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Culpeper's Orchard

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Culpeper's Orchard Second Sight album cover
3.31 | 34 ratings | 4 reviews | 9% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1972

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Julia (3:17)
2. Keyboard Waltz (4:24)
3. Classified Ads (4:13)
4. Late Night Woman Blues (6:39)
5. Mind Pollution / Weather Report (9:35)
6. Autumn Of It All (4:07)
7. Satisfied Mind (6:06)

Total time 38:21

Bonus tracks on 2005 reissue:
8. Raving (single) (5:10)
9. Sailor (live) (7:13)
10. New Day, New Day (live) (4:26)
11. Hey Mister Housekeeper (live) (6:09)
12. Good Days (live) (4:34)
13. Sailor (live) (10:02)

Line-up / Musicians

- Cy Nicklin / electric & acoustic guitars, mandolin, vocals
- Nils Henriksen / lead, slide & acoustic guitars, piano, vocals
- Michael Friis / bass, organ, piano, sitar, acoustic guitar (7,8), vocals
- Ken Gudman / drums, percussion

Releases information

Artwork: John Bauer

LP Polydor ‎- 2380 018 (1972, Denmark)
LP Polydor ‎- 2380 018 (2017, Denmark) Remastered by Jørgen Bo Behrensdorff

CD Karma Music ‎- KMCD 21025 (2005, Denmark) With 6 bonus tracks, new cover

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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CULPEPER'S ORCHARD Second Sight ratings distribution

(34 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(9%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (53%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

CULPEPER'S ORCHARD Second Sight reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The second album of this Danish group has very similar sound textures as found from their first album. They are emphasizing acoustic, carefully constructed harmonies, analogue organs and beautiful singing melodies for painting lush feelings to being paired with upright rock'n'roll passages. In addition of the more delicate and dynamic parts, there are also some quite straightforward and more unimaginative moments here, like the track "Classified Adds" - A symptom of filler-track syndrome, which was diagnosed already on their first album. The beginning of the fourth tune "Late Night Woman Blues" returns back to more ethereal feelings, morphing as a traditional blues number with acoustic slide guitars and amplified rhythm guitars. The fifth song "Mind Pollution / Weather Report" starts then as a more traditional sounding folk number, with still some bluesy elements echoing underneath the dreamy sequences, later opening up as a more straightforward rocker. Though there are quite basic rock movements in this music, the tracks evolve in pleasant way from one feeling to another, creating nice contrasts and increasing the musical content to the conventional rock tapestry, making the music pulse with emotions. Again on the next song "Autumn of It All" track the music returns to the folky moods, and the last song "Satisfied Mind" continues the folk style, but maybe moving towards more American country folk music, a style where I understood that part of the band members moved after this release. Though there's some skillful rock jamming on the presented themes in the end of the song, maybe this track wasn't my cup of tea still. This probably won't make their stuff poorer, but it surely makes this more mainstream music in my opinion. If you like bands like Led Zeppelin, Uriah Heep, Nazareth, The Who etc. and want to check out something more exotic but little similar, I would recommend this record along with the first album of Culpeper's Orchard as exceptionally good targets for listening. As an anecdote, the album cover picture is done by the Swedish artist John Bauer, work illustrating "Tuvstarr is still sitting there wistfully looking into the water") from the year 1913.
Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Second Sight is the second studio album from Danish band Culpeperīs Orchard. The album was released in 1972. Frontman and guitarist Cy Nicklin ( who is english and not Danish by the way) started Culpeperīs Orchard after leaving another experimental rock/ progressive rock band which he started in 1968 called Day of Phoenix. Before his days in Day of Phoenix he enjoyed moderate success with the Danish folk trio Cy, Maia and Robert which also hosted another one of the most prolific characters on the experimental Danish rock scene of the late sixties and early seventies namely Robert Lelievre ( who was French by the way). Robert was the mainman behind one of the most rare and expensive Danish releases ever: The original LP with Pan. Iīve seen that album a couple of times in second hand stores and it cost from 300Ģ to 350Ģ. Robert sadly took his own life on the 26th of August 1973.

Well that aside Cy Nicklin and his companions in Culpeperīs Orchard released their debut album in 1971. Itīs a pretty good album which reminds me a bit about the early Jethro Tull albums. Itīs a mildly progressive album and it is clear from the start when you listen to that album that Culpeperīs Orchard isnīt the most innovative band in the world. Itīs still a good rock album though.

