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Strawbs Strawbs album cover
3.14 | 97 ratings | 16 reviews | 6% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1969

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Man Who Called Himself Jesus (3:41)
2. That Which Once Was Mine (2:48)
3. All The Little Ladies (2:15)
4. Pieces Of 79 And 15 (2:56)
5. Tell Me What You See In Me (4:58)
6. Oh How She Changed (2:50)
7. Or Am I Dreaming (2:25)
8. Where Is This Dream Of Your Youth (3:04)
9. Poor Jimmy Wilson (2:33)
10. Where Am I / I'll Show You Where To Sleep (3:25)
11. The Battle (6:30)

Total Time: 37:25

Bonus tracks on 2008 A&M remaster:
12. Interview / That Which Once Was Mine (3:41) *
13. Poor Jimmy Wilson (2:28) *
14. The Battle (6:09) *

* Recorded for John Peel's "Top Gear" BBC Radio One Show, 12th January, 1969.

Line-up / Musicians

- Dave Cousins / vocals, guitars
- Tony Hooper / vocals, guitars
- Ron Chesterman / double bass

- Tony Visconti / "Musical vibrations"

Releases information

ArtWork: Barry Feinstein (photo) with Tom Wilkes (art direction)

LP A&M - AMLS 936 (1969, UK)

CD Si-Wan Records ‎- SRMC 0088 (2000, South Korea)
CD A&M Records ‎- 5302679 (2008, Europe) 24-bit remaster by Paschal Byrne w/ 3 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy STRAWBS Strawbs Music

STRAWBS Strawbs ratings distribution

(97 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(6%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
Good, but non-essential (52%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

STRAWBS Strawbs reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Very much a folk album at this stage in the Strawbs reportoire. Therefore I suggest it as for hardcore Strawbs fans only. I like it, and it has real gems like ' The man who called himself Jesus' with Cousin's amusing narrative as well as the classic ' Tell me what you see in me', which later became a classic tune for gigs even today, remade on the Don't Say Goodbye album. ' It also includes ' The Battle' which shows glimpses of future progressive leanings that were to follow.Great addition to your Strawbs library but as I say very much a folk album.
Review by hdfisch
3 stars The Strawbs happen to be as well on my all-time-favs list since quite a long time. Certainly their albums between "Witchwood" and "Ghost" had considerably better things to offer than their first two ones. But actually I like also very much their debut which admittedly might have been still rather folk than Prog, but hey keep in mind that we're still in 1969. And I think for that year of release this one can be considered quite a remarkable debut. Moreover I even prefer it in some way to its follow-up "Dragonfly" since it's overall more lively than that one. Though there isn't any long-track on here we get instead a track like "Tell Me What You See In Me" with a great oriental flavour, certainly the outstanding one here. But there are other highlights like "Where Is This Dream Of Your Youth" with some piano playing (not listed in the line-up!), "Poor Jimmy Wilson" though being just a rather simple song with a nice story and pleasant flute (also not listed!) or "The Battle" with keyboards that are again not listed. To sum up my review this debut might have been certainly not to be considered essential in any sense but anyway it had been a noteworthy and very good one.
Review by clarke2001
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A nice prog-folk debut. This one sounds really dated nowadays, but I love that sound and style. Folk tunes are occasionally spiced with proggy elements. For example, "All The Little Ladies" is a pure folk tune, very English. In my opinion, only AMAZING BLONDEL could come close by their "englishness". Lovely guitar work. Interesting lyrics."Tell Me What You See In Me" is breathtaking tune which combined perfectly music from India with contemporary pop and rock.

The element of psychedelia is not to be overlooked, the examples are "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" (sounds like SIMON AND GARFUNKEL with distortion) and nice "Where Is The Dream Of Your Youth" with loads of reverb - the effect that is overused in "Where Am I", which sounds quite pathetic.

"Oh How She Changed" and "Poor Jimmy Wilson" are weaker tracks, first one being pop, and second one pure folk, but they are pleasant enough.

My personal favourite, the highlight of the album is "Pictures Of 79 And 15", in my opinion one of the top 10 most beautiful songs ever written! Pretty Hammond organ work (reminds me of early era JETHRO TULL) and unbeatable, dreamy vocal harmonies. That's what this album is all about, really. One lovely dream.

