Intervention Records will soon be giving the deluxe audiophile treatment on both hybrid stereo SACD (playable on all CD players) and 180-gram vinyl LP to a bona fide country-rock classic. The Flying Burrito Brothers’ 1969 A&M Records release The Gilded Palace of Sin remains a landmark album, fusing genres to create something wholly new – “Cosmic American Music,” as Gram Parsons memorably named it. It will arrive on LP in May and later in the year on SACD.
Though the group’s original incarnation was short-lived, The Flying Burrito Brothers inspired generations to come. The Burritos had their roots in The Byrds, formed by guitarist-singer-songwriters Chris Hillman and Gram Parsons of that band with bassist Chris Ethridge and pedal steel guitarist “Sneaky” Pete Kleinow in 1968. Yet this line-up recorded just one album, The Gilded Palace of Sin, before the departure of bassist Ethridge. Gilded Palace introduced a brace of band originals blending R&B, country-and-western, and rock-and-roll, and also featured well-chosen covers of the Dan Penn/Chips Moman classics “The Dark End of the Street” and “Do Right Woman.” Though the original release only peaked in the lower reaches of the Billboard 200 and failed to yield any hit singles, artists across multiple generations took notice – from Bob Dylan to Elvis Costello, The Eagles to Wilco. Its stature has only grown over the years.
Following Ethridge’s farewell, Chris Hillman moved over to bass, future Eagle Bernie Leadon joined on guitar, and another ex-Byrd, Michael Clarke, joined on drums. The group then recorded 1970’s Burrito Deluxe, but internal strife led founder Parsons to decamp for a solo career which would be cut short by his untimely death. Rick Roberts joined the remaining four members for 1971’s self-titled album, but after 1972’s Last of the Red Hot Burritos live album, the band would break up. By the time of Red Hot, Leadon and Kleinow had also jumped ship, with Hillman, Roberts and Clarke joined by Al Perkins and Kenny Wertz on guitars. A group that once held so much promise had crashed and burned, though the Burritos would be Flying Again in 1975, with yet more personnel changes.
The era-defining The Gilded Palace of Sin captures the original group on a stirring collection of Americana. Intervention’s reissues have been remastered by Kevin Gray from the best source available: a 1/2″ safety copy of the original master tape as provided by Universal Music. The LP (pressed at RTI) has been remastered in 100% AAA analog fashion, and the SACD was remastered directly from analog tape to DSD. As with previous Intervention releases, the packaging will be similarly lavish. The LP will boast a tip-on-style jacket, printed by Stoughton, and the SACD will be housed in a Super Jewel Box.
Watch this space for Amazon pre-order links once available! In the meantime, you can pre-order the LP directly from Intervention Records at the links below, and look for a review of Intervention’s recent release from Erasure soon!
The Flying Burrito Brothers, The Gilded Palace of Sin (A&M SP 4175, 1969 – reissued Intervention Records, 2017)
- Christine’s Tune
- Sin City
- Do Right Woman
- Dark End of the Street
- My Uncle
- Hot Burrito # 1
- Hot Burrito # 2
- Do You Know How It Feels
- Hippie Boy