skeith

Need recs on Pentangle/Fairport Convention

155 posts in this topic

Coming up in August:

dreamatticshout.jpg

Another classic cover!

http://www.richardthompson-music.com/catch_of_the_day.asp?id=1203

That it is. I was at one of the shows that was recorded for this album, and granted it's hard to be fair towards hearing all new material for first time in a live setting, but sad to say most of the songs sounded like filler at best. He also somehow managed to write a dull song about Burning Man. The 2nd set of older songs was excellent, but that's not on this album.

Edited by Quincy

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That it is. I was at one of the shows that was recorded for this album, and granted it's hard to be fair towards hearing all new material for first time in a live setting, but sad to say most of the songs sounded like filler at best. He also somehow managed to write a dull song about Burning Man. The 2nd set of older songs was excellent, but that's not on this album.

Just read a 4 star review in Mojo. But I'm not holding my breath - Thompson has put out a lot of dull rockers over the years. Filler describes them perfectly! I think they are the sort of thing that gets a great response live but don't bear up afterwards.

He needs to get back over here and reconnect with his roots. I've always felt his songwriting suffered from the early 80s once he seemed to be on endless tour in the States (which is not to say that he hasn't written some great songs in that time - but they tend to make up about 1/3 of each record).

Edited by Bev Stapleton

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Just read a 4 star review in Mojo. But I'm not holding my breath - Thompson has put out a lot of dull rockers over the years. Filler describes them perfectly! I think they are the sort of thing that gets a great response live but don't bear up afterwards.

Don't get me wrong as I do like Thompson, but it seems like every review I read of his albums is 4 stars, and typically the reviewer says something about Thompson being "criminally underrated." Then when it comes time for the next review the publication lets someone else review the album and it's mentioned how much better this album compared to the last one, how underrated Thompson is, and it's given 4 stars. And so on. Only when a book (or web collection) of reviews comes out do albums get demoted to 2 or 3 stars. At least they don't do the "best album since Blood On The Tracks" like they do with Bob.

More positively multi-instrumentalist Peter Zorn who appears on the live album is a joy to watch (and duh, listen to) in person. He's played with Richard in the past.

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Guys, I just wanted to thank you for this, and other similar threads. clem was also into some british folk, steel string, etc. musics, so I owe him thanks as well.

Over the past few years, I've managed to find some Pentangle, Fairport, Steeleye, Davy Graham albums that are so perfect for me. Really great and fun music. Thank you.

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Don't get me wrong as I do like Thompson, but it seems like every review I read of his albums is 4 stars, and typically the reviewer says something about Thompson being "criminally underrated." Then when it comes time for the next review the publication lets someone else review the album and it's mentioned how much better this album compared to the last one, how underrated Thompson is, and it's given 4 stars. And so on. Only when a book (or web collection) of reviews comes out do albums get demoted to 2 or 3 stars. At least they don't do the "best album since Blood On The Tracks" like they do with Bob.

More positively multi-instrumentalist Peter Zorn who appears on the live album is a joy to watch (and duh, listen to) in person. He's played with Richard in the past.

I think you are right there. Because Thompson has never enjoyed mainstream success he seems to get the press rooting for him every time. Of his albums from the last ten years or so the only two that really bear up for me as albums are 'Mock Tudor' and 'The Old Kit Bag'. Another thing that increasingly disturbs me about Thompson's writing is the sheer nastiness of some of the lyrics. He's always had a thing about oddballs and characters on the wrong side of the tracks but a sort of sneer has crept in.

If you want three records that pick up on the spirit of early Thompson (without the guitar heroics), much more firmly rooted in the British tradition, try these:

lark-descending.jpgtrespasser-cover.jpgchris-wood-handmade-life.jpg

This 7 minute video about the making of the recent album is well worth watching. Interesting to note Wood's take on humanity compared with the bitterness that so disturbs me in recent Thompson:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBSWYnzGFh0&feature=player_embedded

The first two albums are available in a cheaper double package called 'Albion'.

