In Philadelphia during the late 1960s, a new soulful R&B rock band called Wax emerged and began a promising start at success. The group quickly began opening for various big name bands including the Byrds, the Everly Brothers, Manfred Mann and Chicago and additionally headlined multiple music festivals on the east coast. The band’s soulful vocal harmonies combined with intriguing musical forms and instrumentation was becoming popular without ever releasing a studio album. In 1970, Wax signed to producer Bob Crewe’s label, CGC, and in the summer of 1971 the band recorded at the Record Plant in New York City. A live session was put on tape but due to financial issues with the label, the album was never mixed or mastered. Wax unexpectedly broke up soon after the session in New York without a single recording ever released. The only evidence of Wax’s time together was the tape from this live recording that remained in band manager John Kalodner’s personal collection for almost 40 years.
The tape of Wax’s live recording that would come to be known as Melted was recently rediscovered, mixed, mastered and released. The 40-year-old time capsule has been opened and the jovial sounds of 1970s R&B funk rock can be heard again in its most authentic form. Melted may not line up with contemporary rock or jam band releases, but it definitely deserves a spot on your shelf next to all of those Yes and Doobie Brothers albums. David Kagan’s vocals drive through the album from beginning to end while Beau Jones provides funky bass lines. Rick Levy’s distorted guitar solos add a tasteful crunch and Rob Hyman’s keyboard work—whether on piano or organ—churns out the band’s signature sound by adding his own jazzy vibe. Wax may have melted but this solid album fortunately survives it.