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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

John Barleycorn Must Die

Traffic

1970

Wikipedia

John Barleycorn Must Die

Rating

3.17

Votes

3663

Reviews

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4

Listening to this album makes me want to scour Craigslist for an organ, attempt to play it at a few jams, then abandon it a couple months later—much like my criminally-brief stint with the trombone. Digging the layers. Never considered how unifying of a force the humble flute can be. Jazz, rock, Middle English folklore. There's no genre those delicate winds can't touch. Occasionally getting some Steely Dan vibes, Traffic's definitely dipping their toes in the jazzy side of rock here. Steve Winwood has some pipes. Wasn't sure who John Barleycorn was or why he had to die so I did a little research. Turns out he's a character from an old English folktale, circa 15th(?) century. Much like Rasputin some centuries later, the song chronicles the many varied and brutal methods by which the townsfolk and the nobility kill and grind John Barleycorn up, only for him to return once more in the spring—the anthropomorphized body of the crops he farms. Though it's not by a giant penis that he provides pleasure but the alcohol fermented from his barleycorn carrion. The album certainly cycles through deaths and rebirths and is a fitting tribute to this folk hero of intoxication. The flute really ties the room together.

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1

Come on. How many more albums 70s lads from Birmingham with long hair and a love for overblown organ solos must we listen to before we get some albums by some other genre of musician up in this junket?

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5

This album started out on a high note and went on to reach an even higher note. It’s like a weird combination of jazz and folk. Some songs are some great jazz fusion, while others sound straight off a Jethro Tull album. Thoroughly enjoyed. Favorite Track(s): “Glad,” “Freedom Rider,” and “John Barleycorn”

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3

SO glad I found this album! A few really great tracks that will be in my regular rotation more often. I can definitely see where a look on interesting bands in the 70's took some inspiration but at the same time the combination of the keys, flute, and saxophone make this something completely unique from anything else.

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2

A techincally competent and well-adjusted blend of post-psych jamming and blues with enough levity to keep the scourge of sincerity-via-roots-music at bay. In the context of this book, yet another one scoring high for inoffenive listenability and low for musical evisceration, spiritual edification, intellectual expansiveness or any other good form of "challenging".

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5

Traffic is a perfect blend of piano, organ and R&B sound. This is a real defining album for future sounds.

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5

Jazz-Rock. didnt know my body needed this. holy shit that sax. AND THAT VOICE. Freedom rider is amazing. Very replay-able for background or vibing

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5

I didn’t expect this at all. Imagined it would be more like Fairport Convention, but actually a huge mix. Really enjoyed it.

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5

Epic! Sounds from my childhood that I never knew the source of. Groovy.

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4

somehow i have never seen this band mentioned anywhere before i will forget the whole album within the next 5 days but it was good

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4

Chill 70s rock

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4

I quite enjoyed a lot of this album, even if it was one of those were all the songs slightly blended together in my mind. Not always a bad thing however

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4

Good should listen again

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4

Not my favorite style of music but I enjoyed it

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5

Excelente descoberta. Destaque para vocais e flautas. Músicas que mais gostei: Freedom Rider e John Barleycorn

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5

Really good, a mix of a lot of styles. My favorite might be the instrumental first track

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5

Good Vibes to start. I ended up leaving this on repeat all day. Great Record

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5

Fone: hd 599 Música predileta: Empty Pages Baixo sensacional, piano muito gostoso, vocal masculino super agradável, mas a cereja do bolo é a flauta

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5

Huge

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5

This I liked! Funky 70-s rock

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5

Some true jams on this album

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5

I still remember the first time I heard this when I was in high school. I've always thought it was great, and it opened the door to all of Traffic's great music.

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5

Batteries running low. A 20 year old water heater. My step-kids’ biological father. Yes, now I remember why I deleted so many tracks from this recording on my iPod. It’s not that 'John Barleycorn Must Die' is a bad LP. It just gets a little tedious. ‘Course, these were the days of extended jams. So, I’m willing to make allowance for that. And Steve Windwood is a mega talented instrumentalist, as well as a good vocalist, at least when he’s not slightly off-key, which is unfortunately often. (Flat or sharp, I can never quite tell.) Jim Capaldi is a great drummer, and Chris Wood gives them that nice jazzy sound with his sax and flute. I was 11 when this recording was released, but didn’t discover it until High School. The title track was the big seller in my day, that whole resurgent honoring of the ancient pagan ways among British musicians. (By the way, it’s interesting to note how many of Windwood’s musical colleagues were raised Anglican, but ultimately rejected Christianity in favor of practicing all of the eastern religious traditions, extraterrestrial veneration, and their own native paganism. Don’t blame this entirely on LSD, either. But this is another subject for another time.) But the title track is not really representative of Traffic’s usual sound. I remember thinking how unique the whole jazz/blues/rock vibe was that Traffic had going on. And it really ‘sparked’ on their next LP. This one, though, for me, is lacking a little flint. (Funny, too, how some LPs from that same period still seem to resonate with this listener- 'In The Court Of The Crimson King,' ie- while others no longer do.) It’s one of those grey, snowy days today in Colorado that typically puts me in the mood for something a little soulful, a little mellow. Theoretically, 'John Barleycorn' should do the job, but it seems to now be on the dole, at least for me. Maybe a nice glass of mead might help?

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5

There were three men came out of the West Their fortunes for to try And these three men made a solemn vow John Barleycorn must die.

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5

Sweet tunes

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5

Amazing album set. Added to the regular rotation.

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5

I enjoyed this record, great combination of blues, with piano and guitar tracks. The songs were all excellent, as to be expected from this group. A very tight, nice album that was pleasant to hear.

