Ian Cropton nominated me to put forward my top ten albums of all time.
That’s good. I enjoy that.
This is Number 1!!
- Roy Harper – Stormcock
In my opinion Roy Harper is the greatest British song-writer and poet. There is no one who even gets close. His acerbic lyrics and social commentary are unsurpassed. He rivals Bob Dylan as the greatest songwriter of all time and is greatly undervalued. This is not surprising as he has constantly shot himself in the foot and sabotaged his own career. Even so he remains the foremost British dissident and commentator on the human condition. His epic songs are legendary and the music sublime.
Stormcock is arguably his best album but is strongly pushed by both HQ and Lifemask. I would place at least ten of Roy’s albums in my top 400 albums. He’s that important to me.
The Stormcock album features only 4 tracks but the album is one of his masterpieces. It consists of brilliant songs with poetic imagery and wide canvasses that challenge your imagination. The music and musicianship was innovative and of an excellence that puts this album top of my top ten thousand. It is one of four Harper albums that would make it into my top ten albums of all time. I have a penchant for great meaningful lyrics put to brilliant music and this hits the spot. I never tire of hearing these songs and simply cannot understand why Roy has not been lauded from on high. I love the depth and insight he brings to bear and the risks he takes in developing his ideas through epic songs. Few people can match it. Roy’s shorter songs are great but these four songs show how Roy has matured and taken his art to another level. ‘Me and my woman’ is one of the very best tracks ever recorded. The scope is immense and Roy was at the top of his game. I can see that it is never going to be commercial. Roy’s work is thought-provoking, intelligent and musically intricate. You have to concentrate. It’s not your catchy pop song – fortunately! But it is well worth the effort. For me Roy is the James Joyce of music as opposed to Simon Cowell’s Barbara Cartland.