Here is Wood doing his greaterst hit. Ten minutes long but I defy anyone with a heart not to get to the end of it without a tear in their eye:

Edited by Bev Stapleton

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This book due out next week should make an interesting read on this area:

51pKYOzjpKL._SS500_.jpg

The Amazon blurb:

'Electric Eden maps the secret aquifer beneath the flourishing landscape of British musical creativity over the last century. Rob Young has crafted a vivid and penetrating study ... a stunning achievement' --Simon Reynolds <br /><br />'Young has charted a territory that is sodden with mystery and tunnelled under with ceaselessly interconnecting themes and ideas ... a wonderful informative book full of surprises.' --Michael Bracewell

'Stunning ... The thread of mapping modern instruments on to traditional folk tunes leads Young from Peter Warlock to Bert Jansch, Steeleye Span and the Aphex Twin, via the bucolic psychedelia of the Incredible String Band, the Beatles and Pink Floyd. This is no easy path to navigate but Young rarely wavers.' --Bob Stanley, The Times

'A passionately researched, carefully written and compulsively readable map of the leys and songlines of an oral culture with its roots in pre-Roman times and its branches in the charts ... Young s grasp of context is enviable, his knowledge encyclopaedic ... Electric Eden constructs a new mythography out of old threads, making antiquity glow with an eerie hue. It can sit proudly on any bookshelf beside Alan Lomax s The Land Where Blues Began, Greil Marcus s Invisible Republic, Nick Tosches Where Dead Voices Gather or Jon Savage s England s Dreaming. If Mr Young never writes another word, he can count this epic book as the fruit of a beautiful labour.' --Peter Murphy, Sunday Business Post

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Electric-Eden-Unearthing-Britains-Visionary/dp/0571237525/ref=pd_ybh_9?pf_rd_p=138755991&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_t=1501&pf_rd_i=ybh&pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_r=0V0SGXREWHD6CMS0E481

The extract in the recent Froots magazine (on Mr. Fox) was excellent.

Edited by A Lark Ascending

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A book on the burgeoning wyrd music scene is about to come out.

(Guessing though that this would NOT be for the tastes of the origional poster.)

Have you tried any of Christie Moore's early lps?

Also from Planxty, the Andy Irvine solo lps are excellent, especially the one titled 'Rainy Sundays..Windy Dreams".

The Irvine/Paul Bradey "same" lp on Mulligan is traditional acoustic and , if not classic, should be.

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51pKYOzjpKL._SS500_.jpg

Read this over the last 2 weeks whilst out in the country. A lovely book, recommended to anyone with a fondness for the British folky music of the late 60s/very early 70s.

Doesn't really hang together as an overall thesis because I'm not convinced he knows what it is - a general feeling that the British/English have throughout their history reacted against modernity by retreating into an imagined, idyllic myth of Albion and the countryside. He explores that through the early 20thC folk song collectors and the classical composers influenced by the folk music (often the same people) and then through the folk revival of the 50s/60s and into the heart of the book, the folk-rock movement from c. '69 to '72.

Loses his way at the end where he paints a picture of a music largely lost and then presents a few random poppy examples of where the desire for something rooted in the English past bursts forth - Kate Bush, David Sylvian, Talk Talk, Julian Cope are his main examples (none of whom I've paid any attention to). Surprised there was no mention of XTC who very much went back into the idyll of an imaginary England.

The biggest flaw in the book is his complete oversight of the major revival of interest in folk music that has flowered since the mid 90s in this country; a whole new generation discovered the music then and another bunch of 20-somethings are discovering it again now.

The usual problem with critics presenting their prejudices and blind-spots as the truth; but I was impressed with his honest assessment of Sandy Denny's output. Her early death has led to uncritical hagiography - Young' assessment fits with my perception of a wonderful era with Fairport and two magical albums with Fotheringay and the Northstar Grassman, followed by a steady loss of focus and increasing blandness. He lays the blame at husband, Trevor Lucas' door.

Nice to know I'm not alone in seeing the English early 20thC classical composers, the folky/folk-rockers and some of the more pastoral rock bands of the late 60s and early 70s as part of some sort of vague continuum.

Edited by A Lark Ascending

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Weird England!

Cornwall's answer to Mardi Gras...though a few weeks later:

And here's the same thing from 1932:

Most of the year Padstow is an overcrowded tourist honeypot, increasingly dominated by the commercial concerns of a celebrity chef. But on May Day it's overcrowded lunacy.

Bev

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The Thompson box set flood continues...

51FLdILNYgL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

isc: 1

1. The Little Beggar Girl - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

2. Dragging The River - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

3. The Great Valerio - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

4. The Neasden Hornpipe / The Avebury Particle Accelerator / The Flowing Tide - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