The music on Second Sight hasnīt gotten anymore progressive than it was on the debut, but the quality is still high. The music is generally more mellow and there are lots of beautiful acoustic guitar playing, great singing and memorable melody lines. Like on the debut there is a considerable amount of blues rock influences but this time the folk tendencies are more obvious than before. The last song Satisfied Mind is even in country mode. The only slightly progressive song on Second Sight is Mind Pollusion / Weather Report that starts with a beautiful acoustic section while the second part of the song showcases the most hard blues rocking moments on the album. Great track that one. The rest of the songs are also good and because of the many folky acoustic moments Iīm reminded a bit of Led Zeppelin III ( and maybe a bit of Wishbone Ash).

The musicianship is good. Cy Nicklin is a great distinct singer and the instrumental interplay and soloing are really enjoyable.

The production is pleasant and well done. The louder rock moments are also produced well.

I enjoy this generally mellow and beautiful album but itīs not the most challenging album in this world. If you like bluesy and folksy rock music with a slight progressive touch this might be an enjoyable album for you. I think itīs a good album but not excellent and it deserves 3 stars.

Review by Matti
3 stars This folky prog band from Denmark had an English vocalist Cy Nicklin, who also was the main writer of music. I've read that the debut Culpeper's Orchard (1971) is partly closer to heavy prog and it's compared to e.g. early Led Zeppelin and Jethro Tull. There's some raw-ish rocking on this one too, but perhaps it focusses on more peaceful, blues and country flavoured folk-rock. I don't hear very much of prog, sad to say. The songs got less and less interesting towards the end... but oh wait, there were actually many bonus tracks that were all worse than the main album. Well, the majority of album tracks too made no notable impression on me. My favourite track is the ballad 'Autumn of It All' written by multi-instrumentalist Michael Friis. In it the acoustically oriented sound of the band is at its finest.

There are some nice vocal harmonies. Nicklin's (?) vocals remind me of R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe, at least on 'Mind Pollution'. As in Le Orme album that I reviewed a moment ago, a nice cover painting that I - again! - have on a book cover too (the book is about John Bauer, the author of the painting). A funny coincidence... 2― stars for this uneven album, rounded up because of such marginal prog country.

Review by GruvanDahlman
3 stars When I first acquired the debut of Culpeper's Orchard I couldn't believe my ears. At the time (circa 1992) there was not even the remotest chance for me to find out anything about the band. The reissue I bought lacked not only general information about the band but the yyear aswell. Odd, one might say. I dare say that would not happen today. Internet was strictly speaking not in operation, which means that that particular well of knowledge wasn't only dried up, it had not yet begun it's flow. I took a guess based on sound and structure of the songs and concluded it was made back in 1971 or 1972. Pretty good guess.

While the first album is one of my Top5 albums and has been rated five stars by me, the decline seemed rapid for Culpeper's Orchard. The first album is flawless in my opinion. Their brand of hard rock, prog, folk and a slice of countryfied rock was and is superb. This, their second effort, is, while not bad, not all that good. In particular that is true when compared to the brilliance of album number one.

What is the matter, then? For the most parts the details that made up the tapestry of the first album are here. There's blues, hard rock, prog, folk and country all mixed up and presented in a fine fashion. The problem lies in the material. Soundwise it is an improvement on the first album, though I really appreciate the rough and raw sound found on that one. The material on "Second sight" is simply lesss urgent, less forceful and less intriguing.

The opening, "Julia", is a lovely folkstruck little thing I enjoy. It is pretty and the voice of Cy Nicklin is wonderful, as ever. "Keyboard waltz" is also a nice track and holds alot in common with the songs on ttheir debut. "Classified ads" is a hard rock stomper, which also holds similarities to their debut.

The main problem on this album really is "Late night woman blues". I have not quarrels with the blues but in this case it seems like an easy way out. Stretching out for 6.36 minutes it is really nothing more than a piece of bluesy jamming. It disrupts the flow.

"Autumn of it all" harks back to the debut, once again. A nice, little folky thing and one of the better songs on the album. It would really have suited the debut. "Mind pollution/Weather report" is the highlight, really. Nigh on 10 minutes long it is divided into two distinct parts. The opening folky one and the hard rock closing section. Really great song. Inspired and intriguing. The last track is the very countryfied "Satisfied mind" which sees them in some sort of CSN or Grateful Dead mode. Good one, especially as an ending song.

Overall one has to say that this album holds great musicianship but the problem is the material in itself, being really not that strong or intriguing as those tracks on the debut. I believe one has to judge each album on it's own merits and so I do. Even if I was to look at this album as one made by a band that never recorded another track the judgement would be the same. Nice but not that thrilling. I have struggled with this album over the years and every time I get the same experience and draw the same conclusion.

This is an album for those already into Culpeper's Orchard. I would not recommend this album anyone else. It's not bad, just not that special either. Three stars.

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