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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Sunshine Superman

Donovan

1966

Buy At Rough Trade
Sunshine Superman
Album Summary

Sunshine Superman is the third album from British singer-songwriter Donovan. It was released in the United States on August 26, 1966, but was not released in the UK because of a contractual dispute. In June 1967, a compilation of tracks from this album and the follow-up Mellow Yellow was released as Sunshine Superman in the UK. Sunshine Superman was named after Donovan's hit single released in the US in July 1966. The album was Donovan's most successful, peaking at number eleven in the US and remaining on the Billboard Top LPs chart for six months. The tracks from Sunshine Superman and Mellow Yellow were not mixed into stereo, with the exception of "Season of the Witch", until the 2011 2-CD deluxe edition issued by UK EMI.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.08

Votes

11838

Genres

  • Rock
  • Folk
  • Psychedelic Rock

Reviews

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Mon Jan 18 2021
5

I have a very special place in my heart for Donovan. I don't know if I can quite articulate it. I get the sense he was very true to himself somehow... I guess that it comes down to the fact that I don't get the slightest trace of cynicism from him. I feel like he was one of the hippies who actually believed in the flower power and in doing so had a hard time adjusting after the summer of love came to an end. I don't know if he has an entire album that is a masterpiece per se but I love his sound, even as it changes from song to song. Always interesting arrangements and fusion of influences. Dare to be gentle. Favorite tracks: "Season of the Witch" and "Celeste." Sounds like this album could use a good remastering.

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Sat Jun 19 2021
1

As I've found out over this process, my relationship with 1960s psychedelia is very hit and miss. Some of it surprises me, by being more appealing to my tastes than I would have thought. Sadly, this record is not one of those... It's a sort of cheesy pastiche of "ye olde Englishe folke" filtered into mediocre 60s pop. Moreover, it is just quite boring, with vocals and music both being unremarkable. 1.5

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Mon Jan 18 2021
4

I really enjoyed this album. I was only aware of the title song before. This is definitely the first success story of this project for me, I would have never purposely sought out this album myself. When the album finished I immediately restarted it. Highlights include: Sunshine Superman Three Kingfishers Bert's Blues

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Tue Sep 14 2021
4

Hey Siri, play me what the 60's sounded like.

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Wed Sep 16 2020
5

Really loved this album. I loved the sounds of the harpsichord and the sitar in some of the songs. Favorites include "Sunshine Superman", "Three King Fishers", and "Season of the Witch".

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Thu Jan 13 2022
5

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymH-Zv5RLxQ If Bob Dylan doesn't like him, then I like him...

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Mon Jan 25 2021
2

Not bad, but I wasn't 'grabbed' by a single song and I was a bit bored.

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Sun Jan 03 2021
5

Absolutely loved this album. Favorite tracks were Bert's Blues and Season of the Witch.

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

This album is SO me. It reminds me of Megan Robbin. Lots of trippy 60s instruments. And I kind of like that his voice isn't perfect. I love the sitar as well.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Vibrant and nostalgic. Very groovy.

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Fri Feb 12 2021
5

kinda epic, got distracted towards the end lol

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Fri Nov 05 2021
5

It's a bit dated listening to this Whimsical album in the 21st century but that's part of its charm. The UK edition of the album gets the edge by virtue of having more tracks. Donovan was one of the foremost and influential exponents of the UK hippy music scene. The album has elements of pop, folk, jazz and chamber arrangements. There's lots of sitar n spice moments throughout (Three Kingfishers, Ferris Wheel, Guinevere) but there's also some groovy tracks like the title track, Season of the Witch and The Fat Angel. Most impressive is the baroque arrangements on several tracks and the hazy shimmering vibe of Celeste. Best enjoyed on a glorious summer afternoon with a couple of beers and a smoke!

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Sun Feb 27 2022
5

I have always loved this album’s title track, “Sunshine Superman.” One of the apex songs of 60’s psychedelia. And I think I have grown to love “Season of the Witch” even more. But that is the extent of my familiarity with this album. Those two songs are so good that the rest of the album would largely have to be seriously disastrous for me to not give this a great rating. Is this album unmistakably of its time? Definitely - a very good thing. I was surprised at how much of this album was psychedelic folk with rambling storytelling lyrics, sitars, harpsichords and bongo drums. I started longing to be grooving along to this music reclined in some 60’s hashish lounge. The fantasy-filled storytelling of damsels and castles and knights and jesters and kings (with a psychedelic commercial interruption from “Trans Love Airways”) took me away from the worry-filled news. I can’t help but wonder it was the events in another time of stress and upheaval that inspired the creation of this. I loved the dreamy “Ferris Wheel” featuring one of my favorite birds (seagull - which also makes another prominent appearance later). Donovan’s stuttery singing on “The Trip” won me over instantly - it’s practically a crime that I have never heard it before. “Bert’s Blues” has some great orchestra arrangements that made it stand out. The final track, “Celeste,” was a perfect finale. I had a ton of fun listening to this psychedelic masterpiece and look forward to taking more trips with Donovan.