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5

muy jazzer oaleatorio me gustó

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5

Freedom Rider just went boom it’s so good. I was not expecting such an outstanding intro from what I heard the song before. Honestly solid frickin album

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5

Thats just a fucking jam

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5

This album is IMMACULATE. God I friggin love Traffic, and not that beep beep honk honk stuff! I'm talkin' ROCKEMROLL!

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4

Very jazzy, love the instrumental opening track

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4

Underrated tunes on this album

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4

muito, muito bom! Vários sons em harmonia, lindeza

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4

Nicht gut für einen Workout geeignet. Die Orgel gibt dem ganzen einen besonderen Flair, auch wenn ich es dadurch nicht jederzeit ertragen würde. Gefällt mir aber sehr gut! Viele stimmige bodenständige Soloeinlagen und ein stimmige Stimme. John Barleycorn hat es mir angetan. Zuerst dachte ich es sei ein Outlaw-Western-Ding, aber dann waren immer mehr Leute involviert, Reincarnation und einige der „Bestrafungen“, die ich verstanden hatte, waren sehr brutal. Was ist da los? Nachdem ich die Lyrics gelesen habe, geht es höchstwahrscheinlich um Alkohol, vielleicht der Wunsch nach Abstinenz? Lustige Reise!

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4

Really enjoyed it. Nice and relaxing album

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4

this was decent, bopped it all day

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4

Really nice album, enjoyed this a lot

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4

Favorites: John Barleycorn (Must Die), I Just Want You to Know Glad: Effectively conveys the mood it describes, quite jazzy, a bit too long - 0.25 Freedom Rider: Flutes, piano, and sax all make for an interesting jazzy composition - 0.75 Empty Pages: CCR meets soul - 1 I Just Want to Know: really good, wish it was longer - 1 Stranger to Himself: Eagles “desperado” meets soul, guitar kills it - 1 John Barleycorn: very folk rock - 1 Every Mother’s Son: Good, but too long - 0.25 Sittin Here Thinkin’ of My Love: Love the bass guitar in this song - 0.75 Total: 6/8

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4

Pretty good album by this good band!

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4

Fun! Great 60s/70s vibes here too. I can imagine this being the soundtrack to a movie set in NYC in the 70s.

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4

Not a bad album.

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4

No comments

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4

Pretty dope

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4

Funky.

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4

Always loved this record. Got a lot of elements of what I love from rock from this era.

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4

Oh yeah, I can listen to this. This jazz flute-ing, guitar riffing, hippy rock is my jam.

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4

ok

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4

Toques de jazz y de folk. Muy buen disco aunque cuesta entrar

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4

lekkere muziek. Waar om vaker naar te luisteren

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4

.

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4

Love Traffic and this is my favorite.

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4

meh. not bad, but is been too long. i dont really remember it.

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4

Short but good. Nice find

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4

Nice mix of rock and folk, pretty short album, but Empty Pages and John Barleycorn are good songs.

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4

Pretty solid folk rock sound. I like Steve Winwood.

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4

Good

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4

A refreshingly brilliant album, wonderful songwriting and musicianship and Steve Winwood’s vocals are just lovely. Will revisit this and explore more of their catalog

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4

"John Barleycorn Must Die" is the fourth studio album by Traffic -- released in 1970. It is described as progressive/folk/jazz rock. There are 6 songs on this album, 2 of which are about 4 minutes long, and the rest around 6 or 7 minutes, which I believe means each track will tell a story. And who is John Barleycorn? He is "a personification of the important cereal crop barley and of the alcoholic beverages made from it, beer and whisky," derived from an English folk song. Intriguing... This album opens with "Glad," a jazzy, pianoy, upbeat instrumental song. Lots of saxophone, organ, and piano going on here. This track is the only instrumental on the album, a great primer for this LP. Track number 2, "Freedom Rider," opens with more piano and saxophone, leading to Steve Winwood's smooth, high-tenor vocals, as he sings about cool things like lightning and motorcycles. Ride on, baby! The third track, "Empty Pages," features more piano and organ work, with a popping bass guitar and jazzy percussion. Winwood goes on about the woes of writer's block: "Staring at empty pages Centered 'round the same old plot Staring at empty pages Flowing along in the ages" A true joy (/s) of any writer's life! "Stranger to Himself" is track number 4, and is the shortest on the album at 4 minutes and 2 seconds. This track is poppy and has a really fun guitar/piano solo (duo?). Perhaps I'm projecting a bit onto this song, but the lyrics really strike a chord with and I feel compelled to lay the entire (short) set of words here: [Verse 1] Struggling with confusion, disillusionment too Can turn a man into a shadow, crying out from pain [Chorus] Through his nightmare vision, he sees nothing, only well Blind with the beggar's mind, he's but a stranger He's but a stranger to himself [Verse 2] Suspended from a rope inside a bucket down a hole His hands are torn and bloodied from the scratching at his soul I really dig it. Track 5, the titular "John Barleycorn (Must Die)" features a soothing acoustic guitar paired with Winwood's voice as he sings us the tale of 3 men who make an agreement that John Barleycorn must die. This is a cover song and it's quite fun. There is some great flute and tambourine work going on here. "Every Mother's Son" is the closing track on this album, and at 7 minutes and 5 seconds, it's the longest. More piano and organ work build this song up, with an electric guitar vibing with Winwood's vocals: "I'm a traveling soul and every mother's son Although I'm getting tired I've got to travel on Can you please help, my god? Can you please help, my god? Can you please help, my god? I think it's only fair" ...Did I write this? This album was a pleasant surprise. I really enjoy the little stories Traffic tells within their folklore, and the instrumentation is very easy-listening. Their lyrics are familiar and relatable, and Winwood's Ray Charles-inspired vocals are truly enjoyable. Nice work! Favorite track: Stranger to Himself Honorable mention: Every Mother's Son

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4

Nicely progresses from jazzy smooth jam session to rock/jazz fusion with organ looming to acoustic folk storytelling. Empty Pages, glad, every mother’s son.

