The Doors

There's the known and the unknown, and in between them is...a goofy keyboard solo.
*special introductory paragraph!
*The Doors
*Live at the Matrix
*Strange Days
*Waiting For The Sun
*The Soft Parade
*Morrison Hotel
*Absolutely Live
*Alive, She Cried
*Bright Midnight: Live in America
*Live In Boston 1970
*L.A. Woman
*Greatest Hits
*Other Voices
*Box Set
*Full Circle
*An American Prayer
A carnival band with a sexy young '60s Sinatra splattering pretentious poetry all over it, The Doors in their heyday controlled the hearts and minds of more fifteen-year-olds than possibly even Nirvana in theirs. More important though is that they had a completely unique sound - yes, my fine-feathered bird, keyboards were a large part of most late-'60s "psychedelic" rock bands, but rarely were those crazy electric humdingers so responsible for the overriding sound of the music; Ray Manzarek played rollicking circus music both on lead and "bass" organ, dominating the stage and screen while guitarist Robbie Krieger either just emulated him or contributed a bit of noodling every now and again. No, that's inaccurate. Let me apologize.

I'm sorry.

Now let me continue.

Krieger actually played a large part in every Doors song; he just did it in such a modest way that you hardly notice until you start really paying attention to what that little diddly-do was up to. He was an amazing guitarist. And he never used a pick! Just fingered off tons of wonderful swirly bits like "Love Me Two Times" and the terrific solo in "Light My Fire." Drummer was good, too, but even less noticeable than Robbie. Why? Why, you ask? Why were these talented men overlooked in the grand scheme of this monster success we call Doors?

Well, because the singer was Jim Morrison. Without those other Doors, Jim may still have had a successful singing career; as demonstrated, however, The Doors without Jim Morrison were... well, we'll just say "fucking awful." For, without that self-assured swaggering lounge drunk voice booming in the foreground, the output of this particular outfit would have sounded like just a bunch of bizarre acid bubblegum pop - like early Pink Floyd without the guitar noise. With Jim, though, it gelled. It worked. It was a beautiful combination - a wonderful suxxx-s. They brought out the best in each other, including Jim's penis on occasion. And now? Who sounds like 'em now? I'll tell ya who! The Soft Parade! The Back Doors! And that's about it. And let me tell you something else, I find the Velvet Underground duller than church, but I love them Doors. Doors had pizzazz. And tonight, I'm having pizza!

The Doors - Elektra 1967.
Rating = 8

At their inception, The Doors (in my opinion) played too much generic '60s rock, as highlighted here by the inclusion of "Twentieth Century Fox," "I Looked At You," and "Take It As It Comes." Plus, Jim wasn't cocky enough yet to go hogwild on the microphone; in fact, on several of these tracks, he's tied down by double-vocal overdubs (one of my least favorite studio effects - the singer knows he has to sing everything the same way twice, so he's afraid to improvise - see the first Ramones album or early '70s Bowie for further examples), so this isn't The Doors at their hottest. It's still a very good debut though, featuring not only several of their best songs ever (the rockin' "Break On Through," the beautiful "Crystal Ship," and two perfect cover songs, "Alabama Song"" and "Back Door Man"), but one of the greatest and most popular rock epics ever recorded by anybody!

"The End?," you ask, innocent as a baby lamb in the forest? No. "The End" is okay, but I'm talking about "Light My Fire," goddammit. The long version. I think I've heard it sixty zillion times, but I'll never get sick of it. It cooks! Those keyboards, that guitar solo, that steady drumbeat, those shouts at the end....awww man. It's hypnotizing!

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
Well, to me, this is the greatest post-Beatles debut album in r'n'r history (close second: The Pretenders). I agree that "I Looked At You" is weak, but "Twentieth Century Fox" pretty much defined COOL in the mid-60s, and I love the way "Take It As It Comes" builds. Morrison's "poetry" seems a bit childish now to these ears (well, I first heard this album when I was 11), but nowhere NEAR as silly as it would become later on, and the music is just so damn good that the worst lyrics become unimportant. Still a great record, maybe The Doors' only one (altho Strange Days and L.A. Woman come close).
a bit out of place, but pearl jam had a darn good debut, too. reeeeally good.
Okay, my personal opinion is... that THE DOORS has to be the god damn best band to ever live. I totally agree with you on the Jim Morrison thing, about how they would have been unnoticed without him. damn straight! I also agree with you on the "Light my Fire" song.I could listen to that 45 times and not get sick of it. The darn song is 7:05, and my friend just the other day said "Gee this is a long song", and I thought I was going to smack her. I should have said "You're lucky I'm not gonna play "THE END" for you! You'd probably die." That's actually my favorite by THE DOORS. I have no clue why, but I just love the sound of it. O.K. I`ll shut up now. (Marc Kovac)
"20th Century Fox" is actually a rather clever song, I think. (Ted Zimmer)
It pisses me off beyond belief when I hear "Light my Fire" on the radio and it's the goddamned 3:00 long radio edit with the solo section edited out!
Man that Ray Manzarek could play some awesome keyboards. That Jim Morrison could sing pretty good too. But man could Jim play his organ. AND IN A VERY ARRESTING MATTER AT THAT!!!!!! (George Starostin)
Right you are! I agree with your review totally. Well, almost totally. I actually do enjoy "20th Century Fox". But the two shorter tracks on side B are truly fillers. And "The End", although not really boring, pales in comparison to the real apocalyptic bunch of noise on their second album ("When The Music's Over", that is). "Light My Fire" - fantastic! And you also forget to mention "End Of The Night". At one period it was my favourite Doors song ever. Right now this honor falls to the tracks on Strange Days, but I still keep freezing every time I hear that "end of the night... end of the night" refrain together with the spooky keyboards. Majestic!

On the other side - yes, this is probably the only Doors album which has definite fillers on it. Not many, though. So an 8 would be OK.

And, by the way, I would strongly advise everybody to check out Live At The Hollywood Bowl. It sucks per se, but it has a very funny version of "The End" with alternate lyrics, going like: "Have you seen the accident outside? Seven people took a ride. Six bachelors and their bride." Groovy! That Jim, he had a good sense of humour, despite all the darkness.
Definitely the best debut album of all time! Imperfect, as you say, but a stunning arrival on the 60's rock scene. For me, tracks 1 to 7 are just perfect, even "Twentieth Century Fox". "Light My Fire" has stayed in my Top 10 Songs ever since I first bought the record some 23 years ago - I just never get tired of it! Tracks 8 to 11 don't work quite as well, despite "Take It As It Comes" and most of "The End". So, I'd give it '8.5'. (Robert L. Best)
I think that The Doors first album is to be taken for what it is. Three young musicians and a rebellious, poetry-minded singer. All four being completely unsure of their style, their abilities or the direction that they wanted to travel with their music. The only thing that they knew for sure, was that they had stumbled upon something magical. (If not mystical.)

To say that Jim Morrison would have made it big as a singer, regardless of the "backing" musicians, is to me a missing of the whole point of The Doors. These four young men were able to bring out in each other, the necessary elements to produce a powerful and unparalled expedition into uncharted areas of rock and roll.

The different styles and ups and downs on this recording are a testament to the various avenues that the band could (and would in the future), be able to explore and experiment with. By not limiting themselves or allowing themselves to be easily labeled, the different personalities of the band members were allowed to explore and to grow individually.This was something not accomplished with such clarity by The Beatles, until the release of The White Album.
What does this opinon matter? Any moron can prattle on about music, and since sitting down and objectively evaluating anything so emotive as a peice of music is next to impossible, no one will be around to say you nay.
Now, I'm a big punk and Gothic fan, but I can never get enough of this one! I love it. I do have to disagree on one thing, I can't stand that keyboard solo in "Light My Fire" (Like I said, I'm a punk fan and that's shortened my attention span to about 3 minutes, with the exception of 'Come Back' by The Misfits and 'Riders on the Storm' of L.A. Woman), I also HATE The End. Aside from that this is awesome!!!!!! (James L. Tichenor)
Well there, Mr. Marky, I would have to say that my analysis of this album is not far off from yours on their debut album. Light My Fire kicks ass all over the place. If the doors were only good at one thing (which they weren't, they were great at alot of things) they really knew how to pace a song, and Light My Fire is a great example of said pacing. Catchy lounge verses, pleasant vocals (until the screaming at the end... YEAHHH!) hypnotic solos and a thunderous coda. Orignal music par excellence. They don't (usually) make em like the Doors anymore. Nosireebob. The Doors kicked the shit out of all of those other popular hippie bands- yea doors! (Elliot Imes)
I first got into the Doors when I found their Greatest Hits tape under my parents bed (don't ask me what I was doing under there). Anyway, I was pretty skeptical, being the rudimentary punk & ska fan that I am. So I tried it out, and was very impressed. Later I bought this cd and was officially a fan. These songs all have incredible staying power (save "I Looked At You"). "Crystal Ship" is beautifully hypnotic, "The End" is decent, and "Take It As It Comes" is great no matter what you say. If only the movie was as even as this album.
I like this album a lot, though it's not one of my all-time favorites. I agree with George Starostin that "End of the Night" is an underrated classic, and I also love "Back Door Man" and "Light My Fire." I do think "The End" is sort of silly, though I've only heard "When the Music's Over" a couple of times, so I can't really comment on which one is better. (Michael Haag)
So "Light My Fire" is #7 on VH-1's list of the top 100 rock songs of all time. But they show that insipid version from Live at the Hollywood Bowl. Why not show that incredible version from the Ed Sullivan Show instead? I've known girls who've had to change their panties after seeing that performance. Does anyone know where to get a copy of the Jonathan Winters Show LMF that John Densmore talks about in his book? I've heard a tape of it and it is strange. I'd like to see the video. (Jason Adams)
I despise "Light My Fire". It's just a horrifically rambly, lard butt jam with stupid lyrics and irritating coma-organ by that doofus Manzerak. That said, there are exactly two (2) good songs on here ("Break On Through" and "Crystal Ship") by a band that I never really got. I mean, "Twentieth Century Fox"? Gah!
The doors is at best a mediocre effort, prindle is right the classics are cluttered in with filler, the only songs I really like on here is 'brake on through (to the other side)' and 'the end.'

Definate classic, although not as good as what was to come. I agree that "The End" is a little overrated, and that the real undisputable classic is "Light My Fire". "Break On Through" is another classic, but ive heard it a little wee bit too many damn times. The rest of the songs are ace, including those filler tracks, which i think are just average good songs, although nothing great. And man "End Of The Night" is really some song! So dark, so depressing, but so beautiful! Id probably give this a low 9. (Madd Hunter)
I think this one is their best. "Light My Fire" is my favourite here, with the amazing solo. "The End" is their darkest song ever with an unique atmosphere. This album is essential. (Roland Arbour)
Dear Mr. Prindle:

Yours is the best rock review site on the web, and I like the way you let everyone else have a say.

The Doors are one of my favorite bands. Of course it helped that my girlfriend once played "Love Me Two Times" just before I was heading off on a long trip abroad...

But their first album is their best. The Doors' distinctive sound springs off the vinyl like Athena jumping fully armed from Zeus' skull. Doom and happiness in equal measure. Even such a light pretty little thing such as "I Looked at You," which if heard alone on the radio would sound like a silly airhead AM pop tune, takes on that ominous "sex and death" quality when fitted into context of Side 2 of the album--there's no turning back!

The long instrumental jam on "Light My Fire" was the beginning of my later appreciation of jazz. It was the first tune where I learned as a listener to wean myself away from the fixed pacing of rock and to wander in the more free-form but still structured and meaningful phrases of jazz.

It's hard for rockers to dabble successfully with Freud, but Jim Morrison & Co. manage to use poetics the way they should be--to express truth through imagery rather than argument. For comparison, imagine poor Geddy Lee and Rush trying to do Freud--can you imagine some sententious Neil Peart lyrics for the occasion (no doubt filling 3 album sides)? It's not even funny to think about, is it?

The best thing about the Doors is that they can play all cheerful and naive while Jim sings about the end of the world. "Blood in the streets in the town of New Haven..."

And for me, Manzarek's overstated keyboards are the key to the Doors' unique sound.

While Jim Morrison's poetics are a bit overblown, nevertheless he keeps coming across as real, even after thirty years. He's sort of like Walt Whitman combined with some hard drugs and kinky sex. (James Hippie)
Jim Morrison is dead, but Ray Manzarek and Electra Records' clever marketing of the Doors legacy sees to it that every year a new batch of seventh grade stoners discover the juvenile poetry and contrived rebellion of the cock-swinging Lizard King. Jim Morrison is the Sylvia Plath of rock - teenage fantasy fodder for sexually confused boys building their first pipe bombs and jacking off to High Times. It's an out of control marketing blitz for a second-rate band, and one that won't go away any time soon. So kids, buy the Morrison books. Emulate the legendary stories. Drink a gallon of port wine and throw up on your friend's carpet. Flash your cock at a make out party. Your friends are dumb - they'll be impressed by your antics. Jim Morrison would do it, and you should too! Buy the music, or at least the first three albums. Whatever you do don't buy L.A. Woman, 'cause we all know that if Jimbo hadn't dropped dead the Doors' next album would've been worse, probably sounding like Doobie Brothers outtakes. Better yet, buy the Greatest Hits CD. Listen to it while you're on angel dust and fucking your idiot girlfriend - it'll be a trip you won't soon forget, I swear! And Ray and Robbie and Ringo need the money. Don't worry - they'll send Mojo Rising his cut. I know you think he's alive and living in a monastery somewhere in Europe, writing poetry and making a nuisance of himself down at the town tavern. Go ahead, it's a harmless fantasy. When they dig up his grave and discover that they buried a fat leather-clad scarecrow in his place, well, you'll have something to talk about when you're ditching school and sniffing glue, won't you? So go ahead, buy into the mythology. You may as well get it out of your system while you're still young. (Louise Gagliardi)
Why does everyone dis “The End” it rocks especially the “fuck me” part at the end (Pat Shipp)
This album is definitely a monster that changed the world of music forever. "Break On Through" is probably the first true 'heavy metal' song ever recorded, and it kicks maximum ass all the way through. "The Crystal Ship" is heart-melting loveliness; "Light My Fire" doesn't even need to be explained; "Back Door Man" is killer blues; "End Of The Night" is unbelievably hypnotic (can't believe that you didn't mention it, Mark); and "The End" is a masterpiece. That is, lyrically, it's a masterpiece, but not musically. (Akis Katsman)
An absolutely magnificent debut, and also the best Doors album. Strange Days is no worse than this, but the debut came first. The sound is unique and no other band except Jim and his company could have written classics such as "Break On Through", "Light My Fire" and the majestic "The End". I like all the songs, although I think I could live without the poppy "I Looked At You" (which isn't that bad). The cover of "Alabama Song" is another winner. 10/10 (Hossein Nayebagha)
I really like "Crystal Ship", that's my favourite and I think it is possible to get tired of the classics. "Back Door Man" is also cool, and yeah it's a cover but, the end result is there and you can't complain. I think these are the only two that I really look forward to when I put on this album. I used to think "Soul Kitchen" was really, really, cool, but apparently not anymore. 8/10 is a fair rating.

