Monday, September 18, 2006

Dando Shaft

"Dando Shaft" (aka. "An Evening With Dando Shaft") 1970

On their first album, Dando Shaft came off as something like a more folk-oriented, yet also more hippie-oriented Pentangle. The percussive pulse of Roger Bullen's bass in particular gave much of the material a rhythmic swing that helped it stand apart from traditional folk, as did original material based around images of nature: rain, wind, leaves, the dawn, flowers, the country, and so on. The singing and songwriting betrayed a notable debt to Bert Jansch, though with a more whimsical bent that Jansch usually allowed. Their greatest assets, certainly in terms of putting their own stamp on a sound that bore close resemblance to aspects of Pentangle (and, more distantly, the Incredible String Band), were the colors added by multi-instrumentalist Martin Jenkins' mandolin, flute, and violin. As progressive folk that was pastoral in mood and not quite folk-rock, it was pleasant but ultimately not as distinguished or interesting as their unavoidable reference point, Pentangle. The Pentangle comparisons would if anything multiply when they added a female vocalist, Polly Bolton, for their next two albums. ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide

01 - Rain
02 - Cold Wind
03 - September Wine
04 - Cat Song
05 - In The Country
06 - Drops Of Brandy
07 - End Of The Game
08 - Lazily Slowly

"Dando Shaft" 1971

The major change on Dando Shaft's second album was the addition of singer Polly Bolton, whose lead and harmony singing added considerable color and appeal to the group's vocal blend. The band might have been edging just a bit closer to the folk-rock mainstream, too, with a more standard rhythmic and melodic base to some of the tunes. Generally, though, they remained in the same mindset as they were on their 1970 debut: just barely rock-influenced folk, similar to Pentangle but folkier, and given to a greater emphasis on mandolin, violin, and unusual tempos. While something like "Whispering Ned" sounded as traditional as British folk-rock got, other songs nodded a bit toward the more wistful romantic pop song tradition, like "Sometimes," "'Til the Morning Comes," and "Waves Upon the Ether." The nature imagery of the debut was still present, too, if not as prominent, in songs like "Riverboat" (one of the highlights, with its lovely Bolton vocal). ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide

01 - Coming Home To Me
02 - Sometimes
03 - Waves Upon The Ether
04 - Riverboat
05 - Dewet
06 - Railway
07 - Whispering Ned
08 - Pass It On
09 - Kalyope Driver
10 - Till The Morning Comes
11 - Prayer

"Lantaloon" 1972

Dando Shaft's third album wasn't all that different from its predecessor, Dando Shaft: rollicking folk-rock tunes that were more folk than rock, heavy on rhythmic interplay among mandolin, guitar, and violin. Nor was it at times all that different from Pentangle, particularly on one of the best tracks, "Road Song," which sounded quite a bit like some of the more up-tempo Pentangle tunes on which Bert Jansch took lead vocals; "The Black Prince of Paradise" trod pretty far into Pentangle territory too. And as with Pentangle, the woman singer, Polly Bolton, was the best of the vocalists, though the male singers weren't bad and served as good counterpoints. Perhaps their songwriting and instrumental approach broadened just a bit to take in more pop and rock influences, with occasional flute (and, on "The Magnetic Beggar," harpsichord). In all, though it's not as original as the best British folk-rock of the period, it's very well played and fairly well written, guaranteed to appeal to fans of bands like Pentangle, to restate the inevitable comparison. ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide

01 - Road Song
02 - Is It Me
03 - Down To You, Up To Me
04 - Melancholic Fervour ( It's Only Us )
05 - It Was Good
06 - Harp Lady
07 - The Black Prince Of Paradise
08 - When I'm Weary
09 - I Heard Somewhere
10 - Magnetic Beggar
11 - Don't Forget The Animal *Bonus
12 - Sun Clog Dance *Bonus
13 - Lullaby *Bonus


Anonymous Anonymous said...

No download link for this album.

19 September, 2006 00:21  
Blogger Lizardson said...

if so, it's still uploading to rapidshare. please wait

19 September, 2006 00:34  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for all the Dando Shaft uploads. They're a new discovery for me and I'm enjoying them immensely. A pity they never made it big like some of the other 70s folk-rock bands.

19 September, 2006 13:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


21 September, 2006 22:32  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, "Dando Shaft" is a real discovery. I'd read about them before but it always said that they were a sub-par Pentangle. However, the first album is really nice, not one bad song on it.
Thanks a lot,man.
The Great Spelunker

23 September, 2006 22:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow, sometimes i think that richie unterberger guy sometimes has no idea what he's talking about.dando shaft are MUCH better and do way more musically than he gives them credit for here....i think his descriptions/eva;luations of them are way off. this is folky psych pop (pop in a progressive lyrical melodic sort of way) of the higest caliber.

24 November, 2006 12:36  
Blogger rock of lamb said...

hi, any chance of reposting the first album


25 November, 2006 02:41  
Blogger UK folk junkie said...

Polly Bolton singing on 'Riverboat' is one of the best vocals I have ever heard. Hey Lizardson, on the 'Lost In Tyme' blog you are referred to as 'the great Lizardson'. I agree completely!

09 June, 2007 14:57  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much, it's been so wonderful to receive the first and last albums by Dando Shaft.
I would really be grateful if it was possible to re-upload Dando Shaft Volume 2 some day ...
And maybe leave a trace so that other people know about it, that they are still available.

02 September, 2007 16:08  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Merci beaucoup...

06 September, 2007 02:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dando must have been one of the best unsung acoustic bands of the 60s 70s.kev dempsey and martin jenkins still provide superb innovations of world music within their chosen genres. poor old Ted is dead. Polly is so good she can do her own thing whenever she wants. nothing can beat the live performances of those good old days. Going the way of Mozart probably? All too late all too soon. If the internet were available then, they would have been world class. If you are reading this, please look at the back catalogue - they deserve the royalties. Buy and believe!

19 March, 2008 09:17  
Blogger dacoopz said...

Official site
Here you can download the whole catalogue.

24 September, 2010 23:46  

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