An Incredible New Year...
Thursday, January 6, 2011 at 8:29PM

Ever since I name checked 'A Very Cellular Song' in reviewing Robert Plant last year, I've kept going back to the Incredible String Band themselves. And reminding myself just how much astonishing music they made - alongside an admixture of clunking whimsy. They took far more risks in the course of an album than many of their peers managed in a career, and a good proportion of them paid off beautifully.

Well, I never had their earliest albums on vinyl. I first got into them via the Relics compilation and eventually got CDs, by which time the originals had got pretty expensive. So all praise to eBay - bargains are still to be had: I happened upon a reasonable US copy of The 5000 Spirits on red Elektra for all of $8.50, and then Amazon Marketplace produced an equivalent UK copy of The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter. Sorted - while keeping a weather eye open for the first album...

Anyway, if you have listened to the Incredibles recently, I recommend you do so. 'Nightfall' offers the best western use of a sitar I've come across: 'Koeeaddi There' the best childlike, but not childish, evocation of childhood; while 'A Very Cellular Song' is just extraordinary - all together now:

May the long time sun shine upon you
All love surround you
And the pure light within you
Guide you all the way on.
Article originally appeared on Eden On The Line (
See website for complete article licensing information.