Strawberry Alarm Clock – Incense Peppermints (1967)
“Good sense, innocence, cripplin’ mankind”
We know the elite would attack our good sense, innocence, and even innocent… but no, these aren’t the cripplers of mankind.
“Dead kings, many things I can’t define”
These are the elite’s ancestors; they’re saying, why look into such silly things? It’s nothing you could define anyhow.
“Occasions, persuasions clutter your mind”
They can. And they love to clutter ours.
“Who cares what games we choose? Little to win but nothin’ to lose”
You don’t choose; they choose, and you pick from their selection. And yes, there’s little of significance to win, but there’s always something to lose.
“Incense and peppermints, meaningless nouns”
Nouns are never meaningless; they define persons, places, and things. In this case, we have a double meaning even. Incense is often burned to mask the smell of marijuana. Peppermints are used to mask the smoke on their breath.
“Turn on, tune in, turn your eyes around, look at yourself
Look at yourself, yeah look at yourself, yeah, yeah, yeah!”
Tune on, tune in, drop out is a phrase Timothy Leary used to promote LSD. It is used here, except the “drop out” is accomplished by telling the listeners to look at themselves.
“To divide this cockeyed world in two, throw your pride to one side, it’s the least you can do”
They’re telling you, we don’t like what we see, you’re too cohesive. Build up your pride and throw it to one side; it’s the least you can do.
“Beatniks and politics, nothing is new, a yardstick for lunatics, one point of view”
This is a call to arms against free-thinkers and free-thinking in general; stop thinking just go with the flow nothing is new anyway. Nothing but a yardstick for lunatics, just stick to one point of view.
It would seem Strawberry Alarm Clock was targeted to appeal to the youth, offered fame and fortune, given “Incense Peppermints” (a stark contrast from the rest of their repertoire), which was then sung by an outside member… and the rest is history.
PS – Likely played too, check out the lo-fi footage below.