Intervention's New Gene Clark "White Light" Reissue Is Like "No Other"

If you do a "Gene Clark" search on this website you'll find plenty to read and to listen to—including an AnalogPlanet Radio show dedicated to the late musician and former member of The Byrds. Please also read here the many record, book and documentary reviews covering Gene Clark's life and recorded output. The cult of Clark will live on.

Clark's second solo album (the first was on Columbia with The Gosdin Brothers) was called White Light was released by A&M in 1971 but due to an artwork screw up, while the label correctly called it White Light the jacket omitted it. Thus the record became known as Gene Clark. In the interest of accuracy, Intervention repeats that formatting.

Let's not forget about the two short but influential Dillard and Clark albums released in 1968 and 1969 that had a profound influence on the country-rock to follow, particularly on The Flying Burrito Brothers and The Eagles (Bernie Leadon, later with both groups was a core member of the Clark, Doug Dillard group).

Unfortunately, the album title confusion, the eclectic, introspective nature of the music, Clark's refusal to tour and A&M's tepid promotion doomed the album to cult status despite critical approval. Produced by Jesse (Ed) Davis and recorded at The Village Recorder in Santa Monica, the album features seven delicately drawn Clark originals and one cover of the Richard Manuel-Bob Dylan collaboration "Tears of Rage", which sounds as if it was recorded elsewhere at a different time and grafted on to this album to fill a side. But never mind. It's still a worthwhile cover.

Gene Clark was an original, with distinctive singing and compositional styles. His lyrical complexity was no doubt influenced by Bob Dylan but Clark's "hitched" vocals and singular melodic and rhythmic constructs were obvious standouts on the early Byrds albums as they are here.

There's not a less than compelling tune on this album but the standouts are "Because of You" and "Spanish Guitar", both of which take full effect every play thanks to Clark's searing vocals and the intimacy of the recordings, which have never before sounded this pure and transparent, nor has Chris Ethridge's bass been reproduced with such weight and texture. Lacquers were cut from original analog tape safety copy. The laminated cover and "Tip on" jacket add to the reissue's attractiveness.

I'm compiling a list of 100 "must have" all-analog in print records and this one has been added to the list. Highly recommended, even if, no, especially if you have a treasured original A&M pressing. This reissue kills the original in every possible way!

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COMMENTS
tparker14's picture

Intervention has continued its streak of excellence with this reissue. If you like the music/artists they've released, you can't really go wrong with one of their LPs.

IR Shane's picture

Really appreciate your support!

IR Shane's picture

Was at Michael's house some years ago when I was working with AudioQuest. Mikey asked me what I'd been listening to and I was on a wicked Gene Clark jag, and he played White Light for me.

I also think he might have given me a copy of Dillard and Clark's Through the Morning, Through the Night!

tparker14's picture

I'm hoping these sell well enough for Intervention to consider other Gene Clark reissues!

bkinthebk's picture

YESSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!

May I also suggest a "worth mentioning" list of any albums that are out of print but that might be found online given the price hasn't skyrocketed. For instance, all analog OOP records that can be found relatively easily for under $50 or $100 (or whatever) that would be MUSTS on the list if they were still in-print.

bkinthebk's picture

I love it and think the mission statement on the Intervention Records website is amazing (if perhaps subjective) and also tragically rare in the world of premium price LP re-issues (and albums in general).

"Intervention's sonic goal is that each record we do must be the single definitive, final version of that album, the one real music lovers will seek out."

Also love this:

"Premium vinyl reissues are expensive to produce and they cost our customers real money. Customers have a right to know what they're buying! Our commitment to transparent sourcing means that we will always reveal the exact source material used for mastering and who the mastering engineer is, who pressed the records and who printed the jackets. We will always be completely open about the vendors we work with in producing our reissues. We are proud of the way these records our made ..."

Not many labels around with these standards. Not all the music is in my wheelhouse, but I hope the IR folks stick around for a good, long time. I'd be curious to know the process of how albums are chosen by the IR team and the process for procuring the masters. Seems like a story worth telling.

I'm definitely gonna grab this album.

GroovyGuru's picture

Although the current level of my finances is at its lowest, I still pre-ordered immediately after reading your post ... Thanks!

nobonemovies's picture

Big difference between the IR and Sundazed releases? Received any goodies from Gearbox lately?

ChrisM's picture

I 've just received my copy, this version is outstanding, I never heard "Because of You" like that, the pressing is also absolutely dead silent. This record revisits completely the music, a must have.

IR Shane's picture

Thanks! RTI really nailed this one for me, and of course Kevin Gray. But this is a beautiful quiet record and RTI's work really shines. Thanks so much for buying and enjoying!

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