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4

Good

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4

Pretty good bluesy rock album. Gets better towards the end.

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4

I liked this album quite a lot. I had heard of Traffic but I’m not sure I’d ever actually listened closely to any of their music. My favorite parts were the jazz improv parts of “Glad” and “Freedom Rider”, and honestly after “Glad” I was disappointed to hear Steve Winwood’s voice, which to me personally is the weakest part of the whole thing. If I could do half stars this would be 3.5 but since I can’t I’m rounding up to 4 in this case. Would listen to more jazz-rock in the future.

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4

Good rock and roll. I like this band.

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4

Short and sweet

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4

Nice length of album, some songs a bit repetitive but overall a fun listen

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4

some chill guitar vibes no?

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4

-first song started off really strong and original -became sort of regular 70's rock -still very good

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4

7/10

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4

4/5 Nice album, good sound

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4

My dad had been telling me to listen to this band for YEARS. Kinda like a rootsy prog rock band. Pretty cool!

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4

Pleasant country/folk jams. (7/10) Favorite Tracks : Freedom Rider

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4

Nice but not more

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4

This album has a whole lot of genre-bending, which is even more impressive when you consider that it only has 6 tracks. Each song stakes out a slightly different corner in the jazz-blues-prog rock-English folk tapestry that is Traffic. Good stuff. Best track: Every Mother's Son

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4

Funky!

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4

😎

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4

There are some albums that, like Electric Ladyland or Remain in Light, if someone tried to tell they were lame, I'd say \"Sorry, bro, you're just wrong. Get the wax out of your ears.\" John Barleycorn Must Die is not one of those. JBMD is a little hard for me to review dispassionately because it was one of my favorite albums when I was ten years old. I still like it, but I'm willing to admit to its shortcomings. Conceptually, I think it's fantastic. Gone is the psychedelia of the first two albums and in it's place is a sophisticated mixture of R&B, pop, rock, jazz, folk, and even a little avant guarde. You'd think that would be a mess, but the group manages to combine these genres seamlessly. That's largely due to excellent songwriting and canny arrangements. And that's where the group successfully hides its most glaring weakness--these musicians are not technically that great, which is a problem when you're trying to incorporate jazz or avant guarde, both of which require a high level of skill to be successful. They get around that with tightly written sections with minimal free playing, just enough to get the feeling of jazz and avant guarde. As an older listener, I can tell when they're faking it, and I'm both amused and tolerant. Others might be less generous about the vamping and weak solos. But to me, the most important thing is that they got the feel right. That's better than a great jazz player trying to play rock or R&B and getting the feel wrong, for example Joe Farrell and his album Upon This Rock.

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4

Weiß gar nicht, wie ich das hier einordnen soll. Big Band Soul Folk?! Aber unterschätze sie nicht, denn wenn der Gang mal rausgenommen, offenbart sich eine hypnotische, ja jazzig-fieberträumende Schönheit. In diesem Zusammenhang werde ich auch immer wieder ungläubig die totale Run Time checken, denn 34 Minuten dehnen sich, krümmen sich zu etwas längerem, aber zur Abwechslung mal im positiven Sinne. Als hätten die Songs und Instrumental Tracks eine Tiefe, die eine 5 Minuten Einheit locker bläht, ausstaffiert, ausfüllt. Schöne Entdeckung eines Kleinods, das vom Genre wohl gar nicht ganz meins ist. 3.7

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4

4.5

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4

Not a bad track on the album. Great musicianship vocals and lyrics.

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4

This was close to getting the 0 to 5 star treatment.

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4

Really enjoyable electric rock, spanning multiple styles from folk to blues with a hint of psychedelic in there. The weakest track is probably the title one, as I don't think they nail folk properly, but the rest more than makes up for it.

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4

You know how sometimes you forget about artists and albums. How much you enjoy them or it? Case in point Traffic and their wonderful album; John Barleycorn Must Die. Was anyone else quite sounding like Traffic in the 70s, with their jazzy vibe ? Sax sometimes taking the part of guitar like on album opener, Glad. And of course the title track is just gorgeous - what a beautiful melody. I love this album and I'm happy the 1001 albums led me back to give it alisten...(I actually listened twice). 4 stars

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4

not exactly a high point for winwood or traffic so it's another weird addition to this book. this album was winwood trying to figure out what to do after blind faith broke up so he went off to write a solo album that somehow turned into a traffic album minus their guitarist. most of the better tracks on the album just seem like the byproduct of a bunch of weed and acid and just having a great time jamming, and i'm here for that. then there's the weird dabbling with american folk rock that doesn't really click. weird album made weirdly but a real good jam

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4

Just started to get into it and then it ended.

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4

Could've been a 5 if it stuck to jazz

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4

Great rock album with different sounds. Felt like listening to a jam session

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4

Classic

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4

No idea what to expect going into this one, but I quite enjoyed it. Some cool old-school rock, sometimes nearing psychedelia. Plenty of unexpected instruments and styles, especially the title track. Really loved that old folksy dirge. One of the better left-field British rock albums that this list has put in front of us. RIP to John Barleycorn but I'm different. Favorite tracks: John Barleycorn Must Die, Freedom Rider, Empty Pages. Album art: Very simple drawing, but I don't really mind it. It adds to the folk aesthetic, though I wish that aesthetic were a bit more consistent in the music. 4/5

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4

this was a very fun album. Traffic is clearly very skilled muscailly. The tone of some of the songs on the album was very much like the Battle of Evermore by Led Zeppelin for me which I have a huge soft spot for.

