Unconditionally Guaranteed

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Unconditionally Guaranteed
Unconditionally Guaranteed cover.jpg
Studio album by Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band
Released April 1974
Recorded 1974
Hollywood Sound, L.A., CA
Genre Rock
Length 31:14
Label Mercury (US), Virgin (UK)
Producer Andy DiMartino
Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band chronology
Clear Spot
(1972)Clear Spot1972
Unconditionally Guaranteed
(1974)
Bluejeans & Moonbeams
(1974)Bluejeans & Moonbeams1974
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau B−[2]
Rolling Stone Album Guide (1992) 2.5/5 stars[3]
Sounds (mixed)[4]

Unconditionally Guaranteed is the eighth LP by Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band, originally released in 1974. It was recorded at Hollywood Sound, Los Angeles.

Upon release it was criticised for being too commercial; even so, it failed to give Beefheart any real chart success, peaking at #192 on the Billboard Top 200.

Magic Band quits[edit]

Immediately after recording of the album the entire Magic Band quit – as biographer Mike Barnes has stated, "[Beefheart] was in effect sacked by his own group."[5] They had become increasingly disenchanted with the lack of financial success, having subsisted on food stamps and donations from their parents, and with Beefheart's tyrannical control over the group. In the words of guitarist Bill Harkleroad "we had had enough of him treating us like punching bags."[6]

The album's lackluster and unchallenging music was the last straw. Drummer Art Tripp recalled, "When the band finally got our album copies, we were horrified. As we listened, it was as though each song was worse than the one which preceded it."[7]

Beefheart disowns[edit]

After his contract with Mercury Records ended at the end of 1974, Beefheart disowned the record along with its successor Bluejeans & Moonbeams. He urged his fans to "take copies back for a refund" and called the albums "horrible and vulgar".[8]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Don and Jan Van Vliet and Andy DiMartino.

No. Title Length
1. "Upon the My-O-My" 2:43
2. "Sugar Bowl" 2:13
3. "New Electric Ride" 3:02
4. "Magic Be" 2:55
5. "Happy Love Song" 3:54
6. "Full Moon, Hot Sun" 2:19
7. "I Got Love on My Mind" 3:08
8. "This Is the Day" 4:51
9. "Lazy Music" 2:49
10. "Peaches" 3:20

Personnel[edit]

Additional personnel
  • Mark Marcellino – keyboards
  • Andy DiMartino – acoustic guitar
  • Del Simmons – tenor sax, flute

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mason, S. (2011). "Unconditionally Guaranteed - Captain Beefheart & the Magic Band". AllMusic.com. Retrieved 22 July 2011. 
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert (2011). "Captain Beefheart". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 22 July 2011. 
  3. ^ DeCurtis, Anthony (1992). The Rolling Stone Album Guide. New York: Random House. ISBN 0-679-73729-4. 
  4. ^ S.P. (2011). "Giant Step For The Captain – Unconditionally Guaranteed review". Captain Beefheart Radar Station. Retrieved October 31, 2015. 
  5. ^ Barnes, Mike (2000). Captain Beefheart. London: Quartet Books. ISBN 0-7043-8073-0. 
  6. ^ Harkelroad, Bill (1998). Lunar Notes. Wembley, Middx: SAF Publications. ISBN 0-946719-21-7. 
  7. ^ Froy, Steve (2006). "Art Tripp is Ed Marimba is Ted Cactus". Captain Beefheart Radar Station. Retrieved October 31, 2015. 
  8. ^ Weitzman, Steve (1975). "Zappa and the Captain Cook". Captain Beefheart Radar Station. Retrieved October 31, 2015.