Jackal

Jackal was a Canadian post-psychedelic hard-rock band that released the 1973 album Awake on Periwinkle Records.

Members: Charlie Shannon (vocals), Steve Hayward, Chris Kellesis (organ), James Kellesis, Lois Mutton (drums), Dave Bernard (guitar, bass)


Background

Jackal formed in 1969 when organist Chris Kellesis and his bassist brother Jack teamed with singer and schoolmate Charlie Shannon. For the next three years, they honed their chops at rock venues in Greater Toronto. They signed a management deal with veteran Ottawan music entrepreneur Art Snider, the founder of Sound Canada Studios, a recording facility in Don Mills, Ontario, where soul-rockers Mandala cut their 1968 album for Atlantic.

Jack Kellesis cleared for bassist Steve Hayward. Jackal stabilized as a quintet with guitarist Dave Bernard and drummer Lois Mutton. Snider signed them to Periwinkle Records, the label of Sound Canada. Mutton cleared for drummer Cameron Lauder.


Awake

Jackal released their singular album, Awake, in mid-1973 on Periwinkle. It features eight originals in the vein of Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, and Budgie.

Chris Kellesis wrote the bulk of Awake, including the first two songs and the epic title track. Three tracks date from prior lineups: one (“In the Heavens”) co-written by Louise Mutton and two (“A New Day Has Arisen,” “How Time Has Flown”) from Jake’s time in the band.

Steve Hayward contributed two short numbers, “Sunny Side of the Day” and “Lost In the World.”

A1. “At the Station” (5:35)
A2. “For You” (3:03)
A3. “Sunny Side of the Day” (2:42)
A4. “A New Day Has Arisen” (8:22)
B1. “How Time Has Flown” (5:49)
B2. “Lost In the World” (2:21)
B3. “In the Heavens” (4:00)
B4. “Awake” (7:52)

Sessions took place in early 1973 at Sound Canada with Reign Ghost soundman Bob Stright. Artist Julius Ciss illustrated the cover to Awake, which shows the members unconscious and web-spun with a jackal under a mountain of hair; grown from a sleeping subject who part-eclipses the sun. The back cover depicts one subject lying nude and unconscious on a stretch of grass.


Later Activity

Snider lacked sufficient funds to secure an international release of Awake or put Jackal on the road to promote the album. Consequently, it became a rare collector’s item. The band continued for a short period of time before the members parted and left the music scene.

In 1994, Labyrinth Records resurrected Awake for the first time on CD. In 2004, the title reappeared as a CD and LP on Radioactive Records, a label dedicated to post-psych obscurities (Fifty Foot Hose, HP Lovecraft, Grodeck Whipperjenny, Morgen).


Discography:

  • Awake (1973)

Sources:

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