Saturday, February 24, 2007

Synanthesia (1969-Acid Folk/Rock)

Though recorded quickly over two days — and indeed, literally recorded live in the studio with no overdubs — Synanthesia's sole album from 1969 is a gentle treat for anyone interested in the obscurer realms of late-'60s U.K. folk and its descendants. It's always a pleasure to hear something that did not deservedly go out of print — and therefore get an unnecessary reputation. Instead, the combination of bandleader Dennis Homes' gentle vocals and delicate guitar work, Leslie Cook's equally strong talents, and the ace-in-the-hole performing of sax and flute player Jim Fraser is often quite magical. That the band openly has a debt to the Incredible String Band and Bert Jansch practically goes without saying, but there's a difference between mere aping and finding a particular spin on a sound, and Synanthesia firmly comes down on the side of the latter. For such a rushed and in-the-moment album, the sound is often quite rich — credit not only to Vic Gamm's inspired engineering, but to the band's clear abilities as a solid live act. Hearing Homes' gentle vibes work on "Peek Strangely and Worried Evening" or Cook's flourishes on mandolin for "Fates" shows how well each complements the other songwriter's work. Yet Fraser in many ways is the key throughout — clearly picking up on jazz influences as much as folk ones, much like his bandmates, and the result is a detailed, fluid series of performances on his chosen instruments, ranging from the restrained then strutting sax parts on "Morpheus" to gentle background flute on "Rolling and Tumbling." The band's weakest element might be the lyrics, but nothing is outright bad, just sometimes awkward. Sunbeam's 2006 re-release, in keeping with the label's similar work, features not only excellent sound but winning, retrospective liner notes from Homes and a slew of rare pictures, plus a bonus track, "Shifting Sands," that originally appeared on an obscure compilation album from 1970, from allmusicguide.

Strongly Recommended…check “Vesta” and "Mnemoysne" feelings…


Blogger markmscott said...

Brother Vlasdance,

First of all, let me give you my bear hug and a BIG thank-you for all the great great music here in the blog. So many shining names I've come across, Shelagh McDonald, Dave Van Ronk, Joni Mitchell... The list will be too long! It must have taken you loads of time to build the blog for us to benefit, how generous you are!

When I turned to October, I'm wondering if you've noticed that nearly all the links are sadly gone. Rapidshare deleted them all, for copyright or time limit. That's a shame! Rapidshare is very unreliable and shameless in that it doesn't respect people's effort and, lately, even double the waiting time for free download. So I would highly recommend you to give up using rapidshare. On the other hand, although I've never heard of the site, to my surprise I found all links on are still existent, and the down speed is awesome. So would it be nice to give this site a little more sharing :)

I'm achingly aware that reup is a lousy job because you've already uploaded it and shouldn't waste more time on it. If you could consider reup those great albums in October, that will be more than a big favor, for me and for all these late visitors as well as authentic music lovers.

BTW, a very small surprise. Here is a link to Odetta's two albums, Odetta and Blues & Odetta Sings. Sorrily, it is on rapidshare :)

Best Regards!


2:16 PM  
Blogger Vlasdance said...

Man thanks for your good words..
Thank you also for the Odetta reposts albums (may i post them with your link??)

Which albums from October would you like to be uploaded?

I am a little busy lately trying to catch a job..but i will upload the request albums as soon as possible...

C u..

11:12 PM  
Blogger markmscott said...

Dear Vlasdance,

Thank you! What I'm in most desperate need of are these albums in Oct, Joni Mitchell-Song to a seagull, Dave Van Ronk-Folksinger, Van Dyke Parks - Song Cycle, Odetta-Odetta sings Folk Songs, Mississippi Fred McDowell - Steakbone Slide Guitar (Blues), Mississippi John Hurt -Avalon Blues : Complete 1928 Okeh Recordings, John Prine-John Prine. Too many? Please forgive my greedy heart.

If you could kindly upload them to space like megaupload or sendspace, that'd be splendid!

Please take your time. No need to hurry. I will visit your dearing blog from time to time to snatch them :)

Wish you all the best!


5:35 PM  
Blogger djkit said...


3:15 PM  
Blogger Bonnie said...

i m a new listener of acid folk but i have heard from a friend of mine, that Synanthesia is a great band...i m intersted in listening to their album,so would be kind enough to upload it says its been deleted ....thanking you very much...

12:44 AM  

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