Good overall sound, but it's sometimes pretentious, sometimes it's so pretentious it's funny and sometimes it's just tiring. Either way, it's not really genius.
Yeah, well I didnt really feel like blowing my mind by reading every opinion on this matter, I'd rather sign a government waver for a brain wash. Indeed I like the Doors a lot, and Jim Morrison was a special person among less special people, but not not special, just less special than how special Jim's specialness was. But as I scanned through some of the comments on the first album, I dont think I noticed ONE person mentioning the name of Arthur Lee. Which doesnt suprise me, even some of the most arrogant of people who THINK they know a lot about music history, STILL have no clue who Arthur Lee is, or his band LOVE. But ask any old self made rock star worth his salt, and hell tell ya all about Arthur Lee. He was an influencial singer/songwriter in the mid 60's into the early 70's and with his band LOVE he recorded an album called Forever Changes, in 1967 which has since been called one of the most important albums of all time. His lyircs were dark and apocalyptic at one moment, proto-punk, and righteaous at another, and soft and melodic at the next. He was a black man in the world of white, psychedlic rock and regurgitated blues. He gave Jimi Hendrix his first real job, and apparently he gave him the riff to Hey Joe, because Lee's version came out first, and the almighty RIFF on Hendrix's version is the riff Lee wrote first. And even at that Hey Joe was a cover of a cover of a cover of a... well you get the point, it wasnt written by Hendrix. But about the Doors, well they broke out onto Arthur Lee's scene. Lee was the king of the LA scene, but his stubborn refusal to expand elsewhere hindered the spread of his popularity. But the Doors, who played similar music, and had similar dark and mystical lyrics with jazzy smokey music, WERE willing to self promote and made it big with Lee's help. Lee was the main act on Electra records at the time, and he helped get the Doors signed. Just a small note: if you watch the movie with Val Kilmer, theres is a small mention of Lee and Love taking place at one of the early gig scenes, and Jim asks "whose on now?" someone says"Love." and he says " oh Arthur Lee, groovy" or something stupid like that. OKAY BYE
I don't get it, this gets an 8? I guess I haven't listened to 'Strange Days' very often, but it doesn't have 'Light My Fire'...... I used to like this album much more than I do now, it gets old people. 'The End' may be their best song........... but it sure is wierd. I mean pretty wierd. But, hey, Jim Morrison was wierd. I'm probably spelling wierd wrong. Eh, sure, I give this one a 9. Not a really high 9, closer to an 8.5 than 9.5.
Ahhhhh the Doors….cool band. The debut was also cool and so far ahead of its time it wasn’t funny considering it was recorded in September 1966 and released January 1967. I heard somwhere that Lennon and McCartney bought something like six copies of this album each when it came out. Anyways it’s got Light My Fire on it which aint to bad, especially Krieger’s crawling solo man, easily one of the 5 best axeman of the 60s IMO! Back Door Man is so good Billy Gould had to steal the bassline for the Faith No More classic “Midlife Crisis”..yes he did. Crystal Ship is beautiful and if u got a thousand fucking girls and thrills on a ship...of course it’s good! Break On Thruu rocks, the riff rocks, Morrison rocks, Densmore references drug use which also rocks! Soul Kitchen is another perfect song..what’s to fault about it? Morrison is brilliant and whether people call him a drunken untalented buffoon or whatever….the man could fucking sing and bring a song to life! Robert Plant and Roger Daltrey wished they had his talent and charisma..only Mick came close in the 60s. The End is really an interesting song because it has a great buildup and the riff is evil! Im glad Krieger didn’t change it for the entire 11 minutes! Obviously Morrison was tripping out when he wrote it and it shows in the disconnected lyrics spouting out references of everything to do with sex, death and even incest, Oedipus Rex or whatever. The “Killer awoke before dawn” bit is exciting and it’s when the song really comes to life and shit does it ever. And for all the peoples out there wondering Morrison was the first person on tape to use the word “fuck” in a rock song and it’s not the “mother” part either! If anyone’s heard alternative version he pleads “fuck, fuck yea c’mon baby, fuck me baby yeah!!!……” definitely adds to the song and it sounds very cool. Great album 10 (Vladimir Stojanovski)
Maybe the best Doors album. This exciting 60's band made an exciting 60's masterpiece. I mean, Ray's wonderful keyboard work, John's steady and cool drumming and Robbie's modest but great guitar playing is maybe unparalleled in the 60's. And yet... Jim's hypnotic, mystical poetry and singing, in fact, made the Doors what they are. And they are HUGE! Yeah, we know those flower-power, soft, boring 60's bands (with exceptions, of course), and they all looked the same, much or less. My point is, the Doors brought something on the scene that changed a lot and that's way they were (are) so POPULAR!!! "Light my fire" ROCKS and RULES at he same time!!! Fantastical debut!
You're right: more often than not, the voice-doubling is stupid. HOWEVER, and I know you've mentioned before that you're not crazy about the Grateful Dead, take a listen to "Alligator" off Anthem of the Sun (1968). That song amply demonstrates a rare scenario where the vocal is doubled and the singer is NOT afraid to improvise. This results in a hilarious (yet catchy and entertaining) tangled mess of vocal melody where the two tracks don't always line up in melody, phrasing, etc. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised, if by nothing else other than Pigpen's whacked vocal (or two).

As for The Doors' debut? 8/10 is the perfect rating for it. Best song? No way of telling, for me. I've always had an inclination to "Back Door Man", but "Soul Kitchen" pretty much tears the roof off the sucker, too. And there's the obvious favorites "Light My Fire", "Break on Through", etc. Great record. Not the best, but great nonetheless.

Ben Burch
I used to think this was the Doors' best album. After listening to it again I'm unfortunately mistaken. I wouldn't call it "generic," but a couple of songs ("End of the Night," "The End," - former favorites of mine) get boring. I find Jim's vocals on here to be pretty powerful, and don't really mind the double tracking. Yeah, it's probably the most "normal" Doors album, and easily the poppiest. Even though I'm sick of all these songs, some of them are pretty fantastic.

Add your thoughts?

Live at the Matrix - Rhino 2008
Rating = 7

Hi! I'm Jim Morrison's rotting corpse! You know, I'll never forget the good old days of being alive and rockin' and rollin' all the kids, but I do have a few regrets. First and foremost, I regret pushing my band to perform so many blues covers. What was I thinking!? Can you imagine that band -- a carnival organist, noodly jazz guitarist, crooning vocalist and... well, I don't even know WHAT I'd call John Densmore -- performing blues music that didn't sound like a stiff parody of the entire genre? I sure can't. But then, I was drunk all the time. Believe me, it only took a few months of stone cold sobriety, my skin peeling off and flies laying eggs in my eyes, nostrils, mouth and ears for me to realize that my whole 'Blooze' obsession was a fool's paradise!

Secondly, I regret not selling more of our songs to commercial advertisers. The other guys were against it, but I thought it would be great to rewrite some of our hits and sell them for some mean green. I came up with some particularly inspired ideas as the larvae hatched and the maggots began to eat my body. Check this out: "Come on baby, drive my car. Come on baby, drive my car. Push the pedal down and drive far!" And here's another one: "Come on come on come on come on and drive me babe - can't you see my bucket seats are suede?" And how about this for a local veterinarian's office: "When you've got mange - you smell like you've got the mange - when you've got mange! You smell like you've got the mange - when you've got mange! When you've got mange! When you've got mange!" That one needs a bit more work, but you see where I'm going with it.

Thirdly, I regret letting John Densmore inject an air bubble into my vein. Yes, John Densmore murdered me. Nobody sue Mark Prindle for this wild accusation, as he didn't write it. I did, Jim Morrison's rotting corpse.

But fourthly and most of all, I regret not recording more great music when I had the chance. I still remember thinking to myself, as bacteria in my gut broke down my body tissues, releasing gas and causing bloating in my abdomen and genitals, "Darn it, Jim. Now your legacy is over and nobody will remember you after six months." But I couldn't stay dejected for long; after all, that's how rock and roll radio has to operate in order to stay fresh and relevant. Can you imagine if radio stations in the 21st century were still playing tired old songs from the '60s and '70s!? What a hilarious and backward-thinking policy that would be! No no, I understand the importance of moving on, and I'm perfectly satisfied that the only people who know the name 'Jim Morrison' are all in their 60s now. Besides, I'm sure that The Doors went on to even greater success after my death. I was an okay singer, I guess, but man could Ray and Robbie belt 'em out. And right before John Densmore murdered me, Robbie played me this new song he'd written about a mosquito, and my MIND WAS BLOWN. If that song didn't go on to become the premier Doors anthem, then my name isn't Jim Morrison's rotting corpse. Am I right? Who's with me?

Oh, that's right - nobody. I'm alone in my coffin.

One of my fondest memories (aside from my digestive organs, brains and lungs liquefying into unidentifiable goo) is of a pair of March 1967 concerts we performed at The Matrix, a teeny SF club owned by Marty Balin of Jefferson Airplane -- I bet those guys are still rockin' out today too! This was before anyone knew who we were, so we kinda dicked around, playing a bunch of blues covers and early versions of songs that we hadn't worked out yet. Yes, if I remember correctly, we played 8 songs from our just-released debut, 6 from the as-yet unrecorded Strange Days, 2 that wouldn't see release until Waiting For The Sun and L.A. Woman, 2 that would never see studio release (though they did wind up on Absolutely Live), and 6 other cover tunes that we just kinda threw out there for gags and shiggle-ghees. Also, I guess I'm probably more of a 'skeleton' than a 'rotting corpse' at this point, but it's quite dark in this coffin so who knows? I haven't seen daylight since John Densmore dug me up to saw my arm off a few days after my burial.

I'll be honest; I wasn't that great a performer at the time we played at The Matrix. I hadn't yet transformed into "King Gila Monster" or whatever stupid name it was that I gave myself, it's been a long time. Instead, I just sang everything very cool, calm and collected. I thought this made me sound mature, but in retrospect it must have been a complete bore for anybody who bothered showing up. I know some people complained about the endless drunken ranting I would do at concerts later in my brief career, but at least that stuff had entertainment value! At The Matrix, I was just so restrained -- singing songs in 1 or 2 notes, rarely getting excited enough to yelp or even pretend to be an old bluesman. Oh well. You can't change the past, I guess. And at least I learned from it! I went on to become a delightful showman, as well as posthumously performing several excellent concerts down here by myself. This was before my body cavity ruptured though. Insect activity became a little too intense for me to continue after that.

Here are a few specific moments I remember from the Matrix shows and the butyric fermentation stage:

- Our six-minute jam on "Soul Kitchen," extended through extra keyboard solos and me chanting "All night long!"

- My inability to shut up as Ray sang "I'm A King Bee," leading to me singing the last word of each line for no reason at all

- The mummification of my carcass

- Singing the second verse of "Alabama Song" as "Show me the way to the next little boy"

- A ridiculously early attempt at "Summer's Almost Gone," before Robbie had written a guitar part

- My loss of body odor and the formation of a cheese-like substance all over me

- Starting "Light My Fire" with guitar arpeggios, and awkwardly placing the classic keyboard intro after the first chorus!

- Adding an "I've got the right to love you" verse to "Back Door Man"

- Losing all my internal organs to ravenous insects

- Ray's longer keyboard intro to "Unhappy Girl"

- Our happy, bouncy early version of "Moonlight Drive," before Robbie had written his solo

- Excruciating pain. I've gotten used to it now though.

- Our early uptempo jazz version of "Can't See Your Face In My Mind"

- A cover of "Summertime" that we clearly later ripped off for "Riders On The Storm"

- An early rendition of "When The Music's Over" when the opening keyboard riff had three chords instead of two (to differentiate it from the soundalike "Soul Kitchen"). I can't remember why we ended up changing it to two. Of course, I can't remember much since my brain was eaten by wasps.

- Dull, unnecessary covers of "Money," "Get Out Of My Life Woman," "Who Do You Love" and "Woman Is A Devil (interpolating 'Rock Me')," but a pretty darn solid version of "Gloria"

I just hope that somewhere above ground there's a record company releasing an endless stream of Doors live shows like this one, enabling senior citizens to enjoy my work for another few years until they pass away and the name 'Jim Morrison' is no longer remembered by a single living soul.

And hopefully they're available on quadrophonic 8-track cartridge, for the state-of-the-art sound that our music deserves.

Reader Comments
While I've never been much of a Doors fanatic (though I do enjoy my greatest hits of theirs that I have somewhere), the only thing that needs to be said here is that this review made me laugh to the point of sending my homemade mixture of Jack Daniels and Pepsi into my nostrils.

Kieth Moons rotting corpse (I wrote this between ridiculous drum fills and spinning in my grave in reaction to the actions of Townshend)
Thank you, Mark Prindle!

On behalf of all the people who have ever had someone they care about die and not be cremated (or woodchipped, eaten in a farewell feast Martian style, etc.), thank you for putting all those wonderful images and detailed descriptions in our heads, so in addition to our existing grief, we now get to vividly imagine what must be happening to our loved one's earthly body! (Just out of curiosity, where do find this stuff? Did you do an internship on a body farm?)

Your review wasn't all that painful - the bit about John Densmore sawing off your arm added a bit of levity... Why did he do that, anyway? Has anyone seen Jim Morrison's arm up for sale on eBay lately?

The best part, that may actually help out this hurting economy, was the line about the formation of a cheese-like substance all over you. Is that stuff edible? Would it have been possible to scrape the cheese off of Mr. Mojo Risin' and collect it for a tasting? Just think- like Tyler Durden made & sold high end soap made from liposuction clinics, we could open a "gourmet" cheesery and sell this new delicacy to adventurous foodies, and use the proceeds to feed starving children! We could also have fun, traveling across the country, exhuming dead rock stars (with their record label's permission of course) and inviting 1000s of their fans to come sample their cheese at listening parties. I wonder if the 3 Ramones are ripe for harvesting??? Of course, such shenanigans eventually catch on with the masses, and with luck, this'll go mainstream quick enough to jumpstart our sagging economy. So whaddya say? Are we in business?

Back to the Doors at the Matrix and listening to some fledgling band playing the blues 40 years after the fact. Let me know when a group comes out that is as good now as they were for their time, and will still be as potent sounding 40 years from today, and I'll give you a free lap dance and stop going to Borders and picking up Doors CDs every now & then when I'm feeling that postpartum middle age rock-is-dead malaise after seeing Coldgay or the Hives on yet another corny TV commercial.

Once again, thank you! I'm going to try and forget about decomposing bodies and focus on the blues, and John Densmore's hacksaw, and have a nice day.

Add your thoughts?

* Strange Days - Elektra 1967. *
Rating = 10

Their best. All dark, all the time. No silly upbeat "I Looked At You" carp here. Yes, carp, goddammit. The closest you'll get to summertime bliss on this record is "Moonlight Drive," which ends with the protagonists pretty much drowning themselves for no good reason. Elsewhere else you get drowning horses, strange people, dead love, unhappy lost little girls, backward keyboard lines, moog synths, and, most importantly, consistently capital melodies. If the piano/slide guitar beauty of "Moonlight Drive" doesn't grab you, then the bendy-string axe pickin' of "Love Me Two Times" should. And if not that, then the eerie-as-frig bass line in "You're Lost Little Girl." And if not that, then the bumblebee droning of two competing guitar solos battling it out in stereo in the better-than-"The End" epic, "When The Music's Over." And if not, then you shouldn't be listening to this band in the first place. Shoo.

Even the ones you've never heard of ("Unhappy Girl," "My Eyes Have Seen You," "I Can't See Your Face In My Mind") are intriguing, moody, dark, and memorable. Plus it's got "People Are Strange!" Psychedelic, eh? Furry too, eh? Echo? Bunnies? Eh? Who? Huzzahs to the chef!

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
I'm glad Mark loves this record. I loved it too when I bought it--The Doors were the first group other than The Beatles whose albums I started collecting, and this was the first one I got without having heard it, so it's got special memories for me. In retrospect, stuff like "Horse Latitudes" is just plain silly, but most of this just cooks or burrows into your mind. And "When the Music's Over" is still probably my favorite r'n'r epic. Yum. (Jesse Lara)
I totally agree with you on this record. I think "When The Music's Over" is a total jam all the way through! Even though "Horse Latitudes" freaks me out as Stephen King's "IT" did when I first heard it. (Ted Zimmer)
I agree w/ you 100% on this one. It's tied w/ LA woman as my favorite doors album. (Marc Kovac)
This album is boring. Not as interesting as Waiting for the Sun, and with a worse album cover. It does not stand up to repeated playings.
"Moonlight Drive" is just an awesome song. The rest of the album is pretty cool too. (Patrick Ryan)
"When the Music's Over". The definitive Doors epic. Incredible guitar, and overall sound. John, the drummer wasn't a John Bonham, but he had timing. You should hear the remastered version on the box set of "When the Music's Over" and "Moonlight Drive". I think I am in heaven. (George Starostin)
YES. I rarely agree with your ratings, Mark, but I confess you hit the bullseye here. Except for "Horse Latitudes", which I don't quite like (anyway, 'tis not music - 'tis clear poetry!), all the songs are perfect! While "The End" DID seem overlong to me, "When The Music's Over" never did! A VERY rare case when one makes an eleven-minute-long epic which doesn't bore you for even a single moment!

This album is a great showcase for everybody: Ray is especially great on "Love Me Two Times", Robbie is fantastic on "Moonlight Drive", Densmore plays great drum rolls on "When the Music's Over", and Jim... Jim is perfect everywhere!
This is a classic album, 'When the musics over' truly kicks ass.
I have to disagree with you on this one, Mark. It's got 5 great songs, but 5 weak ones too - the first 3 songs lure you into thinking that it could be even better than the 1st album, and then we get "Unhappy Girl", followed by a Morrison 'poetry' rant. After that, "the great "People Are Strange", but then 2 half-constructed songs that are just fillers, before the superb "When The Music's Over". So, only 7 out of 10. It's also rather short, even for a 60's release - about 28 minutes. A warning about the CD release: it's been spoilt by the new mix. It's definitely more 'tinny' than the record version, which is particularly annoying when you listen to "When The Music's Over" loud, as of course you must. (Rich Jenks)
First of all, great site and even if I disagree with ya, I still have to say that you stick to your opinion and it is something you have put a lot of thought into. I HAVE to respect that.