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Mon Nov 23 2020
4

Somber pyschedelia is the shit. Standout Tracks: Legend of a Girl Child Linda, Ferris Wheel, Guinevere, The Fat Angel, Celeste

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Sun Jan 24 2021
4

I liked it. Would listen again. Didn't sound as 60's as I thought it would

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Mon Feb 08 2021
4

I enjoyed that. Again, would have been a great hippie me.

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Wed Jan 24 2024
4

Wow, what an unexpected treat. I know Donovan only for the hit "Season of the Witch," which is on here, so we're off to a great start. The title track sounds familiar, but I can't be sure when or where I may have heard it. Regardless, there's an impressive degree of variety to this album, lots of great psychedelic departures and eclectic instruments. This released in the same month as Revolver! Obviously not as highly regarded but damn, it's pretty dope. Definitely comes out ahead of a lot of the '60s albums we've had that get repetetive, this one was excellent and refreshing. Favorite tracks: Season of the Witch, Sunshine Superman, Three King Fishers, Ferris Wheel, Bert's Blues, Guinevere, The Fat Angel. Album art: Absolutely love this design, the text and framing is really cool, great use of color too. This picture of I assume Donovan....looks EXACTLY like Kristen Stewart. Does anyone else see that? 4.5/5

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Sun Feb 27 2022
3

Cool to see that Bobby Orr played the drums on Sunshine Superman. Who knew ole #4 knew how to hammer the tubs. Another proud moment for Parry Sound. I guess he had to give up drumming when he started with the Bruins later in 1966. When Sunshine Superman started I was wondering if I mistakenly started to play an Austin Powers movie. If I were 20 years old when this was released and a cutie with a peace symbol embroidered on her shirt said she liked the song, I would probably agree, but it doesn't sound so special anymore. The second song is lame and had me worried the rest of the album would be torture. I'm glad to say I was wrong. Some of the later songs pleasantly surprised me. There is some cool percussion and sitar on Three King Fishers and Ferris Wheel as Donovan picked up the musical trends of the day. Also, Season of the Witch is a good guitar driven tune. Donovan was picked on back in the day for copying rather than setting the trends. The sitar on this album exemplifies that since it's a year after Norwegian Wood. Many say the early bird gets the worm. While that may be true, it's also true that the second mouse gets the cheese and Donovan got a belly full of Anster.

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Sun Dec 10 2023
3

Mixed. Heady mid/late 80's fare - you hear a lot of other influences from and in these songs. Enough with the medieval minstral tones!!!

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Tue Feb 09 2021
2

Hated a lot of it, liked a couple songs

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Fri Feb 26 2021
2

A lot of these tracks are pretty monotonous and the medieval lyrical themes are really corny. The rockier tracks are decent enough but every musical idea gets played out like 2 minutes before the track actually ends. High 2 probably

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Tue Sep 28 2021
2

it was different world. very 60's. Quite rubbish really but a couple of tunes. 2.

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Mon Nov 08 2021
2

Whiny folk drivel saved by some catchy riffs.

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Fri Sep 30 2022
1

Really did not enjoy this one. 1.5 bc jimmy page is on track one, but I’m not a fan of anything mickie most produced. Almost every song is about King Arthur or something and they all sound like medieval folk songs. Too much harpsichord for my taste

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Tue Jan 12 2021
5

Najlepszy z tych które były dotychczas. Początek albumu ma taki magiczny vibe bardzo przyjemny. Legend of a child girl Linda przepiękny utwór, choć każdy z utworów bardzo mi sie podoba.

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Tue Sep 07 2021
5

Fantastic mix of psych and folk with great lyricism. I need to cop this album.

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Tue Oct 05 2021
5

Beautifully 60s. A good mix of big hits and weird trippy stuff.

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Fri Jan 21 2022
5

Love Donovan. Folky with some Indian music influence. Great album. Season of the witch.

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Wed Feb 02 2022
5

This album unexpectedly really touched me. As another reviewer said, there is not a trace of cynicism in it.

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Wed Feb 02 2022
5

i did not realize singing about wizards was such a long and storied tradition

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Sun Feb 27 2022
5

Wowee, was this fun! I love the prominent bass and the psychedelic sound. Occasionally, it ventures into a ren-faire area (a ren-fairea, if you will) and engages in some scansion shenanigans (scansionanigans) that might make me uncomfortable if they came from another artist. But on Dononvan I find them completely endearing. ("Through the DARK, forbo-DING skies..." You're kill-ING me!) Fun fun good good fun.

