The Art (evolved from the VIPs, a rhythm and blues band formed in 1964)
were one of the bands that took advantage of
the psychedelic boom of 1967 when they recorded
the album Supernatural Fairy Tales (Island, 1967), containing
Love Is Real.
The Art, led by Mike Harrison on vocals and Luther Grosvenor on guitar,
met American keyboardist Gary Wright and changed name to Spooky Tooth to
record It's All About (Island, 1968), also known as Tobacco Road.
In the years of Traffic and Family, they played progressive-rock with a harder edge, one year ahead of
Spooky Two (1969) delivered granite-heavy blues for guitar and organ, best materialized in the nine wild minutes of Evil Woman, while That Was Only Yesterday and Better By You Better Than Me displayed their AOR capabilities.
The band even composed a rock mass, Ceremony (1970), thanks to assistance from electronic pioneer and avantgarde composer Pierre Henry. Coming on the heels of the Electric Prunes' Mass In F Minor and the Who's rock opera Tommy, it was a bold concept that wed the aesthetics of art-rock with the vibrations of hard-rock.
Wright left after this album to launch Wonderwheel and his solo career with three mediocre albums: Extraction (A&M, 1970), Footprint (A&M, 1971), Ring Of Changes (A&M, 1972). Thus Spooky Tooth's line-up underwent some major reorganization around Harrison and The Last Puff (1970) was a very minor work (The Wrong Time).
Wright rejoined to Spooky Tooth in time for You Broke My Heart (1972), featuring Mick Jones on guitar (a former Wonderwheel, and a former collaborator of French rocker Johnny Hallyday, and a former surfer with Nero and the Gladiators in the 1960s) and Witness (1973).
Vocalist and keyboardist Mike Patto replaced Harrison and Wright for The Mirror (1974), while Wright released The Dream Weaver (Warner Brothers, 1975), whose title-track and Love Is Alive coined a kind of soft-rock for the living room with electronic arrangements that predated synth-pop by a few years. Subsequent albums Light Of Smiles (Warner Brothers, 1976), Touch & Gone (Warner Brothers, 1977), Headin' Home (Warner Brothers, 1979), The Right Place(Warner Brothers, 1981), leaned more and more towards new-age music. In the 1990s Wright will resurface as an ethnic musician with First Signs Of Life (Triloka, 1995).
The Spooky Tooth reunited (the original line-up except for Wright) to record Cross Purpose (Ruf, 1999).
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