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Culpeper's Orchard

Eclectic Prog

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Culpeper's Orchard Culpeper's Orchard album cover
4.14 | 94 ratings | 12 reviews | 21% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1970

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Banjocul (0:48)
2. Mountain Music Part 1 (6:28)
3. Hey You People (1:31)
4. Teaparty For An Orchard (6:13)
5. Ode To Resistance (5:54)
6. Your Song & Mine (5:35)
7. Gideon's Trap (5:45)
8. Blue Day's Morning (2:11)
9. Mountain Music Part 2 (7:26)

Total time 41:51

Bonus tracks on 2005 reissue:
10. Steamhouse (1971 single) (2:34)
11. Classified Ads (Live at Nyborg Festival 1971) (9:45)
12. Troldspejlet (1971 single) (4:13)

Line-up / Musicians

- Cy Nicklin / lead vocals, rhythm & acoustic guitars, percussion
- Nils Henriksen / lead & acoustic guitars, piano, harpsichord, lead vocals
- Michael Friis / bass, organ, flute, two finger piano, percussion
- Rodger Barker / drums, percussion

- Birgitte Swarbrick / performer (12)
- Mette Holkenov / performer (12)

Releases information

Artwork: Bernhard Boesen

LP Polydor ‎- 2380 006 (1971, Denmark)
LP Polydor ‎- 2380 006 (2016, Denmark) Remastered by Jørgen Bo Behrensdorff

CD Ha-Wanna ‎- HW 32009 (1999, New Zealand)
CD Karma Music ‎- KMCD 19025 (2005, Denmark) With 3 bonus tracks, new cover

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy CULPEPER'S ORCHARD Culpeper's Orchard Music

CULPEPER'S ORCHARD Culpeper's Orchard ratings distribution

(94 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(21%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(59%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (1%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

CULPEPER'S ORCHARD Culpeper's Orchard reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars Culpeper's Orchard is one of those pivotal group from Denmark. not that they became very popular or had an impressive release catalogue (max 4 to my knowledge), but they made with this debut , an album that sort of set the standard for Danish bands for years to come. Not particularly prog if you are to compare it with the prog classic from England of those same years , but progressive enough AND A DAMN GOOD ROCK'N ROLL ALBUM!!!!

This is an album really on the borderline of psych and prog much the same way that Burnin'Red Ivanhoe's and Ache's debut were also! Another classic Danish rock album from those years would be The Old Man And The Sea's sole album. I can only tell you to read Angelo's review here below as I could not agree more with him on his description of the music, although I find him a bit harsh about Ode To Resistance! Yes, from a prog point of view side 2 is a little weaker but on a rock point of view , this is another album album!

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This album was my own introduction to the Danish progressive rock, and it is certainly a very good album. Though the opener "Banjocul" is quite unnecessary intro without much happening in it, the following "Mountain Music part 1" really shows the band's talent and the characteristic manners of their style, this being artistic bluesy hard rock of the early 1970's with many kind of details and influences enriching their sound as unique and personal. Layers of acoustic guitars soften the quieter parts, which contrast the more faster and heavier phases, creating nice tensions to the songs. Compositions are also quite sophisticated, and the majority of the music is controlled with surprising rhythm changes and arrangements for larger amount of instruments. All this is also nicely balanced with moments for open jamming, and the music sounds free, relaxed and powerful. In the first song's guitar work I'm hearing some similarities in the playing of The Who's Peter Townshed style, aggressive rock'n'roll riffs with manic rhythms and roaring tones. The heaviness of this music could be compared to early 1970's Deep Purple, only that these guys are more personal, artistic and richer with nuances than the British group mentioned. "Hey You People" is a short upright acoustic piece with multiple vocal harmonies, and it leads directly to "Teaparty for an Orchard", over a six minutes long track with euphoric acoustic beginning, which morphs as a another sequence with different melodies trough an acid soundscape. "Ode to Resistance" has some nice flutes, and as these are companied with an acoustic guitar, baritone vocals and interesting hard rock punches, this could be compared with "Aqualung"-era Jethro Tull. "Gideon's Trap" sounds then like Procol Harum, as it builds up from minor steady beating bluesy tune for piano and organ, the roaring solo guitar bursting at the end. The theme of the first song continues in the conclusion, creating a loose concept structure to this fabulous album, which I would really recommend to all those who like artistic 1970's classic rock music. What here was really pleasant to my ear were also the singing, as this is not done in the usual fjord vocals style familiar from the days of this recording (Uriah Heep's vocals were called as such, sounding like somebody is falling of a fjord in a very cold day).
Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This self titled studio album is the debut album from Danish band Culpeperīs Orchard. Culpeperīs Orchard is fronted by former Cy, Maia and Robert member Cy Nicklin. Cy Nicklin is as opposed to the rest of the band from England which means that the vocals are not strongly accented which sometimes was a problem with other danish acts from the sixties and the seventies.

