Two great songs, but overall a weak album
woburnmusicfan | Woburn, MA United States | 09/10/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Guitarist Simon Nicol left Fairport Convention after the "Babbacombe Lee" album. After a couple of months with Roger Hill on guitar, Fairport regrouped, adding Trevor Lucas on vocals/rhythm guitar and Jerry Donahue on lead guitar, and that lineup made the "Rosie" album. Drummer Dave Mattacks only appears on 4 of the 10 songs.
This album has two great songs, and they lead off the CD. "Rosie" is a lovely Dave Swarbrick ballad that has become one of Fairport's signature songs. Fairport alumni Sandy Denny and Richard Thompson guest star on the track, along with Linda Peters (soon to become Linda Thompson). "Matthew, Mark, Luke and John" is another fine song, and one that has been forgotten over the years. The remaining eight songs are average at best, the better ones being the traditional medley "Hens March Through the Midden & the Four Poster Bed" and Dave Pegg's memoir of a tour gone wrong, "Hungarian Rhapsody". Lucas contributes a couple of songs that don't do anything for me. I've never understood Lucas' participation in Fairport--why was an Australian who specialized in American country music brought into a British folk-rock band? Swarb's "Me with You" is the sort of weightless piffle that filled "Gottle o'Geer". If you're a big Fairport fan, you'll want to have the first two songs. But on the whole, this is one of the lesser Fairport albums. To provide additional value, this reissued version of the album adds 5 live tracks.
(1=poor 2=mediocre 3=pretty good 4=very good 5=phenomenal)