Bong-rattling riffs, Cream-y vocals, a ridiculously locked-in rhythm section and killer covers of “Morning Dew” and “Last Train To Clarksville”? The Damnation of Adam Blessing should’ve been bigger than Grand Funk! Things didn’t work out that way, of course, but now we can dig back into the Cleveland band’s two stellar LPs, which have been lovingly reissued on wax by Exit Stencil (the first editions to have been drawn from the master tapes).
The Damnation of Adam Blessing’s sound is a good example of transitional hard rock – still indebted to the Yardbirds and Hendrix, perhaps, but looking ahead to heavier, Sabbath-style grooves. It’s an absolutely perfect mix, and both the self-titled debut (1969) and Second Damnation (1970) show off the skills of a band bursting at the seams with talent and charisma, whether it’s the psych-ed out “Cookbook” or the ferociously choogling “Back to the River.” And it has to be said – Second Damnation features one of the greatest inner gatefold photos of all time. Damn good stuff. words / t wilcox