09 May 2014


There's no real point in my dishing out some abbreviated and scattered history of The People's Temple, but if you are not already familiar with this legitimately fascinating organization then I recommend you start reading up. Equal parts militia, cult and political machine, Jim Jones' cult of personality was a contentious force in the 1970s San Francisco political and social community winning over countless influential friends and allies (Harvey Milk, Angela Davis, Mayor George Moscone - whose 1976 election was largely due to nefarious "campaigning" by Jones' Temple - Assemblyman and future mayor Willie Brown among many others) before breaking ground on the doomed would-be utopia in Guyana. But in addition to political corruption, questionable sexual dominations, a message of racial harmony, mass suicide, and mind control under the guise of a noble Socialist ideal, The People's Temple also kicked out some serious grooves in 1973. The 12 track banger He's Able is full of traditional Southern christian gospel, but even the straightforward title track features screaming funk guitar leads in the background and parts of this record swing like an all out motherfukkr (I'm talking "Something Got A Hold Of Me" and "Walking With You" here). Not at all hard for me to see how going to a cult service and getting this shit dished out at full volume might swing a few non believers over to the dark side. And just when the child's choir wraps up the laid back disco-meets-Hair burner "Will You?" and you are feeling all blissed out....the nice folks who booted this gem onto cassette were nice enough to include the entire mass suicide from Guyana on the flip side. Oft sampled maniacal ramblings of a truly demented man lasting forty some odd minutes, the recordings of these doomed people and their chosen leader have made the rounds countless times but listening to Jones lead his followers to death is still beyond powerful. 

I call on you to stop this nonsense...no more pain.