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4

really liked this, had no idea what to expect, thought it was a jazz record at the start!

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4

Un disco de 34 minutos y seis canciones, que mezcla el rock con elementos del soul, e incluso del jazz, confeccionado por una banda británica. John Barleycorn Must Die empieza fuerte ("Glad" es mi favorita del disco), con un tremendo groove y con vocals distorsionados. Por esta canción pensé que el álbum iba a ser algo diferente a lo que en realidad es, pese a que igualmente es muy disfrutable. A pesar de las buenas canciones que contiene el disco, cuesta encontrar algo refrescante en las letras o en la música de Traffic, ya que en ocasiones puede sonar a un refrito de Marvin Gaye. Buenos órganos, buenos pianos, buenas flautitas, buenos jams, pero no mucha originalidad . Si pudiera dar una nota exacta sería 3.5, asi que le pondre un 4.

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4

This album has quite a lot going for it, but also has a couple of point in which it could be a lot better. It's pretty nice classic prog rock with jazz and folk elements. For that I'd like to give it a 3.5 but will round it up because I did quite enjoy it. But the vocals could definitely be a lot better and don't do the instrumentation justice. Also, the mixing is pretty weak. All of the instruments would benefit from a fuller sound, especially the guitars. If those two issues were resolved this could be a 5-star album.

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4

a nice mix of jazz and rock 4/5

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4

Sounds like dozing in the barn on a late Summer day. 3.5

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4

I have this album on vinyl... had no idea it was Steve Winwood!

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4

Приятные вкрапления фолка

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4

Love this

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4

A weird combination of genres, seems like it goes between pop, folk and prog rock numerous times throughout the album. Yet none of the switches in sound are jarring. I get a ELO and Jethro Tull vibe mostly. "Freedom Rider" and "John Barleycorn (Must Die)" my favourite songs on the album.

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4

This album is really underrated, I hadn't heard of it before! The performances are sooo smooth and infectious, they're amazing!

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4

This album would be a great listen on a summer day chillin’ in the yard with friends around grilling burgers and such.

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4

È un album strano, ineffabile. Però mi piace!

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4

really great stuff.

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4

Oh this is interesting stuff. Stevie Winwood does English folk with funk, blues, jazz, not blended all together but bit by bit. Freedom Fighter is a great track. I'm sure the album comes under 'let's pretend this influenced me' by modern pretentious musicians. Good listen though.

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4

A classy if brief album, bursting with classy jams from that slightly mystical time when British acts were inspired by folk music of the past but pushing into prog rock of the future. Maybe the pure folk stylings aren’t quite as enjoyable as the energy of the opening tracks Glad and Freedom Rider but an impressive record overall. Nod along.

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4

“Psychedelic rock” albums don’t usually do it for me but man, I thought this was a good album. The use of so many different instruments (I heard harpsichord and some brass!) along with cool harmonies, I genuinely enjoyed this.

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4

Pretty good - clearly enjoy a jam jazz rock folk album or two. One track added to the roster

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4

A jazz folk rock explosion that I found rather enjoyable

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4

gott stuff

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4

I like these guys. A couple of these songs were gems, a couple weren't. The rest was a good listen.

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3

Loved the acoustics, great singing, some songs dragged out too long imo

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3

It’s good but my music tastes have moved on.

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3

Chill rock music. Ik zou eerder 3.5 geven eigenlijk.

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3

Really not my thing at all, but the songs feel really well put together and would make great 70's heist / detective show music.

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3

Personally don't enjoy progressive rock or Steve Winwood.

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3

Fine. Not bad for a jam band.

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3

I can see why people like this album, but it feels really dated to me. 3/5

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3

Not bad, but also not mindblowing. Liked Freedom Rider.

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3

This was good. It was good, I liked it but I just didn't like it enough.

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3

Fave Song: Stranger to Himself

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3

like steely dan, but cornier and doesnt hit as hard

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3

Great opening track, then loses steam.

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3

Nice different album. Different then a lot of other 70's albums. I liked it.

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3

A strange mix of folk, rock, and jazz. Not bsf but not my thing.

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3

Quite enjoyable, but not that memorable

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3

started of really strong - first track best track - last half was not so great. progressively more folk = ew if this is “classic rock” idk if I like it ...

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3

Fairly enjoyable.

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3

No se que decir... solo que estuvo agradable, disfrutable.

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3

Está de 3.000001 Hay veces que decimos que la mayor virtud de un disco es ser corto, de este no es la mayor porque sí está bueno pero estar corto le ayuda.

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3

Was just fine

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3

I've never heard of it, it's inoffensive, didn't blow me away

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3

Empty pages and barleycorn are really good. Though the psychedelic jazz and flute shenanigans are a bit too thick at times.

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3

Awesome random horn/flute parts. Definitely a bit of a castle-folk vibe with the acoustic numbers, but super rocking and jammy in the best moments

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3

The first two jams are great. Rest of the album is alright. 6/10

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3

I feel this album started off really good. Freedom Rider was particularly bluesy and jazzy, and I was getting into it and funking out. But then it finished rather week and the final two songs left little impression one.

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3

Buena propuesta. Diferenton

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3

Not bad!

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3

Pretty good

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3

the intros were so long that I thought this was going to be an instrumental album at first...and actually found myself disappointed it wasn't? Interesting musical flourishes (i loved the flute) and a wonderful interpretation of old british folk music aren't enough to make this album anything more than a nice three.

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3

Jazzy

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3

It’s fine

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3

not bad

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3

Not my favorite Traffic album. Flute forward. Poor man's Jethro Tull album.

