Buying the albums sampled on “You Can All Join In”.
Musically, this is an excellent and extraordinary album. We shall embark on a detailed consideration of the tracks next time, but here we limit ourselves to some general observations.
This was certainly the first “prog-rock” LP to be released on the Island label, and the only one never to be released in stereo. More importantly, it was one of the first such records anywhere.
The year was 1967, in the spring of which The Beatles had surprised the world with “Sergeant Pepper”, and Pink Floyd had burst upon the planet with “Piper At The Gates Of Dawn”, at this time being Syd Barrett with a backing band. Slightly later that year Traffic had come along with “Mr Fantasy”. Each of these three records, particularly the Pink Floyd one, contained seeds of prog-rock, or “the underground” as it was more commonly known in those days. However, in terms of the delightful originality, inventiveness and musicianship which typically characterized such music, nothing touched the Art record. I therefore submit that it was the first ever prog-rock album.