The major event on the record, One of 'Those Days In England', is a collection of reminiscences. The legend of Excalibur in the first line. The last of the willow leaves at the top of the tree hanging on into January. 'Alfred had me made', the words written in anglo-saxon around the Alfred Jewel. More precisely 'AElfred mec heht gewyrcan' Alfred ordered me to be made. The Alfred Jewel is housed in the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford (England) and I visit it regularly when I can for emotional sustenance.
In the light of the events of his lifetime, Alfred must not only be considered as the founder of the British Navy, but more importantly as the founder of the English language. Had it not been for Alfred's victory over the Danes in the late ninth century, it would perhaps be conceivable that one fifth of the world's population would now be speaking some kind of Danish dialect.
I really love this album. It's always been one of my real favourites. I've always thought that the long version of 'One Of Those Days In England' is a touchstone of my long affair with my own culture. All in all, the album has the pastoral feel of the nature of my life at the time.
Having said that, it also has a lovelorn edge in 'Cherishing The Lonesome' and angst in 'Naked Flame'. There's also sufficient reference to the nature of the times in lines such as 'You and me sister we're gonna plant a bomb in a street to change law and order', and 'You and me brother wrapped up in silence brooding for better breathing spaces'; both of which unfortunately still seem set to demand attention in global culture for the foreseeable future.
Perhaps the reason I always think of it as a gentler album is the subtle ushering in of the realisations embodied in 'These Last Days', which are not so much resignation to a certain maturity as recognition that negotiation in life is paramount to community.
Tracks / Additional Information
|Track Listing||01. One Of Those Days In England (3:25)
02. These Last Days (4:27)
03. Cherishing The Lonesome (5:54)
04. Naked Flame (5:06)
05. Watford Gap (3:23)
06. One Of Those Days In England (Parts 2-10) (19:28)
07. Breakfast With You (2:42)