Unanimously considered amongst fans of all strains of alternative pop culture the flamboyant cinematic masterpiece known as Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Holy Mountain can proudly claim, amongst all its other accolades, one of fantastique cinema’s greatest red herrings of all time.
In the interest of anti spoilerism we are not referring to the film’s reconstituted plot here (recycled from René Daumal’s 1952 fictitious mountaineering journal) but rather the film’s devious inverted end title sequence, a murky pond which harbours the true crimson fish that has quite frankly wasted record collectors time for over four bloody decades. The immortal, fatal, deviously distracting and plain EVIL strap line that reads “Forthcoming soundtrack available of Abkco Records and Tapes” has served a repeat menu of wild goose chase soup followed by red herring salad served in half a camouflaged curveball with a glass of muddied water in your own personal smoked screen booth for most of our adult lives. The gift that keeps on not giving. For those of us addicted to black plastic circles, if there was ever to be a sequel to The Holy Mountain then a two hour title card reading “we decided not to release the soundtrack to the original film” would have saved a lot of time, fingertip skin and want list paper and ink… In fact, in keeping with Jodorowsky’s grand vision for the film, this rug puller was (unbeknown to him) the final illusion.
If it wasn’t for Jodorowsky and Allan Klein’s thirty-something-year “temporary stand-off” (leading to release schedule cancellation) we might have already got over how amazing this soundtrack is. In fact, with all its quite unrequired Beatle connection hyperbole it might be in your old dad’s all-time favourite lists as the only token alternative/soundtrack/jazz record he ever bought, and you might have learned to hate it. But that never happened, and as the forbidden fruit idiom commands THIS IS NOW YOUR FAVOURITE LP OF ALL TIME AND YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT IT.
So we need to write a press release. One which will sound like we are talking about seven different albums in one and for those that have seen the film, that will make perfect astrological sense. Where do we start? The unreleased soundtrack to the most fantastic transcendental spiritual cinematic explosion of our time? The lost Don Cherry album? The missing Jazz Composers Orchestra album featuring Charlie Haden, Carla Bley and Frank Lowe? The Elephant’s Memory soundtrack follow-up to Midnight Cowboy? The lost soundtrack album secretly funded and A&R’d by John Lennon and Yoko Ono? The music to the film that George Harrison was sacked from because he didn’t want us to see his butt hole? The orch rock LP made by the arranger of the collectable Mandrake Memorial prog pop LP? Walter Sears’ undiscovered studio experiments? The record that The Beatles’ managers didn’t want you to hear? The true axis between New York psych rock, free jazz and Swedish prog rock? All are relevant, all are true and all clearly outlined in liner notes exclusive to Finders Keepers’ bespoke vinyl pressing of this grail-trail double-slab of psychedelic vinyl film history. Featuring the original cues, composed-to-scene, and mastered from the original studio master tapes via Record Plant, A&R, Sear Sound and Electric Ladyland and housed in exclusive packaging based on one of the rarest European posters for the film’s original release.
This first edition also includes exclusive interviews and lost information from Neneh Cherry, Ronald Frangipane and the Swedish members of the original Don Cherry Holy Mountain line-up Bengt Berger and Christer Bothen alongside commendable quotes from Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) and Kieran Hebden (Four Tet). Alongside this release Finders Keepers, in collaboration with ABKCO will also present special vinyl editions of Jodorowsky’s other two Allen Klein produced films, El Topo and The Dance Of Reality, housed with the same unique design features and liner notes driven by the label’s long-term commitment to a project that has taken over a decade to release. The wait has been too long. Zoom back camera! Break the illusion and enjoy your salad.