This album (CD for you youngens hehe) sparked something in me. It is hard to look at the Doors one way and then look at them another. Every song is great on so many levels, it is hard to fix them in one catagory. If you say that this cd is better then the first it's like saying "Who's the better guitarist?" It's apples and oranges with this band. Everytime they recorded it was something new.

I'm not saying you were right or wrong, I'm just saying with the Doors you kinda have to step back and look at the whole picture which is what you did I'm sure. :) Take it easy. (Joe)
This is one of the Doors best albums People Are Strange is a great song also Moonlight Drive is great should of been on the first record since it was one of the first songs Jim ever wrote,Your Lost Little Girl has some fine guitar by Robbie Love Me Two Times you know is a classic My Eyes Have Seen You is good too the final song you should know if your a true Doors Fan my thoughts exactly Jim We Want The World And We Want It Now! a 10 (James L. Tichenor)
STRANGE DAYS!!!!!! Says it all. What a kickass fucking album! Ranks right up their with Sgt. Pepper and Black Sabbath's debut. When The Music's Over- one of the greatest epics of all time. A real musical journey with each member at their peak. And that eerie poem- "...legs FURIOUSLY PUMPING!!!!!!" Every one of these songs are just fucking brilliant- an absitively posolute overall 10 man. Go on a road trip with acid and put this album on repeat. (Justin Cable)
Um... I keep thinking I sent in a review of this one. If not... I dunno. Anyway:

HOLY SHIT, THIS ALBUM IS AWESOME!!! I saw it in a music store for $13. Amazing that for only $13 you can get one of the best albums ever made, and for a little over $20, you can buy a new Puff Daddy album which may feature one or two of the songs, minus the incredible lyrics or guitar solos and such.

This entire album screams "EVIL." I mean, Moonlight Drive at least starts pretty. Right?

I bought the album because I had seen the VH1 Doors Legends special and decided that I needed one Doors album, if not all of them. So I got Strange Days because I had heard the chorus in the Legends special (the part where Jim is yelling the words loud enough for people in China to hear) and right then decided that the song was awesome enough. So I picked up the album, seeing a bunch of hits that I had already heard a million times on the quiet radio (loudness helps any album), and figured that at least now I had about 1/4 of their hits. But MAN, the other non hits are incredible. I have to say that the second best song on here is My Eyes Have Seen You. All Doors songs have the same build-up, but My Eyes Have Seen You's is particularly awesome.

The yells on this album are spectacular, and the music perfectly accompanies it all. I CAN'T BELIEVE I NEVER HAD A DOORS ALBUM BEFORE THIS, MAN. THIS IS AWESOME. I think that if anyone is gonna call themselves a rock fan, they should have every Doors album, even though I only have this one. I'm poor.

By the way, Kid Rock is not the Detroit sound, and I apologize on behalf of the city for berthing this Vanilla Ice wannabe loser. Also, MTV is gonna be having some show on called "Return of the Rock 99," which just goes to show how clueless MTV is and was. First of all, just because MTV wants to blow gay Mariah Carey and Jennifer Lopez shit doesn't mean that NO ONE plays rock. Second, Limp Biscuit/Korn/Kid Rock and other lame rip offs of eachother is not rock, it's untalented grunge (yes, UNTALENTED, it's that bad) with some people scratching records and/or talking constantly. Third, I don't care about what MTV thinks rock is, because I won't watch it unless it's Headbanger's Ball, which was cancelled a million years ago, showing that MTV doesn't give a fuck about what's real music. They suck, and the Doors fucking kicked their ass.

I cannot go into enough detail about how awesome this album is, or how much I like it. So I'm gonna shut up. (Michael Haag)
Listen to the guitar at the end of 'I Can't See Your Face In My Mind""Carnival dogs consume the lines......" Man, if that don't send shivers down your spine. Do it ,Robbie, do it. (Timothy W. Harrington)
this album is solid, and has something for just about everybody. you get plenty for fans of jim as dionysus poet (whatever), solid musicianship, tight songs, wierd music, and pop hits. the playing here is very focused, unlike what would follow on there next two albums. everyone sounds great on this. especially his soloing on "you're lost little girl", "love me two times", "moonlight drive", and "my eyes have seen you". this is definitely the best pre-fat morrison album.
I think ya nailed it Mark. The mood of this album is so dark and eerie that it almost creates an uneasiness in the listener. I can't listen to this one passively. I give it my full attention. Even the bizarre album cover demands close inspection. Nice package..... Surpasses the debut.... (Ian Moss)
I'm not quite ready to jump on the bandwagon of this album, mainly because of "Horse Latitudes" and some of the other lackluster tracks, but I do have to admit it was better than I expected. "My Eyes Have Seen You" and "You're Lost Little Girl" rank up there with any Doors radio classic, and "Strange Days," "People are Strange" and "When the Music's Over" are justifiably given ample airtime these days. I've always hated "Love Me Two Times," though--I'm not really sure why, all I know is that I've always been the lone dissenting voice on that one. Who knows.

I'm not sure I'd get this before the debut album, but it's certainly an okay choice for the casual Doors fan like myself.

For some reason, none of my Doors comments are very exciting. Unless, of course, you get a hard-on just from seeing my name on the screen. I know I do!
Oh, yes...Another great album! "When The Music's Over" is fantastic. I love very much also "Love Me Two Times". Buy this album, NOW!!!!!!!
The doors seem to be getting better, strange days is a huge step up from the doors but it is still not a 10, it is more like an 8 or 9. I have to state here that I think the doors (especially Jim Morrison) are highly overrated and not all that great, the music is annoying (I don't like the guitars or that damned organ!) and the lyrics try far to hard to be mystical and deep (but aren't), why couldn't Jim admit that he wasn't fascinated with "the other side" but with getting as much pussy and booze as he could? I think that in reality Jim Morrison was a party boy who took much LSD and marijuana. He sure as hell wasn't a good poet (if you need proof of that listen to 'love me two times', '20th century fox', or 'light my fire' even) and it was obvious he thought he was, also he seemed like a pretenses prick (which is kinda funny considering he did not seem to be all that intelligent or at the very least not all that articulate and he seemed awfully slow), he also was a limited songwriter, look at the song title for strange days, they all share striking similarities. so my real point I don't dislike the doors (so ignore that huge paragraph, i was just pointing out some of their flaws), no not at all (in fact I think they are a better then average circus pop band, and I do mean pop), what I dislike is how it seems everybody form 12-16 seems to worship these guys, they are not the best band ever and although they have come up with some clever ditties there is no reason to worship them like gods (and I bet if Jim Morrison really is still alive he would be very upset if he read this page and saw how everyone's worshipping him). (Madd Hunter)
Very similar to their debut album. Dark as hell. The title track influenced Joy Division and other 80's goth bands. My favourite here is "People Are Strange". (Pat Shipp)
I dunno, it's hard to tell which one's better, this one or the debut album. If you ask me, they're equal.

You forgot to mention that the guitar solo in "You're Lost Little Girl" is one of the most BEAUTIFUL moments in all of music. And it's only about fifteen seconds long! How Robby got that Heavenly tone on his guitar is something that I'll never understand. The title track is psychedelic bliss, and was one of the first uses of the Moog synthesizer in rock 'n roll. "Love Me Two Times" is of course an ass-whompin' blues jam. Dig the way that it gets more intense at the end (The Doors were masters of building up the tension and then leading it to the climax). "Unhappy Girl" is so unusual, one of those songs that could've ONLY been done by The Doors and nobody else. "Moonlight Drive" is wonderful and dreamy, as is "People Are Strange" and "My Eyes Have Seen You". And "I Can't See Your Face In My Mind" is a lovely ballad. Listen to the last verse, where Jim softly sings "Baby please don't crrrryyyyy". THAT is beauty.

"When The Music's Over" is indeed better than "The End". I just love Jim's battle cry of "We want the world and we want it........NOOOWWWWWW!". Man, the intensity just never lets up.

Music is your only friend. Until the end. (Rob Raymer)
the best doors album period. this record is perfect lol i could go on about why i think so but ill spare ya (Akis Katsman)
Great album. Also very dark for its time, hell, even for now! The only bad thing is that it's almost a ripoff of the debut, so it can't be the best Doors album. There is no filler here, just winners. My favourites are "You're Lost Little Girl" and "People Are Strange". This album's epic is "When The Music Its Over" which is truly great, with some of the best Morrison poetry ever, although it rips off both "Soul Kitchen" and "The End". If you like the debut you will like Strange Days and vice versa. 10/10

Ben Burch
I think giving it a 10 might be going a little overboard, but there are some awesome songs to be found on this album. I give this album an 8.5, and this is because of that dumb "Horse Latitude" interlude and the fact that I find "I Can't See Your Face in My Mind" to be kind of lame. Anyway, this is such an improvement over the already great first album that it's shocking. Even the 10+ minute epic from this album "When the Music is Over" is much more entertaining than "The End," and I can't help but picture this song as a proto heavy metal song. Even though I eventually overplayed it, "Love Me Two Times" (the best song on here by far) gives my ears an orgasm every time. Same for just about every other song on this album. Seeing that this album was kind of looked down upon when it came out, it ended up getting bolded on I thought that was going a bit overboard at first, but now I definitely see why that was necessary.

Add your thoughts?

Waiting For The Sun - Elektra 1968.
Rating = 9

'Tis not as tight or self-assured as the last one, but the songs (divided evenly between sleepy ballads, superhappy pop winners and dark rockers) are still extremely enjoyable, thanks in large part to the vocal chords of Mr. Jim. Some critics called this one a letdown, but it's not. Just takes a little while to get into it, 'cause it's neither as accessible and radio-ready as the debut nor as stunningly cold as Strange Days. Instead, it's basically a bunch of disconnected great songs.

The most popular one is "Hello, I Love You," but the gorgeous sorrowful ballads "Yes, The River Knows" and "Summer's Almost Gone," as well as the Robbie Krieger Classical Guitar Attack of "Spanish Caravan," will also keep you coming back for more in between Fugees videos on the ol' M. Remember Fugees videos on the ol' M? Ah, those were some truly awful times.

"The Unknown Soldier" is strong (though way too short to make a decent anti-war statement), "Not To Touch The Earth" is their weirdest yet, and "Love Street" is dang lounge music! I hate to describe individual songs like that, but this is such a loosely-organized album that it's hard to say "Waiting For The Sun, as a whole, is...." without coming up empty-mouthed at the end of the sentence. As a whole, they sound creative, but exhausted. How's that?

And personally, I think the tribal chant "My Wild Love" is just plain moronic. But again, that's just me talking. Unless somebody stole my keyboard and is fooling you with ballsy connection!

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
So...the first two Doors records were among my verymost favorites in my early album-buying history. So...I'm eagerly buggin' for album #3. So...I hear "Hello, I Love You" on the radio, and go "whatthefuck...the Doors doing BUBBLEGUM?" (and ripping off Ray Davies, although I didn't know that at the time) So...I buy the album, and...HATED IT. HATED, HATED, HATED IT. Thus endeth my Doors obsession. Now, in ain't so bad. Make your way past the clinkers ("Hello...", "Love Street", and, yes, "My Wild Love") and there's some good shit happenin'. But get almost any other Doors album first. (Marc Kovac)
This album is somehow my favorite Doors offering. "Spanish Caravan" is the best freakout while "My Wild Love" is crap, as you have mentioned. I'm amazed how such a song like "Love Street" can actually hold my interest with its simple structure. If you cannot learn all the instrument parts for this song within the hour, you should be wearing a retards helmet. (Michael Eisenkraft)
I like "My Wild Love", please don't make fun of me too much. (Dana L. Thomas)
I don't know if you notice it but almost all of the people responding are just agreeing with you. I don't think that it is one of their best albums but it still kicks ass. "Love Street" is not lounge. Break on through.
"Wintertime Love" is such an unusual beautiful song. That rollicking piano sets a fine background. "Spanish Caravan" and "Summer's Almost Gone" are the other standout pieces. (George Starostin)
A 9 is a bit too much for this album. Personally, for me it was a bit of a disappointment after Strange Days. Hey, let me rethink that: I actually got WFTS before Days, so it was the other way: Strange Days was a bit of relief after WFTS. So there.

There are several brilliant songs sticking out of different places now and then: "Hello I Love You" is a great start (and what's that talk about ripping-off Ray Davies? did the Doors ever know who Ray Davies was?), and there's "Love Street" which may or may be not Jim's best ballad, and "Not To Touch The Earth" is a classic, and the album closes with yet another monster-epic "Five To One" which is probably Jim at his most frightening, but in between are sandwiched some verrrry second-rate tunes. "My Wild Love" IS moronic; it belongs to An American Prayer, which, by the way, is much better than you describe it, but one HAS to distinguish between music and poetry/chanting! "Wintertime Love" is dull. Plain dull. Sounds rather like Krieger to me, not Morrison. As for the "gorgeous sorrowful ballads" - well I don't know, but they seem a bit too commercial to me. Phooey. Not bad, I mean, but Jim isn't at his best here. In all, the album is probably their weakest ever.
"Hello...I Love You" BUBBLEGUM!? Lust drips from every note of that song. Bubblegum didn't deal with emotions like that, I mean, they were sicky sweet. "Hello...I Love You" is not a song you want sung about your teenage daughter. (Unless you're a very disturbed parent.) It's a strip-joint song. (Joe)
The third doors record has some great songs and some fillers.Not To Touch The Earth is a great song the ride with me chorus is wonderfull! Love Street has some nice guitar work by Robbie, Wintertime love has a good vocal by Jim.Five to One is a great sing a long.The Unknown Solider has some good lyrics if anyone has seen that video besides me,Jim pretending to be christ on the cross at the end it's pretty cool ,the Vietnam war was a total joke and a waste of human life so the song serves a purpose. Hello I Love You is great but to short .Spanish Caravan has great guitar but the songs so good together, river flows are so boring if they would of put two more rockers instead this would be a classic album.listen to it on vinyl if you can it sounds great.a 7 rating could of been stronger
Hello I Love You is quite the Kinks rip-off. And if I recall correctly, there were talks of lawsuits and such, but it never happened. Oh well, Ray managed to rip off Jumping Jack Flash on Catch Me Now I'm Falling, so everybody's equal, right? Oh yeah, never cared much for the Doors outside a song or two. Jim seems to be the overrated poet/performer in my book.
"Not To Touch the Earth" is a part from their epic-masterpiece, Celebration For the Lizard. The entire suite was to be inculded but the rest of the band wasn't too fond of it. (Josh Cable)
Yea, I skip over My Wild Love too.

Summer's Almost Gone and Wintertime Love are the two songs that really seem connected. The rest, while great, is kind of in pieces.

And what great pieces. Apparentltydsfdkg, this whole album was just going to be Celebration of the Lizard. They left on one really great song from that, which makes me wonder how good the rest is.

Spanish Caravan is an amazing sound. Getting stoned and listening to that song might be the best thing a human being can do.

The whole album is decent, but I still don't like My Wild Love.
I didnt like this album that much at first, really dont know why, but the charm seems to be growing on me. "Hello I Love You", "The Unknown Soldier", and "Five To One" are all classics ive always loved, but the rest seemed pretty dispensable to me. But collectively as a record, these songs are quite charming! Its the mushy, sensitive side of Jim, and mostly people know him as the antithesis of that. "My Wild Love" is indeed pretty silly, but its pretty cool. I'd give it a very high 8.
You're pretty much correct with most of these Morrison-period Doors reviews (the Morrison Hotel one in particular is, like, spot-on), but Sun and The Soft Parade are a bit highly rated here. On this album, the Doors either abandon all their edge for a score of sadly derivative, clumsily arranged, unremarkable pop tunes, or try to do a whole lot with other genres and fail. John Densmore later said that this was where the Doors started running out of steam for a brief period of time, the steam they'd regain at the time of Morrison Hotel's recording, but in the meantime, Morrison was at a creative crossroad, and Kreiger had to supplement said frontman's work--not a great thing, since Kreiger hadn't yet mastered his songwriting abilities.

