Saturday, January 9, 2016

Amazing Blondel - 1972 - England

Amazing Blondel 


01. Seascape (6:13)
02. Landscape (7:38)
03. Afterglow (3:40)
04. A Spring Air (3:41)
05. Cantus Firmus to Counterpoint (3:21)
06. Sinfonia for Guitar and Strings (3:11) (from the suite 'For My Ladys Delight')
07. Dolor Dulcis (Sweet Sorrow) (3:25)
08. Lament to the Earl of Battesford Beck (3:11)

- John David Gladwin / 2nd guitar, lead vocals, double bass, tabor, tubular bells
- Terence Alan Wincott / vocals, flute, recorder, harmonium, pipe organ, Mellotron, bongos, percussion
- Edward Baird / 1st guitar, vocals, dulcimer, 12-string guitar, percussion

- Adrian Hopkins / harpsichord (6, 7), strings/oboe/horn arranger & conductor
- Jaque La Roche / strings ensemble leader

A group which is not easily categorized, 'England' is arguably Amazing Blondel's best work, featuring a very high level of musicianship throughout, and an excellent sense of arrangement. One not so taken with early music may find the vocals difficult at first, but once one becomes comfortable with this element of the sound, the music can become quite infectious and find a semi-permanent place in one's cd rotation for quite a while. This album sounds especially good on a cold winter morning, with snow falling outside and a big mug of coffee, as the tasty melodies flow and the infectious nature of 'England' keeps one playing it over and over. Very interesting, largely accessible, and well worth seeking out for fans of British folk music in particular.

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