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3

This was Cream lite, and I much prefer heavy Cream. Wasn't surprised to learn later that Steve Winwood joined up with Clapton to form Blind Faith. He definitely was already biting his style. Solid 60's style jam rock but nothing outstanding.

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3

3/5

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3

"His hands are torn and bloodied from the scratching at his soul" (Stranger to himself) Me lo termino de escuchar porque es un disco cortito, pero la verdad es que no estoy conectando nada con él!

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3

Good

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3

very 70s sound (duh)- not bad

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3

Very close to being a very good album for me but misses the mark. Needs a bit more something somewhere in the music. Also only 34 minutes? It needs more to get more stars

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3

and I thought all these tunes were Steve Winwood solo. Good 70s rock.

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3

Hark! Is that an Angel? No. It's this terrific little album from 1970. John Barleycorn must die, but what a way to go out! Rest in peace, Corndog. X

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3

This must've been around the time when all the British classic rockers decided to move to the countryside, grow beards, and wear double denim. Listen to folk, listen to jazz, steal George Harrison's wife, etc. It's a pretty unimpeachable album front to back. First song sets the scene and glides seamlessly into the second. Each track gets to jam and breathe. It's got all the right ingredients on paper - I can't put my finger on why I didn't feel it. Winwood is all over the keys, all the time, so perhaps I'm missing the guitar? Percussion is strong. Best guess it's probably the sax and flute - pretty tame, especially the sax. I'd imagine this helped open the door to jazz rock, but the jazz doesn't rock on this one (cc: Chicago). B-

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3

Prog-folk? Best Tracks: Empty Pages, Stranger To Himself, Every Mother's Son

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3

Good stuff

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3

Eh

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3

Reminds me of Jethro Tull but less musically creative. Pleasant easy listening

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3

I enjoyed it, John Barleycorn was my favourite

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3

I didn't realize Traffic was a jam band until now... in retrospect of course a band named Traffic jams. All in all pretty groovy.

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3

Hmmm kind of mediocre

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3

started strong then lost steam in the middle. last song pretty decent. this album was very meh but not like unenjoyable

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3

When the first track hit I wasn’t too sure about this album. It wasn’t bad, but I also wasn’t really enjoying it. The second was a lot better and the album overall wasn’t horrible, but it just wasn’t for me. I will say though, it’s a good thing this album was short. Right now I give it an average 3/5, but that would surely go down had it been any longer.

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3

14th June 2021 Listened outside in the baking sunshine whilst dozing having taken the Monday off work. Easily listening, nice background music and enjoyed the jazzy vibes to a rock/blues man. 3.5 if I could.

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3

Good tunes

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3

When I saw the title I got excited as it put me in mind of the brilliantly catchy fairport convention track. Sadly it’s not nearly as fun as that but I enjoyed this well enough. Won’t go back to it. Only 35 mins though so that’s a real bonus.

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3

increible album de los años 70s aunque un poco largo pero es toda una experiencia, mis canciones favoritas fueron; Glad, Freedom Rider

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3

Forgot

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3

I really enjoyed this album, but I think the producer/engineer was on something pretty strong when mixing. It was all over the show. The music was punchy and cool and there was a lot of talent there, but I don't think I'd go back and listen again.

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3

Jazzy rock with some nice riffs, solid album but with no stand out songs.

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3

3.5 really. Was over quickly but was a decent listen.

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3

Musically fairly impressive but not particularly memorable. Title track is a bit more interesting with the folk influences going on.

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3

I like Traffic, but this one is one that needs many more listens to appreciate.

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3

3.5

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3

Every Mother's Son is fantastic, but the folkier stuff doesn't do anything for me.

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3

this is not at all what i was expecting but i'm into it?? the flute solos are great in the beginning but they probably could have used some editing later on i do love folk tho vocalist is pretty strained

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3

Fairly pleasant to listen too, even if not overly memorable. John Barleycorn was the standout track for me

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3

Some of this music was really good. This didn’t grab me.

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3

I liked this album, it was so of it's time and i got a curtis mayfield vibe quite a few times. It is nice to listen to in the background, chilling, relaxing and hearing something soothing.

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3

Ok...total track...Steve winwood etc...short lp

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3

Much better than I expected but a bit flute indulgent at times. Didn’t realise Steve Winwood was such a good bass player.

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3

A mild surprise.

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3

Nice jazz stuff, but without singer that would be much better. I'm glad that I listened to "Glad". Too repetetive to rate higher than 3/5 (3.49 in my mind :D).

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3

Very meh. Not bad enough to trash, but not good enough to listen to again.

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3

6/10 Esquecivel, legalzinho

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3

🧔‍♀️🧔🧔‍♀️🧔🏻‍♀️🧔🏻🧔🏻‍♂️🧔🏻‍♀️🧔🏼‍♀️🧔🏼🧔🏼‍♂️

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3

This was an enjoyable but not a jaw-dropping listen- it felt like a band caught between Steve Winwood's blue-eyed soul origins and the developing characteristics of progressive rock at the turn of the 1970s (emphasis on jamming, jazz and folk influences creeping in). At times some songs feel like they are pulling for a tighter focus, in the vein of the chart-topping soulful rock Winwood enjoyed with the Spencer Davis Group and would go onto as a solo artist. The verses of the single "Empty Pages" or the brilliant chorus of "Every Mother's Son" are good examples of this, both held together by Winwood's excellent vocals. But overall this album is much more loose, padded out by jams which often work and often don't serve the songs in the best way. "Glad" is the best showcase of the band's instrumental talents, with a great keyboard riff- for me they didn't top this instrumentally across the rest of the album. In general this sounds like it was born out of live performance and improvisation, but the virtuoso talents fall slightly short of other emerging prog outfits like Yes and ELP, and the lyrics lack the tongue-in-cheek quality of the likes of Jethro Tull. Fun to hear but nothing life-changing on first listen.