The first (and last and every) time I heard "The Unknown Soldier", it sounded irrepressibly stupid and pretentious. "Love Street" and "Yes the River Knows" are about as inoffensive and overall intelligent as a Hollies tune. "Hello I Love You" was a bubblegum tune from the early days along with "Moonlight Drive", but Jim and the band didn't even try to make that as demented and engrossing a pop tune as "Moonlight" was. Jeez...where's the eerie, dark mysticism, innovation, and unconventionality that fueled the debut record? You could say, "well, it's on 'Not to Touch the Earth'", but that song is the most overblown and unlistenable stab at creating an atmosphere ne sais quoi. Stupid rampant noise with stupid Jim Morrison yelling out stupid, meaningless poetry and trying to lure in his audience. He himself probably knew the gimmick was sounding tired--why didn't he just whip out his cock right then? Or, even better (and less disturbing for me), he could've written another "Light My Fire". Good, timeless, endlessly clever rock'n'roll. Yeah. This? Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit. (Madd Hunter)
A good album. It has some terrific songs ("The Unknown Soldier", "Spanish Caravan") but also some bad filler songs ("My Wild Love"). I love "Summer's Almost Gone". "Hello, I Love You" has never been a favourite of mine, but it's a good song nevertheless, but the real (underrated) gems here are "Not To Touch The Earth" and "Yes, The River Knows". (Roland Arbour)
In my opinion Waiting for the Sun is less successful than the first Doors album. "The Unknown Soldier" gets very tiresome after a few listens. I think it's gimmicky. But "Summer's Almost Gone" demonstrates that deceptive innocence on the brink of disaster that is the Doors at their best. And "Five to One" and "Not to Touch the Earth" are kick-ass rock songs! (Pat Shipp)
Right on, Mark. I'm glad that I've finally found someone who agrees that this album is underrated.

Some say that "Hello, I Love You" is a rip-off of the Kinks' "All Day And All Of The Night". Well, just because a certain song may sound like another song, that doesn't necessarily mean that it's a rip-off. "Hello, I Love You" is a fantastic tune, regardless. Anyway, I'm sure you know the story about how Jim wanted to include his poem "Celebration Of The Lizard" on this album. But it would've taken up one whole side, so the rest of the band overruled his decision. Thus, it wasn't included, except for one part, "Not To Touch The Earth". This song finds The Doors going back to that dark, mystifying style that was found on the first two albums. And call me crazy (many people do), but "My Wild Love" is one of my favorite Doors songs. I find it captivating, all those indian chants and congas and everything. It's definitely one of the most UNUSUAL songs ever written, showing the Doors uniqueness even further.

"Love Street" and "Yes, The River Knows" are somewhat lame, certainly not some of Jim's best songwriting. "Summer's Almost Gone", on the other hand, is absolutely glorious. A haunting, poetic work of art, nothing less. Contains fabulous piano and some truly euphoric guitar lines. "Wintertime Love" pretty much blows, but "We Could Be So Good Together" is a cool rocker. "Spanish Caravan" is awesome, and I just love that acoustic intro from Robby. Who'd of thought that he could play that fast? "Unknown Soldier" is a classic, and rightfully so. But "Five To One" is the album's best song. Heavy, pounding, intense and cool as hell. Why didn't you mention it, Mark? Oh well, I can't complain, I guess, seeing as how your site is so friggin' great. Anyway, "Five To One" is perhaps the most rebellious anthem that the boys ever made. It deals heavily with political issues. But check out the version on "Absolutely Live", which has about three times more intensity. (Akis Katsman)
This is the 'poppiest' album of The Doors, reminding me somewhat of Odessey And Oracle-era Zombies (which is a good thing!). Most people say it's a letdown, but I like it as much as the first two albums, even if it's different. Songs like "Summer's Almost Gone" and "Yes, The River Knows" are overlooked for some reason, but they're beautiful. "Hello, I Love You" is okay but overrated. Needless to say that "Five To One" rules. So do "The Unknown Soldier", "Spanish Caravan" (great psychedelic solo!) and "Not To Touch The Earth", part of "The Celebration Of The Lizard" suite. A couple of songs do nothing for me ("My Wild Love", "We Can Be So Good Together"), but overall it's a great album. 9/10
Waiting for the Sun is definitely an underrated album, its got a lot of variety. Also my two cents- Morrison doesn't get enough appreciation for his sense of humor, he was very funny and not at all the corny rock star that the awful oliver stone movie depicts. Read his interviews, especially the later ones and listen to the records, especially the live box set stuff, the guy was funny. Bangs got that right.

Anyway, In regards to the question(ing) from an earlier reviewer as to whether the doors knew who ray davies was, the answer is a definite yes. In one of those early rock star interview sheets (favorite color, singer, bands and the like) -reprinted in i think the doors the illustrated history- Morrison lists his favorite bands as the beach boys, the kinks and love, which shows that in addition to everything else the guy had damn good taste. I think Sinatra was listed as his favorite singer, natch.

Add your thoughts?

The Soft Parade - Elektra 1969.
Rating = 9

The most hated product in Jim Morrison And The Doors' fine studio catalog, this record is actually filled to the maxwell house with creative ideas, diverse subgenres, interesting arrangements, and the sorts of instruments one simply never planned to hear on a Doors record (horns and violins and crap). Seriously, the horns sound fatabuleoifhts on here - Jim's got a voice that deserves a well-placed horn every now and again. At least for one album. It's not like he turned into Buster Poindexter or something.

The string-driven Sinatra popper "Touch Me" is the classic, for good reason (what other rock band would dream of writing a melody this darned hokey? Well, okay, Yes. But what other band could write a hokey song that's this darned catchy????? Well, again, Yes. But aside from Yes and The Doors, who could pull it off? Not Styx, I'll tell ya that right now!), but it really only demonstrates one tiny portion of this record's gigantic smorgasboard of generic experimentation. Elsewhere, the Doors apply their skills and naivete to muzak brass-pop ("Tell All The People"), country-western ("Easy Ride"), soul ("Runnin' Blue") and their first ever 'fun and playful' epic (the title track)! Plus, fans of old timey Doors will tear the bricks off the rug upon ear-meeting the beautiful as a lily cloud ballad "Wishful Sinful," crazy nuts hard rock poem "Shaman's Blues" and simmering brood rocker "Wild Child."

Seriously, it's a tremendously fun and surprising record. The energy is back. They're still doing their own thing. And you get to hear Robbie sing for the first time! An underrated hippie gem for Moody Blues and Monkees fans of several ages.

Having said that, "Do It" definitely rivals "My Wild Love" for the title of Worst Song To Make It Onto A Doors Studio Album Before Jim Died. Here's a good rule of thumb: If you can't think up a third line, consider cutting the song in half and playing it as an instrumental. But hey! Don't mind me and my attitudes!

Reader Comments (Galen Clavio)
THIS is the best DOORS album. Not the best American R&R album, or the best pop album, or the best Top 40 album, but the DOORS' best album. I mean, let's be honest, the debut album is okay, Strange Days is, well, strange, Waiting For The Sun sounds like the Stones' Between The Buttons with all of the good songs taken out, Morrison Hotel blows goats, and LA Woman is okay, but sounds like Jimbo has died already. But The Soft Parade is different. It is one of the true classic albums of the 60's, and the 6th-best album released in 1969. Because on this album, you see the true trainwreck of 60's music. Listen to all the horns, cabarets, drunk men, psychedelia, keyboards, naked men, blowjob-giving Meg Ryans, and mandolins! The entire "progressive rock movement" could be summed up on this album alone. There's no Paul McCartney to add saccharine to the proceedings, no Justin Hayward to sing worth a shit, it's just a bunch of guys in a studio with a shitload of musical instruments and a few songs that the lead guitarist probably wrote on a bad acid trip. But that's okay! Because that's what the Doors were about. (Peter)
This is the best album the doors ever released and one of my all time favourites. I listen to this more than any other of their albums. I know a lot of fans don't agree with this but that's how I feel about it. Jim sounds great on this album and the strings and horns give the band a different feel. I love virtually every track, and the song "wishful sinful" is one of their finest. The guitar work in "wild child" is also great and "touch me" is superb. (George Starostin)
Yeah, Mark. We agree here. Most of the people around keep saying: "Oh, that Soft Parade album? Screw it, man, it's just got that title track, 'tis all!", but there's certainly much more to the album.

First of all, there's "Wild Child" which probably got the most memorable riff that ever came out through the Doors. And there's the obviously-commercial-but-not-less-wonderful-because-of-that "Touch Me" with Jim at his melodic best. And there's the obviously-comic-and-even-more-wonderful-because-of-that "Do It" with John at his drumming best. And finally there's the obviously-mystical-and-quite-wonderful-independently-of-that "Shaman's Blues" with Ray at his keyboard best. And...

...well, there are a few fillers here. The fiddle on "Runnin' Blue" is damn awful. That's arguably the worst track on the album. And then there's "Wishful Sinful" which I don't really like. But the rest are fine. (Joe)
The Doors best album some say I say no but it is the most diverse , quite a nice change to hear strings and horns on the songs I wish some other bands I love besides The Doors and Yes would have the guts to try to record an album like this.Having classical instruments in a rock and roll song is an honor because any classical player is better than any rock muscian.The band is in great form Jim's voice is in it's prime and the band really cooks. Touch Me is a classic Tell All The People is catchy but the rest of side one is not that great .side two is much better Wild Child is great and the two ballads Wishfull Sin is pretty and haunting I wonder if Jim though his time on earth was almost up then,the title track is wonderfull also except for Jim screaming out some poetry at the begining of the song.what keeps this album from being a classic are the really awful Running Blue I agree with a reviewer who said this about this song, The Doors are rock and roll! I hate country music that fiddle is horrible.also Do It is pretty corny,If another rocker could of been on here this could of been a great album but in the end it gets an 8 (TAD)
Mark, Jim Morrison wasn't trying 2 B Frank Sinatra, he was trying 2 B Perry Como -- "Touch Me" proves this 1nce & 4 all. & I love it, of course. & by the way, trivia buffs, the 4 words Jimbo sez way down low during the last 3 notes of the song R "Stronger than dirt." (Adam Bruneau)
I don't wear it on my sleeve and I don't paint it on my walls, but I'm a VERY big Doors fan. Sure, the poetry can be cool, Jim can be a real interesting nut, and the keyboard can sometimes send shivers up my spine. But the thing that I really dig about these four cats is that they write amazingly cool, catchy rock/pop/jazz tunes! Seriously, when I started getting into them I thought, "Oh, sure, 'Light My Fire' and ' Love Her Madly' rocks, but how many good songs did these guys write? I bet the albums only have 2 or 3 good tunes at the most..." but how wrong I was! I own every Doors album and even though there are a few tracks that can sometimes get on yer nerves, there's not one lousy, contrived tune in the whole catalog.

But when all the smoke is cleared, and all the candles have burned out, I stop and think about which album I actually like the most. Oddly enough, it's The Soft Parade, and I really don't know why. Maybe it's the way Jim belts out "Gonna bury all our troubles in the sand" in "Tell All the People". Maybe it's that funky/cheesy signature riff in "Touch Me" and the way you can hear Jim advertize for vacuum cleaners in the end. Maybe it's the way "Wild Child" has one of the most threatening guitar riffs I've ever heard. Maybe it's that stupid-ass Yokel voice Robby sings with in "Runnin' Blue". Maybe it's that hilarious one-liner Jim throws at hippies in the title track ("Lo-ove yer neighbor til...his wife gets home!"). I don't really know. It's probably a million different reasons. For me, it gets a ten, but a little higher ten than all the other Doors albums... (Michael Haag)
The live version of 'Wishful Sinful" iwith only the core band is Door's heaven. The short organ solo in the middle is sheer bliss.
Pretty good; I don't like "Touch Me" as much as most people, but the second half is dud-free as far as I'm concerned. I also enjoy "Shaman's Blues" quite a bit. (Adam Bruneau)
Now I know why I like this music so much! It's an exact portrait of the _REAL_ Doors, without blues-band posing and overtly 60's pop restrictions. This is The World's Most Kick-Ass Acid Lounge Band doing tunes the way _THEY_ wanted to, minus trying to look cool and mysterious. The end result is incredibly charming! Half of the album is Jim and the boys in a jazzy lounge kickin' it to what should be standards in the genre. And the other half is completely tongue-in-cheek, sarcastic parody of the whole hippie-dippie thing that was going on at the same time. I'll admit that it's kind of odd too see that The Doors, above all people, had somewhat of a grip on reality, but it's just so much fun to listen to. Still my favorite Doors album...and we even get to hear what Jim probably woulkd have ended up doing in the 70's had he lived that long....become a smooth, mystical crooner in a Las Vegas night club! Oh yeah....
Definatly an underrated album. "Touch Me" is so dang melodic and pretty of course its a classic. The title track is a wonderful transition from Jim screaming something about "petitioning the lord with prayer", to an absolutely beautiful lament about longing for solitude, to god fuggin' carnival music! Good shit indeed. The rest are all great as well, with nice added orchestra or horns or violins or other instruments, broadening the sound to great effect. I agree with the 9. (Madd Hunter)
The Soft Parade is The Doors' letdown. It's not a bad album, by any means (I like the bizarre horns in this one), but the overall songwriting is not so good as their previous efforts. Not a terrific song on here, just some good songs. I like "Tell All The People", "Touch Me", "Wild Child" very much. "Do It" is as simple a song as it can get (and it's crap), while "Runnin' Blue" makes me laugh every time I hear it! Country-blues-pop-rock! Get It? And "The Soft Parade" (the song) doesn't hold a candle to previous epic efforts (see "The End"). (Roland Arbour)
My least favorite Doors album is the Soft Parade, but "Wild Child" is one of my favorite Doors songs. I've never been fond of "Touch Me." (Akis Katsman)
This record is not bad, but sure it's a letdown for Doors' standards. There is no problem with the horns and all that stuff, but, some songs here are dull. "Running Blue" is almost a self-parody, while "Do It" and "Easy Ride" aren't that good. "The Soft Parade" sure is a highlight, especially the intro ("YOU CANNOT PETITION THE LORD WITH PRAYER!!!"), and is among the finest Doors songs. "Wild Child" is another favourite of mine, due to its catchy riff. The rest of the album is quite good, although not great. 7/10

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Morrison Hotel - Elektra 1970.
Rating = 8

Now see, herein lies the rub. Many people consider this to be the finest Doors album. "Great American rock 'n' roll!" they shout, holding up a beer and a marijuana jar as the rockin' beats of "Roadhouse Blues" drift across the vacant shore, searching for longing and whispering for home. Me, I agree that there are quite a few handy-dandies on here (especially the buzzy guitar rockers "Peace Frog" and "Land Ho"), but what I don't hear is that unique Doors style I've grown to love. This record is many things - raw, fun, bluesy, diverse - but it's not circusy, it's not weird, and poop it, it's not idiosyncratic! Any band could have made this album! Well, any band with a godlike singer. It's really good, yeah. I agree. It is. But The Doors were so much more unique than songs like "Ship Of Fools," "You Make Me Real" and "Maggie M'Gill" (or "Five To One Again, But With Different Lyrics," if you ask me) make them seem. You know? And I'm only saying this because I know that a lot of people would give this a 10, and they're probably wondering why I only gave it an 8. Well, now you know. Would it make you feel better if I finished the review with a cute little sideways smiley face? :)

No? Well, how about if I just hold up my middle finger for half an hour?

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
I agree completely. (George Starostin)
I haven't yet commented? Oh dear me. This is my number two. The Doors were never better than on 'Maggie M'gill'. I like all this bluesy stuff - it's not as generic as on L.A. Woman, so it's much more Doorish. C'mon now, that riff on 'Maggie M'gill' is just awesome! It's almost painful to hear it in a certain way - like an old dying bluesman squeezing his last notes. 'Ship Of Fools' does suck, though, I confess. And 'Indian Summer'.

But 'The Spy'? 'Waiting For The Sun'? These are prime songs! Let me just have a guess at why you don't like this album so much. OK, so: I'd bet you find a lot of electric blues here and none of the dark originality of their first albums. Am I right? Well, then you're wrong: there IS a lot of electric blues here, but it always has a lot of 'doorpaint' (I like that!) 'The Spy' could have been generic, too, but with its typically Jim lyrics and spooky ending it DOES belong to the Doors rather than to... er... Muddy Waters or anybody.

