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Saturday, 4 April 2015

Post 570 - Healing Force - Golden Miles - The Gully

Healing Force was something of a 'supergroup', and its history intersects with several other important bands of the period, notably King Harvest and Friends. They made only one single, but it is still widely regarded as one of the flagship Australian progressive rock releases of the early '70s. All the members had a wealth of experience – Laurie Pryor had been the drummer in the The Twilights; Charlie Tumahai   was from Nova Express; Mal Logan was from The Rebels and Lindsay Wells had been a member of Perth's rock pioneers Bakery.  The first line-up formed late in 1970 and began playing in Adelaide over the '70/'71 Christmas period. They played at several early rock festivals including Launching Place. In April 1971, they signed with Robie Porter's new Sparmac label. Midway through 1971, they expanded to a five piece with the addition of John Pugh (ex-18th Century Quartet) on guitar. In July, they released their single.  "Golden Miles" b/w “The Gully” (SPR-009), penned by Lindsay Wells, it is one of the most admired Australian progressive rock recordings of the period. It was very successful and spent nineteen weeks in the Melbourne charts, barely missing out on entering the Top 30. It features rippling Hammond organ by Mal Logan, highlighted by the soaring vocals of the late Charlie Tumahai. The flip-side, another Lindsay Wells composition, was heavier but almost as good. Just before the single hit the charts, Charlie quit to join Chain and the group returned to a four piece. Pryor left soon after and was replaced by Joe Tattersall (ex-Barrelhouse), but then Lindsay also left and the band fizzled out. In November 1972, Healing Force reformed with Logan, Pryor and Pugh, plus newcomers Gus Feniwck (bass) and Mal Capewell (ex-Company Caine) on reeds. This version performed at the Sunbury Pop Festival in January 1973, with Charlie rejoining especially for the show. One track from their set, "Erection", was included on the Mushroom Records Sunbury '73 album. They disbanded shortly afterwards, during preparations for a planned LP, leaving their considerable promise sadly unfulfilled. mp3

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks again Oz

Healing force were a band with so much to offer but simply fizzled out.