Strawbs - Antiques & Curios (UK) your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl records. your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl your online record shop for mint and rare vinyl records.

Band/Record: Strawbs - Just a Collection Of Antiques & Curios

Label/Matrix: UK 1970 A&M AMLS 994 with A1 // B1

Condition Record/Sleeve: EX/EX

Extra Info: Fantastic Album !! Original U.K 1st press LP on the A&M label ...with original laminated McNeill press cover. wow ..EX TOP audio ... 

~~ Bringing in a whole new line-up after the uneven (but embryonic) Dragonfly, and most notably young academy student Wakeman, but also ex-Velvet Opera rhythm section Ford and Hudson, Strawbs took a dramatic turn towards rock but retained all of their previous folk heritage. With this album, they actually come just about as close as possible to one of the textbook case descriptions of what progressive folk is about. This album in itself was rather daring as Cousins took the immense gamble to present the new Strawbs line-up with an almost completely new tracks set (except for a few that will be released as bonus tracks some 35 years later), explaining why the public present (not familiar with the songs and changing musical scope) is only reacting politely to the band. Do not be fooled, the band's performance that night is probably one of their most noteworthy highlight. Dave Cousins's voice by now is coming to a (much nicer) Dylan-type of tone, and it is one of the very best feature of the group for albums to come.

This is rather a mixed-up affair and could be called schizophrenics as it seems the album cannot make up its mind between shorter tracks (folk-cultured) and more adventurous jam-band-style rock with much longer tracks and the classical oriented Wakeman track called Temperament Of The Mind (basically a solo showcase improv for his classical talent) where he became a crowd pleaser. Clearly the rhythm section hints at the second option and it just looks/sounds like Wakeman (whom had participated to one or two other tracks in the preceding Dragonfly album and especially on the lengthy closing Vision Of The Lady Of The Lake) seems much more comfortable with them two musicians, than with the two original members, Hooper and leader Cousins. Constantly oscillating between such two different styles does not ruin the continuity of an album. To my tastes it is clearly the rock influences that win in this set, as is clearly shown in the 9-min+ Where Is This Dream Of Your Youth where Wakeman takes the spotlight and pulls in one of his best solos of his career (Yes will not give him that long a spotlight until GFTO) even if it is live and improvised. But before that had happened the very interesting multi-movement 4-part suite Antique Suite, with the only the last part a bit flawed (too long and repeating its "punch line" to often. Another sign of Strawbs's multiple influences by now is the sitar present on Fingertip hinting at Indian music. Sad little girl is yet another charming typical Strawbs number of those days.

Certainly one of their classic album and one of those that typifies the boundaries between folk and rock always on the fringe of both styles,