Oh, and I thought the lyrics to 'Maggie' went 'her father got drunk and left her no will', not 'the will'. It does make sense. That's why she went down, you know. (Joe)
I agree that this is one of The Doors best albums You Make Me Real Peace frog Roadhouse Blues and Waiting For The Sun are great songs You Make me Real has some of Jim's best singing ever Maggie is really good to not a bad song on of my top three albums better than LA Woman because it has more enjoyable songs (James L. Tichenor)
yea mark i totally agree with you- it kicks ass sure, but the Doors had already proven themselves more than capable of doing better than this. So stick by that 8 proudly!
This album beats the holy hell out of Soft Parade -- which you gave a 9. I'm uncomfortable with "lounge rock." I prefer them being a blues band over a crooning band. (Madd Hunter)
Morrison Hotel? Funny title! It's a joke or something like that? Well, no. It's another Doors' album. It kicks with "Roadhouse Blues" which if you like, I can tell you that you'll like this album! I dig this guitar riff, it's my favourite Doors' riff (along with "Love Me Two Times" and "Wild Child"). Other great songs are "Waiting For The Sun", "You Make Me Real", "Ship Of Fools", "Land Ho!". Get this album if you're into wild country rock. It's nothing like Strange Days, though.
It is a good LP but is it a lazy LP? It is the Doors playing but it could be anybody. I always find it a bit naff when bands resort to, or fall back on bog standard blues riffs. And what about "You make me feel" - a show band tune? That thing that was The Doors is missing from this record. (Pat Shipp)
Yeah, this one is overrated. Songs like "Land Ho!" and "Queen Of The Highway" just don't sound like the Doors, ya know? However, I agree that "Roadhouse Blues" kicks all kinds of ass and is one of the greates blues songs ever. Also, it's one of the greatest cruising songs ever, you know, perfect for cranking up while you're barreling down the interstate at 70mph. In otherwords, it's a road anthem. Plain and simple.

"Blue Sunday" and "Indian Summer" are both celestial, the latter is especially haunting. "You Make Me Real" is a great funk-rocker and "Peace Frog", well, what can I say? The wah-wah intro is indeed marvelous. Kick-ass song. "Ship Of Fools" is equally good, and it seems to be about people wasting their time on this Earth, but who knows? With a genius like James Morrison (his real name was James), you never know what the songs are gonna be about: they could be about rebelling against authority, fucking your mom, wandering in the desert, crying out for loneliness or just having a good ol' time. That's one of the many great things about Jim.

And "Maggie M'Gill" is cool too. "The Spy" is also somewhat eerie.

Before I split, I gotta say something to that dumbass who called himself James Hippie. He posted a comment on the "Strange Days" album, and he totally insulted the Doors in a way that really pissed me off. He talked like the only thing The Doors music was about was doing drugs and acting crazy. Well, fuck him, he's just another poor, misguided soul who's been misled by today's society. Sure, drugs may have been a big part of the whole scenario, but that hardly takes anything away from the glory of the music. Most of the great rock bands of the 60's would do a frightening amount of drugs and STILL be able to jam and play excellently. Just look at Hendrix, for example. He's not my favorite guitarist by any means, and I think he's gruesomely overrated. But think about it, the guy would shoot up heroin until he couldn't think straight, and then go on stage and play his guitar with such power and dexterity that it amazed everyone to no end. My point is that drugs have nothing to do with the music. "James Hippie" totally missed the point of The Doors (as do many people nowadays). So James, the next time you're gonna run your mouth about something you don't understand, please use at least a small portion of your brain cells. That is, if they haven't all been brainwashed by modern music.

Fuck modern music. Break on through to the other side. (Akis Katsman)
A lot more bluesy than before. Not Doors' best album by any means, but it's quite good and it has grown on me. "Roadhouse Blues" is the best Doors opener since "Break On Through". The riff kicks ass! And what about "Peace Frog" with the strange guitar playing? Genial! There are some underrated songs here, like "The Spy" and "Maggie M'gill". "Ship Of Fools" and "Land Ho!" are cool too! Good album, only make sure it's not your first Doors purchase. 8/10 (Brendan S. McCalmont)
I kinda agree with 8. I may even have given it seven. But yet, my favourite Doors tune is on here, 'Indian Summer'. That si so haunting and yet beautiful. Morrison laid down a fantastic vocal, too! That, Ship of fools, Peace Frog and Queen of the highway are my favourites form this album. I think my problem with the album, at least in mty ears, was it had somewhat repetitious riffs son many of the songs. This is basically my only complaint though. (Ron)
This is my favourite Doors album, despite the more straightforward style. Maybe I'm the only guy who thinks that "You Make Me Real" is a great song, and I love "Ship of Fools" as well. "Waiting..." "Roadhouse.." and "Peace Frog" all are among the best things the band ever did. Maybe because this album isn't chock full of Doors "classics" that it makes it more interesting. It's missing the 10 minute extended Morrison soliloquys, but as a rock album it's as solid as they come. (Tim B.)
Nah, I don't agree...Morrison Hotel is definately the best album from the Doors. Strange Days, the debut, Waiting For The Sun and all that junk had more personality for sure, and more circusy-general weirdness, but for pure rocking outness, this album cannot be freakin' beat. This is the most head-bobbingest fun time good rockin' album on the planet, and the one in which the individual members shine equally. It's not a Morrison dominated album, oddly, with the name an' all, Krieger really owns on this. L.A Woman is very excellent as well but seems a retread and suffers from over blues-loungification and slightly kasplunkered energy.

My flatmate comment that he hadn't listened to this album because he heard that it was just Morrison being a drunk dumbass. I pointed out that the music itself is some of the best they ever made, but in a way my flatmate was being accurate (minus that dumbass jab). If the early Doors albums were all drug-laced acid induced dark fantasties, Morrison Hotel is definitely immersed in boozy, drunken decadence. In fact, things sort of transitioned from being tripped-out on acid to being wasted on beer and whiskey. This is an alcohol soaked album, but it's more unhinged, fun-time kickass than the smoozier drug inspired period. Seems Jim was just as cool a drunk as a drug-head.

Roadhouse Blues = the world's greatest drinking song of all time bar none period no arguments. I've met a few people who don't like this song, I think they're insane. Monster blues. Waiting For The Sun, You Make Me Real, Peace Frog. Do I really need to tell you how brilliant each of these songs are? Probably. But you should know. Blue Sunday is when things turn more 60s chilled out style and is generally one of the very few filler moments, but ok. Ship Of Fools is a musically extremely cheery happy-go-lucky sounding track with bizarrely apocalyptic 'we're all gonna die' lyrics from Jim that make it that much better. Effortless jamming in the middle.

Well, I suppose to be fair the album takes a dive here, and Land Ho! is also somewhat fillerish, but it's also ok. Perhaps the sequel to the superior Ship Of Fools, similarly jumpy sea-faring fodder. The Spy foreshadows the loungy-ness of L.A Woman and is nice and relaxed. Queen Of The Highway is simply cool. Indian Summer completes the trilogy of throwaway-ish tracks and they pull it all together for the flat-out awesome blues-fest Maggie M'Gill, which is one of their best blues excursions in my opinion. I always get 'she went down, down to tan-gee (sp?) town, people down there really like to get it ooon'. Jim at his most masochistically drunkass. Decadent! Win!

So...yeah. I admit, I admit the album takes a dive and becomes bogged in loungy laziness in the last half but that first lot of songs is far and away the best the Doors ever concocted. And overall as an album it's still quite solid and good and I prefer it to the very very similar L.A Woman (which boasts Riders Of The Storm as it's biggest innovation...thougha huge one it is). Screw the Morrison and Doors haters, you can all just...fudd...oof...


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Absolutely Live - Elektra 1970.
Rating = 7

A double-album pulled from several different 1970 concerts, this double-album presents The Doors not as a weird, creative carnival band, but as a sweaty American blues-rock band with pretentious leanings. The bluesy stuff is actually a lot of fun, but the pretentiousness doesn't work so well in a concert setting; the excruciating 14 minutes of "The Celebration Of The Lizard" make it painfully clear why they decided to only put a four-minute excerpt on Waiting For The Sun, and the formerly hypnotic "When The Music's Over" is reduced to something near a yawnfest (at one point, Jim even has to scream at the crowd to shut up! Trust me, no psyches were affected by magical tones and mystical spells that night). Otherwise, cool enough. Some joking around, and lots of happy positive vibes, dude.

Reader Comments (Jeremiah Walter)
While I agreed with you on most all of the reviews you have done on the Doors (who, it should be noted, are my favorite band), I think your assessment of "When The Music's Over" is off base. Even now, listening to it nearly 30 years later, it is still an electrifying performance, which I think was more powerful by involving the audience (I think it was wonderful how Jim could joke w/ the audience like that when deep down he really did want them to shut up). You may see the slower and nearly-silent spots as boring, but I feel they do a very good job of adding a dramatic effect to the epic that is "When The Music's Over." That's all. You have a very cool site here, otherwise. :) (Ted Zimmer)
The best part of the of this album is the "Celebration of the Lizard" which simply entrances you. And right before you go insane, they play a great version of "not to touch the earth". (Dana L. Thomas)
he was joking.
This one I didn't buy that long ago. I decided to finally buy it after seeing the Oliver Stone movie, because there were some thrilling performances there - great credit to Val Kilmer, who is obviously a fan! But this selection is definitely not the best of the Doors live! I'd give it '6', because some of the live versions are pretty good, but Jim Morrison in particular doesn't sound like he really cares about the gig. (George Starostin)
'Celebration' is bullshit, sure enough, but the rest is wonderful! I adore the live version of 'When The Music's Over' (by the way, Jim always did something during that middle part: it's not that the audiences were particularly unthrilled, it's just that he was expressing himself in that way. On the Hollywood Bowl version, when it came to the middle part, he... burped). And the blues covers are great, too. 'Who Do You Love' and 'Close To You' sound exactly like Doors' songs. Does this prove that blues is an offspring of Satan?

By the way: nobody was ever affected by magical tones at a Doors' concert. Jim was not enchanting the audience, he was teasing it and mocking at it. You just got it all wrong. No mystical spells ever. (Skip Debrossy)
This has got to be one of there best pieces just because it has all there strrong songs on it. Some people might disagree with me because they don't like live musice but all in all this is a great all around album!! I believe that this rating of a seven is disgraceful to the Doors fans and The Doors themselves. I loe the doors and have been a long time fan and this is some good stuff!!! (Carson Duper)
Doors fans will probably hate this, but there's a terrific Jim Morrison sample on P.M. Dawn's 1995 album, "Jesus Wept." It begins in silence and then: "Is everybody in? Is everybody in? I everybody in...? The ceremony is about to begin..." Taken from "The Celebration of the Lizard" from Absolutely Live of course.

After that, Prince Be murmurs something about true artists wanting to express the will of God... and he sounds just like Jimbo reciting! Well, a little bit anyway. Next comes a few blasphemous quotes from some movie about Jesus, a bit of Charlie Brown writing to the Great Pumpkin, and a couple more lines of existential poetry ending with the sound of an automatic being cocked. All of this serves as "Intro" to "Downtown Venus," a song built entirely on a looped Deep Purple sample! It's pretty trippy stuff which my wife calls "new age hip hop."

There are a couple of other good songs, notably "The 9:45 Wakeup Dream," and "Fantasia's Confidential Ghetto - " a medley of incredible cover versions of "1999," "Once In A Lifetime," and of all things, "The Lime and the Coconut" which they build on a loop of Three Dog Night's intro to "Mama Told Me Not To Come!" I laugh my ass off whenever I hear it, and in fact it rocks.

None of this is exactly "dark" or remotely like the Doors except in one respect: it's just the kind of wacked-out theatre I would have loved when I was fifteen and really, really into the Doors. And still do and still am.

If you buy this and hate it, I warned you! (Gary Zajdel)
Greetings Mark:

Just recently I stumbled across your website...and have been glued to it since....very entertaining...This is the 1st of many to come "thoughts" concerning some of your reviews.

I am 47 yrs old and a music fanatic (also a drummer since10). Currently my musical tastes are exclusively "indie"...stuff like Mars Volta, Magnolia Electric, Decibully etc. Reading your reviews of various '70s stuff took me back into my parents basement getting stoned, laid and "ABSOLUTELY LIVE" wired...

The Doors Absolutely record, to me, is perhaps their finest. Compare it to ALIVE SHE CRIED and you'll hear why. Of course the song selection isn't the same but neither is the aura. ABSOLUTELY captures the pure essence, the pure soul....of the entire Doors experience. It also allows each member to express their contribution in a non- contrived sceario. The lengthy (sometimes too) soloing....on stage babble...and constant musical and lyrical improvision bares all....That includes mistakes, miscues and at times poor editing. That, comprehensbly makes it...The Dorrs/ loke 'em or not!!!

Thanks for the forum. I can't wait to read all of your reviews. You'll definitely hear frome me again if you all. Keep up the good work on the site...later
‘Absolutely Live’ is the best live album ever made, and ‘When The Music’s Over’ is the best track. No other album captures such electricity between a band and their audience, and Jim’s interaction with the crowd in the middle of ‘When The Music’s Over’ captures one of the defining moments in all rock music.

Rarely has a live album produced so many great versions that surpass studio versions which themselves were great. I’m talking about ‘Soul Kitchen’, ‘Break On Through’, ‘Alabama Song’ and ‘Backdoor Man’, and of course the already mentioned ‘When The Music’s Over’. (By the way ‘Who Do You Love’ and ‘Build Me A Woman’ are also magnificent.)

Casual listeners may be initially disappointed that none of the Doors obvious hits are included. There’s no ‘Light My Fire’, ‘The End’, ‘Hello I Love You’, ‘Touch Me’, ‘Riders On The Storm’ or ‘L.A. Woman’. Get over it! Deeper listening elevates 6 or 7 of the live tracks to the level of ‘L.A. Woman’, etc. And that of course is the highest level in Rock Music. Ultimately, Absolutely Live demonstrates the breadth and depth of the entire Doors’ output and firmly confirms their status as one of the greatest bands of all time.

Josh Pennington
You must be confused."Celebration" is an unmatched accomplishment in the field & is one of the most important pieces of music ever recorded. That it is completely overlooked by the establishment is a given considering its scope & ingenuity. This is Morrison's magnum opus - the perfect symbiosis of poetry & music. The performance here is nothing short of mesmerising. This is the Doors at the height of their powers. A visionary masterwork- that this could be played to this degree of realization & perfection with such nuance & emotion is a testament to the greatness of this band. The vocals are incomparable. This is an epic journey into the deepest recesses - the heart of Morrison's dark surreal vision. Anyone who hears this & has anything left but praise for Morrison as poet & visionary should just give it up because you're never gonna get it... this is creation purely realized.

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Alive, She Cried - Elektra 1983.
Rating = 7

There are three good reasons for a Doors fan to buy this live album - (1) the amazingly crisp cover of Van Morrison's "Gloria," (2) the lengthy but previously hard-to-find (and, thus, worth hearing) blues cover "Little Red Rooster," and (7) the eerie version of "Texas Radio And The Big Beat." Otherwise, it's just your basic live album. "Light My Fire" and "Love Me Two Times" sound as good as you might expect (although Jim yelps a little too much), but the original studio versions are the ones you want.

Compiled from live recordings dating from '68 through '70, Alive, She Cried is less of a full-fledged (fake) concert experience than Absolutely Live, but it doesn't stink up the joint with its hairy smelly blues ass either.

Reader Comments (Patrick Ryan)
Take a listen to the uncut version of "Gloria". Jim tears Them's version to shreds and then spits it out.

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Bright Midnight: Live In America - Elektra 2001.
Rating = 8

I was reading We Got The Neutron Bomb during my fateless trip to IKEA today (one does certain favors for one's wife when one has been laid off and is providing the household with no income at all), and a couple of people in the book opined that Jim Morrison was the first L.A. punk rocker. Their argument is that he was an asshole egoist out to ruin everybody's good time whenever they came to see his band play a normal rock show, and was thus a punk rocker. If the tone of that sentence wasn't clear enough, I'll go ahead and STATE that I disagree with this assessment. Hollywood has ALWAYS been known as the home of the vain and selfish, and Jim Morrison was just another piece of shit to throw on the pile. He was a "rebel" and an "instigator," which I guess were interesting things to be when the rest of the entertainment world was still only treating people like garbage OFFstage, but this hardly makes the man a "punk rocker," even if he was a big influence on Iguana Popular. He loved the ELECTRIC BLUES, for Christ's sake. Even when Jesus had given him every last drop of his hot Japanese alcoholic beverage (HA! PLAYS-ON-SPELLING ABOUND!), Jim continued to wail his idiotic drunken nonsense about the power of the stupid boogie-woogie blooze. Check out the minute-and-a-half track "Bellowing" on this release and try to explain to me how it was that this 26-year-old Nietzschean buffoon wasn't laughed off the stage every night of his career.

