CD Frost and Fire [Reissue] (CD 1126462),
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Frost and Fire [Reissue]

  • 1. Here We Come A-Wassailing
    2. Derby Ram, The
    3. Jolly Old Hawk
    4. Pace-Egging Song
    5. Seven Virgins (The Little Leaves of Life)
    6. Holly Bears a Berry, The
    7. Hal-An-Tow
    8. Earsdon Sword Dance Song
    9. John Barleycorn
    10. Harvest Song: We Gets Up in the Morn
    11. Souling Song
    12. Christmas Is Now Drawing Near at Hand
    13. Herod and the Cock
    14. Wassail Song
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 563

  • Credits
    ProducerTony Engle
    EngineerBill Leader; John Gill

    FROST AND FIRE contains the complete 1965 album of the same name, plus tracks from the 1977 album SOUND, SOUND YOUR INSTRUMENTS OF JOY.
    The Watersons: Mike, Lal & Norma Waterson, John Harrison, Martin Carthy (vocals).
    Gabriel's Horns: Tony Engle (C melody saxophone); Steve Heap (cornet); John Adams (trombone); Alex West (tuba).
    Recorded in 1965 & 1977. Originally released on Topic (12T136).
    The first family of traditional British folk music, the Watersons have proved to be a long-lived and prolific bunch, but one of their finest moments remains their debut album, 1965's FROST AND FIRE. Recorded with the original lineup (i.e. before Norma Waterson's husband, famed U.K. folkie Martin Carthy, joined the band), the album is subtitled "A Calendar of Ritual and Magical Songs." In someone else's hands this might mean the listener was in for a bunch of New Age gobbledygook, but fear not. That's just the Watersons' way of saying this is an album full of traditional Christmas carols, harvest songs, and the like. As they work their a cappella magic on both the esoteric and the more familiar ("John Barleycorn," "Wassail Song"), it's tough not to be entranced. Note: The reissue of the album includes a batch of great bonus tracks from the Carthy-era lineup.

  • Critic Reviews
    Q (11/99, p.163) - Included in Q Magazine's Best Folk Albums of All Time - "...a round of magical songs which chimed with numerous progressive acts of the time and helped rescue traditional singing from the clutches of the tufted, moleskin'd cabal. Their unaccompanied polyphonic harmonies have never been bettered."
    Dirty Linen (p.44) - "[F]ocusing on traditional music of celebration and gratitude sung throughout the seasons."
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