Dorothy Moskowitz & The United States Of Alchemy – Under An Endless Sky

21st March 2023 · 2020s, 2023, Music

Not many people reading this will have heard of Dorothy Moskowitz, an iconic counter-cultural figure from the late Sixties, apart from my friends familiar with the avant-garde fringes of music.

She first came to attention in the experimental group called The United States Of America, formed by her erstwhile partner, the composer Joseph Byrd.

Their only album, released in 1968, blended psychedelia with electronica and avant-garde composition long before that was fashionable.

Moskowitz, who had once sung in a group with Art Garfunkel in New York, before he found a more permanent partner, provided their voice, and lyrics.

She went on to enjoy a diverse career, ranging from playing piano and singing with Country Joe McDonald (alongside Barry Melton and members of Big Brother & The Holding Company) to writing music for Sesame Street.

Now in her 80s, she’s as active as ever, and this 23-minute piece, Under An Endless Sky, recorded with her new ensemble The United States of Alchemy, is an ethereal delight that variously calls to mind other idiosyncratic geniuses like Nico, Marianne Faithfull and Robert Wyatt, as well as Terry Riley, Mercury Rev and Flaming Lips.