Drake, Nick: Pink Moon (Vinyl LP)

Drake, Nick: Pink Moon (Vinyl LP)

Regular price €29.95 €0.00 Unit price per

By 1971, the 23-year-old Nick Drake was overwhelmed by depression and had lost all confidence as a live performer. His final public gig, at Ewell Technical College, in Surrey, in June 1970, had been abandoned halfway through the song “Fruit Tree” before a disconsolate Drake walked off stage.

With no immediate plans to make a new record to follow 1969’s Five Leaves Left and 1971’s Bryter Layter, Drake spent time recuperating at Chris Blackwell’s Spanish villa, at the personal request of the concerned Island Records chief. Drake then snuck away with producer John Wood to lay down a new album, which was recorded over just two late-night sessions at Sound Techniques in London’s Chelsea, in October 1971.

Pink Moon is Drake’s music at its starkest and most uncompromising: no other musicians, no arrangements, just Drake and his acoustic guitar and one piano solo on the title track, with its ill-omened pink moon a portent of disaster. Drake did not know what he wanted on the cover of his new album, except that it had to feature a pink moon. In the end, a surrealist painting by Michael Trevithick, who was the boyfriend of Drake’s sister Gabrielle, was chosen and seems fitting.

The album, which is only 28 minutes long, has an unsettling simplicity. Drake said he didn’t want it arranged, just to stand “naked.” In the brilliant and bleak “Parasite,” Drake uses the device of a journey on the Northern Line of the London Underground to offer a chilling view of the emptiness of contemporary life.

The lack of sales for Pink Moon disappointed Drake, whose depression was deepening. He died on November 25, 1974, at the age of 26, from an overdose of anti-depressants. It was a tragedy that passed largely unnoticed at the time.

The three albums which Nick Drake had made in his short lifetime were all, in commercial terms, unsuccessful, even though leading musicians such as Martyn and Richard Thompson urged people to listen to Pink Moon. Eventually, long after his death, people took notice and Pink Moon posthumously went Platinum.

2013 reissue.

  1. Pink Moon
  2. Place to Be
  3. Road
  4. Which Will
  5. Horn
  6. Things Behind the Sun
  7. Know
  8. Parasite
  9. Free Ride
  10. Harvest Breed
  11. From the Morning

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