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3

Not bad, definitely better than Steve Winwood's solo material.

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3

Just kind of washes over me.

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3

I liked this, especially the first couple songs, but as a whole I found it underwhelming. As an aside, Steve Winwood sounds eerily like Nina Simone at times.

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3

Not my fave Stevie Winwood

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3

Steve Winwood. Great voice. Will give this another go sometime.

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3

I didn't know this band, it's good.

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3

Very good. Steve Winwood delivers here… 3.5/5

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3

My estimation of this varied wildly as the admittedly short album progressed. Track 1 I was all in. Purely bitchin' musical jam. 4 stars, easy. Once the vocals kicked in, I was annoyed. The vocals were weak and didn't fit the music. I dropped down to 2 stars quickly. But by the time we get to the final two tracks, Traffic had really heated up. The title track, John Barleycorn, is SO. GOOD. Like Jethro Tull at their peak. I was all in again, ready to give 4 stars. So, my 3 star rating is more of an aggregate of all the tracks than my feelings overall. Tracks 1, 5, 6 are four-star-tracks, and 2,3,4 are two-star-tracks.

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3

Los teclados, vientos, percusión, este disco no puede ser más setentero!

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3

Cream-like jazz blues slides into country through folk. Interesting and engaging in places.

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3

Passing familiarity. Didn't know it was Dave Mason or Steve Winwood. Glad: This is a song any pre-millennial will know. Freedom Rider--some wickedly weird chords, challenging to analyze for me. (over my head at this point). Enjoyable and relatable to me. Like it.

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3

Great musicianship, I didn’t connect with the narrative of the album. This is a great record to listen to in the background.

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3

Buen disco, interesante

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3

Fairly average.

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3

Listened through twice… didn’t do heaps for me. Would improve their craft if a better singer involved

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3

Mooi album die echt wel wat Beatles vibes heeft

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3

Only listened to a few but was alright

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3

Trevligt att lyssna på! Önskar att det fanns en starkare bas dock, känns som att albumet inte är helt förankrat.

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3

Nice rock songs with jazzy and folky elements

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3

Dog han? Ja uppfatta int!

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3

Enjoyed it quite a bit. Kinda jazzy/folksy rock ballads all the way through. 6/10

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3

Eenvoudige folk-rock, niet zo speciaal 3*

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3

it's... fine?

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3

6/10

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3

This was a good album. I don’t have much to say about it but I liked the blues/folk sound of it. Fav song: every mothers son

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3

liked this, especially the title track, very olde worlde English folk

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3

Great jazz-fusion record. Feels very akin to Steely Dan.

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3

Actually enjoyed this album as a casual listen

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3

Meh. Not bad, not amazing. Pretty average album IMO.

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3

Juste un autre album classic rock qui est ok sans plus.

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3

J'ai ecouté cet album hier pour me rendre à un repas organisé par la famille Dimery, destiné à me féliciter pour mon année 2021 "exceptionnelle" selon les dires de Robert. Robert m'a remis à cette occasion une statuette de Morissey, supposer représenter le trophée de meilleur auditeur du générateur.

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3

Quelle curieuse situation que celle que j'aui vécu en compagnie de cet album. En effet, alors que je roulais dans ma twingo et que j'insérai le disque de Traffic dans mon auto-radio, je fus pris dans un énorme embouteillage duquel je ne sorti qu'à la fin de la dernière piste. J'ai discuté de ce phénomène avec Robert qui m'a rassuré en me disant que je n'étais pas la première personne à qui cela arrivait.

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3

outro on the final track is super sick but the only notable section of the album for me

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3

this is an album from 1970

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3

Early-70's folk/progressive rock album. Not bad, but didn't speak to me at all. Why this is on the list is beyond me. Still, 3/5.

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3

Meh, ok but almost a pastiche on places

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3

Middle of the road for me.

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3

I wasn’t sure about this album but then they bought in the flute out Freedom Rider and then it’s like ‘blow on, brother’

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3

Not bad

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3

Reminded me of Aqualung and that's a good thing.

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3

Quite good in parts

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3

Местами интересный и необычный рок-альбом, смешанный с целой массой других жанров.

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3

3.2 - funky and soulful with impressive vocals, but nothing that will keep bringing me back for another listen.

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3

Started out great for me with Glad and I enjoy most of the tracks. I just kind of hate the actual track of "John Barleycorn Must Die".

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3

Yeah pretty good.

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3

Tym razem cos nowego, ale jednak juz jakby slyszanego, bo Traffic to grupa pana Winwooda, ktory juz mial swojego picka na liscie w postaci arc of a diver, tym razem jednak jest wspierany przez dwohc dodatkowych muzykow przez co plyta brzmi bardziej zywo, a mniej kompozycyjnie, John Barleycorn Must Die jest czwartym krazkiem w dyskografii grupy z 1970 i tak jak na zaslyszanym wczesniej diverze stara sie laczyc w sobie elementy folkowego rocka z progesywnoscia jazzowa, Winwood stoi zarowno za kompozycjami, koloboracyjnie z drumerem Capaldim, lirykami, wokalem, jak i wiekszoscia granych instrumentali na plycie, stranger to himself jest grany w calosci przez niego, wiec nie sposob jest nie miec wrazenia deja vu, dodatkowo dochodzi kwestia liryczna, ktora jest zdecydowanie mocno wyspiarska, wiec ciezko wylapac jakies pochowane folklorowe referencje, ale opowiesc o tytulowym Johnie Barleycornie, do ktorego nawiazuje snop z okladki, bedaca metafora produkcji piwa i whisky przepelniona nawiazaniami biblijnymi do umierania i odradzania sie byla zaiste ciekawa, calosc to zgrabnie zamkniete 35 minut na 6 trakach, ktore featuruja bogate zaplecze instrumentalne jak na trzy osobowa ekipe i potwierdzaja, ze pan Winwood to gruba ryba wyspiarskiego progresywnego rokowania, na plejke dodam tytulowy traczek, ale rownie hajlajtowy jest otwierajacy glad, bedacy jedynym w calosci instrumentalnym utworem na ktorym najlepiej slychac to bogatwcto brzmienia o ktorym wspominalem, na siedmiu minutach pojawia sie dziewiec instrumentow i cala trojka ma udzial na tym krazku, co zdecydowanie poprawia jego brzmienie, nadajac mu jamowatosci, ktorego przeciwienstwem bedzie zamykajacy every mother son, gdzie calosc poza drumami jest grana przez jedna osobe, wiec lepiej sie tego sluchalo niz ostatniego arcowania

