Psychedelic rock band formed by Daevid Allen and Gilli Smyth in France in 1969. Gong became pioneers of a new brand of psychedelia/space-rock/trip-rock - with a conceptual ethos involving aliens and alternative realities. An international outfit, increasingly linked to other bands of the Canterbury scene, many musicians came and went.
In 1970, the world got its first taste of the original pothead pixie, Daevid Allen's Gong, as Magick Brother was released in France on the BYG label. Allen's wife, Gilli Smyth, penned all the tunes on the album, and Allen's now-classic "Ph.P." drawing style graces the inside of the gatefold. Leaning a little toward the pop end of the spectrum, Magick Brother is a fairly light album, devoid of the blatant psychedelic/hippie qualities which shine through so brilliantly on the later Camembert Electrique.
On 12 June 2014, Allen underwent surgery to remove a cyst from his neck. It was determined to be cancerous and he subsequently underwent radiation therapy. In a statement, released on 5 February 2015, Allen wrote that the cancer had returned to his neck and also spread to his lungs, and that he was "not interested in endless surgical operations". He was "given approximately six months to live".
On 13 March 2015, his son, Orlando Monday Allen, announced through Facebook that Daevid Allen had died. The Planet Gong website announced that Allen had died in Australia, at 1.05pm, "surrounded by his boys". Allen had four sons, two with Gilli Smyth and two with other mothers.
Reviewing Allen's life, The Daily Telegraph said:
Allen revelled in being the court jester of hippie rock and never lost his enthusiasm for the transcendent power of the psychedelic experience. He once remarked: "Psychedelia for me is a code for that profound spiritual experience where there is a direct link to the gods." That he never attained the riches and fame of many of his contemporaries did not concern him.RIP Daevid Allen.
Here it is...