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Tuesday, August 7, 2007
ANDROMEDA - Andromeda

(Extracts taken from the 'Atomic Rooster Story' available from:
Keep On Rockin’ the 70s fanzine, 13 Heswall Ave St. Helens, Merseyside, WA9 4Dk, UK)

n the late sixties ex-Attack guitarist/vocalist John Cann teamed up with Mike Hawkesworth
to record some songs written by two guys who lived nearby and who had gained a record deal as The 5 Day Week Straw People. The actual album was recorded on a mobile studio, set up ii a local children's playground. They were each paid £25 for the session. It was never a serious undertaking but it did lead to the formation of Andromeda.
Andromeda was formed by John Cann (guitar/vocals), Mike Hawkesworth (bass/vocals) and Jack McCulloch (drums), brother of Jimmy (Wings) In 1968. They played the circuit of clubs and colleges relentlessly and built up a good cult following. The band did a session for Jonn Peel's Top Gear and indeed almost signed for his Dandelion label after the initial demos. Jack McCulloch was replaced by Ian McLane. For some reason, Dandelion didn't take kindly to this, and failed to take them on the books. Track Records were also interested but wanted Pete Townshend to produce their first album. The band being young and innocent (!) declined the deal, wanting to produce it themselves. They finally signed to RCA, producing one album and a single that were well received and attracted a lot of attention in the music press. The music was fairly progressive, heavy rock and is still popular today, selling for healthy sums on the collectors' markets. Unfortunately, RCA lost interest in the band, just as John Cann heard Atomic Rooster were auditioning for a lead guitarist.
For there to be a winner there has to be a loser. John Cann's joining of Atomic Rooster lead to their chart success with the songs 'Tomorrow Night’ and 'Devil's Answer', and the loser had to be the now defunct Andromeda who, like The Attack, never achieved the heights their talent deserved.
The band built up an enormous cult following in the late sixties and their reputation began to grow once again in the mid eighties. Their recordings have been much sought after as their music was a special type of 'Hard Rock', and recently collectors have paid up to £200 to purchase just one copy of Andromeda's first LP.

My opinion: one of the greatest psych/hard rock LPs. John Cann's guitar style is indeed unique, sometimes dissonant but with attitude. The tracks are all excellent and quite ahead of their time in terms of construction. Try to locate the vinyl (prepare to pay loads of money but it's really worth). Bonus tracks included.


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