Simon Nicol

Before Your Time/Consonant Please Carol

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This two-CD set is comprised of two albums recorded by Simon Nicol. The first is 1987's Before Your Time and the other is Consonant Please Carol from 1992. Although both albums are competent, Before Your Time is far and away the winner of the two. It contains a number of songs showcasing both Nicol's songwriting skills and his vocal talents. He sounds a bit like a cross between Gordon Lightfoot and Ian Anderson. Several of the tracks on that release are songs which have since become mainstays of Nicol's band, Fairport Convention's live set. Taken by itself, that album goes well toward the excellent side of good. The second disc certainly brings the set down; it does not show the sense of style and quality of the first, nor is it nearly as consistent. Still, the collection is a good deal, even if you just really add the first album to your regular listening regimen.

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