Ah heck, we're pals. I'll transcribe it for you:


Now what kind of fumbduck would call this jerk "the first L.A. punk rocker"? Jim Morrison was the kind of malignant old-school rock star god that punk rock was created to destroy. Luckily his bushy hippy beard was long in the grave by the time Lee Ving came along. None of this is to say that I don't love The Doors. I DO love The Doors. I'm just arguing with a book. Can't a man argue with a book? Lookat it!!! It's flipping me a bird right now!!!!

This particular CD was put together by The Doors of Full Circle and Other Voices fame to give the pubic a taste of eight extremely well-recorded concerts from 69-70 that they plan to release one by one at some point if they haven't already done so (many of which are reviewed below!). Oddly, it features six tracks from the first album and only ONE EACH from every single other one. ??? Not sure what that's all about. It also includes a bland two-and-a-half-minute segue between "Back Door Man" and "Five To One" called "Love Hides," as well as covers of rhythm 'n' blues classics "Baby Please Don't Go" and "St. James Infirmary." Jimmy sounds weak on the former, but really tears up that nice vocal melody in "Susan St. James' Infirmary." The band sounds fine with their boogie thing and the production, again, is absolutely PHENOMENAL considering how long ago it was recorded. Evidently the only one of these seven concerts to be recorded under less-than-studio-esque conditions was Bakersfield, a stage recording that sounds like you'd EXPECT a live record from '69-'70 to sound: a little muffled, the instruments not quite balanced volume-wise. But every other song - MAN! You know? Which doesn't mean I really need to hear Jim Morrison or anybody else for that matter shouting "Come on and give head to me! Eat me!" during an otherwise interesting rendition of "Been Down So Long," but nevertheless...

And a sixteen-minute version of "The End"? Couldn't they have just put on sixteen minutes of amplified ants carrying dirt around or something?

Reader Comments (Brian Dickson)
The Doors are one of the most puzzling bands I've heard. I first tried them in 1988. At the time I was into bands like Iron Maiden, Deep Purple, the Scorpions, Rush. In other words mainly hard rock with high pitched vocals. So here's the Doors with mainly mid-tempo or slow songs, with a sound based not on the guitar , but keyboards, and a singer who has a crooing baritone, only sometimes interupted with hystercial outbursts. And he's singing about lizards, soul kitchens and Crystal Ships. It's such a change of pace from previous bands that I'm hooked. So I buy most of their albums. Problem is that after their first 2 albums they're very uneven. Kind of dissapointing but still, I like the overal vibe of the early stuff. A year later I get hooked on early Black Sabbath. I try listening to the Doors as a change, but I hate them now! No I think they're awful! What did I see in them?! fast forward a couple of years when I've got more experience with rock music and I listen to The Doors again. Hey, maybe they're not so bad. And I've always ahd this curious ambivalent attitude towards The Doors. (I'm similarly ambivalent towarsd David Bowie by the way, maybe there's some similarity between him and The Doors) Sometimes I think they're one of the coolest and original bands ever, other times the keyboards sound stupid, the songs drag, and Morrison creeps me out with his death/ reptile obsessed misanthropic lyrics. However one thing I'm firm on, their debut is a stone classic, and Waiting For The Sun is the worst album ever done by a "big" band. So what am I to think of them? Even I'm not sure. They can be both an enthralling, almost eerie listen that can have you full of admiration at how well the four connected, and at the same time they can be a horrible Dean Martin meets the Monkeys on acid cringefest. All in the space of a week. And I know from hearing others that the Doors are very much a band that you either love or hate. One thing I will credit them with is that they created a very distinctive sound. Nice one........I think....
I'll start this off by saying that I'm a huge fan of The Doors. I have all six of their albums with Jimbo, Other Voices, Full Circle, In Concert, I've heard their box set, and I attended one of their concerts this year under the name "The Doors Of The 21st Century." It was with a live bassist and drummer that was actually better then John Densmore, singing for them was Ian Astbury, {yeah the 80s Cult singer who belted out 'Fire Woman,' to Mtv,} who was absolutely astonishing. Whether you actively despise the Cult or not...this man could sing those songs margins BETTER than the untrained Morrison and the soul and the energy that night was unbelievable. You can purchase Doors Of The 21st Century live albums at'll blow your mind. And you're wallet if you're not careful.

Anyway, Live In America to me is another document of Mr. Manzarek, Mr. Krieger, and Johnny "Appleseed" Densmore being in their signature psychedelic trance that made everything the Doors ever did so enjoyable, {it's as Ray once said, "people say this is Jim's music. It's not. Jim never made music, he wrote words,"} with an often unenthusiastic Morrison on top. His commentary is often philosophically brilliant however, as you stated, moments like "Bellowing," are god-awful and it often doesn't get a whole lot better. Always interesting but now in the 21st century when the Doors have an extensive catalogue of official material, bootlegs, and a touring band that features the key original members, songs, and a singer who is alive and can really keep up, Live In America I find is merely inferior.
The doors are the fucken best band the world. If you don't like them watch the movie it'll get you into them. Get some friends go to your room turn off the lights get some acid and listen to the doors it'll be the best time of your life

CDDude, your not fooling anyone morrison is the only one that could have sung those classic songs,others might sing those songs for their and other peoples pleasure but emulate the doors,dont think so mate,WHAT A BAND.
You disparage the notion Morrison was a proto-punker, but please read Iggy's account of how seeing Morrison play at a Michigan high school gym changed his life and gave him his sense of mission. (It's in the indispensable Legs McNeil oral history of US punk, "Please Kill Me.") Morrison, dead fucking drunk (and this is waaay before his cock-waving hi-jinx in Miami, it's like early in their first ever national tour, while he was still a hearthrob and not a fat bearded wino), sang his entire set in a piping girly falsetto after getting heckled. The jocks in the audience literally wanted to murder him, began tearing the joint apart, but Morrison would not stop. Young Mr. Osterberg was entranced, said hmmm. The subsequent account of the first Stooges gig, where Ig appeared in a house dress, with tin foil rollers in his hair and covered in glitter, his mere walking out on stage provoked a riot, shows how quickly the disciple out-did the teacher, but still, Jimbo had a certain something goin' on that had not been seen before....

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Live In Boston 1970 - Bright Midnight/Rhino 2007
Rating = 6

On the evening of Friday, April 10th, 1970, The Doors performed two sets at the Boston Arena in Massachusettes.

On the afternoon of Friday, April 10th, 1970, Jim Morrison shoveled 14,000 gallons of alcoholic beverage into his nervous system.

Thus, liner notes such as these:

- "A Surgeon General's warning should be stickered on this recording, because Jimbo is ripped!"

- "When I hear Jim slurring his way through 'When The Music's Over' or 'Light My Fire,' I cringe. I feel bad for the audience."

- "Jim is pie-eyed, stinko, a rummy in training."

Say! Did I mention that each of those quotes was written by a different member of The Doors?

No, I just re-read the page and I don't seem to have mentioned it so far. But indeed, John, Robbie and Ray are no fool: they can recognize an alky just as well as you and me. And Jim Morrison was mighty drinked on this fine evening, even in time for the 7:00 PM show!

Live In Boston 1970 is one of several archive concert recordings that have been slowly released by Rhino and Bright Midnight, and is a three-CD set consisting of both Boston shows in their entireties. Unfortunately, the two performances feature nearly identical set lists (only 3 of the 12 'early show' songs are not repeated in the 'late show'), so the RipOff artists at Rhino made up a bunch of fake track titles to trick you into laying out the green. In fact, a quick listen to such 'rare treats' as "Wait A Minute!," "All Right, All Right, All Right," and "We Can't Instigate" reveals that this 46-track SHAM OF LIES actually includes 4 songs each from The Doors and Morrison Hotel, 1 each from Waiting For The Sun, Strange Days and L.A. Woman (sort of - more on that in a minute), 6 non-LP covers, 3 non-LP originals, and a full SIXTEEN tiny bits of stage patter and applause disguised as numbered tracks!

Seriously -- 7 seconds of crowd cheering is a track!? Jim saying "All Right" six times in a row is a track!? Jim responding to the crowd's encore request is FOUR DIFFERENT TRACKS!?!? Furthermore, if Jim saying "All Right" six times in a row counts as a track called "All Right, All Right, All Right," then how come when he says "All Right" three times at the end of "When The Music's Over," it isn't given a separate track listing of "All Right, All Right, All Right (Reprise)"? Then he does it AGAIN at the end of "Five To One," and yet AGAIN during "They Want More"! Come on now, recording engineer, these are all important moments that deserve their own song titles.

As for the songs themselves - well... Jim's drunk. On the upsibe, this leads to some of the most entertainingly stunted stage patter you'll ever hear ("Everybody feel alright? Well, I feel alright myself! Yeah, I feel pretty good, yeah! Why not? Why shouldn't I feel good?"... "You guys just go out and overpopulate all you want, man. There's plenty of room!"... "I don't think there should be a president, man. I think there should be a total democracy."... "I don't know what's gonna happen man, but I want to have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames!"... "Would anybody like to see my genitals?"), as well as some funny bits of comedy within the songs themselves (as in the middle of "When The Music's Over" when a crowd member shouts "Hey Jim!" and he responds "Just call me Jimbo" before entering the triumphant scream portion of the song with a polite "We'd like the world...." --- or the second-to-last verse of "Light My Fire," which he performs with the entire microphone stuffed into his mouth!).

On the downsibe, his actual vocals are terrible! He lazily sings "Roadhouse Blues" in a lower, easier key (while Robbie insrutably deletes all the low bits from the guitar line), hams up "Light My Fire" like a tipsy lounge singer, mumbles through "Back Door Man" and "Alabama Song" like he's half-asleep, and is so obviously incapable of finding any internal energy that Ray has to scream the hyped-up endings of "Light My Fire" and "Break On Through" for them to have any impact at all! Furthermore, a drunken Jim Morrison is a bluesy Jim Morrison, so we have to sit through embarrassing endless repetitions of "Ah wanna love ya babe-uh," "Why don't ya shake your thing?," "I like to see ya move," and "Roll all night long" -- even in the middle of carnival pop songs like "Light My Fire!"

Then there's the abominable set list. Looking for a night out in Beantown in in April 1970? Say, the hitmaking band The Doors are in town! Let's all hop in the jalopy and go hear such top hits as "People Are Strange," "Love Me Two Times," "The Unknown Soldier," "Hello I Love You," "Touch Me" and "Tell All The People"! (*concert takes place*) Hay! What was all that blues shit?

"Rock Me." "Mystery Train." "Crossroads." "Build Me A Woman." "St. James Infirmary Blues." A one-lyric original called "Away In India." Terrible poems about graveyards and running to the mirror in the bathroom look. I fully understand a band growing disinterested in its old hit singles and wanting to challenge its audience with something new, but how could they possibly have thought that a paying audience would want to sit through interchangeable 12-bar electric blues all fucking night!? It's seriously an absolute revelation when they finally break into "Light My Fire" and you remember that they were a MELODIC POP band! So Jim of course makes fun of it. Because he was a 26-year-old white bluesman.

In short, this is an intermittently entertaining triple-CD, but mainly in a humorous way. Musically, it's a complete wreck because the only Doors song that Jim even seems to like at all is "When The Music's Over." And I love that song too, but who needs to hear it TWICE in the same CD package? It's like 5,000 years long!

A few other standout moments from this classic concert of yesterday year:

- Jim hilariously growling the first line of each verse of "Ship Of Fools," as if he were a pirate

- Jim reworking the close of "Five To One" into "I gotta go out in this car with these people... and get myself FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCKED UUUUUUUUUUUUUUUP!"

- Jim engaging in light sexual banter with young girls in the audience before concluding, "I think I'll pass"

- Jim in the middle of "When The Music's Over," pleading with the audience, "Alright, let's get real quiet - this is real scary."

- Jim taking nine thousand years to finally come back in after the "Break On Through" solo... then screwing Ray up by coming in with the wrong lyric

- An example of exactly how empty and rotten "The Spy" might sound with no piano

- Jim prefacing a terrible blues medley by requesting that all the stage lights go out except for one blue spot

- Jim ending the second set by excitedly shouting for more, as if he were an audience member!

- Jim introducing the at-the-time unrecorded "Been Down So Long" (strangely, sung to the music of "Crawling King Snake") with "We have a special treat! Not only are you not going to see my genitals, but...."

- A laugh-til-you-can't-breathe bone-headed conclusion to the train wreck, as "Power Turned Off" shares a full 7 minutes of crowd responses to things happening onstage that we at home can neither see nor hear. It's like Neil Hamburger's "X-Rated Hot Dog Vendor" 20 years early!

It's neat that he refers to himself as "Mr. Mojo Risin'" during "Build Me A Woman" though. See, he didn't do that on record until L.A. Woman's "L.A. Woman"!

I love the existence of this triple-CD. I can't imagine that I'll ever listen to it again, but I'm so glad it exists. It's so BAD! And DUMB! And BORING! And HILARIOUS! In fact, I'd go so far as to say it's "badumboringilarious!"

And I'd do so alongside a drawing of Dennis The Menace in order to sell you a Peanut Buster Parfait!

And by "Peanut Buster Parfait," I of course mean "A Bag Of Ground-Up Human Testicles."

Reader Comments
I would actually have sold my sister to see this concert! the guys are on fire (even if they make some misses here and there) and Jimbo is an hilarious son of a bitch! He ruins everything! AND I FUCKING LOVE IT!!! he screws up every song, but in a way that i find entertaining to say the least... but i guess that for most of the people this album is just nice bluesy songs ruined by a buffoon. But MAN what a fucking buffoon! 9/10 every fucking day of the week
I dont know if you were aware but apparently theres a new live album out, Live in Pittsburgh you might want to check out. Or maybe Live in Boston has tarnished the Doors for you forever. Fuck, i dont know.

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L.A. Woman - Elektra 1971.
Rating = 9

Well, here you go! The Doors could be bluesy and unique at the same time! The overblown FM-radio razzledazz of Morrison Hotel is left in the dust as The Knobs apply their time-tested insular strange-ass songwriting style to their trendy newfound love for blues music. And it may sound a bit forced at times, but nobody played the blues quite like this. Quirky, wired and white, with touches of funk, sissy pop, and hard rock mixed in, this is about as far from "traditional" as the blues could get - mainly because this is a Doors album, and The Doors were, first and foremost, NOT an authentic blues band! Yes, they wanted to be, but no, they weren't. Jim's voice was shot, so it sounds a little more credible, but still - I mean, come on!

You see, this was not the logical next step for the standardized rock and rollers that had just done Morrison Hotel; it was a John Lee Hooker tribute album recorded by the weirdos that had unleashed Strange Days into the world four years earlier. Unlike the last record, which aspired to be nothing more than simple blues-influenced rock and roll (and, of course, succeeded), L.A. Woman wanted to be the genuine article. But it couldn't be, because The Doors were too friggin' screwy to pull it off! But never mind that; it's awfully entertaining anyway. You probably already know the eight-minute rock god title track, the forboding murder jazz of "Riders On The Storm," and the basic rocker "Love Her Madly," but what you don't know will kill you! "L'America?" "Been Down So Long That It Looks Like Up To Me?" And what about that fake guitar solo Jim does with his mouth at the end of "Cars Hiss By My Window?" Awww man, now you're talking my language.

God, I love this album. Rarely does such a lousy idea turn out so darned neat! Good band, those Doors. Jim died right before this record was released.

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
Once again...I agree completely about L.A. Woman. (Jesse Lara)
His voice sure was shot! When I first heard "L.A. Woman" I thought the singer was a black man! Still "L.A. Woman" is my favorite Doors song. (Jeremiah Walter)
I totally agree w/ your review on LA Woman (my fav Doors album...and song, for that matter). Anyway, the other reason I am writing is that you said Jim died just before the release of the album. He died just after. That's all. Thank you, and have a nice day. :) (Ted Zimmer)
This the doors' best album, because it is so raw. Forget about "Jim Morrison and his Orchestra" as Kreiger once put it describing the Sgt. Pepper-like feel of The Soft Parade (which is still a good album), this is just blues to the max. I wish some people would realize that doors were not just Jim Morrision, because the rest of the band could jam with the best of them . Just listen to the title track. (Barry Abbott)
In my opinion this is the best Album ever released by any group. I can only think of five other albums that even come close. Guess which ones? By the way, you left out 1 red dot!
Just by listening to this album you can tell Jim was at the end. Some good blues numbers. Love that organ sound (that's Ray Manzarek's playing not Jim's jerking off!) If there was a way to go out, Riders On The Storm definitely was it. You can feel Jim just fading away._ (Ted Zimmer)
John Densmore is my favorite drummer is rock n' roll, because he brings elements of jazz into his playing and he just swings. (George Starostin)
A fantastically good album! It could be my favourite, but the only thing letting it down is that there are too many straightforward blues numbers - too many, that is, for the Doors. "Crawlinng King Snake", "Been Down So Long" and "Cars Hiss By My Window" are all magnificent, but I personally think they should not be placed together on one record.