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Sun Feb 27 2022
5

I knew a couple of tracks on this album, but it was my first exposure to the album as a whole. It was excellent. Although I was less in love with the slow folkier tracks than the psychedelic-leaning ones, I thought that the album as a whole was a treasure.

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Mon Feb 28 2022
5

I can't believe I'd heard so little of Donovan before this! This album leans heavy on psychedelic, but it does so much more, and it shows a lot of the sound that I'd thought was a Doors trademark. Donovan clearly deserves to be remembered as a first generation innovator of rock music, rather that the also-ran, hanger-on to the Beatles and Bob Dylan that I'd thought he was.

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Wed Mar 09 2022
5

60s in a bottle. I LOVED IT!

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

so. huge fan of psychadelia. come to find out, this was some of the OG shit. love it!

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Tue Jul 19 2022
5

This is right up my alley. This kind of folk music just feels so genuinely unpretentious to me. From the harpsichord to the sitar to all the other instruments, I loved listening carefully to this record. An album I can get lost in.

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Sat Sep 03 2022
5

Mí favorita es The season of the witch pero me gustaron todas las canciones. Discazo!

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Tue Sep 27 2022
5

oh hell yeah that his has been one of my favorite albums for a while I’m glad I got it again just all-around weird and perfect 10/10

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Wed Oct 05 2022
5

Un extravagante álbum con toques folk y rock los cuáles asemejan mucho a la edad medieval, además de sus letras las cuales nos llevan en un viaje a través de le época medieval

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Fri Oct 07 2022
5

Absolutely sure I've heard quite a few of these songs before. But if someone had asked me what Donovan sounds like, I wouldn't have had any clue whatsoever. Turns out, I quite like his music. Not sure if I should round the 4.5 up or down - but let's err on the positive side for the obvious influence he had on a lot of later music I enjoy a lot.

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Mon Jan 16 2023
5

Donovan is a great storyteller and calms me with his voice. True, original and genuine musician. 5 stars

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Thu Mar 16 2023
5

Awesome band, I like this kind of music

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Sun Apr 16 2023
5

THE GREATEST! I fucking love Donovan! What a wild card, a true pioneer of the psychedelic rock genre. Great album too with such classic songs, Superman Sunshine, Season of the Witch, Guinevere all so so good! Cannot go wrong with any Donovan tunes! 10/10

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Mon Jun 12 2023
5

J'ai vraiment trippé, c'est dans les années qe j'aime et je ne connaissais pas. J'ai été vraiment surpris et ca mérite cette note car ca fait un bout je n'ai aps eu grand chose a me mettre sous la dent que j'aimais beaucoup. J'imagine qu'après 878 albums il en reste plus beaucoup de bon... 5

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Fri Jun 30 2023
5

Excellent early Psychedelia, I think this was important enough and also unheard of for me (a layman) to consider it vital.

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Mon Jul 03 2023
5

I love the meandering flow of the album tracks, this album takes a few listens to get it and maybe some LSD. Great stuff.

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Tue Aug 15 2023
5

Minimalist and mellow compared to other psychrock efforts, which are usually explosive. Yet it's groovy and rich in colours. Perhaps the most elegant piece from the psychrock era.

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Sun Nov 19 2023
5

Great psychedelic rock. Seems to be closely related to sgt pepper. Enjoyed listening to this in the office with Alyssa. Really like the blues song

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Wed Dec 20 2023
5

Very nice psychedelic indie music with a wide array of great instrumentation. All songs were good. I wouldn't be surprised if they had a strong influence on The Decemberists.

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Fri Dec 22 2023
5

So much weirder than his greatest hits, which is the only thing I've heard of him before. Should have found this earlier. Love it.

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Thu Feb 01 2024
5

I surprisingly really enjoyed this album. The unique sounds of each song kept me intrigued. Some of them used Indian sounds which I really enjoyed. 4 stars

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Fri Feb 09 2024
5

a classic of psych rock, Season of the witch MVP

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Thu Feb 08 2024
5

Season of the Witch is one of my top favorite songs. Donovan is classic, 5/5

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Sun Feb 25 2024
5

It doesn't get more 60s than this album, complete with some elements of Indian music. Best song would be the opener "Sunshine Superman". I really liked it, have to listen to it again.

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Sun Feb 25 2024
5

Absolutely love this album! I have a very special place for 60s music and especially Donovan in my heart. One of my all-time favourite records ever. Most of the time I had the feeling of taking a walk through the woods with little elves and dwarves crossing my way. For me, this is exactly what the 60s sounded like.

