The Zodiac

Cosmic Sounds

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• A classic 1967 Elektra edition, conceived by label head Jac Holzman, who claimed that the success of the Doors was a primary inspiration for the project, the Zodiac’s Cosmic Sounds is a concept piece based on the twelve signs of the Chaldean astronomical zodiac. It combines the music of electronics pioneer Mort Garson, performed on early moog synthesiser by Paul Beaver, and the words of Jacques Wilson, which would be delivered in Morrison-esque style by the Iranian-born folk musician, Cyrus Faryar, a man dubbed by Holzman “the Persian minstrel of Barham Boulevard”.

• One of the earliest psychedelic / progressive concept albums, Cosmic Sounds is performed by members of the Wrecking Crew, the loosely affiliated assembly of West Coast musicians, who during the 1960s worked extensively with Brian Wilson, Phil Spector, the Monkees, Simon & Garfunkel; Carol Kaye: bass guitar; Hal Blaine: drums; Bud Shank: flute; Mike Melvoin: keyboards, Emil Richards: exotic percussion. Technicians of the highest pedigree. The producer on the Zodiac sessions was Alex Hassilev, a former member of the Limeliters vocal group.

• On one level, Cosmic Sounds is a psychedelic exploitation novelty album but there’s a precocious quality, an understanding of the innate playfulness of psychedelia that places it alongside a handful of such hallucinogenic enterprises of the era as Mass in F Minor, I Love You Alice B. Toklas, and The L.S. Bumble Bee. Here, for the first time we hear moog on a rock album and, as observed by one critic, ‘fuzz guitar straight out of a late ’60s commercial for the ultimate airline for swingers’.

• The mood is enhanced by Abe Gurvin’s bold period graphics and comes complete with the legend “MUST BE PLAYED IN THE DARK”.


1. ARIES The Fire Fighter
2. TAURUS The Voluptuary
3. GEMINI The Cool Eye
4. CANCER The Moon Child
5. LEO The Lord Of Lights
6. VIRGO The Perpetual Perfectionist
7. LIBRA The Flower Child
8. SCORPIO The Passionate Hero
9. SAGITTARIUS The Versatile Daredevil
10. CAPRICORN The Uncapricious Climber
11. AQUARIUS The Lover Of Life
12. PISCES The Peace Pipe