Thomas & Richard Frost Visualize

Thomas & Richard Frost Visualize
The annals of pop are rife with dubious legends about "great, lost” albums that, had they been released in their time, would have irrevocably altered the cultural landscape, or at least provided a pleasant distraction. But the hysterical archaeological practices of the reissue industry have, more often than not, simply proven that one man’s Holy Grail is another’s Heaven’s Gate. Visualize, however, is so thoroughly an exception to the rule that its 30-plus years of neglect isn’t a head-scratcher, so much as a mind-boggler. Shelved in 1970 when its record label was abruptly shut down by parent company United Artists, this California duo’s sole long-player is a scarily ambitious audio travelogue of ersatz Hollywood psychedelia and Pet Sounds-inspired symphonic grandeur. Straddling the precarious divide between rock and easy listening that the Left Banke, the Hollies and early Bee Gees negotiated so well, the likes of "Where Did Yesterday Go?” and "Hello Stranger” are timeless number ones from a better revisionist past. And the fact that the ravishing and epic "Everyday Judy” — a would-be career peak for most of their late ’60s peers — was deemed an outtake proves that the Frosts presided over some serious quality control. (Rev-Ola)