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Fairport Convention - Fairport Convention CD (album) cover


Fairport Convention


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3.29 | 65 ratings

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Eetu Pellonpaa
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Embarrassingly I had first little cautious feeling towards this album, as instead of the singer from the legendary line-up here is Ms. Judy Dyble singing. Luckily I got over this prejudgment, as her performance is fine and the album good, just different than their recordings with Sandy Denny.

Album starts with "Time Will Show The Wiser", which is a nice beat rock tune sounding very much The Byrds, with similar ringing guitar and male vocal melodies. There's also a nice film of this song existing. There are two Joni Mitchell's songs in this album, second track "I don't Know Where I Stand" is a really fine interpretation, full of pretty euphoric waving. Maybe the version from the upcoming BBC sessions "Hey Day" is little better, but this is very good too. The other Joni's song coming later is "Chelsea Morning", a fast rhythm section in behind brings much motion to the song fronted by Judy in fine manner. "If (Stomp)" is The Beatles styled light and little boring rocker in my opinion, but "Decameron" is then a quiet and slow, beautiful acoustic tune for both male and lady singers. Minor chord progressions with effect treated guitar introduce then "Jack O'Diamonds", a decent rocker. "Portfolio" is a piano driven hypnotic short tune gathering support from violins and other instruments. Middle section's slow jazzy rhythm and distant vocals create a funny surreal feeling to this very fine performance. "Sun Shade" is a relaxed and calm slow jazzy song for both singers and nice guitar solo. "The Lobster" runs through some changes in slightly experimental way. It starts with instrumental jazzy piece, morphing then to more mystical and oppressing tune, leading to trashy sequence, finally ending to fine shadowy ambience. "It's Allright Ma, It's only Witchcraft" stars as quite pure easy jazz, and rock drive punching in heavily as the song opens. "One Sure Thing" delivers minor traditional sounding ballad for Judy, with bluesy end sequence. The album closes with "M.1 Breakdown", a weird short end for the album, maybe some kind of "Going to the country" joke? I did not have the bonus tracks on my version, so can't say much about them.

Though the next incarnation of the band is my favorite, there are no reasons to neglect this record either, especially if you like 1960's American oriented folk rock music. As an anecdote, you can hear Judy sing with King Crimson on the compilation double-LP "Young Person's Guide to King Crimson", the song is "I Talk to The wind". As an album the record contains many kind of songs, not focusing totally to one style, but having many kind of ideas by the group. That is not every time a bad approach... Some songs here are quite of my favorites, "I don't Know Where I stand", "Decameron", "Sun Shade" and "One Sure Thing" are easy moody choices for a romantic, and tracks like "The Lobster" brings in interesting slightly avant-gardist sides of this fine group. I found later Judy's vocal art from the Trader Horne album, which is also quite nice to verify for the proggy folk tones.

Eetu Pellonpaa | 3/5 |


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