Self-produced, 1969's "Friendsound" makes absolutely no attempt to go down the commercial road and to ours ears may deserve to be noted as one of the first real "jam" albums. It's also one of those rare instances where the liner notes are dead-on ... "A musical free-for-all ... The idea for Friendsound came to us when we were in the early stages of creating our first album. We rounded up all out musician friends in the area and headed for a recording studio to have a musical free-for-all." That pretty much says it all. Exemplified by material such as the title track and "Childhood's End", the six extended numbers were largely instrumental in nature. Credited as group compositions, songs such as "CHildsong" and "Empire of Light" are full of studio experimentation, including backward tapes, sound effects and acid-influenced ramblings. Raiders members Levin, Smith and Volk were too grounded in top-40 pop to totally abandon such concepts as rhythm and melody, but it's pretty clear late night parting imbued them with a lot more freedom and creative latitude than your typical Paul Revere and the Raiders session. Not for the faint of heart, or top-40 junkies, but worth checking out for the more adventuresome of you out there.