Pretty Things or S.F. Sorrow (and Emotions and Parachute – both really great albums as well). I wouldn’t knock Grizzly Bear completely – I don’t think them boring, a little watered down maybe. Although if I were to choose a band I would certainly choose The Pretty Things. Great post though… Death just so happens to be a favorite of mine.

    Comment by David — June 5, 2009 @ 10:17 pm
  3. I know it’s some lofty expectations for anyone to live up to the greatness of the Pretty Things work on S.F. Sorrow, and maybe it’s slightly unfair to contrast them to Grizzly Bear but the more I think about it the more I think the comparison is fair. Grizzly Bear have a lot of similar influences as the Pretty Things and I think I get frustrated with them only because that while they often come close to reviving and building upon that ethereal psych melodic foundation the Pretty Things laid, they often just don’t take it anywhere. I think songs like “Knife” were incredibly beautiful, but more recently their melodies seemingly haven’t been tinkered or developed with as much because a lot of the new songs just leave me wondering when a bridge or chorus is going to well up only to never make an appearance.

    Comment by Edvard — June 5, 2009 @ 10:29 pm
  4. I don’t see the comparison between the two at all. The Pretty Things are one of my favorites, they’re far heavier and “rock” than a band like Grizzly Bear, the only similarity that I hear are some vocal harmonies maybe (?) I think Grizzly Bear is an exceptional band and great at what they do but, no need to compare them to the Pretty Things. But the point is… The Pretty Things are fucking rulers! There’s other good footage on youtube beside just this.

    Comment by Bruce Leaf — June 6, 2009 @ 10:06 pm

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