Monday, June 25, 2018

More U.K. Obscurities On U.S. Labels: The World Of Oz

WORLD OF OZ-King Croesus/Jack US Deram 45-85034 1968

The UK Deram psych pop quartet World Of Oz were not a smashing success at home so one wonders why not only all three of the U.K. 45's were released here but US Deram went one better by issuing a 4th single unissued anywhere else of two cuts from their untitled LP ("Beside The Fire"/"Mandy-Ann" Deram 45-85043). They were however quite successful  "on the Continent" so perhaps this has something to do with it?

"King Croesus" was released in the UK as Deram DM 205 in August of 1968. It was released the following month here in the States. Produced by Wayne Bickerton it's not the band's strongest 45. It starts with some organ/Mellotron and it has a regal/churchy feel with some sweeping strings and great harmonies.  The whole thing brings to mind The Bee Gees '67. It's also shorter than the LP version.

Scan c/o

For my money the real gold is the flipside "Jack", though not credited on this 45 it was orchestrated by Mike Vickers (who also handled the top side as well). Vicker's stamp is easily felt in it's incredible whimsical feel with a mixture of strings and brass and layered harmonies making it an archetype quintessential toytown psych classic. There's an almost soulful feel to the horns that reminds me of their label mates The Flirtations (who were also produced by Wayne Bickerton).

Both sides are available on multiple reissue packages of their untitled 1968 Deram LP .

Hear "King Croesus":

Hear "Jack":

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