Cutler Of The West
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"Cutler of the West" is the third Adge Cutler & The Wurzels album, recorded live at the famous Webbington Country Club in Somerset in 1968. It is a superb record of a man (and his band) at the peak of his performance.
As usual, the album includes some of Adge's humour and banter between songs, to give listeners to the album the impression of being there at a live show. The album features more compositions by other writers but nonetheless includes some of Adge's classics, notably "Thee's Got'n Where Thee Cassn't Back'n, Hassn't?" and Adge's Rock 'n' Roll number "Up The Clump".
The addition of Tommy Banner (still with the band today) and Henry Davies to The Wurzels line-up adds a new dimension to the band's sound. This is especially seen on "In The Haymaking Time" where we have Tommy on accordion and some nice tinkley piano (which I suspect may have been add in the studio later!), while Henry's upright bass is bowed for the sad finale; while "A Pub With No Beer" sees Tommy on piano and Henry on violin.
All in all this is a great example of Scrumpy & Western music performed live in the heart of Somerset to a crowd who are obviously enjoying themselves almost as much as the band. They just don't make albums like this any more!!!
But according to the experts, this made me a bit of a Philistine: "You should have 'eard the Wurzels when Adge Cutler was the frontman - that's how they orter sound!" I was told.
So when I'd saved up enough pennies, I invested in a copy of Cutler of the West, and I suppose I'm still a bit of a Philistine.
It sounds all right - but it didn't make the impression that I'd been led to expect.
The first thing I noticed was a sticker on the case saying that the CD is Copy Controlled. That doesn't worry me, but it does sound a bit uncharitable.
The second thing was that because of the way the tracks are arranged, you can only really play them in the order they are laid out - otherwise you end up with a heap of introductions that go nowhere. So it's a bit like going back to the days of the LP.
The third thing was that three of the items listed as Drink Up Thy Zider ('Play on', 'Play off' etc) is simply an electronic fanfare and announcement. This effectively reduces the number of tracks to twelve, and we don't get to listen to Drink Up Thy Zider after all - shame really.
And the last thing was the inclusion of A Pub With No Beer - which simply doesn't sound right to me when transplanted from the Southern Hemisphere.
But no doubt it will grow on me - I orta have a few ziders first, p'raps...
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