The music reminds me a lot of the early Jethro Tull albums This Was and Stand Up without exactly sounding like Jethro Tull though. But try and listen to Your Song & Mine or Ode to Resistance and tell me that this doesnīt sound like Jethro Tull. I can almost imagine the flute from Ian Anderson even though there are little flute on this album ( there are some flute in Ode to Resistance though). The music is very guitar driven and there are some great bluesy soloing here and there from lead guitarist Niels Hendrikson. Songs like Mountain Music Part 1, Teaparty for an Orchard and Your Song & Mine are great examples of bluesy and mildly progressive music that Culpeperīs Orchard play. I also hear some cream and Wishbone Ash in the music. The Eclectic prog tag is just right as there are both folk, psych and blues rock in the music.

The musicianship is great and I really enjoy Cy Nicklinīs vocals. Heīs not a very distinct vocalist but he has a pleasant style. The instrumentation is mostly stripped down to vocals, guitars, bass and drums but there are parts with organ, piano or flute.

The production is really good. Warm and pleasant.

Seen from a progressive angle this debut album from Culpeperīs Orchard isnīt the most exciting release but itīs still good rock music and does deserve 3 stars. Itīs only mildly progressive but still serves as a good representative of the early seventies Danish experimental music scene. Listen to the album more than once. I know I did and it still grows on me so it might be a 4 star rating some time in the future. There are more details here than youīll probably hear on initial listen.

Review by historian9
4 stars Not a progressive rock masterpiece, but excellent rock all around. I think 1970's were still the beginning of the classic era so CULPEPER'S ORCHARD isn't out of place. The music is a mix of rock, folk, blues and probably other stuff as well, sometimes very guitar heavy and very remniscent of LED ZEPELIN for example. Highlight would probably be the two part eclectic "Mountain Music" with over 14 minutes in length but "Your Song & Mine" is a good rock out track as well. There are some needles fillers but they don't ruin it but sometimes bring a country music atmosphere in them (which is something that prevails at the end of their career allegedly).
Review by GruvanDahlman
5 stars A friend of mine asked me name, in my opinion, five best albums of all time. In order, at that. Well, "In the court of the crimson king" got the No.1-spot and Culpeper's Orchard came in as No.2. Alongside the Crimson debut this album ranks among my absolute favorite albums of all time.

I bought it in a recordstore with the basic selection of albums, ranging from the usual pop to the usual metal, but in the far corner there was a shelf with hard to get reissues with the likes of Leaf Hound, Kahvas Jute, Dr. strangely Strange and so on. And then there was Culpeper. The cover struck me immediately, of course. Such a magnificent piece of art. This purchase took place way before internet, so there wasn't any chance of me really finding out anything about the band, apart from the fact that they seemed to be danish and maybe with an english speaking singer. Anyway... I bought the album and I have never looked back.

The music is an interesting mix of hard rock, folk an Tull-ish prog, I'd say. The music is hard rock in a way thah Tull was at the time but retaining a personality of it's own. There are also the scent of late 60's folky rock-approach of, say, Grateful Dead in "Hey, you people".

From the opening "Banjocul" to the magnificent, omnipotent, powerful "Mountain musit Pt.2" the album never lets up. I find it to be the perfect mix between prog, hard rock and folk. Culpeper never sounded this good or this inspired again. The musucianship is great and played with a really rough edge, which I like. The atmosphere is english with danish topping and that is really great. Danish prog seems to me almost as good as the british, which I always prefer.

Amazing album and really one of the jewels in the crown if prog. There you have it.

Review by Warthur
5 stars On Culpeper's Orchard self-titled debut album they play a style of heavy psych-prog influenced by a mixture of the proto-prog sounds of the late 1960s and the West Coast folk-rock of the same time period. Gideon's Trap, for instance, sounds uncannily like a slightly harder-rockin' Procol Harum, whilst the brief piece Hey You People features vocal harmonies which put me in mind of a blend between the Moody Blues and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Bookended by the extended jams of Mountain Music, the album visits a range of styles over its running time, with occasional visits to folk and good old-fashioned rock and roll rooted in a psych-prog foundation. The group didn't make a whole lot of note after this, but in terms of artistic accomplishment they didn't really need to - this is a rare example of a "forgotten gem" which really is a gem.
Review by Mellotron Storm
5 stars I feel 4.5 stars is the right rating for me but I'm bumping it up this time because this is one special album folks. They are from Denmark and this their debut was released in 1970. They were actually led by an Englishman named Cy Nicklin who was the vocalist and rhythm guitar player. His vocals are really good and one of the highlights for me. The music is a bit all over the place but hey it's 1970 so we get sixties sounding stuff, some hard rock, some folky bits and more. The thing is each song is so well composed and appealing to me. If there's one complaint it's too commercial sounding at times and although it doesn't sound like WISHBONE ASH's "Argus" at all it's very melodic like that with a bunch of really good tunes.

