Heavy (Iron Butterfly album)

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Heavy
Studio album by Iron Butterfly
Released January 22, 1968
Recorded October 1967
Genre Psychedelic rock, blues rock, acid rock
Length 30:45
Label Atco
Producer Charles Greene; Brian Stone
Iron Butterfly chronology
Heavy
(1968)
In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida
(1968)

Heavy is the debut studio album by the rock band Iron Butterfly, released in early 1968. Most of the songs are strikingly simple, based on two or three riffs. The lyrics are also simple; with the exceptions of "Unconscious Power" and "Gentle as it May Seem", each song has but a single verse of eight lines or less, repeated in whole or in part as needed.

The first two tracks, "Possession" and "Unconscious Power", were released as the respective sides of a single.

Three of the group's members (Jerry Penrod, Darryl DeLoach and Danny Weis) left the band shortly after the album was recorded, leaving Ingle and Bushy to find replacements. Despite being a debut album with no hit single to provide an entry point for the casual listener, Heavy was a commercial success, reaching #78 on the Billboard Charts[1] and eventually going Gold in the US.

Contrary to rumor, tambourine player Darryl DeLoach contributed lead vocals to only a few songs on Heavy. As with all of Iron Butterfly's albums prior to Scorching Beauty, most of the lead vocals are by Doug Ingle.

Cover art[edit]

The album's artwork depicts the band members playing their instruments beside a large monument of a human ear. It was designed by Armando Busich (artwork) and Joe Ravetz (photography).

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[2]

Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine rated Heavy three-and-a-half out of five stars. He stated that "most of the album was not particularly well written" but that "the band's overwhelmingly loud sonic attack occasionally made up for the weakness in the material."[2]

Track listing[edit]

Unlike most albums of the time (including Iron Butterfly's other releases), the songwriting credits on the sleeve of Heavy differentiate between who wrote the music and who wrote the lyrics.

Side one
No. Title Lyrics Music Lead Vocals Length
1. "Possession"   Doug Ingle Doug Ingle Ingle 2:45
2. "Unconscious Power"   Ron Bushy Ingle, Danny Weis Ingle 2:32
3. "Get Out of My Life, Woman"   Allen Toussaint Allen Toussaint Ingle 3:58
4. "Gentle As It May Seem"   Darryl DeLoach Weis DeLoach 2:25
5. "You Can't Win"   DeLoach Weis Ingle 2:41
Side two
No. Title Lyrics Music Lead Vocals Length
1. "So-Lo"   DeLoach Ingle DeLoach 4:05
2. "Look for the Sun"   DeLoach Ingle, Weis Penrod, DeLoach, Ingle 2:14
3. "Fields of Sun"   DeLoach Ingle Ingle 3:12
4. "Stamped Ideas"   DeLoach Ingle DeLoach 2:08
5. "Iron Butterfly Theme"   none Ingle none 4:34

Singles[edit]

US singles
  • "Unconscious Power" b/w "Possession"
  • "Iron Butterfly Theme", "Possession" b/w "Get Out of My Life, Woman", "Unconscious Power" (Radio EP)
International singles
  • "Iron Butterfly Theme" b/w "So-Lo"

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Joynson, Vernon (1995). Fuzz, Acid, & Flowers. London: Borderline Books.
  2. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Heavy - Iron Butterfly at AllMusic. Retrieved July 5, 2011.