Molly Drake is Nick Drake’s mother, and these are home recordings made in the 1950s, never intended for public consumption. Of course, we cannot escape the Nick context when listening, but Molly is a bewitching musician in her own right, and although the songs are her own, she imbues them with the feeling of familiar standards. Also, one of the crispest accents you’ve ever heard sing.
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- Molly Drake by Molly Drake
8/10 Clinton Staff review, 04 December 2014
Nick’s mum. There is a school of thought that would say that nobody but nobody would be interested in Molly Drake’s music if it wasn’t for the haunting music and life of the man she gave birth to. However, these old fashioned, intimate recordings have a life of their own and Molly Drake is starting to be seen belatedly as a talented composer in her own right.
I remember almost falling out of my chair when a Molly Drake song was played on the film ‘A Skin Too Few’; the similarity to the melancholy work of Nick was alarming. These songs are delicate, haunting compositions which owe debt to the songwriters of the era such as Noel Coward. Drake’s cut glass voice is as delicate as a small bird and it glides effortlessly over the distant piano twinkles. Songs like ‘Love Isn’t a Right’ are clever and touching and have the lyricism Jake Thackray later displayed on his more subtle, joke-free compositions.
The melodicism that was passed on to Nick is clearly evident on tracks like ‘How Wild the Wind Blows, scarily so at times and these compositions reflect a lot of Nick’s early work that was issued on the ‘Family Tree’ collection.
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