5. I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

6. Hokey Pokey - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

7. Georgie On A Spree - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

8. Ill Regret It All In The Morning - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

9. A Heart Needs A Home - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

10. Wishing - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

11. I'm Turning Off A Memory - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

12. A Man In Need - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

13. Withered And Died - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

14. New Fangled Flogging Reel / Kerry Reel - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

15. Shoot Out The Lights - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

16. It's Just The Motion - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

17. Back Street Slide - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

18. Night Comes In - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

19. Dimming Of The Day - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

20. Modern Woman - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

Disc: 2

1. She Twists The Knife Again - Richard Thompson

2. You Don't Say - Richard Thompson

3. When The Spell Is Broken - Richard Thompson

4. The Angels Took My Racehorse Away - Richard Thompson

5. Valerie - Richard Thompson

6. Jennie - Richard Thompson

7. You Don't Say - Richard Thompson

8. Fire In The Engine Room - Richard Thompson

9. Wall Of Death - Richard Thompson

10. Nearly In Love - Richard Thompson

11. Valerie - Richard Thompson

12. When The Spell Is Broken - Richard Thompson

13. Two Left Feet - Richard Thompson

14. Turning Of The Tide - Richard Thompson

15. Simple Again - Richard Thompson

16. Ghosts In The Wind - Richard Thompson

17. Shoot Out The Lights - Richard Thompson

18. She Twists The Knife Again - Richard Thompson

19. Withered And Died - Richard Thompson

20. The End Of The Rainbow - Richard Thompson

Disc: 3

1. Gethsemane - Richard Thompson

2. The Outside Of The Inside - Richard Thompson

3. Wall Of Death - Richard Thompson

4. Word Unspoken Sight Unseen - Richard Thompson

5. Kidzz - Richard Thompson

6. Did She Jump or Was She Pushed - Richard Thompson

7. The End Of The Rainbow - Richard Thompson

8. One Door Opens - Richard Thompson

9. The Outside Of The Inside - Richard Thompson

10. Let It Blow - Richard Thompson

11. Old Thames Side - Richard Thompson

12. Dad's Gonna Kill Me - Richard Thompson

13. Down Where The Drunkards Roll - Richard Thompson

14. I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight - Richard Thompson

15. Needle And Thread - Richard Thompson

16. So Ben Mi Ca Bon Tempo - Richard Thompson

17. A Hunting The Wren - Richard Thompson

18. See My Friends - Richard Thompson

19. Times Gonna Break You - Richard Thompson

20. William Brown - Richard Thompson

21. Meet On The Ledge - Richard Thompson

Disc: 4

1. Jet Plane In A Rocking Chair - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

2. A Heart Needs A Home - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

3. Night Comes In - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

4. I'm a Dreamer - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

5. I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

6. Shoot Out The Lights - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

7. You're Going To Need Somebody - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

8. Dargai - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

9. Dimming Of The Day - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

10. Pavanne - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

11. Just The Motion - Richard Thompson, Linda Thompson

12. Fire In The Engine Room - Richard Thompson

13. She Twists The Knife Again - Richard Thompson

14. Wall Of Death - Richard Thompson

15. When The Spell Is Broken - Richard Thompson

16. Did She Jump Or Was She Pushed - Richard Thompson

17. Wrong Heartbeat - Richard Thompson

18. Tear Stained Letter - Richard Thompson

19. She Twists The Knife Again - Richard Thompson

Also from 1982:

51eVUbSBTeL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

1. Hokey Pokey

2. Walking On A Wire

3. Strange Affair

4. How Many Times Do You Have To Fall

5. Love Is Bad For Business

6. Genesis Hall

7. Flowers Of The Forest

8. The Inverness Gathering /Maggie Cameron

9. Why Don t Women Like Me

10. The Old Changing Way

11. Small Town Romance

12. Back Street Slide

13. Streets of Paradise

14. Never Again

15. Man In Need

16. Rainbow Over The Hill

17. Dargai

18. Nobody s Wedding

19. Dimming of the Day

And then as if the 18 CD box was not enough:

513Yt2%2B8DhL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

My favourite Sandy Denny album - but looks a bit superfluous.

I won't be able to resist the BBC One - recall hearing some of these broadcasts - the 80s ones are especially useful as they strip the music of the overproduction of the albums of the era.

The other two I'll leave.

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John Barley Corn Must Die is one of those rare high school favorites that still sounds great 40 years on.

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I'm constantly amazed at how many secondary school favourites still sound great 40 years on. They may not have the freshness they had when they were brand new and falling on a largely musically innocent ear - but in compensation there's an aura of nostalgia, an ability to summon up a particular time, place and group of people I knew then.

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A recent death that slipped by me - Mike Waterson:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011/jun/22/mike-waterson-obituary

Don't see any banners advertising Waterson's records on iTunes!

Very sad to see him pass. A highly distinctive singer from a highly influential group.

(Only vaguely connected with Fairport/Pentangle but couldn't think where else to mention it).

mike_waterson.jpg

Here he is, groomed for stardom.

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You may be pleased to note that the library system I work for currently has 9 holds on 3 copies, 10 as soon as I put it on hold.

