UNCUT - - Archive - Rob hughes

The Time Has Come EARTH 9/10 early ’70s mas­ter­class from elu­sive folkie Anne Briggs had been a mer­cu­rial pres­ence on the Bri­tish folk scene for a decade be­fore cut­ting her de­but al­bum. She con­sid­ered her­self an in­ter­preter of tra­di­tional folk above all, fish­ing for com­mon truths amid the depths of old bor­der bal­lads on 1964 EP “The Haz­ards Of Love” and her self-ti­tled 1971 de­but al­bum. The Time Has Come fol­lowed later the same year, and is a gor­geous, guile­less sum­ma­tion of her tal­ents. The wa­ver­ing pu­rity of Briggs’ voice is framed by nim­ble acous­tic gui­tar and, on oc­ca­sion, bouzouki. The ti­tle track had al­ready been cov­ered by ex-lover Bert Jan­sch by the time she claimed it as her own. But it’s eclipsed by a ver­sion of Steve Ash­ley’s “Fire And Wine” that finds Briggs chas­ing away the frosts of win­ter in her best flut­ing voice. “Sand­man’s Song” and “Tan­gled Man” are qui­etly ex­quis­ite too, al­lied to a fresh ar­range­ment of a sole tra­di­tional, “Stand­ing On The Shore”, in which she con­jures the el­e­ments in a man­ner that’s both airy and strangely dis­qui­et­ing. A harsh self-critic, it would be 25 years be­fore Briggs let us hear her sil­very tones on record again. Ex­tras. none.

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