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The all-seeing eye and psychedelia
13th Floor Elevators
The Psychedelic Sounds Of The Thirteenth Floor Elevators, produced by Lelan Rogers, was released on the International Artists label in 1965. Formed in Austin, Texas in 1965 and disbanded in 1968, the 13th Floor Elevators were one of the original acid rock bands. They have also been catagorized as psychedelic or garage rock. The band was created around Tommy Hall who recruited Stacy Sutherland (lead guitar), Benny Thurman (bass), John Ike Walton (drums) and Roky Erickson (guitar/vocalist). After the release of the band’s first album John Ike Walton and Benny Thurman left and were replaced by Danny Thomas (drums) and Ronnie Leatherman (bass). Leatherman was replaced by Danny Galindo in July 1967.
In a series of interviews by Allan Vorda in February 1992 and April 1992 [Psychedelic Psounds: Interviews from A to Z, Borderline Press, UK.], Austin musicians Tary Owens and Powell St. John recalled the origins of the Elevator’s art:
AV: What about the Elevators album cover for the first album, Psychedelic Sounds?
TO: John Cleveland, who was an artist here in Austin, did that great cover. John was a graphic artist here in town who was into creating psychedelic stuff with paint.
AV: Who came up with the logo of the pyramid with the eye? The pyramid and eye logo comes from the back side of a one dollar bill which states "Annuit Coeptis" and has exactly thirteen layers of bricks in the pyramid.
PS: It was one of those arcane symbols of which Tommy was so fond and so vague in explaining. Maybe it had something to do with Scientology. Tommy was very big on Scientology.
TO: Roky and Tommy came up with that idea.
Live "S.F. 66" (bootleg)
Releasing only two albums, The Psychedelic Sounds of The 13th Floor Elevators and Easter Everywhere, International Artists later released Live, a collection of studio pieces with dubbed applause, and Bull Of The Woods. There have been at least five bootleg issues as well as four compilations and a reunion LP entitled Last Concert. Only those noted on this page incorporated the all-seeing eye and pyramid into their cover art.
When asked what his definition of psychedelic music was, Erikson replied "That’s where the pyramid meets the eye." [20th Century Rock and Roll Psychedelia, Scott F Belmer (Belmo". Burlington, Ontario : Collector’s Guide Publishing Inc., n.d. ISBN: 1896522408. p. 40.]
Live Texas 1967 (EP) (Bootleg)
A good indication of the Elevators' influence was a recording compiled by Bill Bentley for Warner Brothers, Where the Pyramid Meets the Eye: A Tribute to Roky Erickson. It consisted of twenty-one different contemporary bands doing covers of Roky and the Elevators' songs.
Acid Visions
A three disk boxed set, Acid Visions: The Complete Collection: Best Of Texas Punk & Psychedelic was release in 1991 [UPC: 09043188072], distributed by Bayside Record Dist.. Compilation producer: Roy C. Ames. Includes liner notes by Peter Buesnell and Roy Ames. Producer: Walt Andrus. The cover also pays homage to the Elevator’s influence on the art of the period
Concert posters


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