51pKYOzjpKL._SS500_.jpg

Read this over the last 2 weeks whilst out in the country. A lovely book, recommended to anyone with a fondness for the British folky music of the late 60s/very early 70s.

Doesn't really hang together as an overall thesis because I'm not convinced he knows what it is - a general feeling that the British/English have throughout their history reacted against modernity by retreating into an imagined, idyllic myth of Albion and the countryside. He explores that through the early 20thC folk song collectors and the classical composers influenced by the folk music (often the same people) and then through the folk revival of the 50s/60s and into the heart of the book, the folk-rock movement from c. '69 to '72.

Loses his way at the end where he paints a picture of a music largely lost and then presents a few random poppy examples of where the desire for something rooted in the English past bursts forth - Kate Bush, David Sylvian, Talk Talk, Julian Cope are his main examples (none of whom I've paid any attention to). Surprised there was no mention of XTC who very much went back into the idyll of an imaginary England.

The biggest flaw in the book is his complete oversight of the major revival of interest in folk music that has flowered since the mid 90s in this country; a whole new generation discovered the music then and another bunch of 20-somethings are discovering it again now.

The usual problem with critics presenting their prejudices and blind-spots as the truth; but I was impressed with his honest assessment of Sandy Denny's output. Her early death has led to uncritical hagiography - Young' assessment fits with my perception of a wonderful era with Fairport and two magical albums with Fotheringay and the Northstar Grassman, followed by a steady loss of focus and increasing blandness. He lays the blame at husband, Trevor Lucas' door.

Nice to know I'm not alone in seeing the English early 20thC classical composers, the folky/folk-rockers and some of the more pastoral rock bands of the late 60s and early 70s as part of some sort of vague continuum.

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Thanks for pulling out the Electric Eden rec by Bev. Our library has it on order and I'm now #5 in the queue.

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I noticed that Electric Eden is now available in normal (i.e sensible!) paperback size:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Electric-Eden-Unearthing-Britains-Visionary/dp/0571237533/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1313431616&sr=8-2

Must be selling. It was up front on display in a number of book shops I visited over the last couple of weeks.

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dude man ive never heard pentangle, but one british guy i met a few wks ago, i was all whats your favorite band in england and he said: pentangle

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Look what just appeared on e-music:

600x600.jpeg

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Look what just appeared on e-music:

600x600.jpeg

Saw that gig. Should be a good listen. Off to see them reprise selection on Friday

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Somewhat odd, but as part of BBC4's send off to the BBC Television Centre (which is being retired), there's an hour or so Richard Thompson performance.

As part of the Goodbye TV Centre celebrations, guitarist, singer and songwriter Richard Thompson plays a one-off concert filmed in TC8.

Thompson has been performing in BBC TV studios since 1969, starting on Top of the Pops with Fairport Convention and then making frequent appearances on the Old Grey Whistle Test, The Late Show and Later with Jools Holland as a solo artist and bandleader.
Filmed before the opening night of the tour celebrating the Top 20 placing of his album Electric, Thompson leads his current power trio through songs from that album, including Salford Sunday and Stony Ground, alongside classics from his songbook like I Want to See the Bright Lights and Tear Stained Letter. Thompson is joined on a couple of acoustic songs by former Fairport bandmate and master fiddler Dave Swarbrick, frequent collaborator Pete Zorn adds sax to Al Bowlly's In Heaven and his daughter Kami Thompson harmonises on Waltzing for Dreamers.
Filmed before a small studio audience in the bare style of some of the previous BBC music shows on which Thompson has appeared, this concert celebrates Thompson and a tradition of popular music performance from TV Centre.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01rgr1n

Edited by A Lark Ascending

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Thanks for the heads up on that Bev, but on my computer the link goes nowhere!

Looked it up and it's on BBC4 at 10.25pm on Friday 22nd March with a repeat advertised as 12.40am Monday 25th March.

RT has been a bit of a hero of mine ever since I first bought 'Full House' back when it was first released, still my favourite Fairport album.

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Thanks for the heads up on that Bev, but on my computer the link goes nowhere!

Looked it up and it's on BBC4 at 10.25pm on Friday 22nd March with a repeat advertised as 12.40am Monday 25th March.

RT has been a bit of a hero of mine ever since I first bought 'Full House' back when it was first released, still my favourite Fairport album.

Have repaired it - one space too many on my part.

Yes, Full House is a favourite of mine too - something woody and natural about it. I didn't get to see Fairport until the second coming of Sandy Denny band c. 1974. But it did go to a very early Cropredy (before it was at Cropredy) where the Full House band played a full couple of sets including most of the album.

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Look what just appeared on e-music:

600x600.jpeg

Vol. 2 & 3 are awfully good also (esp. 3).

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