Amazing Blondel — Englische Musicke
(Edsel EDCD 365, 1972/1993, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 1994-05-01
Amazing Blondel existed throughout the early 70s, originally formed by John Gladwin and Terry Wincott after leaving another even more obscure band called Methuselah. This compilation is drawn from their second, third and fourth albums (they produced a total of nine between '70 and '77.) For these three, the band was a three piece, singing and playing krumhorns, recorders, lute, theorbo, guitars, dulcimers, flute, piano, harpsichord, Mellotron, organ, tabor, cittern tubular bells, glockenspiel and percussion. From this instrument list and the fact that (at this point in time) they were drummer-less, you might be getting the idea that this was some sort of medieval-meets-modern folk trio, which is absolutely correct. Musically his is very close to Gryphon circa Midnight Mushrumps, while the vocals may remind a bit more of Peter, Paul and Mary. Very nice stuff, this is.
The first eight tracks are drawn from their third (Fantasia Lindum) and fourth (England) albums, and represent the most musically sophisticated of the material here, which any prog fan without an aversion to folk music should have no trouble enjoying. Included are the incredible twenty minute title track of Fantasia Lindum, "A Spring Air," "Dolor Dulcis," and two extracts from "The Paintings" on England. After the 43 minute mark, the compilation begins to draw from their more simple second album Evensong – still excellent, but not quite as powerful musically. Still, I think most fans of early Gryphon, Fairport, and other British folk-rock will be delighted with this one.
Related artist(s): Amazing Blondel
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music festival world, and music festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more