A good debut, definitely not the milestone, but a fine example of late 60's music. Very pleasant work.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars A strong statement of intent

For the Strawbs first official album (excluding their work with Sandy Denny which was retrospectively released some years later), we have to go way back to 1969. Back then, the band was an acoustic trio (even the bass here is a double bass, not a guitar) consisting of David Cousins, Tony Hooper and Ron Chesterman. Cousins and Hooper share vocal and song writing duties, Cousins being the dominant partner. The band were the first to sign to the UK arm of A&M records. In an ironic twist, the album they originally submitted was deemed too "pop", the record company insisting that they record some more progressive material.

The album has many fine tracks, offering a good indication of where the band were heading. The folk influences are strong, with acoustic instruments dominant, but there are some more rock orientated pieces.

The opening track, "The man who called himself Jesus" is a strange tale set in the present which reflects on how society might react if Jesus, (or someone claiming to be him) was to return. The song was written by Cousins following an experience a friend of his had in Copenhagen, Denmark. While his friend working in a shop there, a man walked in an introduced himself as "Jesus". This got Cousins thinking about the fact that Jesus had (according to Christian belief) indicated he would return one day, and he (Cousins) wondered how Christ would be able to convince people of his authenticity. The track was a controversial selection both for the first track on the album and as a single, being quickly banned from broadcast by the BBC.

"Pieces of 79 and 15" has some fine unaccredited mellotron, while the early version of "Tell me what you see in me" here has a slightly eastern feel. The song would be completely transformed decades later into one of the bands most powerful numbers ever. "Or am I dreaming" also contains enhanced orchestration, the track having a Simon and Garfunkel like relaxed but upbeat mood.

"Where is this dream of your youth" is one of the more ambitious pieces, but for the definitive version of the song look to the "Antiques and curios" album, where Rick Wakeman hijacks the song with a lengthy organ solo. The closing song "The battle" is a complete story in 11 verses. There is perhaps a nod to Bob Dylan in the style of the composition, but the song is a strong statement by the band which whets the appetite for the albums which follow. Once again, the song benefits from significant supplementary instrumentation.

While the acoustic basis of the album inevitably leads to the music being described as folk orientated, there is more to "Strawbs" than is at first apparent. The songs are wonderfully composed both in terms of lyrics and melodies with underlying complexities which cannot be simply dismissed as folk music. "Strawbs" may be the start of the journey, but it is nevertheless a wonderful, album in its own right. Its importance in the history of prog folk should not be underestimated either.

RIP Ron Chesterman, who sadly passed away while I was preparing this review.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars This debut from Strawbs is a gentle and peaceful piece of music. Mostly acoustic, it features some fine vocal harmonies (Pieces Of 79 And 15), some weak song as well (All The Little Ladies and Oh How She Changed). The opening track is too much religious for my ears (The Man Who Called himself Jesus).

The music you can find here is hardly essential and sounds pretty much outdated. The psychedelic and early Floyd oriented Tell Me What You See In is my fave out here. There are some nice Oriental influence as well (percussions, violin).

When one listens to Or Am I Dreaming, it is impossible not to think about The Boxer (Simon & Garfunkel). Paul Simon wrote it in 68 though.

The album weakens substantially from there on and offers some childish mood and frankly poor songs like Poor Jimmy Wilson and Where Am I. The closing track is another good part of this debut album. It is much more constructed and consists of much more mature music. There is a fine keyboards play in the background, and the crescendo approach is rather efficient. A second highlight.

I will upgrade this album from five out of ten to three stars mainly thanks to three songs (but which accounts for almost half of the running time). But, be aware that the band will sound more progressive in later releases (some years after this release).

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
2 stars I was quite surprised when I heard this album. This music is firmly rooted in 60's pop and it reminds me a lot of Donovan and even The Beatles, much more so than early Fairport Convention or Steeleye Span. Some songs even remind me of David Bowie's funny self titled debut album, especially Or Am I Dreaming?, All The Little Ladies and Poor Jimmy Wilson. Some songs here are even humorous!

The song Where Is This Dream Of Your Youth? was later recorded live for the album Just A Collection Of Antiques And Curios. Here it is just over three minutes long and on Just A Collection Of Antiques And Curios it is almost ten minutes, with a long psychedelic organ solo by Rick Wakeman.

This is a cute Folk pop album with a strong 60's sound and it has very little to do with the Prog Folk band they later became. If you want to find anything progressive on this album, I guess you have to look towards the closing number The Battle which is over six minutes long and reminds slightly of The Vision Of The Lady Of The Lake from the next album.

