I suppose this is the album that kick started British folk rock with A Sailors Life, and what a track, they took folk’s fingers out of its ears and used them to plug-in electric guitars. You can hear the echoes of so much folk rock here, right up to The Unthanks. It’s definitely a British Sound, but there is still shades of West Coast psychedelia, you could almost imagine Jefferson Airplane having a go at this.
My favourite track on this album is the wonderful trippy Genesis Hall a wonderful and overlooked song. And who could forget everyone’s favourite Fairport track, Who Knows Where the Time Goes. Listened to this tonight while walking through Dublin, made the rain disappear.
Kid view: When I was a kid I often wondered how that guy Trad Arr was such a prolific songwriter.
A holiday, a holiday, and the first one of the year.
What three albums would you put in a time capsule to represent the high points of human culture? I think this album would be in mine, along with John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme, and one of those Top of the Pops covers albums (just to mess with our future cultural historians).
I really enjoyed listening to this today, not only is it a fantastic record, it is also a genre creating one. Without this album English folk-rock might have took a very different path. I am listening to this, as God (John Peel) intended, on vinyl, crackles, pops and all. The three tracks, for me, that define this album are, Matty Groves (a 17th century Lady Chatterley’s Lover), Tam Lin and the absolute gem Crazy Man Michael (written by the equally magnificent Richard Thompson). I still go and see Fairport when they tour, they are a great live act and one of the few bands who you will catch mingling with the punters before a gig.
Hidden gem; Farewell Farewell, a voice to make you cry
An aside; I really miss Sandy Denny, she makes this album.