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Electric Eden

Unearthing Britain's Visionary Music

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Electric Eden documents one of the great untold stories of British music over the past century. While ostensibly purporting to be a history of that much derided (though currently fashionable) four-letter word, 'folk', Electric Eden will be a magnificent survey of the visionary, topographic and esoteric impulses that have driven the margins of British visionary folk music from Vaughan Williams and Holst to The Incredible String Band, Nick Drake, John Martyn and Aphex Twin. For the first time the full story of the extraordinary period of folk rock from the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s will be told in a book with the breadth of a social history touching on sonic worship, pagan architecture, land art, ley lines and ther outer fringes of the avant garde. Electric Eden identifies a particularly English wellspring of imagery and imagination, an undercurrent that has fed into the creative and organic strand of Britain's music over the past century. From Edwardian composers assimilations of folk song and visionary poetry, via folk rock of the 60s and 70s, the story is brought up to date by placing these earlier movements in a continuum that links through significant figures in 21st century pastoral electronica.

From Publishers Weekly

21 February 2011 – In this massive, beguiling history of 20th-century British folk music and its legacy, music journalist Young surveys the scene from the Edwardian revival through its postwar coffee-house heyday to contemporary outcroppings. He probes its influences on other genres, from the classical music of Ralph Vaughan Williams to the plangent Renaissance-ish harmonies of Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven"; the book's headliners are folk-rock luminaries of the '60s and '70s: Fairport Convention, the Incredible String Band, Steeleye Span, and Nick Drake. Young roots his narrative in analyses of folk traditions and the eternal English nostalgia for a mythic rural past, but he also treats the folkie eruption as a very modern reaction to the discontents of industrial society. The folk culture he celebrates is really that of the musicians themselves: their gypsy wanderings, their clubs and festivals and country-house idylls, their debauches and overdoses, their fashion oscillations between hobbit outfits and pagan nudity. American readers' eyes may glaze at the endless litany of groups they have never heard of, but many will be inspired to rediscover these bands by Young's evocations of their music—and the romantic yearnings it expressed. Photos.
Electric Eden
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  • 12,99 €
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Music
  • Published: 19 August 2010
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber
  • Print Length: 672 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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