TOUCH - Touch

Like Ladies W.C., I had this 1969 album many years ago, and did not really like it enough to keep it. There was one track that stood out which I copied onto a compilation tape, and that was the excellent instrumental 'Down At Circe's Place', but I thought that the rest was pretty unmemorable. I now have the chance to re-evaluate it with its re-appearance on CD, and see if my opinions have changed. Well, yes they have, as the first track 'We Feel Fine' is a fine blend of organ and guitar on a good rocker, and I can't really think why I didn't like it first time around. That also applies to the next track, the gentle piano-led 'Friendly Birds', but with 'Miss Teach' I can begin to remember why, as it is the sort of jaunty commercial pop that I dislike. This is followed by 'Circe's Place', which still sounds superb, and 'Alesha And Others', which is a gentle piano ballad, leading into the epic 'Seventy Five', which was one of the first songs that Don Gallucci wrote for his new band. At over eleven minutes long it is very much of its time, and in being not wholly successful could be the reason that I passed last time. It does have its moments, though, and on hearing it again perhaps I was a bit harsh. For many years I though that this US band were British, but that is possibly because they were the first American band to be released in the UK on the Deram label. Apparently Gallucci started his musical career with The Kingsmen (of 'Louie Louie' fame), before forming Touch in 1967, trying to appeal to a more mature audience. Rounding off the CD we get five bonus tracks - two live studio demos of album tracks, an unreleased single, and two lengthy new pieces, both of which somewhat outstay their welcome. Overall, though, an album that was worth reacquainting myself with.