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Thu Mar 28 2024
5

This is a great one. I wore out my LP by playing it over and over. Good to listen to the songs again.

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Mon Apr 15 2024
5

Fantastic album, really one of the best offerings of the 60s psychedelic scene. Donovon shows he can do it all on this album here, varied yet catchy

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Fri Apr 26 2024
5

I'm not exactly sure what it is about this album that I love so much. It sounds like pretty classic 60's psychedelic rock, in the vein of the Beatles, but all the songs work together so well. I enjoyed the mythical, mystical theme about the legend of Camelot. I also enjoyed the use of Indian instruments like the sitar and tabla. Overall, a lovely listen.

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Sun May 12 2024
5

Donovan's first couple of albums are pretty bad, but it all started to change with Sunshine Superman: a really great Donovan album to which I listened a lot and that contains the best song from the sixties, Season of the Witch.

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Tue Jan 12 2021
4

Świetny album. Niewiele brakowało do tego, abym wystawił mu 5. Album na prawdę ma fajne proste brzmienie gitarowe(zwłaszcza bas) oraz miły, lekki wokal. Ciekawe jest użycie tych azjatycko brzmiących instrumentów, choć w pewnym momencie ich natłok i monotonia zaczynają męczyć i traci się zainteresowanie utworem.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
4

Interesting mix of melodic influences and textures. The mesasges weren't connecting with me all the time, but seemed genuine.

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Fri Jan 15 2021
4

very beatle-y, and I don't like the beatles. but certain songs are very melancholy and pleasant. I like bert's blues (reminds me of the black keys). season of the witch is funky as well.

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Wed Mar 03 2021
4

Big Donovan fan. Simple yet powerful.

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Thu Feb 18 2021
4

Very enjoyable, varied and interesting, especially for 1966! I'd heard some tracks off this album, but never listened through it. Very fun.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
4

This is a fun album! Kind of folksy, kind of artsy and experimental.

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Mon Jan 18 2021
4

Donovan is not Dylan, but he’s great anyway

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Wed Jan 13 2021
4

Pretty good psychedelic rock

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Tue May 11 2021
4

A couple of songs I really like.

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Mon Feb 22 2021
4

Pretty darn good, especially for an album I've never heard of before

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Thu Feb 11 2021
4

This feels like listening to the Oldies station with my mom on car drives. :) Another pleasant listen, with the folk sound that I like.

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Fri Feb 12 2021
4

I love this record. It's like going back in time for a nice warm cup of tea.

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Thu Jun 10 2021
4

Pretty good. I apparently knew more Donovan songs than I thought. Very folky and mellow.

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Wed Jun 23 2021
4

Pues se le adelantó por un pelo a los Pink Floyd. Aunque acá hay unas percusiones más chiditas que el debut de los otros, yo digo. Disco chill, como que eso que es medio psicodélico no cansa y pues bueno, tiene ese hitazo que me gusta: "Season of the Witch". Me gustaron también "Sunshine Superman" y "The Fat Angel". ¿Es un disco que seguiría escuchando? Probablemente no, sólo en vagas ocasiones. 8/10

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Wed Feb 24 2021
4

This was a very surprising album. The art cover is awesome and the album itself was an amazing experience. For sure, I'll search other Donavan's albums to discover a little bit more about these songs. The Wikipedia article is also a good waste of time.

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Mon Jun 14 2021
4

Absorbing psychedelic record with medieval arrangements and beautiful melodies. It is child of an era and although it was probably made to enjoy in the mid 60s, listening to it now kind of takes you back then

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Thu Mar 04 2021
4

A pleasant cross-section of 1960s sounds and influences: psychedelic lyrics, folk instrumentation, light roadhouse asides, muted Dylanesque freakouts, British invasion flavors, brief tinkering with sitars and Indian melodies. All added sparingly and tastefully to enhance the songs that are well conceived. It feels like pastiche but somehow it works.

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Wed Jun 23 2021
4

Pues sí hay ratos padres. Me gustó sobre todo la vribra de Season of the Witch y en general la instrumentación de Bert's Blues. Mood: de viaje en una van de hippies junkies.

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Fri Feb 26 2021
4

Ah I liked this! Excellent vibes even if the lyrics were a bit silly. Nice and chill but still interesting. Season of the Witch is groovy.

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Fri Mar 26 2021
4

Production: 11/20 Songwriting: 16/20 Innovation: 16/20 Bangers: 10/20 Emotional response: 15/20 =68 This is really nice but they should have included especially for you, at least as a bonus track #neighbourslolz

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