Only for fans and collectors, I suppose.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Strawbs" is the eponymously titled debut full-length studio album by UK folk rock/progressive folk rock act The Strawbs. The album was released through A&M Records in May 1969. The Strawbs formed in 1964 under the Strawberry Hill Boys monicker, while still attending school. They shortened the name to The Strawbs in 1967. The early incarnation of the band featured a young Sandy Denny (later of Fairport Convention and Fotheringay) and that lineup recorded 13 tracks for an album titled "All Our Own Work", but the album was shelved and wasnīt released until 1973 through the Pickwick Records label.

Stylistically most of the material on this debut album is acoustic oriented folk rock with a progressive edge. Most tracks are carried by two acoustic guitars, double bass, soft melodic lead vocals, and loads or harmonies and choirs. Some tracks also feature string arrangements and/or, flute, and piano. While a few tracks like "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus", "Or Am I Dreaming?", and, "Oh How She Changed" features drums, quite a few tracks on the album doesnīt feature regular rock drumming. Some percussion here and there, but several tracks are based on the acoustic instruments and vocals described above. To my ears itīs also were The Strawbs shine the most. Itīs When they are most stripped down and folk oriented that their music is most intriguing. The string arrangements and drums have a tendency to provide their music with a mainstream orientation, which isnīt that interesting. Thereīs also a slight symphonic progresive rock element in the music which sometimes remind me of Genesis. Best examplified in "Pieces of 79 and 15" and the ending the 6:30 minutes long epic "The Battle".

The musicianship is strong and both Dave Cousins and Tony Hooper have pleasant sounding voices and the skills to perform harmonies which are both intriguing and beautiful. Considering that this is a 1969 release, the sound production is professional and well sounding. All details are heard and thereīs a nice organic sound to the instruments and the vocals. Upon conclusion itīs a strong debut release by The Strawbs. It could have been even stronger had they gone for a more dedicated progressive folk rock sound (like they do on "Pieces of 79 and 15" and "The Battle"), and not combined it with mainstream oriented elements, but as it is itīs still a good quality release and a 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

Review by kenethlevine
3 stars Strawbs have such a weird and wonderful history that this "first" self titled album is only their initial record label release, not actually their debut recording. For that, one has to dig out "All Our Own Work", "Sandy and the Strawbs", or even "Preserves Uncanned". But since this was the first album to be released, it deserves consideration as such.

Already in 1969 the group is blending Dylan and Ray Davies styled storytelling with nascent progressive rock to produce a rather unique British take on folk rock, parallel to but no less impressive than Fairport Convention, even if they are rarely credited on the same level. Songs like "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" and "The Battle" demonstrate an already mature narrative style and a fascination with acid rock, not to mention some adventurous approaches in accompaniment and vocal harmonies. The album is almost entirely acoustic but lead guitars do appear here and there as does the odd electronic keyboard.

Elsewhere, several classics make their first appearance here, such as the Arabian influenced "Tell me What You see in me", the surprisingly rocked up "Where is this Dream of Your Youth". Even the more dated songs are lyrically quirky and shine through with a certain sunny 1960s slice of life quality. This earnestness permeates even later classics such that the value of a full fledged prog rock group having its roots in English folk music can be fully appreciated.

No band has had a trajectory anything like that of Strawbs, nor a commitment to quality that only rarely has flagged, and this was true from the moment they became A&M's first signing and released this historic work. Recommended for completists and those with a hankering for moderately brocaded folk music of the decidedly English variety.

Review by ClemofNazareth
3 stars Dave Cousins and Company had managed to secure themselves a recording contract with the up-and-coming American label A&M in the spring of 1968, largely on the strength of material they had recorded in Denmark with then-band member the late Sandy Denny. Its unclear today whether A&M realized Denny had already left the group when they signed the Strawbs, but the label was definitely looking to expand their portfolio into the folk-rock arena. They began with the Strawbs but would eventually add Cat Stevens, Phil Ochs, Joan Baez and others, and would manage U.S. distribution for several of Joe Boyd's Island Records acts including Fairport Convention, which of course is where Denny had landed by the time the tracks for the Strawbs debut had been recorded.

A&M must have been taking a pretty conservative trek into progressive music of the British or folk variety though, as they originally limited distribution of the band's debut to Britain. It didn't find its way into U.S. release until 1973 by which time the band had established itself as a serious prog folk force.

