This was, sadly, the last major album by Nick Drake before his death in 1974. He was undergoing some personal issues at the time, and his death from an overdose of antidepressant medication is very sad indeed. Regardless, Nick Drake’s legacy is made through his music. Legend has it he simply dropped the tapes off to the reception at his record label Island Records, although in retrospect there was likely more to the story than such a thing as that. Still, Nick Drake was very unhappy in his personal life and he, fortunately, gave us this last album for us to hear, despite all the events going against him. Let’s hear this final album, often seen as his best overall. The cover art is very much reflective of his depressed and eerie mood and is inseparable from the music present.
Pink Moon launches into it with acoustic guitars strummed nicely, and Nick Drake’s plain and clear voice above it all throughout. This is a rather psychedelic piece lyrically, hence the title of the tune. It is two minutes of beautiful and lovely music. There is some overdubbed piano here as well, which is sweetly melodic to hear. An enjoyable and listenable piece of acoustic goodness, this is totally underrated music to enjoy. Great and simple Folk music.
Place To Be begins with some energetic strumming, likely with a capo on the acoustic and launches into a wistful reflection of the past for Nick Drake. Again, this is simple, artistic and wonderful sounding music to enjoy. A lovely and enjoyable tune to listen to, this album is already a classic by this point. That’s how good it is upon hearing it. Nick Drake articulates his soul perfectly on these simple acoustic tunes. It works, very well. A great listen throughout, it is very emotional and moving listening. Good job man, the world of music is better for this set of tunes.
Road is a simple piece of gorgeous fingerpicking that sounds excellent from the go. It is a short tune that is only two minutes long and sounds bright and optimistic. Nick Drake sings in a plain, clear voice and sounds excellent here. A really great piece, again this album is already a winner musically. This flows gently and breezily, and the music is perfect for closing one’s eyes and relaxing to. Another great piece by Nick Drake.
Which Will has slower, yet intricate acoustic guitar fingerpicking. This is gorgeous, simple and musically articulate. The music is accompanied by Nick Drake’s simple and melodic singing, which lacks the pretentious attitude that other singers out there have. Nonetheless, this is another great piece of music that must be heard by Folk Rock fans, in particular. A lovely listen, this sounds really pretty, simple and effective for what it is. Another great tune, with lyrics about the choices one takes in life. A brilliant listen, and worth your time. Simply fantastic. A great piece of music and musicality.
Horn is incredibly short, beginning with the same sustained note (C flat) as The Velvet Underground’s Heroin begins with. This gradually launches into a decent and pretty tune that sounds very unsettling. An odd piece of music, this only goes on for just a minute but sounds melancholy and eerie. A good listen regardless.
Things Behind The Sun launches straight into it, sounding like an intentional continuation of the previous track. It goes into a sad and emotional piece of music with some moody singing from Nick Drake. Nonetheless, this is a decent listening experience. Simple music from a simpler time in the history of humanity, this is a very mellow piece of music that works exceptionally well. A great tune throughout, this is good music to take your time and relax to. Interesting listening, it seems that Nick Drake struggled to deal with his difficult life, and poured his emotions into his music. A really deep tune, this has some interesting playing, chord changes and melodic beauty about it.
Know begins with a smooth acoustic guitar riff, launching quickly into a more optimistic and pleasant listen with hummed harmonies by Nick Drake. Again, this is calm and pleasant listening and is a short snippet of the awesome talent of Nick Drake. Catchy, simple and excellent, Nick Drake eventually sings about being in love with a lady, and other simple things that make life unique, this is a nice tune. Short and sweet, just like acoustic based Folk Music should be. Excellent.
Parasite begins with chiming acoustic guitar and more irresistible melodies to listen to. Nick Drake sings almost immediately and articulates his emotional struggles and life very well here. In fact, Nick Drake does extremely well for someone suffering from major depression in this song, and he sings about simple ideas and visions of things. Of course, this simple acoustic music and singing will not be to everyone’s tastes, but credit must go to Nick Drake for putting in the effort here. The fingerpicked melodies present in this tune are magical, and Nick Drake’s vocals are inimitably simple and sweet. A lovely listening experience, even if troubled emotions are put through here to be noticed. A nice tune nonetheless, worth hearing. The playing throughout on acoustic guitar is simply gorgeous.
Free Ride begins with a sweet fingerpicked acoustic guitar progression that sounds really great. This is a mellow musical journey before Nick Drake delivers some pretty singing that works wonders. A fresh, unique and nicely delivered tune, this is amazing and works wonders for the listener. An adventure through lyrical music, this is 20th century poetry set to music, many decades ago. A fine listen, this also shows that sensitivity and gentle music can make a great impression on the listener. Wonderful listening from start to finish, this is timeless. It ends with more lovely acoustic guitar playing that works wonders emotionally.
Harvest Breed begins with some minor key melodies by more acoustic guitar fingerpicking, and enters into a really great listening experience, yet again. Nick Drake sings again and he sings about the ending of things to come. Perhaps he knew his time was coming to a close on planet Earth, in a very eerie way. Nonetheless, a short and sweet tune at a minute and a half long. Good work, all the same.
From The Morning breathes light and shade into acoustic music. Nick Drake sings and plays about simple things in life, and this is a fine conclusion to his brief yet quintessential music career. Nick Drake himself is reflective of the beauty of the morning, and he sounds very much fantastic here. A great conclusion to a career that should have been much longer, the music will live on. A beautiful, melancholy yet awesome listen, this ends well. A great finish to an underrated album. Very enjoyable.
This is a classic album that appeals to those who, in the chaotic world of the 21st century, need to hear some simple, beautiful and melodic music with primarily just vocals and acoustic guitar playing. Arguably, this final effort is also Nick Drake’s best effort overall before he fell apart personally in his life and his unfortunate death soon afterwards. If you want minimalist, beautiful and acoustic based music with better sensitivity than Coldplay could ever depict, look no further. A real classic of simple songcraft and melodic beauty.