And I am also not a fan of the title track: it's overlong.

However, when it gets to Ray's beautiful jazz piano on "Riders on the Storm", all the problems are immediately forgotten and forgiven! Hell, I don't know if there is any more music in the world that would capture your body and soul like that one!

I fully agree with a 9. Even if the record contained nothing but "Riders", it would still deserve a 9 as long as I care!
Second only to the debut album, this was a brilliant performance by the whole band - and then, the end! I've never quite understood the popularity of "Riders On The Storm" - for me, it just doesn't go anywhere, but there isn't really a bad song on the whole LP, and the title track is definitely one of the Doors' Top 5, and I wouldn't want it edited down by even a second! Hard blues rock, but sounding far more authentic than Zeppelin or Free. I'd give it 8 out of 10. (Joe)
The Doors final record has some powerful songs on it the title song is great Riders on the Storm is great it gives me the creeps every time I sing or hear it, the message of it is danger ahead or death. some songs should not have been on the record Crawling King Snake is to slow I heard a live version that The Doors did on an early show that was great that blows this version away. Car Hiss By My Window is also a bore I don't think Jim was a ballad singer like Sinatra, his best stuff was when he was singing rockers or screaming, that part with Jim trying to sing in falsetto is cool though i wish he would of tried it more often.Love Her Madly is a classic L'America has a great riff and a circus like middle break which is cool .but one of the best songs is Hyacinth House a great acoustic guitar riff with some of Jim's best lyrics singing and Robbie's best guitar work, Texas Radio has some cool jaming by everyone .Mostly a good record except for 2 or 3 songs or else it would of been a classic record ,as a final record though it's pretty good. (Ryan Atkinson)
First I gotta say that the Doors are the most overrated band in the history of the planet and I can't stand their albums all the way through (good singles tho).

But this one really is pretty great. I think they seriously nail the vibe on 'Riders' and especially the title track. Whoo. Quite a great listen and the only Doors CD I still listen to on any regular basis. Yeah, there's some slow parts on this one, but for some reason they don't bother me like the ones on the earlier records.

Ever hear the 2 records the other 3 put out after Jimbo bit it? Eek. (Roland Arbour)
LA Woman is my second fave of Doors albums. It stands distinct from the others. I think your review exactly described the sort of blues rock they end up doing on the album. I agree with you that the blues rock on this album is more sophisticated than on Morrison Hotel although I greatly enjoy that album also.

Who can listen to LA Woman and not be certain that Jim is soon going to be dead? From the smooth vocals of only a few years before, he sounds like a gruff old guy about to croak. But it still looks like up to me! (Mike K.)
This is a really good album for something that sounds more than a little like a band on it's last legs (although that's mostly because of Jim Morrison's gruff, craggy vocal delivery. I swear you can actually hear his big old mountain man beard at points...). The hits are the best tracks in my opinion, but even the songs you've never heard of are quite good. Well you, the reader, not you, Mark Prindle, because you probably have this album since you're reviewing it and all.

Anyway, new paragraph because I derailed that one. "LA Woman" naturally kicks ass, and in addition there's this one particular Morrison "yeah!" grunt during one of the myriad solos that's so odd and nasal sounding it somehow makes me crack a smile everytime I hear it, "Love Her Madly" is pretty poppy for this album, but catchy as all get-out, and "riders on the storm" is more than creepy and cool sounding enough to redeem it from the admittedly terrible lyric "there's a killer on the road, his brain is squirmin' like a toad". My favorite lesser known tracks here are "The Changeling" and "The Wasp (Texas Radio And The Big Beat)". "The Changeling" is the kind of thing that, slight increase in blues influence and gruffer vocals aside, could really fit in on any Doors album, but still rocks and has a great insistent keyboard hook. And "The Wasp" is one of my favorite Doors songs ever. The "really oddball take on blues music" vibe Prindle describes is in it's full effect here, as they take what sounds like it should be a blues jam and turn it into strange circusy music with weirdbutt Jim Morrison poetry splattered all over it. I'm not a huge advocate for the whole Morrison-as-poet thing, but there's some damn powerful lyrical imagery in there. "L'america" tries for the same vibe but just isn't as strong a song. It still gets my seal of approval though, mainly for that menacing clompity beat later ripped off by Marilyn Manson for "The Beautiful People" and the stupid but hillarious lines "He'll change your weather, change your luck/ and then he'll teach ya how to... find yourself!".

Oh yeah, and when I first had this album I was vehemently against "Been Down So Long" and "Cars Hiss By My Window", because not only were they the most 'straight' blues tracks, but they were also pretty much the exact same generic blues song with different lyrics played at different speeds, and happened to be right next to each other on the album. But after a while I figured out that they probably meant to do that. See, as I said earlier, they're the exact same generic blues progression, but the first one is done in a manic rocking manner, and the second one is performed as sluggishly as possible. On "Been Down So Long" Morrison's screaming for dear life, and in "Cars Hiss By My Window" he sounds like he could die of exhaustion at any given point of the song. So they've taken the same exact basic elements, and with a few changes, used them to create both manic and depressive moods. And that I find pretty damn neat, no matter how "every blues song ever written" said elements happen to be. Also, the "fake guitar solo" in "Cars Hiss By My Window" actually fooled me into thinking it was an actual guitar solo run through some kind of weird wah effect and not in fact Jim Morrison making funny mouth noises the first 3 times I listened to the album, so credit is due for that as well. (Akis Katsman)
I like this a lot more than Morrison Hotel, although I don't think it's as great as people say, because of a couple of generic blues and the annoying "L' America" (arguably the worst Doors song ever with Jim). But the highlights there are real good! "Love Her Madly"? Groovy! "L.A. Woman"? Great! "Riders On The Storm"? Creepy! In fact, "Riders On The Storm" is my favourite Doors song ever, with the best Manzarek solo ever captured on record (I believe it beats even the notorious solo of "Light My Fire"). Well, I could live without "Cars Hiss By My Window" or the cover of "Crawling King Snake" but they're not bad. 9/10 (Tim B.)
L.A Woman is certainly an excellent album and could be seen as the perfect sister-piece to Morrison Hotel. But it's alternatively gruffer and bluesier and loungier and lazier, and has a looseness and intoxicated quality that actually prevents it from being my favourite. The production also seems hollower and much less polished than Morrison Hotel. Those things said...great, great songs!

For some reason the song that gets me the most is the very first but that's often the way. If I could live by the lyrics of The Changeling I'd be a much better person...'I'm the air you breath, food you eat, friends you greet in the sordid street, I'm a changeling, see me change'. I just love how Robby clangs his guitar in the left and Ray taps on his organ, up down up down, in the right. So simple but so dramatic. Very nervous and jumpy. Then Jim is all 'I live...uptown...I live...downtown' like he's trying to spit his lungs out, or like a cat that's howling but also smokes 3 packs a day. Then a middle-eastern spazz out at the end.

Enough! The song rocks!

The album then starts veering into retread land, with Love Her Madly very much sounding You Make Me Real like while still being awesum. Then extreme mega huge blues attack! Been Down So Long is so goddamned bluesy it's annoying. Not a favourite. Then lounge attack territory with Cars Hiss By My Window. Doesn't sound like Doors at all, just generic blues. Title track...I like it, they done much better, but it's good. L'America is fun and cornily evil dark minor, so stupid that it's fantastical. Then well it's just a big stretch of generic blues and lounge rock until we reach Riders On The Storm, which is a bonefide uber-classic. Stupendous end to Jim' s musical career, whether it was his last track or not it remains his own musical eulogy and legacy.

I think Morrison Hotel fades but L.A Woman dive-bombs in the second half. I mean, you can count on the Doors to even be good when they're being sub-par, but still. Just tracks that are good but have nothing much of note to them. L.A Woman has too many of them. I don't know why oh I don't know why...get The Changeling out of my brain! Arhh!

Maybe a 7/10, or a 6/10 if I'm feeling Morrison Hotel's 9/10 or 10/10 if I'm being totally fanboyish.
I haven't listened to this in years because I have it on cassette, but people seem to forget how great "Texas Radio and the Big Beat" is. One of my favorite Doors' tracks.
What an album! Despite being released 40 years ago, it still sounds fresh thanks to Jim's vocals. While most contemporary "nuggets" era band's singers had this generic, weedy voice, Jimbo had the voice of a REAL man. A man with an 8 pound testicles. With cojones that big, when Jimbo says he's gotta tell you about the texas radio & the big beat with his booming voice...we listen.

And music...aww man, the music!

Like a circus band on peyote attempting to play the blues. There's even a weird, futuristic electronic drum break on the Wasp song! What the hell is that!?

No surprise they've influenced so many post-punk bands.

Too bad billy idol desecrated the title track by covering it in the 80's. I've also read years ago that charlie sheen's lifelong dream is to direct a music video for LA Woman.

I hope he dies before that happens.

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Greatest Hits - Elektra 1980.
Rating = 9

Great song selection! The Doors are one of those bands you should really buy all the albums by, but if you just don't have the money, this'll do you pretty well for a few years. Off Album A, you may enjoy "Light My Fire" and "Break On Through." From Album 2, feel free to get a kick out of "People Are Strange" and "Love Me Two Times." Album III serves up a healthy portion of "Hello I Love You" and "Not To Touch The Earth" (which doesn't come close to being a "greatest hit," but is still an awfully quirky little tune). The fourth album is represented on this compilation by one "Touch Me." Album May is proud to bring you "Roadhouse Blues." And finally, their fifty-second album takes up about half the record with "Riders On The Storm" and "L.A. Woman." Again, I personally recommend that you spring for the entire catalog, but if you're not really that big a fan, pick this one up and enjoy the nights away! Tonight and today! Hey hey hey! Where's my whey?
Reader Comments
A good little compilation. But it's missing far too many songs to be considered an adequate substitute. If you want to really know what The Doors were about buy the original albums. If you just want a sampler skip this one and get the 2 CD set Best Of The Doors, which is the only worthwhile Doors compilation. But overall The Doors wer best heard on their original albums so the best way to do it is the way I did and get all of them. You can get all 6 of them for about $40 total.
More like THE DORKS if you ask me.

Now that I've dispensed with my 'Prindleism', I'm gonna have to sound a note of dissent. I just don't get this band. Granted, I know nothing of their albums, nor do I seek to acquire that knowledge. But I can sum up their 'Greatest Hits' with some authority, having endured the better part of a starving university student summer working in a auto-parts plant next to a Doors freak who played this crap non-stop from his ghetto-blaster. However many songs repeated over the course of an 11 hour shift made for, I don't know, you do the math...WAY TOO FUCKING MUCH DOORS: gooey, rambling, directionless guitar/organ combos (I've never been a fan of organs on rock LPs -- like tabasco sauce in chili or pee in a swimming pool, a little goes a long way), overlaid by Morrison's baritone crooning like some kinda whacked out, counterculture Bing Crosby. Ugh.

Correct me if I'm right, but isn't their iconic reputation based on the untimely demise of their vocalist? I seem to recall reading that during their (supposed) heyday, they were regarded as something of a bubblegum act. Must have been a damned shame -- the loooks of shock and disgust on the faces of those Dade County teenyboppers who dutifully turned out to hear their hero warble his way through 'Hello, I love you'. A damned shame indeed.

The only Doors song worth a replay is 'The End'. And even that had to be brought to life by the Vietnam firebombing footage in Apocalypse Now. That image gets a ten, as I imagine every single Doors recording perishing in the flames.

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Other Voices - Elektra 1971.
Rating = 3

Hmm. It appears that the three remaining Doors foolishly continued without Jim, under the name "The Doors," assuming, for some reason, that they, and not Jim, were in fact "The Doors." Granted, you might think to yourself, "Oh, Jim was just the singer; certainly the actual musicians in the band could put out a halfway decent album by themselves." But you would be mistaken. Not only are these "other voices" not terribly attractive, but their music is terrible, alternating between dipshit country honk numbers and overreaching Santana-esque noodlings. Aside from the bluesy opening track, which would have fit perfectly on L.A. Woman, none of this nonsense has anything to do with The Doors as respected. Did you notice that it was released the same year as L.A. Woman? Pretty anxious to get rid of the old Gizzard King, wouldn't you say? I shudder to think how his reputation might have suffered had he lived long enough to take part in this miserable project. Pass it up! Even if you're just curious, don't be!
Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
Boy, does it suck. I had high hopes...after all, Krieger wrote most of the Doors' music, and I always liked the music a lot more than the lyrics, but...boy, does it suck. The ONLY memorable song is the one about the mosquito. And what is it that a mosquito does? You got (Thomas Vincent)
I think that this was a milestone album. It shows that they still had alot of Jim's influence. Variety is the Spice of Life speaks volumes! (Jay Arwood)
Been enjoying your site greatly, thanks.

Re: Doors-Other voices, I may disagree with your "terrible" description.

Now I must immediately acknowledge it's been over 20 years since I last possessed this album, so my recollection is a bit vague, but I recall being surprisingly pleased with the album when it was released, and gave it quite a play on my old hi-fi before everything went digital.

Not to say it was "great" by any means, nor would I give it a "ten." However, I liked the work overall and would rate it a good average 5 maybe even 6. (Mike Harras)
Years ago this album was introduced to me by my older brother. I had never heard of the Doors before & he went on and on about a great dead singer or something. Anyhow, since there was no chance of me feeling let down on the absence of Jim Morrison, I thought the album was alright, give it a 5.....compared to the earlier stuff, a 3.

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Box Set - Elektra 1997.
Rating = 8

An outstanding example of everything a box set can and should be, hindered only by the fact that Doors really didn't have that much great stuff left in the vault. Four discs - one of band favorites to keep the new Doors fan from feeling ripped off, one of a really great live show in NYC and two of previously unreleased tracks, demo versions of classics, drunken jams and more cool live stuff. If you're a fan, you need this to complete your collection, but don't be surprised if you find your attention waning during Jim's drunken bloozy bullshit. The early demos are really interesting, with some dude playing harmonica, no Robbie Krieger and some uninteresting gentleman singing who may or may not be Jim. The unreleased numbers may not be classic Doors material, but they are sometimes great ("Go Insane"??? AWESOME!!!!) and always revealing. Hell, if you like Jim's voice, you'll want to hear more of it, right? Ask for it for Christmas. Do it. Please please listen to me children.
Reader Comments (Michael Haag)
Unfortunately, I found only two cuts that would be a revelation fo a true Doors fan. 'Can't See Your Face In My Mind' is just an awesome live version, as good as the originalbut completely different. 'Someday Soon' is just pure Doors nirvana. I just wish it was recorded better. The guitar and organ interplay at the end with Morrison's paintive vocals are just beautiful. Exactly the type of song I was hoping for on this box set (lesley eccleshare)
i think the doors was the best thing to happen to the music industry,jim morrison was a great entertainer,through his music and words he has made me part of what i'am today.i just wish people would stop slagging him off,if they don't like the music they dont have to listen to's as simple as that.
...I loved it, but what the hell is up with disc 4? Anybody who'll buy this box set will already have all the official albums! Anyone who knows anything about the Doors, knows that they have a HELL OF A LOT MORE RARITIES! Why sacrifice a whole disc just for the band's favorites? They should have just listed their faves in the inclosed book and put ANYTHING else on! There are LOADS of unreleased recorded concerts... Outtakes... Interviews...ANYTHING but 70 min. of stuff we already have. (Jonas Narvestad)
The doors box set has a lot of cool stuff for people who dont collect doors bootlegs..

The awesome version of "I can't see your face in my mind" and "break on through" from the isle of wight are awesome examples.

Did you guys know that the "live in new york" disk that they claim have been recorded at the madison square garden in fact was cut from many different shows? mostly from the felt forum wich is in new york but not in the madison s garden.

Its crap like this that pisses doors fans like me off.The doors are squeezing money out of their machine and didnt want to give us the real uncut stuff.

