3 Dec 2022

Underground Folk

A great selection of acid folk

'If you already have and enjoy 'Gather In The Mushrooms', 'Early Morning Hush' and 'Feel The Spirit', then this CD is the next logical step in your acid folk excavations. The selection is quite similar in terms of style, although there is no overlap of tracks with those compilations. Only one of these tracks I had in my collection, the one by 'Synanthesia' which is available on their self-titled album. There are some familiar names like Meic Stevens, Wizz Jones, Oriental Sunshine and Moonkyte, who all have songs on various psych compilations I have, but there were a lot of new names to me which I will no doubt be checking out in the near future.' -Michael

'New 20 Track compilation highlighting the underground folk movement of the late 60’s early 70’s. Under the influence of LSD, by the late 1960s the sands were fast shifting for acoustic music. This new compilation showcases twenty of the best tracks to have emerged from the underground folk revolution, taking in artists from Britain and America, as well as further-flung locations such as Norway, Eire and Canada, and touching on genres including jazz, country and psychedelia. The set comes complete with a full booklet featuring rare pictures and information about each artist, making it truly essential for all strange folk enthusiasts.'

'This is not your average everyday folk collection; the fact that the most well-known artist represented here is the Incredible String Band offshoot C.O.B. -- who never went beyond minor cult status in Europe and are almost completely unknown elsewhere -- should clue you in to the fact that we're talking serious crate-digger territory here. If you tried to acquire the original LPs from which these late-‘60s/early-‘70s tracks were taken, you'd probably need to take out a bank loan. The title claims the tag "underground folk," but the artists on Shifting Sands are also commonly classified as "psychedelic folk," "acid folk," or the more colorful "wyrd folk." If such singer/songwriters as Nick Drake, Roy Harper, Sandy Denny, et al. can be said to occupy this subgenre's upper end in terms of renown, the likes of G.F. Fitz-Gerald, Gordon Jackson, and Rick Hayward are several rungs down, but just as worthy of attention. For the most part, these are the artists who were headed down the coffeehouse path when the psychedelic era exploded and left their Martin guitars festooned with paisley shrapnel. While a few of the singing strummers featured here follow a more traditional folk approach, like British guitar giant Wizz Jones' Lazy Farmer and Scottish songbird Mary-Anne, the bulk of Shifting Sands is occupied by the likes of England's Mark Fry and Canadian troubadour Roger Rodier, who sound like they soaked up Bob Dylan and Sunshine Superman-era Donovan in equal amounts. Despite the international roster of artists, there's a striking coherence to this collection, as most of the bands and singers shared a vision of moving the folk template past campfire tunes and strident protest songs into a more expressionistic musical universe that resonated with the tenor of the times.' -James Allen


Various – Shifting Sands (20 Treasures From The Heyday Of Underground Folk)

Label: Sunbeam Records – SBRCD5075
Format: CD, Compilation
Country: UK
Released: 2009
Genres: Psychedelic Folk, Singer-Songwriter
Style: Progressive Folk, Contemporary Folk

1. Fresh Maggots - Dole Song 3:28
2. Rick Hayward - Can't See Any Sign 2:22
3. Lazy Farmer - Turtle Dove 3:18
4. Moonkyte - Way Out Hermit 4:20
5. Mary-Anne - The Water Is Wide 3:09
6. C.O.B. - Summer's Night 4:09
7. Jaki Whitren - A Little Bit Extra, Please 2:35
8. Roger Rodier - My Spirit's Calling 5:05
9. Loudest Whisper - Cold Winds Blow 4:44
10. Gordon Jackson - My Ship, My Star 6:13
11. Mark Fry - Song for Wilde 2:33
12. Meic Stevens - Dim Ond Heddiw ddoe ad Fory 5:09
13. G.F. Fitz-Gerald - Country Mouse 2:42
14. Oriental Sunshine - Visions 2:46
15. Justine - See Saw 2:31
16. Wizz Jones - When I Cease to Care 4:17
17. Dawnwind - Canticle 2:42
18. Gary Farr - I See You 3:50
19. Lily and Maria - Morning Glory Morning 3:16
20. Synanthesia - Shifting Sands 3:10

Credits
Coordinator [Project Co-ordinated By] – Richard Morton Jack
Design – Yes Creative
Executive-Producer – Jude Holmes, Steven Carr