Psychedelic-Rock'n'roll: The Third Power - Believe (PSYCHEDELIC HARD-ROCK US 1970)

2 June 2009

The Third Power - Believe (PSYCHEDELIC HARD-ROCK US 1970)


"The Third Power" formed in 1967 near Detroit in Farmington Hills, MI by "Drew Abbot" (guitar, vocals), "Jim Craig" (drums, vocals) and "Jem Targal" (bass guitar, vocals) after playing around for several years in various bands.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,grande,vanguard,promoThe Third Power from left to right: "Jem Targal", "Jim Craig" and "Drew Abbot"

Quickly emerged as a favorite on the local club circuit thanks to their bone-rattling sound. "Third Power" arrived with one of the most descriptive epithets a Power Rock Trio ever possessed.
Their heavy attack fast made them favorites at the "Grande Ballroom", "Eastown Theater" and just about every other concert venue in the area.

In 1970 "The 3rd Power" recorded the album "Believe" was recorded for the "Vanguard Records".
But "Believe" was deemed too heavy for the label's direction and lacked the support that could have made it more of a hit.
This decision by "Vanguard Records" to drop "The Third Power" from their roster almost immediately after "Believe"'s release made it an instant collectable.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,grande,vanguard,promoThe Third Power: from left to right "Jim Craig", "Jem Targal" and "Drew Abbot"

Despite production and support by the legendary "Sam Charters", Vanguard's utter lack of comprehension of the work (they didn't really know what to do with the band and dropped them after hearing the recording), poor distribution and non-existent promotion erased any chance the record had to stand on its considerable merit.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,vanguard,labelThe Third Power - Believe, Promo Vanguard Records VSD-6554, US 1970

"Believe" (Vanguard Records VSD-6554, 1970) is purely studio; way too produced and laden with overdubs impossible to duplicate live, at least with the technology available then and it was not strong enough to capture the all important top 40 FM market and most importantly, did not sell well outside of Detroit and related environs.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,grande,vanguard,stage"Jem Targal" had the vocal chords for serious Rock singing and "Drew Abbot"'s supercharged guitar work ranked with the best in the city.
In the early '70s "Drew Abbot" performed as an opener with various "Motown Records" session bands.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,grande,vanguard,windsor"Detroit-Windsor Pop Festival 1970" with FABULOUS "MC5"

Having been managed by "Punch Andrews", "Drew Abbot" knew "Bob Seger"; in fact, "Third Power" had often opened for "Bob Seger".
In 1972 when "Bob Seger" decided he wanted to give up guitar playing responsibilities, "Drew Abbot" was asked to join "Bob Seger"'s band.

third_power,BELIEVE,psychedelic-rocknroll,1970,abbott,seger,detroit,grande,vanguard,promoWhen "Punch Andrews" and "Bob Seger" decided to create a new image for "Bob Seger" by starting the "Silver Bullet Band" in 1974, "Drew Abbot" was the only member asked to stay on.
Photo courtesy by "Tom Wright".


Anonymous said...

Thank you !!! it` a great album!!

see you soon , Richard

Anonymous said...

Have always enjoyed this LP. Saw Targal once solo in 1979, too.

Anonymous said...

This is an excellent late 60s power-trio album, though hardly psychedelic. Plenty of Cream and Black Sabbath influence. Very talented musicians. For a full review see my post on The Rising Storm ( Len Liechti, Bath, UK.

Anonymous said...

Worked with Jem In Fort Wayne, IN
Quite a fellow! full of Detroit rock knowledge!

Anonymous said...

I was like a dream for me, when I first time had heard „Commin home“. It was in 1999 on our former Slovak alternative radio station. I was 21 these days. For The Third Power will always be a one of the most important groups of this beautiful era for me.
Martin Pener, Slovakia (Europe)

Anonymous said...

It's so cool to see that people are still enjoying this music :) The drummer, Jim Craig, is actually my grandfather and it's awesome to me that people are still enjoying his music!