This box has some great cuts on it,but the "live in new york" disc is not a whole concert,its cut from many different shows,thats important to know...

but the worst thing about the box set is that they had to make a 4th disc with another "best of" record! what a waste! why couldnt they give us more rare stuff? like the studio version of "the celebration of the lizard" or studio version of "someday soon" at least some interesting new stuff...we dont need more "best of records" Thats what disappointed me most about the box set

check out the new "bright midnight" label the doors have started now over the internet for releases of rare material.
I'd listen to ANY album from The Doors several times before listening to most of that whiney-assed stuff from The Beatles ...but hey...that's just my opinion...I love The Doors...still one of the most innovative and ahead of their time bands out there..... (Ben Mattison)
maybe i'm just a dumb asshole, but i think prindle's section on the doors should be replaced with this:the

"Doors? More like THE BORES!!!!! seriously, snooze-o-rama on this one, chums. i was listening to it, and i was like "listen, jim SNORE-isson, you may think you're groovy, but you're just loozy!" snooZE OR AMA! "

yeah, i am just a dumb asshole (Stephen Smith)
Jim Morrison and the Doors shouldn't have worked: Morrison wasn't a singer, at first, but this is what made him so great. The BEST thing about the band was the way they allowed this egomaniacal screwed up kid/poet Morrison to front the band. They KNEW what the critics did not. Even Kreiger, a major talent, subsumed himself to Morrison and, as a result, maintained the integrity of the band. The Doors were perhaps the best onstage musicians of the all the 60s bands. Their work on television demonstrates that. On the big screen Oliver Stone took the Doors and made them into a cliche. Screw you, Oliver Stone. The story of the Doors is still waiting to be told. . . . . .

tazman dont slag the beatles mate!

my three favourate producers of music are the beatles the doors followed closely by bob dylan,the beatles are a classic band the formula as with the doors is perfect,you have got to respect these bands dont slag the beatles on a doors forum or whatever you want to call.

the beatles were a very good band!!!
i find that on the doors box set disc 2 live in new york is basically a fake concert . i listened to the bootlegs of the shows and the music is different . jim's vocals are as well . the doors probably re-recorded their music for the set and lifted jim's vocals from other tapes . if you listen to gloria it is almost word for word the same as alive she cried . all in all though it is still a great cd to listen too the perfect show that never was .

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Full Circle - Elektra 1972.
Rating = 3

When I first reviewed this album, I gave it a 7 out of 10. A SEVEN!!! Was I fucking HIGH on COCAINE I was SNORTING through my DICK!? This is a TERRIBLE album!!!! It's got a few goofy circusisms reminiscent of classic Doors, but the vocals are rancid (dull) and most of the music is either straightforward boogie rock, Santana Latin Jazz or obvious ripoffs of their previous work (the "Peking King" track in particular sounds nearly exactly like "L.A. Woman"). I am so, so very sorry if my previous review influenced anybody to waste money on this pile of crap. I'm SORRY!!!!

("The Mosquito" is hilarious though. So DUMB!)

Reader Comments
Although backed by hugely talented musicians, notably Chris Ethridge, Jack Conrad and Charles Larkey on bass, Full Circle is an album that fails to deliver on most fronts. Unlike it's precedessor, Other Voices, which I feel is a very brave attempt but Mssrs Manzarek and Krieger just don't have the vocal reach to pull it off. However their musicianship (along with John Densmore) is not in question, which they would prove again on An American Prayer.

The one track here is Good Rockin' (not an original Doors) which is worth a listen, but the mediocre 'It Slipped My Mind' and 'Peking King..' remind me of the weaker Doors efforts, ‘Do It’ and ‘Easy Ride’. I think though it is worth mentioning at this point that here we have a band that lost their lead singer and they went and produced two further albums, so are they to blame for the change in direction that they took? I don’t think so.

Love them or hate them The Doors belong to that rare pantheon of groups whose music invokes the turbulent memory of the sixties and continues to make fans not only of those who lived during that time but of following generations as well.

The music they made was raw yet poetic, angry yet seductive. The stage show at it's best was dramatic, brilliant theatre. Jim Morrison's sensual stage presence, charged with strength and energy, capable of projecting a sense of danger, spoke to young audiences' fantasies and became a catalyst for an era.

Their message was simple, life is a journey, but any journey will be painful. Life is pain, love is pain, and fear prevents people from experiencing life, from accepting what The Doors ultimately come to realise, that we are all just riders on the storm.

You don't need Crystal Ships or stores on Love Street or highways to a bright midnight. Life will take you on journeys if you just let it roll.

The Doors were a world unto themselves and what a wonderful and darkly exotic world it was.

Cancel my subscription to the resurrection?
Not likely, Jim.
It is only the beginning.

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An American Prayer - Elektra 1978.
Rating = 3

At some point while he was alive, Jim Morrison recorded a bunch of godawful sex-and-death poetry that the remaining "Doors" backed with disco in 1978 and released as this crappy album. If ever you've wanted a good reason to hate Jim Morrison, try to sit through this nonsense. Worse than Henry Rollins even, if you can believe that.

By the way, just for the record, Henry Rollins could kick my ass just by looking at me. Still - I don't like his poetry.

Basically, I just don't like poetry. Period. End of review. Go buy Strange Days.

Reader Comments (Brian Leonard)
Hey--this is the greatest album ever made by a dead man! Quit knockin' it! I hope I sound half this good when I'm dead! Yeah, yeah, it's godawful...more unlistenable, I think, than Lou Reed's METAL MACHINE MUSIC. If you can get through it more than once, there are several S&M clubs on the Net I'm sure you'll enjoy. (Jeremiah Walter)
Being a fan of poetry as well as rock and roll, I need to send you a comment on your review of American Prayer. I can understand how if you don't like poetry, you wouldn't like this album. However, if you love Jim the poet (on top of Jim the most awesome rock-n-roll singer ever), then you will love this album, as I do. I think he is a great poet, and I think that w/ the circumstances considered, the remaining Doors did a good job of providing a nice backdrop for Jim's drunken but beautiful and honest ramblings. In "Lament For My Cock," he lashes out against his sex-symbol image. I think that "Out here on the perimeter there are no stars...out here we are stoned immaculate" and "the music was like new black polished chrome and it came over the city like liquid night" are two of Jim's lines that invoke the most imagery. You don't even need music to be sent to another state of consciousness just reading those words (well, maybe it's just me).

And I object to Brian Leonard (obviously an uncultured fuck) and his assessment of this album. Even though you didn't enjoy the album, at least you expressed yourself w/ class, and didn't suggest fans of this album would frequent S&M clubs.

Thanks for your time.
I think you are all wrong about your review of An American Prayer. That's all 'nuff said...
I don't fault you for loving the music of The Doors, and not Jim's poetry, but, if you've done your homework on Jim, which most devout Doors fans have, you must remember that Jim was first and foremost a poet, not a singer. And no, as you said in an earlier review, I don't think he would have been a great singer if it weren't for The Doors. He was painfully shy. When he got together with Ray Manzarek in the summer of 1963, it was just as a lyricist -- not a singer. He didn't start singing until a few months into their gigs on Sunset Strip (and then it was with his back to the audience). If you're going to review this music, at least make sure your comments are backed up. (The Bobster) your section on the Doors and this is one darn good site! Anyway, you can hear Full Circle for yourself (through RealPlayer 4.0) at Just click on the songs and you're away!

I s'pose you want to know my thoughts on it.....

I s'pose it's OK, but nothing like the standard Jim could pull off when he was alive... There are a few REAL stinkers on this, however, "The Piano Bird" and "Hardwood Floor" are real brain-exploders... but... "Verdilac" and "4 Billion Souls" are catchy (especially Ray's little chant bit stuck right in the middle of "Verdilac"), plus "The Mosquito" (love dem Manzarek solos a-la "Changeling") and "It Slipped My Mind" (catchy) are more than palatable.

So, it got marginally better than I expected on listnin' to this 'un, but maybe that's cos I'm a diehard :- and the sad thing is IM ONLY 15 YEARS OLD ! humph
I think, without a doubt, that the Doors were/are the best band formed...Ever! I don't think that there is much of their stuff that I have not read, heard, seen or otherwise come in contact with in one way or another. Their sound chills me to the bone every time I hear that droning, melodious bass synthesiser or Robbie's Deep South guitar accents, Densmore was history's role model, adding his own personal touch of maniacal percussionistic violence which only he was capable of. But I personally believe that, perhaps sadly, Jim Morrison was the absolute heart, soul and vibrant life-blood of the Doors. Why 'sadly' you ask?, well, undoubtedly there would never have been a band called The Doors without the celestial and majestic input of Ray, Robbie and John, but isn't it true that they also couldn't have been The Doors without Jim?, in fact, on at least two (2) occasions they DID actually attempt to play, even perform, with substitute front-men (once even without!!), but this ended in dismal failure, of course.

The reason for this dissension in the ranks? Simply that Jim, towards the end of his life, was becoming increasingly harder for the boys to control, his rapidly increasing drinking problem and subsequent drug abuse allowed him to cover-up his own insecurities and fears about his relationship with Pam and the impending legal battles that were, ironically, the result of his alcohol/drug abuse.

But to be brutally realistic, he was what he was.... Visionary, Poet, Prophet, Leader (follower??), Dreamer, Believer, Conduit, Revolutionist, Reactionary, Escapist, Artist, Idol. He was Jim. The world is a better place for having had him here, I miss him, but as all great men of his calibre, he achieved that which he was put here to do and then he was gone, but not completely, he is still with us, he just hasn't let us know it yet, is all.... (Pam Rezin)
First time I heard his voice I had the chills and wild visual fantasies of who he was and what he looked like...There will never be another voice like it....He looks as dark and sexy like a forbidden dark angel. He was definetly put on this earth for the purpose of grounding us mortals to the truth of the establishment that swirled around th 60s. He saw through the bullshit and wrote and sang about it!!!! It had to be on the dark side so people would question the things around them. There is always two sides to everything but back then people were brainwashed by the media and were zombies untill this beautiful soul told them we should question things and have our own opinion. You have a right to say "I feel differently"

Wonder how things would be today if the kids back then were never made aware they had a voice in there world and never tested the establishment?????? Morrison was ahead of his time for sure, but he's for sure testing the bounds of his immortal world....He'll always be the Prince of Darkness......... (Patrick Ryan)
Jim's etheral lyrics mixed with intensely.... CRAPPY music. Some of the tunes are just plain awful. Reminded me of disco music, and that can't possibly be good. Yuck! (Don Becker)
Jim Morrison had two mindsets -- the poet, and the lyricist. His lyrics may have been out there, but they worked well with the music. The same does not hold true with his poems.

This album is a VERY difficult listen. The poetry is very dark and disturbing, and offers a few misses to go along with the hits. The biggest problem is that the music does not match the words, with painfully few exceptions ("The Severed Garden" being the best match).

Anyone interested in Morrison's poetry should simply buy the books. I would recommend this album only to die-hard completists.

Rating: 4 (Rick)
The Doors are the world's greatest band!! I f you would like to talk about the Doors or any other bands than email me. (James L. Tichenor)
Man, I'm not saying this album is great or anything, but three stars Mark? Damn man, I'm no fan of poetry either, but I don't think Jimbo was that bad of a poet really. So some of his lyrics were corny and pretentious, and he never seems to write about more than a few different emotions, sensations or feelings, but it isn't horrible poetry. And this is the most killer poetic imagery I've ever even had the pleasure of hearing recited: "... fragile eggshell mind." Geez louise, that man could sometimes come up with the most intriguing ideas. But don't get me wrong, Morrison could write poetry out of his ass, and of course sometimes the words and ideas weren't the greatest hehe... "Ode to my Cock"? What the hell is that perverted gibberish?

Secondly, I wouldn't call this disco music, even though it was that era. It's more like pimp hustling backbeats and cheesy jazz riffs. Yeah they're corny, but some of them are catchy dammit! Plus, it's got the Doors on it and it's got Jim on the album and all the other members so that alone makes this album better than a 3.

Take into account all of these things and I think you should reconsider and give this album a 5. 5 is fair. 3 is pretty damn poor. And c'mon, this is a fair album not a poor one, wouldn't you agree? Hmm. Or maybe you really don't... (Michael Haag)
It's 1978. I've been a huge Doors fan since 1971 (talk about bad timing) No one gives a shit about the Doors in these pre-Apocalypse Now times. I hear rumors of a new album coming out Jim Morrison poetry, music by the surviving Doors. Boy, am I excited. I'm at the store the day the record's released. I take it home, put it on the turntable. This is something I thought I'd never see in my lifetime - new works of musical art from Jim Morrison and the Doors. I listen to the spoken word poetry and the backing music by the Disco Doors. Three Stars.
since the doors hurtled by two obstacles. one jim is dead. and two the doors follwed as a trio but it did not work out. but in 1977, they had a plan. they found jim's poetry book full of stories and add it to the new music! this they thought would revive the doors, but they were wrong! but thats just me talking and i'm not here to bash and now!!!!!!!!! ladies and gentelmen, THE DOORS: AN AMERICAN PRAYER BY JIM MORRISON!



3.DAWN'S HIGHWAY: jim's dreams are revealed in this story





















This effort shown on this album is really atrocious. The defence some people have manufactured is also pathetic.* Jeremiah Walter *mentioned Morrion's "In "Lament For My Cock," he lashes out against his sex-symbol image." Erm, am I the only guy thinking "Boo fucking Hoo?" now?

This is a PISS POOR effort from the group of musicians comprising The Doors. The only remarkable thing about it is that both Morrison AND his back up band fucked up, completely independently and (seemingly) unaware of each other! Eight years apart!?!!!!

A new low for this legendary band.
Au contraire, all you necrophiles; Jim was one of the worst friggin' poets who ever walked the planet, and one of the greatest pop stars ever. (though his poet-persona was essential to his ass-man come-on, "baby I'm deep, lemme lay a poem on you...mute nostril agony/great golden copulations, and speaking of copulations, take off your shirt...")For the record I know my poetry pretty well, and I suspect if folks didn't know who the author of his drivel was, it would have passed from print eons ago. Do yourself a favor, read some Charles Olson, Ezra Pound, Frank O'Hara, William Carlos Williams if you want great American vernacular poetry -- I suspect Jimbo would agree with me. Indeed, most rockers who publish poetry, even the gifted ones (Patti Smith, e.g., that huge Doors fan) should be gently dissuaded; ditto for the ones who publish their complete lyrics in sixty dollar coffee table book configurations -- when they pull that crap, I stop listening to 'em, I mean what jackass sits at home reading Lou Reed's collected lyrics in a book when you can just pop on one of his albums?

Kevin Loy
Hello Mark,

I hope the job hunting is going well.

Well, I've queued up Jimbo's "An American Prayer" in my iPod (since I don't have access to the physical copies of 99.634% of my CDs at this time), since I haven't heard it in ages, and I will add my own thoughts on the matter.


Wow, this guitar playing in Like a Hurricane is pretty goddamn....

Oh, wait, sorry! I was actually listening to "American Stars 'n Bars" there. Whoops!

Okay, so, "An Armenian Trailer" by James Frederick Douglass Morrison.

....Alright, I'm not actually going to listen to the record while reviewing it. I haven't listened to it in a long time and I'd like to keep it that way. Sorry, Jim.

Without getting into the debate regarding Jimbo's 'poetry', I'll say this much regarding the album. I remember reading somewhere that Jimbo had originally envisioned an orchestral musical setting for his recitation. He ended up with the Doors. Not just any Doors by this point, of course, but the Doors who had committed crimes against humanity such as "Other Voices" "Full Circle" (to briefly engage the debate regarding Jimbo...while it is absolutely true that he said stupid things like "the engine runs on glue and tar" or "his brain is squirming like a toad", I don't think that he could conjure something like "to wander is my infection" or "no me moleste mosquito/just let me eat my burrito" even in his most brainless moments). Their contributions are occasionally passable in a musical sense, but a lot of it is complete SHIT. It doesn't help that Morrison's recitation has been obviously edited IN ORDER TO FIT THE MUSICAL BACKDROP (obviously, having the musicians respond to the orator was out of the question...'that's too free-form -- we need something snappy so the kids will like it'...I wonder if Elektra tried issuing singles from this album). And using previously-released segments as 'filler' material also hurts the presentation.

Even under the best of circumstances...even if Jimbo were reading something like, say, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, there's no way in HELL that the material would survive the hackneyed approach of the people involved with this set. If Jimbo had decided not to fake his death, maybe something at least passably interesting could have emerged from this. As it stands, listening to this record is like rummaging through a landfill -- there's a slight possibility that you'll find something useful, but you still have to dig through everybody else's SHIT in order to find it...which also means, of course, that you end up getting covered in shit simply by looking for it.

Oh well. At least it isn't a Red Hot Chili Peppers album.

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When the still sea conspires an armor, click here to buy Doors CDs. For extra-cheap used copies, click on the album covers!

Or "Get back to where you once belonged" -- if I may quote a classic Doors song for a moment.