You learn something new every day. I had no idea that Tommy James and the Shondells recorded an experimental album in 1969. They were better known for their bubble gum hits such as Mony Mony and Hanky Panky but they were also among the first rockers to use the Moog synthesizer.
The experimental phase lasted for one album, Cellophane Symphony. I wish I could say there was a colorful back story involving label honcho Morris Levy threatening Tommy James over the album’s flop but there is not.. FYI, Levy is the guy upon whom Heshie in The Sopranos was based.
I listened to the bits and pieces of Cellophane Symphony available online. It flopped for a simple reason: it isn’t very good. The title/opening track sounds like Pink Floyd on a bad day. Low sales and mediocre music are the reason Tommy James was back Draggin’ The Line by 1971.
An alternate title for the album could have been Surrealistic Bandstand.
Here’s the title track: