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The Incredible String Band - The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter CD (album) cover


The Incredible String Band


Prog Folk

3.42 | 58 ratings

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Eetu Pellonpaa
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This album switches in the full throttle of experimentalism for this group, but nevertheless I can't escape feeling that the record is little incoherent and distracted listening experience, containing both very fine musical moments among unpleasant and confusing elements.

"Koeeoaddi There" starts the album, having dominant vocals and sitar flowing over guitars creating surreal feeling. The song is composed quite fearlessly from different kind of parts, which build a yet quite logical entity, flowing free as a thought, and focusing to a rolling theme resembling a lullaby. Among the best songs of this album for me. "The Minotaur's Song" has piano, guitar, vocals and upright feeling, and isn't very exceptional in my opinion. Following "Witches Hat" is a nice romantic shortie with classical sounding chord progressions and naive madness, resembling little the first Pink Floyd record. "A Very Cellular Song" is the longest piece here, starting with organ and slightly painfully played violin. The strong vocal parts and powerful melodies in gospel style verse lead to a kazoo, flute & harpsichord madness, which is really irritating to listen. This kind of sequences are paired with returns to the start theme variations. "Mercy I Cry City" is then more compact composition for voice and guitar, which is attacked with all kind of short visits of musical instruments. "Waltz of the New Moon" is more minimalistic and oppressing song for guitar, wailing voice and supporting instruments. Following "The Water Song" is a medieval tune for organ, pipe, and voice, paired with an avant-gardist sequence, being really pretty. "Three Is a Green Crown" is also a fine song with powerful vocal presence, waving structure, resembling Indian raga music with hypnotic long run of chord improvisations, making up one of the strongest song here. "Swift as the Wind" is then for wailing voices and simple chords, deep emotional load and pretty melody. Closing track "Nightfall" rises from beautifully lingering notes of sitar, voice and guitar.

So this record has not grown as my personal favorite, though there are also fine moments in it. It is probably very sincere, but there are too much incoherent moments in it to fit my own taste totally. I have understood that this record has historical impact as the sound started to grow very experimental with this record, and it merges together interestingly influences from different cultures, but these facts do not affect to my abilities to enjoy this album as a totally exceptional musical experience. Thus it is recommended for those who like experimental and raw hippie music, and who are not drawn away from slightly off-key singing and violins.

Eetu Pellonpaa | 3/5 |


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