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Strawbs - Dragonfly CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.16 | 101 ratings

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4 stars Until "From the Witchwood" came along, "Dragonfly" was the Strawbs album that best captured their uniquely ancient sound. While it was apparently their least selling album ever, this had more to do with a retreat from some of the boldness of their self titled debut into a more pastoral and sentimental outlook. Instead of psychedelic story songs, the group embraced the wonders of the English countryside.

The dual voices of Cousins and Hooper shine separately and in tandem. The greater prominence of Clare Deniz on cello helps to bring about the intended effect on the listener, particularly in the exquisitely dour "I Turned my Face Into the Wind", and the decidedly more contented "Another Day" and "Till the Sun Comes Shining Through". Hints at the surreal are found in "Weary Song", "Dragonfly", and especially the epic "Vision of the Lady of the Lake" featuring Paul Brett's fiery lead guitar. While it sounds a trifle trumped up today, this track begins Cousins' long run through mythological references of love and sin which was resurrected on Strawbs' 2008 release in the form of "Through Aphrodite's Eyes" in a less long winded but equally melodramatic form.

If you have explored the back catalog of Strawbs but not checked out anything prior to "Witchwood", may I plant a bug in your ear and suggest you check out this early and gently buzzing beauty.

kenethlevine | 4/5 |


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