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3.9 out of 5 stars
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3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 4 April 2016
Any of Bert's albums is worth buying and instantly demonstrates his greatness to the listener.

This album is interesting not least because he used lush string arrangements for example on 'Woe Is Love'. A personal favourite is track one, a song he co-wrote with Anne Briggs 'You Go Your Way My Love' which ranks with anything he ever did. It features a gripping lyric and similarly compelling guitar accompaniment.

This album points the way to the music of Pentangle which he and John Renbourn formed not long afterwards.

Lovers of fingerstyle acoustic guitar will ever mourn the loss of Bert and of his old partner John.
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A number of performers during the folk revival of the 1960s progressed from acoustic to electric or heavier arrangements. And so it was with Bert Jansch.
After Three solo albums and a duo album with John Renbourn, this fourth solo project recorded in 1967 was in mood of its time. Here we get Bert on twelve string and electric guitars, double voice tracking and a fifteen piece orchestra with elaborate arrangements.
Some people don’t like this album because it sees Bert move from the acoustic sound that everyone had been familiar with, and to be fair that he returned to, to a more commerrcial project. But it is easy to over look this album. After all it is very different and in that way very unique compared to what he had done before. He would have been criticised by some for turning out yet another acoustic album.
In fairness what we have is an album that does have much to offer. And it has its own originality. I think it is worthy of a place in a Bert Jansch collection. The album is just not as bad as some would make out. I think it is a good album in many ways.

The title of the album comes from a friend of now wife of Bert’s friend John Renbourn. Nicola was a friend of Judy, John’s wife. Bert and Nicola got into a relationship together during the year of this album.
Bert and John were looking towards developing their new group Pentangle and influences of instruments other than acoustic guitar were coming in fast.
Some people didn’t like the end result of this album and its new direction for Jansch but the album is very good indeed and does have its own originality. It stands out from the previous three solo albums.
The instrumental title track has a sort of baroque woodwind cello and guitar feel to it. There is also the blues influence again with tracks Come Back Baby and Weeping Willow blues. Rabbit Run by Jansch is inspired by Wind in the Willows This is one of the tracks with the double vocal tracking,
The first track is by Ann Briggs and Bert Jansch and gets off to a good start in terms of what sort of sound everyone was used to hearing from Jansch. The second track, by Jansch, woe is love my dear, is a beautiful track and although there is orchestration and a busy sound compared to previous works, it is a brilliant track with a lovely arrangement. The track love is teasing is Traditional and the arrangement on guitar and vocals is very appealling.
. It is also clear that there was an attempt to push Jansch into the succesful pop singles charts. It doesn’t quite work though. There are clear pop influences here, Life depends on love, by Jansch has a soft pop feel to it.
Box of Love brings us back to the more familiar acoustic sound with a beautiful song and a wonderful recording, I wish my baby was here offers a very short break back to a pop kind of arrangement only to end the original album with the acoustic blues jazz folk sound of If the world isn’t there. Both are by Jansch.
This re mastered CD version is excellent. It has a good booklet with good photos and there are two bonus tracks which fit very well indeed on to the programme of tracks.
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on 1 July 2011
This is a queer record. On the tracks featuring Bert Jansch singing with just his guitar, which is how I would prefer to listen to him, his head comes out of the left speaker and his guitar out of the right, so that it sounds like a Picasso painting of a Bert Jansch album. Also normally I do not care for Pentangle or for any other accompaniment to his voice and guitar, but in this case I have to make an exception. The first three tracks, two of which include orchestral production and one of which lacks his guitar, are among my favourite recordings of the 60s and of his career. Only track 5 disappoints me, and everything else is very attractive. Singing free of playing the guitar, his voice seems freer and more open. I bought this when it originally came out but I do not remember the effect it had on me. However I have to say that I like this album, having recovered a taste for everything he did in the 60s except for Pentangle.
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on 20 December 2006
Aw come on! This was the one album where Jansch tried to escape the clutches of the purists, and connect to the swirling currents of '60s pop music. All I can say is that as a hip teenager in the '60s, this album compared favourably to Sunshine Superman, Notorious Byrd Brothers and even Blonde on Blonde as a revolutionary attempt to infuse "serious" (actually at the time, verging on the pompous) music with a pop sensibility. And ignore all the nerdy musos who revere Jansch as an accoustic guitar player (whisper it softly, but he wasn't/isn't that good anyway, nowhere near as good and innovative as Nick Drake) - the first album was a cracker, but for the quality of songwriting. The rest were all much of a muchness. But this one...

Having played my vinyl copy to death, I'm going to buy the incredibly cheap CD before any of the rest of you get your hands on it.
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on 22 December 2005
Bert Jansch's 1967 album "Nicola" represents an attempt to create a more commercial sound on some, but not all of the tracks. The problem is that with Jansch you are talking one of the great acoustic guitar players in the history of the world, so when he stops playing the guitar and just sings with an orchestra accompaniment it is just plain wrong. Yes, Eric Clapton has turned into a pretty decent singer, but the same cannot be said for Jansch, although I must confess that "Go Your Way My Love" is one of the first tracks where I have enjoyed Jansch's singing. He was never Donovan, but at least on this one he is heading in that direction. But then there are flutes and strings playing in "Woe Is Love My Dear" and it is just too weird, especially since that was obviously the track they intended to be the hit single in violation of all of our expectations for his music.
Even though there are some of the most atypical tracks in the Jansch oeuvre on this album, such as the outright pop song "Live Depends on Love," there are some songs that play to Jansch's strengths. The title track is a guitar and flute duet, with a nice Renaissance touch. "Come Back Baby" is Jansch playing and singing the blues, as is "Weeping Willow Blues." But then "A Little Sweet Sunshine" has an electric guitar on it (as the jaws of listeners drop on cue) and proves that this album might be the most diverse mix of musical stylings he ever recorded. The lesson here is what it has always been when listening to Jansch. Just give me the man playing his guitar like he does on "Box of Love."
Of the dozen cuts on Jansch's third solo album he wrote nine of them, which means on most of these tracks you get to hear him play the guitar and mix together the blues with traditional British Isle folk music. "Nicola" would not be high on the list of Bert Jansch albums to recommend to people, and since it was combined with his 1969 album "Birthday Blues" on one CD I have to say that is the way to go with this one even with the two bonus tracks on this version, because it is really too odd to pick up by itself. I would rate it at 3-and-a-half stars and round down simply to indicate its position relative to the rest of his early work, although that first track is one of his best.
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on 12 June 2015
Excellent
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on 27 March 2008
Oh dear. Some sixties music sounds like sixties music and benefits from that - like the Doors, early Hawkwind, or the Jackson C Frank album. This doesn't. Where his other work is almost timeless, such as the eponymous debut, or Birthday Blues, or Crimson Moon, this just doesn't work for me. I played it twice and the second time was to make sure I'd got it right the first time. The standout tracks are already on good samplers like Dazzling Stranger anyway, Go Your Way... and Woe is Love My Dear.
I ought to have given this 4 stars just for half the album i suppose but some of the songs are so bad they'd come out as zero, so i guess two points is the average.
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on 2 July 2014
An extract from the Family Announcements section of the Hampstead Gleaner in 1967 :-

Joseph/Jansch ( Kilburn formerly of Edinburgh )

To Nat and Bert at the Transatlantic studios a twelve track turkey Nicola .

A much longed for sister for Al , Donovan and Judy .

Both parents drunk . Special thanks to Dr. Palmer and his strings without whom this could have been a
halfway decent album .
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