Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Iron Butterfly - Heavydotdotdotdot
artworkNow, before you run screaming for the hills, you should know that their original guitarist Danny Weiss grew up on surf music, and played in local garage bands before coming to Iron Butterfly. His use of the reverb tank, which he kicked liberally as required, and his use of damped wet picking for effect demonstrates this clearly. The lone instro here is rife with surfisms strewn among the pomp and smoke of the "Iron Butterfly Theme." These sessions were recorded at Gold Star.

Doug Ingles almost operatic pomp style vocals were alone on the rock scene at the time, and the band's sound was nothing short of revolutionary. The band first appeared on Sunset Strip in 1965, two years before "Iron Butterfly Theme" flooded across the AM radio dial in 1967. It was in 1968 following successful tours with Jefferson Airplane and the Doors that "Inna Godda Da Vida" became the last anthem of the AM radio generation. Erik Keith Brann eventually replaced Danny Weiss on guitar in 1969. Brann brought in even more surf influence. The Ball album, while containing no instros, features several surf remnants, some subtle, some blatant. The intro to "In The Time Of Our Lives" is pure "Third Star To The Left," and "Filled With Fear" is rife with surf guitar. This is carried forth on the insanely edgy 1970 Iron Butterfly Live album, with even more pomp and power.

The scientific name for the band is Feric Mariposa.
Picks: Iron Butterfly Theme

Track by Track Review


Iron Butterfly Theme dotdotdotdot
Pre Metal Post Surf Psychedelic (Instrumental)

The "Iron Butterfly Theme" is a prime example of the crushing intersection between pre-metal and post surf where psychedelia frequently evolved. many early psych outings used surf reverb in a more pompous style because of the images it was capable of evoking. This is thee definitive track. Its limbering cadence and ultra heavy sustain, and utterly dark imagery are superb. While the band was generally defined by "Inna Godda Da Vida," this is quintessential Iron Butterfly in my book. It invokes slow motion images of surf wars on longboards on huge dark walls against a gray stormy sky.