Doomed to premature death and obsessive love after the fact, Trader Horne were one of those turn-of-the-70s acid-folk acts for whom the stars were all too briefly aligned. Named after John Peel’s nanny (nice touch) Trader Horne featured the songwriting talents of Jackie Macauley, Irish keyboard whizz with Them Mk 1 and, in Judy Dyble, a vocalist who would soon quit the band in a tempest of a tantrum, hence blowing out the 1970 festival staged to showcase the album. Cult item, then.
Just as it’s probably now politically incorrect to mention that Ms Dyble was/is the archetypal swoony hippychick, it doesn’t pay to get too hung up on the fact that she was earlier in Fairport Convention. Her performance here is cooler and stronger, framed by Macauley’s consistently fantastic harpsichord and organ figures, simple piano or guitar. Jackie sings, too, the pair duetting with organic, innocent perfection on Morning Way, Velvet To Atone and Jenny May. Through all the wonderment, Macauley still manages to rhyme “burgundy and beaujolais” with “Sheena throws her pants away”.