Pretties for You

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Pretties for You
Alice Cooper - Pretties for You.jpg
Studio album by Alice Cooper
Released June 30, 1969[1]
Recorded 1968
Studio Whitney Studios, Los Angeles[2]
Genre Hard rock, acid rock,[3][4] psychedelic rock, progressive rock[5]
Length 38:02
Label Straight
Producer Ian Underwood, Herb Cohen
Alice Cooper chronology
Pretties for You
(1969)
Easy Action
(1970)Easy Action1970
Singles from Pretties for You
  1. "Reflected"
    Released: May 19, 1969

Pretties for You is the debut album by Alice Cooper. It was released in June 1969 by Straight Records. At this time, the name "Alice Cooper" referred to the band, not its lead singer Vincent Furnier, although he was later also known as Alice Cooper. The music has a psychedelic flavor to it; the group had yet to develop the more concise hard rock sound that they would become famous for. Most of the tracks feature unusual time signatures and arrangements, jarring syncopation, expressive dynamics, sound effects, and an eclectic range of music influences. A few songs, such as "Levity Ball," show the influence of Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd, with whom Alice Cooper [clarification needed] hung out during the British group's U.S. tour.[6] Too bizarre and avant-garde for its time, Pretties for You was a critical and commercial failure, only briefly denting the Billboard Top 200, and none of its songs have ever been played live by Cooper since the release of the band's breakthrough album Love It to Death.[7]

The song "Reflected", Alice Cooper's first single, was later rewritten as "Elected" (which featured on their 1973 album Billion Dollar Babies).

The artwork for this album is a painting by Edward Beardsley.[8] It was originally hanging on the wall of the living room in Frank Zappa's house.[9] His wife Gail Zappa claims that it was later stolen from them.[10]

Production[edit]

According to Alice Cooper's band manager, Shep Gordon, when recording at Whitney Studios in Burbank, Frank Zappa left his brother in charge of recording while Zappa left the studio. Zappa returned later that day and informed them the album was finished, having only recorded the band rehearsing. Gordon states that there was no producer during recording, that the band had no complete songs written, that Zappa "didn't spend 5 minutes in the studio" and never asked to hear their material, and that the band's debut album was made up entirely of that rehearsal recording. [11]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Alice Cooper, Glen Buxton, Michael Bruce, Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith.

Side One

  1. "Titanic Overture" – 1:12
  2. "10 Minutes Before the Worm" – 1:39
  3. "Sing Low, Sweet Cheerio" – 5:42
  4. "Today Mueller" – 1:48
  5. "Living" – 3:12
  6. "Fields of Regret" – 5:44

Side Two

  1. "No Longer Umpire" – 2:02
  2. "Levity Ball" – 4:39
  3. "B.B. on Mars" – 1:17
  4. "Reflected" – 3:17
  5. "Apple Bush" – 3:08
  6. "Earwigs to Eternity" – 1:19
  7. "Changing Arranging" – 3:03

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[12]
Rolling Stone (unfavorable)[13]

Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine rated Pretties for You three-and-a-half out of five stars. He stated that the album "was an earnest but flawed stab at psychedelia that occasionally caught fire."[12] Lester Bangs of Rolling Stone delivered an unfavorable review. He explained that there are no "[hints] of life, spontaneity, joy, rage, or any kind of authentic passion or conviction." However, he stated that "within the context of [Alice Cooper's] self-imposed limitations, the album is listenable." He concluded the review by saying that "Alice Cooper's music is, for this reviewer at any rate, totally dispensable."[13]

Live covers[edit]

On November 8, 2015 the entire record was performed live at The Stone in NYC as part of Nick Didkovsky's residency there.[14] Neal Smith, Dennis Dunaway and Cindy Smith Dunaway were in attendance. Dennis Dunaway joined the band for "Nobody Likes Me" as an encore, a song that was originally slated to be on the record.

Personnel[edit]

Alice Cooper band

Charts[edit]

Year Chart Position
1969 Billboard Pop Albums 193

References[edit]

  1. ^ Alice Cooper Box Set
  2. ^ http://globalia.net/donlope/fz/notes/Hot_Rats.html
  3. ^ Love It to Death at AllMusic. Retrieved February 7, 2017.
  4. ^ Buckley, Peter (2003). The Rough Guide to Rock. Rough Guides. Retrieved 7 February 2017. 
  5. ^ Peter Buckley, The Rough Guide to Rock, Rough Guides, 2003, p.224 ISBN 1-84353-105-4
  6. ^ Liner notes to The Life and Death of Alice Cooper box set, p. 62.
  7. ^ Alice Cooper Tour Archive
  8. ^ "Pretties For You". Sickthingsuk.co.uk. Retrieved 2010-04-26. 
  9. ^ "LIFE: Musician Frank Zappa (R) w. parents (L-R... - Hosted by Google". Images.google.com. Retrieved 2010-04-26. 
  10. ^ "Re: Questions about Alice Master Tapes". 
  11. ^ http://www.wtfpod.com/podcast/episode-758-shep-gordon
  12. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Pretties for You - Alice Cooper at AllMusic. Retrieved July 6, 2011.
  13. ^ a b Bangs, Lester (12 July 1969). "Records". Rolling Stone. San Francisco: Straight Arrow Publishers, Inc. (37): 36–37. Retrieved 25 August 2015. 
  14. ^ "Pretties For You LIVE". didkovsky.com. Retrieved 2016-07-06.