ARTIST: The Pentangle
TITLE: The Pentangle
YEAR RELEASED: 1968
CHART ACTION: #21 UK
SINGLES: Let No Man Steal Your Thyme
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Way Behind the Sun
LINEUP: Jaqui McShee, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, Danny Thompson, Terry Cox
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Debut from a group of fantastic acoustic folk musicians that move toward jazz and rock rather than English folk.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: John Renbourn and Bert Jansch were known commodities in the UK folk scene before coming together to form Pentangle. Yet their acoustic guitar work, as extraordinary as it is (and it is extraordinary) is greatly enhanced by their collaboration with the rest of the group.
McShee’s voice is ethereal and Thompson on double bass (either bowed or plucked) adds a great bottom element to the sound. Cox’s percussion work steers the band away from strict folk by adding touches of jazz and rock rhythms. Renbourn and Jansch also construct complicated acoustic lines to add to the stew.
It’s definitely a strong debut, and the UK public agreed, making this one of their best sellers.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: For a while, Jansch was known as the “British Bob Dylan” when he was a solo folkie.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, outtakes and alternate takes. Almost all of them are just as good as the album tracks proper.
GRADE: A: Music of quality and distinction.