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86 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of A Great Bunch
Having sampled Nick Drake's genius on "Way to Blue - An introduction to Nick Drake", I went out and bought all three of his main albums. They are all worthy of five stars, but while the stark "Pink Moon" perhaps has a couple of weak links and "Bryter Later" relies on some instrumental passages, I would say that "Five Leaves...
Published on 13 Aug 2000

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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful album, poor quality presentation
This is in reference to the 2013 Deluxe boxset.

The album needs no introduction, it's a 5-star job.

This deluxe boxset though, is a shame and a missed opportunity.

* The labels are way off the mark (wrong colour, wrong logo positioning, missing track details), so not as advertised
* Audible ticks on the pressing, especially Time has...
Published 10 months ago by RobL


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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finest fruit, 9 Jun 2008
By 
D. J. H. Thorn "davethorn13" (Hull, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
Not as instantly accessible as his follow-up album 'Bryter Layter', 'Five Leaves Left' is nevertheless the best of Nick Drake's classic trio. Sparse, low-key accompaniment ensures that Drake's soft voice and implausibly nimble guitar playing are always to the fore. The exception is 'Way To Blue', on which strings back Drake's voice rather than his guitar. According to one biography, Drake had a tough time at some of the folk clubs he played. This isn't surprising because Drake's music doesn't pigeonhole as folk or popular music. There's nothing difficult or outrageously innovative about it, but it is art at its purest, driven by Drake's intuitive feeling, by turns dark and warm, occasionally light, and executed with peerless skill and beauty. Jimi Hendrix may have been the electric king, but I prefer Drake's brand of guitar genius.

'Time Has Told Me' is as apt an opening as Drake could have chosen, an understated, almost modest eulogy. After this comes the main business. 'River Man' combines Drake's odd chording and plaintive strings to produce an ebbing effect as the backdrop to an eerie vocal. The epic, relentless 'Three Hours' features some sublime, shimmering guitar patterns. 'Way To Blue' and 'Day Is Done' feature melody more prominently, closing a predominantly melancholy first half.

'Cello Song' is a major highlight, hypnotically weaving the cello, guitar and bass over insistent conga rhythms. 'The Thoughts Of Mary Jane' is the lightest track on the album, a glimpse of broad daylight before the wry humour of 'Man In A Shed'. 'Fruit Tree' is the last of the main highlights, Drake's guitar playing enhancing the drama of the lyric, before the album closes as gently as it began, with 'Saturday Sun'.

Though 'Five Leaves Left' has its peaks, there are no careless moments during its forty minutes. Drake's other two albums are both superb and explore different approaches, but neither tops this.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Simple on the surface, complex underneath., 3 May 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
This was Nick Drake's first album and is a remarkably accomplished one. It can be taken on several levels. A casual listen gives the impression of some nice little songs, low on impact but pleasant - very Easy Listening. Next to filter through is the wistful dark romanticism of the lyrics, such as the fatalistic tones of 'Time Has Told Me' or the hopeless romantic singing 'Man In A Shed'. Gradually, depending on which tracks you listen to, the complexity of the arrangements becomes apparent: 'I like the noodly bits', I thought to myself. The instruments do not appear to have just been used 'because it's what you do on this type of stuff'. Indeed, it rises above fitting into a type; each instrument makes a positive, discernible contribution to each number, without ever crowding each other out. It's most evident in the opening to 'Cello Song', most effective throughout 'Three Hours'. Underlying it all are the string arrangements of Robert Kirby, giving a marvellous flowing quality to the album. Recommended for anyone who has grown weary of chart material.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Leaves Left - Nick Drack, 15 Aug 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
the very best of acoustic music. very fresh and intersting music. a must for any music collection, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Leaves Left, 4 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
What a superb album,would be hard pressed to find a better album of this type of music.Can't stop listening to it...a must buy!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!, 28 July 2009
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This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
This is not my kind of music at all. I normally find myself shamefully skipping tracks along to find a point that interests me... But with Nick Drake, every moment is a treasured one. His organic and sensitive sound, soft voice projecting deep and meaningful lyrics combine to a great mesmerising effect.

You can tell he loves each song, he's raised them like a child and put his whole heart into it, which is more than can be said for many musicians/artists. His music will always be loved by many, but not as many as is deserved.

I haven't plucked up the courage to purchase another album of his because I'm scared of ruining this already perfect bond between me and his music. He's a true musical genius.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars one the best debuts ever!!, 21 Jun 2008
By 
K. Sergeant "chad" (haswell, darkest durham) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
I was brought up among the warring factions of britpop, blur and oasis, in the nineties, I could never really choose between the kinks and the beatles but that's a different story entirely, This album is most definitely one of the founder members of brit pop whether it likes it or not. All the way through my teenage years, a name cropped up in articles....melody maker..... NME......... Nick drake. When I eventually succumbed and bought an album of his, it was this. And I can only tell you that I've never looked back. From the plodding opener of "time has told me" through the maudlin streets of "river man" and "three hours" to the upbeat melancholy, if you like, of "way to blue" and the exquisite meandering of "day is done". To even suggest that songs on the last part of this fantastic album are included as mere padding is ludicrous. This album finishes as strongly as it started, with "man in a shed" being a highlight of gardenial proportions, and the timely classic "fruit tree" shimmying, reaching, never close enough to touch, evading itself with a cloak of irony that reeks of dostoevskys anti-hero, but, somehow, close at hand, the light is within our grasp. Don't download this album, buy it, with real money, for it is a truly great, mesmeric and real collection of fantastic songs that you must own
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breath-taking, 3 Dec 2000
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This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
From the haunting melody of River Man to the excellence of The Thoughts Of Mary Jane, this album offers the listener the chance to experience something unknown to man.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unsurpassable, 28 Nov 2000
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
This album has had more effect on me than all the other albums I've ever listened to put together. It makes contact with something deep within the sould and leaves one longing for more...
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars New 'Remasters' well worth the effort, 14 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
These new remasters of the old classics are aurally far superior (24 bit remaster) to the previous incarnations(Particularly the Fruit Tree box set). They are much more nicely packaged too. Well worth the investment.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slightly vapid, 3 Mar 2000
This review is from: Five Leaves Left (Audio CD)
I discovered Nick Drake by accident, after reading a review in Record Collector that talked of his cult status. Unfortunately I started with his last, Pink Moon, and within a couple of plays came to adore its dark, melancholy mood, with its brilliant guitar and John Martyn-like vocals. I can't recommend it highly enough. Thus encouraged, I completed the three CD collection. But I have to say I found Five Leaves a little vapid - all very nice in its own way but very much a first effort. Bryter Byter however is everything I hoped for, lighter than Pink Moon but technically brilliant with a touch of inspiration. Don't take my word for it though - get all three and judge for yourself. It will be one of the best investments you make - though Cotton Mather's Kontiki would be the best, LOL
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