In some respects this is a transitional album even though it is technically the band's first. Their earlier work as the Strawberry Hill Boys was limited to a couple demo singles steeped in skiffle, folk and pop blues; while the band adopted a convincing electric folk-rock sound during Denny's brief tenure in 1967. They would eventually grow to be a fairly mature and complex progressive rock band with symphonic leanings and hints of the blues, but in 1968 the group was still pretty committed to developing their folk-rock sound.

As with the Denny material though the group realized the need for an ear-catching potential single to open the record, and provided the same here with the pop-folk story-song "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus", a deity-disguised-as-commoner ditty in the vein of the later Joan Osborne mega-hit "One of Us". The style is closer to pop than either folk or prog rock but the song achieved its goal of getting the band some attention, namely a ban from BBC for lyrics that the company's censors apparently never really listened to.

With that out of the way the band turned to creating a collection of pleasant and period- appropriate pop-folk numbers with obvious awareness of what was happening musically in both England and the U.S. at the time. The blend of acoustic folk and electric guitar instrumentation was quite popular in the late sixties and Cousins tried to capitalize on this with his own brand folk-rock that was beginning to show signs of progressive leanings. The band employed elaborate string arrangements on the Moody Blues-sounding "Pieces of 79 and 15" and "Oh How She Changed"; some Arab instrumentation on the mildly psych- tinged "Tell Me What You See in Me"; and hand drums with "Where is this Dream of your Youth?" which Cousins had originally penned in hopes of getting a regional vocal folk group The Young Tradition to record. Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones and sometimes- Rolling Stones keyboardist Nicky Hopkins also appear on the album.

The band revealed future directions with the sprawling, Gregorian-steeped symphonic piece "The Battle" that closes the album. They would pick up where this song leaves off when the returned to the studio for a follow-up album.

A&M originally rejected the album as too bombastic and non-commercial, not really surprising considering they had been sold on the band based on the comparatively stolid folk-rock material the group had presented them from the Denny-lead Denmark sessions. The record would be released in Britain after some rework and eventually in the U.S., but for the most part the album had scant promotion and made little impression at the time.

Despite the poor initial reception, this has become a well-regarded debut for the band in retrospect. While the group would move into a much more progressive direction in the ensuing years, and eventually away from folk almost completely in the eighties and nineties, this is a great example of the unique blend of pop, folk and rock that would endear the band to their fans in the early and mid seventies. A solid three star effort and recommended to any Strawbs fan that didn't become aware of them until the 'Dragonfly' days or later.


Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic
4 stars While rock groups like The Beatles and The Rolling Stones may have dominated the 60s with extremely successful pop hits and albums that still remain some of the biggest sellers in the entire history of recorded music, the folk and hybridization with rock scenes were quite popular on both sides of the Atlantic. While Bob Dylan and The Byrds were giving the American folk scene and electrified makeover to the chagrin of staunch acoustic stalwarts, the British scene was more keen to engage in free-spirit experimentation which led to a wider spectrum of sounds emanating from the British settings. Folk artists like Davy Graham, Roy Harper, The Pentacle and Fairport Convention were some of the earliest pioneers of crafting the British folk traditions into a free-for-all of unhinged creativity and by the time the end of the 60s culminated, in some of the most fertile musical scenes ever to exist developed with bands like Third Ear Band, Synanthesia and Principal Edwards Magic Theatre releasing folk sounds steeped in ethnic and psychedelic influences often blurring the lines between cultural distinctions.

One of the other major bands to have been included in this rich nascency of folk rock fecundity was the London based bluegrass turned progressive folk band THE STRAWBS. Formed in 1964 as the Strawberry Hill Boys by guitarist / vocalist Dave Cousins, guitarist / vocalist Tony Hooper and bassist Ron Chesterman, the band shortened its name for a June 1967 concert and during that same year played with future Fairport Convention / Fotheringay singer Sandy Denny with whom they would record an album which wouldn't find a release until 1973 ("All Our Own Work" was technically released in Denmark in 67.) Evolving from more of an American bluegrass band to a progressive English folk band, THE STRAWBS incorporated many influences into the musical mosaic that made them stand out from the start. Originally influenced by the skiffle sensation of the 50s, with Sandy Denny they developed a firm connection with the native English folk sounds but the trio's adventurous spirit eventually found them incorporating Indian raga themes, American folk and blues as well as the zeitgeist of the psychedelic 60s.