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3

The album went smoothly, with good sounds. Nothing really stuck with me after one pass other than the title track. I need to give it another listening.

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3

My Dad was a fan of all things prog, and Traffic were one of his favourites. I have a copy of this on vinyl that belonged to my Dad. I can't say I love it as much as my Dad did, but this is pretty good.

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3

I definitely feel a jazz influence on this album. I think the second track, Freedom Rider, especially makes me think of the Thelonious Monk album, Brilliant Corners. The album overall is very nice. I enjoyed it. Standouts: Freedom Rider, Empty Pages, John Barleycorn, 3.5/5

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3

Fine.

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3

Pretty enjoys album. Didn’t know Steve Windwood was in a band prior to his solo stuff. Enjoyed this album as much as any other Steve Windwood stuff. This was very instrumental heavy which at times was cool and others it dragged. Overall it’s decent. 6.3/10

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3

I have never listened to a full album from Traffic. "Glad" was the only track I recognized from the album. I enjoyed listening to the album, but I did not pick out any tracks to come back to for a second listen. The title track seemed to reach toward some sort of folk-tune, while reminding me of a less frenetic version of Jethro Tull.

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3

I found it to be delightful but no awfully exciting indeed~~~

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3

Empty pages is a great song. Rest of the album was fine.

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3

It was enjoyable. I liked the instrumental combinations used.

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3

A good listen! An interesting jazz-y sound

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3

Didn't listen to all but seemed goood

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3

I knew of Steve Winwood (and various bands), but hadn't heard of Traffic. Some parts felt too long, like a carried away jam session, but it's a short album so not too overbearing. The folklore of John Barleycorn was interesting to read up on. #TIL (Funnily enough, it was referenced in last week's Inside No. 9 episode "Mr. King") I enjoyed it. "Glad" could be a cinematic track, I'd half expect to see it popping up in a future Edgar Wright movie.

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3

Decent album but was missing a big hit or stand out song to elevate it to 4 stars

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3

Great musicianship, but the album is mostly improvised jams and the lack of songs makes it a forgettable album.

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3

Modern (well 70s!) English folk rock from *a* Steve Winwood band

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3

Nice jazz flute, there were some great moments, but the album feels a bit incomplete.

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3

Thoroughly enjoyed this

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3

Steve Winwood has one of the great soul voices. They should have stuck with soul.

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2

70's jazzy flute, sax.

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2

Nothing memorable or special.

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2

Meh, not my cup o' nuts. Started off promisingly, but lost my interest quickly.

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2

meh.. ok sound I guess

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2

ok folk album. not sure why this is on the list.

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2

2nd track was quite fun. Found the rest quite boring though, folk is really not my cup of tea

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2

Enjoyable enough at times, John Barleycorn was the best track! But nothing super sticking with me.

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2

false

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2

Whatever. It’s music. Not mine.

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2

Do not remember much :/

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2

A easy listening mix of jazz rock and prog rock. Bass, vox and drums are the strongest, especially on 'Freedom Rider'. Other tracks and instruments aren't great and sound dated. 4/10, not much happening here

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2

Good classic rock, but I'll probably not listen to this more than once a year.

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2

yea as far as jam band records go this was better than most. "Sittin´ here thinkin´ of my love is a giant pile of dogshit track. i might dock this album a star just for this bonus track. yea the end of this album went from okay to just languid. there is too much actual skill in here to say it is 1 star but hot damn

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2

meh

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2

Not amazing, freedom rider was my favourite. This just makes me realise that sometimes experimental folk music from the 70’s doesn’t stand the test of time.

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2

Four white boys from Birmingham not playing heavy metal, who'da thunk it. I listened to this several hours ago and can't actually remember anything about it. It was definitely no Sabbath though.

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2

Ehh

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2

old white guy music

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2

Hard to define the genre, kinda jazz inspired rock, almost sounded a bit samba to begin with. No issues with it, enjoyed it to start with, not that bothered about it as a whole album though. 2/5

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2

C'est pas nul mais clairement c'est pas mon type de musique, jamais je réécouterai ça, c'est un yaourt nature. 6/10. Les bonus track me font même dire 5/10, ça fait penser à l'album de CTA : ça va nulle part, c'est des boucles infinies de guitares,syntés. Seule la batterie me plait.

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2

English Folk Rock album that was surprisingly more popular in America than England. The smooth, relaxing music and vocals can easily accompany most situations - whether they be work or play.

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2

The title track is wonderful, one of my favourite tunes for many years. The rest of the album is unremarkable and surprisingly different to the title track. Stevie Winwood is one of the great unsung heroes of rock music, but this is disappointing.

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2

Decent music. Alot of covers but good overall

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2

Not bad, but didn't really care for it at all.

