Nick Drake was the quintessential fragile genius. His late-1960s and early-'70s albums combine pastoral, very British romanticism with a jazzy folk lilt that owes a debt to Tim Buckley and Tim Hardin. His hypnotic whisper of a voice and his virtuosic fingerpicking were the perfect emissaries for Drake's songs of quiet longing and displacement. Though he was virtually unknown during his too-short life, he would posthumously inspire a subsequent generation of artists.
Reissue of the late British folk icon's final full-length album, released in 1972. 11 tracks. Slipcase. Island.
Pink Moon is the sound of Nick Drake cracking up. That's not exactly true--some have long thought that his death by an overdose of an anti-depressant was an accident, and not suicide--but this album, recorded over two late nights, certainly sounds like a fever dream. Peter Buck of R.E.M. has called the album "Like an English version of (Robert Johnson's great blues) `Hellhound on My Trail.'" The lyrics to the title song read in their entirety: "Saw it written and I saw it say, pink moon is on its way. None of you will stand so tall, pink moon is gonna get ye all. And it's a pink moon." Aside from a splash of piano, the only instrumentation on this stark and spooky collection is Drake's eloquent acoustic guitar. --John Milward
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