Notorious for being the first group signed to Herb Alpert's A&M Records, the leading single "Oh How She Changed" was released in 1968 and the debut self-titled album appeared the following year in 1969, however by this time Denny had joined Fairport Convention and the group was trimmed down back to the core trio with some mystery guests providing the touches of tribal percussion, recorder, light orchestration and what is referred to on the liner notes as "musical vibrations.' Given the five year run of writing and performing, the official STRAWBS debut is quite an eclectic folk rock experience for a 60s albums. Steeped in English folk rock tradition, Cousins, the chief songwriter and creative force tackles eleven earnestly delivered narrations ranging from the hilariously titled "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" to the medieval pioneering docu-drama of "The Battle" which sounds like a shoe in as ground zero for the future progressive sounds of early 70s Genesis. While some of the tracks such as "Or Am I Dreaming?" were clearly composed during the lush folky ballad years of the band's origins sans Ms Denny, others such as "Where Is This Dream of Your Youth" clearly point in the direction of a more progressive future and a possible inspiration for future freak folk artists such as Comus.

In fact much of THE STRAWBS' debut album seems to be more influential for other bands rather than THE STRAWBS itself as the band would go on to create some of the most ambitious albums within the confines of the progressive folk universe but even at this early point, this band was greeted with open arms by critics and fans alike. "That Which Once Was Mine" sounds more like what Fairport Convention would become whereas "All The Little Ladies" and its jittery classical time signature offings could have possibly given inspiration to an ambitious Jan Dukes de Grey. "Pieces Of 70 And 15" and several other tracks also evoke the sounds that Spiro Gyra would make their own in a few short years but nothing on the debut STRAWBS album really prognosticates what the band itself would sound like on future albums such as "Grave New World."

If you are only craving the ambitious angularities of the crafty complexities of the future albums then this is probably best skipped but if you are at all interested in the development of the English progressive folk scene as a whole then you can't miss this spectacular debut by THE STRAWBS which cranks out eleven spectacularly brilliant tunes that retain the simplistic beautiful of the English folk melodic tradition but are already exhibiting a wealth of creative mojo that the band would not only nurture into their own but also pass on to create an entire musical scene. It isn't really apparent exactly how influential this band was until you delve back to the beginning and although the cameo with Sandy Denny was the first recording, this first official album is really where the magic began and this is even before Rick Wakeman joined on for the following "Dragonfly." While clearly more pop oriented and the easier of accessibility compared to the monstrous prog dynamics developed just a few years down the road, THE STRAWBS is nevertheless quite an accomplished bridge between the best of what the 60s had to offer in the world of folk rock and what would unfold in the earliest years of the 70s. Personally, i love this one!

Review by VianaProghead
3 stars Review Nš 313

"Strawbs" is the debut studio album of Strawbs and was released in 1969. Strawbs was formed in 1964 as the Strawberry Hill Boys in Strawberry Hill in London. The name was shortened to Strawbs in 1967. Although they started out in the 60's as a bluegrass band the band's repertoire shifted to favour their own material. In 1967 Strawbs recorded thirteen songs for a proposed first album "All Our Own Work" with Sandy Denny. But, the album only saw the light of day in 1973. So, it was only in 1969 that Strawbs released their acclaimed eponymous debut studio album "Strawbs".

The line up on this album is very short and is formed by Dave Cousins (vocals and guitars), Tony Hooper (vocals and guitars) and Ron Chesterman (double bass). The album had also the participation of John Paul Jones, the bassist of Led Zeppelin and Nicky Hopkins, the keyboardist of The Rolling Stones, on some of the tracks on the album.