"Banjocul" is the less than one minute opener that is basically banjo and folky vocals. Kind of gives the wrong impression as to what will follow but Cy was really into Folk music as the following albums would show. "Mountain Music(Part 1)" is my favourite. Man what a hard rocking tune this is at times. Just love that lead guitar and mood. Lots of depth to the sound too with those upfront bass and drums. The guitar is lighting it up after a minute then a heavy rhythm section kicks in as the guitar lays the soundscape waste. Heavy stuff 2 1/2 minutes in. Love those vocals too. A guitar solo follows that goes on and on. Nice. It ends before 4 1/2 minutes as a calm takes over that is so beautiful with the softer vocals, organ, picked guitar and a beat. Almost CAMEL-like here. The guitar is back before 5 1/2 minutes as the vocals step aside. Great song!

"Hey You People" is an uptempo 60's sounding tune with multi-vocals or double tracked. Love it! Such a feel-good song. It turns surprisingly heavy after a minute to the end. "Teaparty For An Orchard" is a top three for me. It opens with some heaviness as the vocals join in. Such a pleasant voice. I love when it settles down, so beautiful. I'm moved. The heaviness returns and I do like that melancholic chorus. Suddenly it turns experimental after 2 1/2 minutes, avant is the word. It kicks back in before 3 1/2 minutes with the guitar out front. Soon the focus is on the vocals around 4 minutes in before it kicks back in again. Organ too then it turns heavy again with vocals around 5 minutes.

"Ode To Resistance" has some gorgeous acoustic guitar to start as reserved vocals and flute join in. Suddenly heavy outbursts arrive before 1 1/2 minutes then it kicks in heavily before settling back like before but with drums this time. It's heavy again and more passionate vocals follow after 3 minutes. The guitar is lighting it up before 5 minutes. Flute follows as it settles some to the end.

"Your Song And Mine" is the other top three song for me. It opens with a heavy guitar line with drums and bass. Vocals join in too. I like this one a lot. It changes after 1 1/2 minutes as the vocals have a higher pitch then he goes back to those more serious vocals. Themes are repeated. Nice guitar solo starting before 3 minutes. "Gideon's Trap" opens with some rare piano before a beat with vocals and more joins in. This reminds me of THE BEATLES. We get a guitar solo after 4 minutes as the vocals step aside for the rest of the track.

"Blue Day's Morning" is a short track with acoustic guitar melodies and vocals throughout. I like it. "Mountain Music(Part 2)" ends the album and we get that same depth of sound as in Part 1 that I liked. Vocals come in singing "One grain of sand, one grain of sand in all this world". The guitar and vocals lead the way here. Check out the bluesy guitar solo that starts before 4 minutes. Another guitar solo starts before 5 1/2 minutes and goes on for a minute. The album ends just like it began with banjo!

I liked this from the first spin and while it's far from perfect this is solid from top to bottom and a lot of fun.

Latest members reviews

5 stars This is arguably one of the top 10 70s European (non-British) albums in any sub-genre of rock music. I am personally amazed by al its virtues (solid songwriting, energy and power without ever being too heavy or pompous, excellent vocals in English) and it gives me a very euphoric feel whenever I ... (read more)

Report this review (#1248953) | Posted by psychprog1 | Friday, August 15, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars "Nicholas Culpeper (1616 - 1654) was an English botanist, psychologist and astrologer. He is known for his work with herbs, for use against diseases and was against the doctors from his time. Lawyers and Priests used Latin as there Internal language to demean the normal citizen, who didn't ... (read more)

Report this review (#1005695) | Posted by VOTOMS | Friday, July 26, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Sure, it might be hard to get a hold of the music of CULPEPER'S ORCHARD (Haven't been album to find their second album yet myself) but the fact their self titled album won't even appear when you search under Denmark on the PA Top Albums' page is an injustice! Find it and start rating it people! ... (read more)

Report this review (#198929) | Posted by manofmystery | Tuesday, January 13, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Certainly this is not a fully progressive album, but considered in the context of history, it is a remarkable album in the genre. The titans of progressive rock were also only flirting with the genre in 1970. Tull's "Benefit," Genesis' "Trespass," Yes' "Time and a Word," and ELP's eponymous ... (read more)

Report this review (#88420) | Posted by progdemon | Tuesday, August 29, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The self titled debut album from the Danish CULPEPER'S ORCHARD is actually a fairly impressive entry into the early progressive/post-psychedelic ranks. Indeed, it's probably among the finest albums I've heard in this particular style. At once highly melodic and whimsical, the band has a sharp ... (read more)

Report this review (#36895) | Posted by archon | Saturday, June 18, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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