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2

generic prog rock

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2

it was ok

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2

Rockigt, jazzigt och funkigt på samma gång. Inledningslåten, Glad, är lite Frank Zappa - Peaches in Regalia, jazzig. Steve Winwood mycket bra sångare! John Barleycorn (Must Die), en tolkning av en traditionell folksång, bryter av mot den annars jazziga och funkiga stilen, ett välkommet avbrott, med fin gitarr och flöjt. Annars är det bra, utan att för den sakens skull någonsin bli utmanande eller allt för underhållande. 2.5/5! Bästa låt: John Barleycorn (Must Die)

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2

Nice, positive, upbeat album. Nothing outstanding but would make for a good album on a day at the beach or a backyard BBQ. Favorite Tracks: "John Barleycorn"

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2

jazz meio blues pop? o cara canta bem freedom rider tem uma flauta dissonante interessante john barleycorn é a melhor

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2

This was a struggle. Great musicianship, that’s clear. It’s just not my genre.

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2

Langweilig

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2

Nothing special, a pretty boring album

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2

Interesting... I am not familiar with Traffic's oeuvre, and have been recently considering spending some time with their back catalog, based on the occasional track that pops up in my listening (eg, covers by Tigers at the Edge of Time). OK, I have listened to some of their previous records, and then this one all the way through... and I'm not thrilled. It meanders, more folk-jazz and less rockin' r'n'b than previous records. Unfocused, not well structured, a bit too laid back for my taste. The guitar leads are (at times,) pretty awful. Interestingly, the live tracks on disc 2 of the deluxe version are far superior. A bit rougher, better playing, and more focused even when stretching out.

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2

This started okay but quickly devolved into an album I never need to hear again.

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2

“Feckless improvised rock, or is it folksong-based jazz?’”

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2

Not my thing really

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2

Better! But still not there yet. Enjoyed the instrumentals and was cool to find out Steve Winwood is a part of this but I don't think I'll come back to this one.

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2

lite smågött

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2

No idea what this is going to be but I'm not feeling positive vibes. Ah that's why! It's more psychedelic folk rock type stuff. Mercifully it's only half an hour long. 2/5.

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2

good band, but just another one of the bunch.

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2

Beige, inoffensive 60/70s rock. An easy listen, but didn't really inspire

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2

The strongest cut is the title track; The rest is certainly British folk. Far from Fairport in my mind.

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2

Worth a listen, but wouldn't say it blew me a way. Very 70s, very English, very jam bandy.

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2

It's interesting but I'm not sure I would revisit this. Would work great as a soundtrack to an RPG though

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2

Never heard of them, but not too bad

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2

No tengo mucho que decir la verdad. No me molesta en absoluto pero no llamó mi atención. Dos temas (Empty Pages (bastante buen tema) / Stranger To Myself) me agradaron, el resto ni fu ni fa. No hubo fu, pero por otro lado, tampoco fa. Musicalmente es agradable, los puntos más jazz-rock (?) están bien, buenos órganos especialmente en esos dos temas que mencioné anteriormente. No hay nada que hatear, pero sin llegar a ser interesante, y prefiero escuchar las versiones de este sonido que si que me interesan. Mediocre. DEP John Barleycone no se merecía un destino tan cruel y además murió debiéndome 55 pavos la sucia rata.

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2

Pretty standard fare which is quite dated nowadays

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2

* fine.. unmemorable

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2

Прикольно, я даже на John Barleycorn подумала «вау», но потом передумала и лепю 2 звязды

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2

Musically ok, vocals were terrible.

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2

Folkprog, not particularly interesting, but a good example of where this scene was in 1970

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2

This didn't really do anything for me.

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2

I wish he had

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2

Left me as cold as poor dead John Barleycorn.

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2

The panpipe player must die.

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2

Ekkert spes. Steve Winwood eina góða við plötuna.

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2

This all pretty much faded into the background and just sat there doing its thing without me. I kept trying to pay attention but ended up drifting away and ignoring it every time. It's entirely inoffensive, like a pleasant wallpaper.

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2

Prog folk not my scene.

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2

Odd and old

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2

Dull jazz-rock. Seriously, why choose this insipid Traffic album to listen to before I die? The first album (Mr Fantasy) may have all the trappings of the psychedelic era, but is so much more varied, interesting and fun to listen to. That album (along with singles like Paper Sun and Hole In My Shoe) is recommended listening! This one is just meandering and a bit tedious. Two stars because there were a few moments of inspired instrumental interplay. Otherwise, it's a bit crap really.

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2

Dislike

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1

Utter bobbins.

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1

Wow. This made me want to have lamb chops for breakfast. I can't remember a thing about it.

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1

I’m gonna say 1 because this made me want to give dusty Springfield a better score. Great jamming, great vibes. Proto Prague/Jazz fusion but it leaves a lot to be desired. Traffic and Steve Winwood seem like a half thought, like they never think hard about their albums, just jam and throw on some lyrics. First two tracks are pretty good, great vibe, good walking songs, good musicianship, but ultimately repetitive. Tracks 3 and 4 seem stunted, weird tempo, bad vocals didn’t work for me. Track 5 goes somewhere interesting sounds almost medieval, tells a story, good flute. Track 6 is strong, cool organ sound—same as my favorite traffic song—really shines on the breakdown. Some moments where it shines, but as a complete album it kind of flops. Sorry Dusty Springfield.

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1

cool idea boring af execution

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1

Hated this one. Not a big fan of blues(?) not a fan

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1

Not really my style.

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1

Could not keep up with the lyrics😆“Just want you to Know” that song was silly! Great guitar and music but goofy lyrics. Same with John Barlycorn Must Die…. Great cord weird words🥸

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1

Didn’t like this one

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1

Just bad.

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1

eh

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1

...

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1

A load of crop

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1

What terribly terribly waffly wank

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