"Strawbs" has eleven tracks. The first track "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" written by Cousins is an interesting song with strange lyrics. It reflects how the society might react if Jesus came back to the world. It's a very good song and one of the best moments on the all album. The track was a controversial selection as a single and unfortunately the BBC objected the lyrical content and quickly banned it from the airplay. The second track "That Which Once Was Mine" written by Cousins is a short song as almost all the songs on the album. It's a simple and calm song, very melodic, well performed, and where the voice of Cousins marries perfectly well with the acoustic sound of the instruments. The third track "All The Little Ladies" written by Cousins and Hooper isn't as good as the two previous tracks. It's another simple and melodic acoustic song, but it's more repetitive and less original and creative than the other two are. The fourth track "Pieces Of 79 And 15" written by Cousins and Hooper is, without any doubt, one of the most beautiful pieces on the album. It's a very beautiful song very well performed and where the vocal harmonies are perfect. It's a song with some symphonic parts that reminds me the early musical work of Genesis, "Trespass", especial due to the keyboard work. The fifth track "Tell Me What You See In Me" written by Cousins is one of the two lengthiest songs on the album. It's a song with an oriental flavour performed by several acoustic instruments, which give to it a very special and exotic musical ambience. This is a song that reminds me the early psychedelic musical period of Pink Floyd. The sixth track "Oh How She Changed" written by Cousins and Hooper is another short song, but nevertheless, it's very beautiful. Again, we are in presence of a very simple song but where all the elements, the vocal performance and the musical performance, are perfectly mixed. This time, the song reminds me the two early albums of Tim Buckley, his eponymous debut "Tim Buckley" and "Goodbye And Hello", both already reviewed by me here. The seventh track "Or Am I Dreaming?" written by Cousins is also a nice song, especially due to its catchy sound of the 60's. It deserves a special mention the use of a beautiful orchestration on the song. This is a song that brings to our memory the good old 60's, particularly Donovan, Simon & Garfunkel and the eponymous debut studio album of David Bowie. The eighth track "Where Is This Dream Of Your Youth?" written by Cousins is another song with a simple musical structure. It's one of the most ambitious pieces on the album and has a very nice and interesting piano performance. When I played this album to my youngest son, when he heard this music, he told me that it reminded him R.E.M. Sincerely, I must confess that I never had noticed that. However, after listening to it again, I think he can probably be right. The ninth track "Poor Jimmy Wilson" written by Cousins is a very simple song, with a nice and sad story. It has a beautiful flute performance, not listed, and the final result is a beautiful and pleasant song to hear. Despite be one of the weakest points on the album it's pleasant enough to not spoil it. It was the song chosen to be the B side of the single "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus". The tenth track "Where Am I? / I'll Show You Where To Sleep" written by Cousins is another weak track and was written in the same vein of the previous track "Poor Jimmy Wilson". These two tracks are with "All The Little Ladies" the three weakest points on the album. The eleventh track "The Battle" written by Cousins is the lengthiest and is their first mini epic. This track represents the highest point on the album and it can show perfectly well the glimpses of the future progressive lines, which were to follow, especially after the release of their next studio album "Dragonfly".

Conclusion: "Strawbs" was one of the good surprises and one of the most pleasant albums released in the end of the 60's. It's true that it shows some weak musical points, but in general, we may say this is an album that shows some consistency and some great musical moments too. Some of the songs are wonderfully composed in terms of lyrics and music, and even we may say, that some of them have already some complexity. Despite the poor initial reception, this is a good debut album by a well regarded and respected progressive band. It has, without any doubt, some of the main characteristics of their future music. And, in a certain way, it represents the birth of their future progressive folk roots.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

3 stars Ah, Dave Cousins and the kitchen sink. That's what's come to mind when I listen to the Strawbs' eponymous debut, and for good reason. "Strawbs" was one of the most expensive albums made in the 60s with a budget of $30,000 US. The equal of over $200,000 in today's money. The reasons for this ... (read more)

Report this review (#2314327) | Posted by SteveG | Sunday, February 9, 2020 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Excellent 'Debut'. Well, not actually their first album, as both 'All Our Own Work' and another ill-fated attempt to record a first album, came beforehand (but both released later). But this one began their public career, and it is excellent. The opener, "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" starts ... (read more)

Report this review (#1697654) | Posted by Walkscore | Tuesday, February 28, 2017 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Strawbs is debut album from the British folk/rock group called Strawbs, released back in 1969. It's mostly acoustic sounded and although not so bad it is only a shadow of the music they are going to make in the years to come. First song "The Man Who Called Himself Jesus" is trying to attract att ... (read more)

Report this review (#513114) | Posted by Archangel | Friday, September 2, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The Strawb's debut is a forgotten gem. There is so much quaity in the compositions and performance here.The arrangements are top notch and give a colourful and interesting setting. The music has a few flavours, going from sparse folk to pop-psychedelia (sometimes in the same song!) Dave Cousin ... (read more)

Report this review (#427724) | Posted by Frankie Flowers | Tuesday, April 5, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Judging it as a prog album it's more of a 3 rating, but I have a folky streak to my personality, and thus I rate it higher. There are delights to be found everywhere, especially on the first half, and subsequently on the last cut, the epic The Battle, depicting in beautiful horrific lyrics th ... (read more)

Report this review (#19689) | Posted by brainway | Monday, February 28, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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