Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme [Bonus Tracks]

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme [Bonus Tracks]

4.6 5
by Simon & Garfunkel

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A far more considered album than the rushed Sounds Of Silence, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme features "Homeward Bound" and Simon & Garfunkel 's fourth hit single, "The Dangling Conversation" (their first not to be a big hit), plus a slew of memorable album tracks: "Scarborough Fair/Canticle," which became a single in the wake of its appearance in the film The


A far more considered album than the rushed Sounds Of Silence, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme features "Homeward Bound" and Simon & Garfunkel 's fourth hit single, "The Dangling Conversation" (their first not to be a big hit), plus a slew of memorable album tracks: "Scarborough Fair/Canticle," which became a single in the wake of its appearance in the film The Graduate; "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)," which became a hit for Harpers Bizarre; and "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her," a showcase for Garfunkel's heavenly voice, among other songs. [The 2001 CD reissue on Columbia/Legacy adds previously unreleased demos of "Patterns" and "A Poem on the Underground Wall" as bonus tracks.]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bruce Eder
Simon & Garfunkel's first masterpiece, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme was also the first album on which the duo, in tandem with engineer Roy Halee, exerted total control from beginning to end, right down to the mixing, and it is an achievement akin to the Beatles' Revolver or the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds album, and just as personal and pointed as either of those records at their respective bests. After the frantic rush to put together an LP in just three weeks that characterized the Sounds of Silence album early in 1966, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme came together over a longer gestation period of about three months, an uncommonly extended period of recording in those days, but it gave the duo a chance to develop and shape the songs the way they wanted them. The album opens with one of the last vestiges of Paul Simon's stay in England, "Scarborough Fair/Canticle" -- the latter was the duo's adaptation of a centuries-old English folk song in an arrangement that Simon had learned from Martin Carthy. The two transformed the song into a daunting achievement in the studio, however, incorporating myriad vocal overdubs and utilizing a harpsichord, among other instruments, to embellish it, and also wove into its structure Simon's "The Side of a Hill," a gentle antiwar song that he had previously recorded on The Paul Simon Songbook in England. The sonic results were startling on their face, a record that was every bit as challenging in its way as "Good Vibrations," but the subliminal effect was even more profound, mixing a hauntingly beautiful antique melody, and a song about love in a peaceful, domestic setting, with a message about war and death; Simon & Garfunkel were never as political as, say, Peter, Paul & Mary or Joan Baez, but on this record they did bring the Vietnam war home. The rest of the album was less imposing but just as beguiling -- audiences could revel in the play of Simon's mind (and Simon & Garfunkel's arranging skills) and his sense of wonder (and frustration) on "Patterns," and appreciate the sneering rock & roll-based social commentary "The Big Bright Green Pleasure Machine." Two of the most beautiful songs ever written about the simple joys of living, the languid "Cloudy" and bouncy "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)," were no less seductive, and the album also included "Homeward Bound," their Top Five hit follow-up to "The Sound of Silence," which had actually been recorded at the sessions for that LP. No Simon & Garfunkel song elicits more difference of opinion than "The Dangling Conversation," making its LP debut here -- one camp regards it as hopelessly pretentious and precious in its literary name-dropping and rich string orchestra accompaniment, while another holds it as a finely articulate account of a couple grown distant and disconnected through their intellectual pretentions; emotionally, it is definitely the precursor to the more highly regarded "Overs" off the next album, and it resonated well on college campuses at the time, evoking images of graduate school couples drifting apart, but for all the beauty of the singing and the arrangement, it also seemed far removed from the experience of teenagers or any listeners not living a life surrounded by literature ("couplets out of rhyme" indeed!), and understandably only made the Top 30 on AM radio. "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her" was a romantic idyll that presented Art Garfunkel at his most vulnerable sounding, anticipating such solo releases of his as "All I Know," while "Flowers Never Bend With the Rainfall" was Simon at his most reflectively philosophical, dealing with age and its changes much as "Patterns" dealt with the struggle to change, with a dissonant note (literally) at the end that anticipated the style of the duo's next album. "A Simple Desultory Philippic," which also started life in England more than a year earlier, was the team's Dylanesque fuzz tone-laden jape at folk-rock, and a statement of who they weren't, and remains, alongside Peter, Paul & Mary's "I Dig Rock & Roll Music," one of the best satires of its kind. And the last of Simon's English-period songs, "A Poem on the Underground Wall," seemed to sum up the tightrope walk that the duo did at almost every turn on this record at this point in their career -- built around a beautiful melody and gorgeous hooks, it was, nonetheless, a study in personal privation and desperation, the "sound of silence" heard from the inside out, a voice crying out. Brilliantly arranged in a sound that was as much rock as film music, but with the requisite acoustic guitars, and displaying a dazzling command and range of language, it could have ended the album. Instead, the duo offered "7 O'Clock News/Silent Night," a conceptual work that was a grim and ironic (and prophetic) comment on the state of the United States in 1966. In retrospect, it dated the album somewhat, but that final track, among the darkest album-closers of the 1960s, also proved that Simon & Garfunkel weren't afraid to get downbeat as well as serious for a purpose. Overall, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme was the duo's album about youthful exuberance and alienation, and it proved perennially popular among older, more thoughtful high-school students and legions of college audiences across generations. [The August 2001 reissue offers not only the best sound ever heard on this album in any incarnation, but also a few bonuses -- a slightly extended mastering of "Cloudy" that gives the listener a high-harmony surprise in its fade; and, as actual bonus tracks, Simon's solo demos of "Patterns" and "A Poem on the Underground Wall." Raw and personal, they're startling in their intimacy and their directness, and offer a more intimate view of Paul Simon, the artist, than ever seen.]

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Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Social change, The sexual revolition, Vietnam, Civil Rights. Just a few of the hundred or so things that went on in the Sixties. Every event in the minds of those who lived it is somehow reflected in the music of Simon and Garfunkel. A theme song of our lives, so to speak. ''Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme'' Stands out as another one of the shining jewels of S&G. If you ever liked anything from this duo, you will indeed like this album also. Some of the tracks on this album are from other compilations, but fit well, nontheless. The LP is in my time worn library. This CD is about to be also. The only nostalgic lacking of the CD will be the predictible clicks and pops of an LP. Better get this one!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The music of Simon and Garfunkel is not only timeless; it is a time capsule in itself. I was transported back to early 1968 stationed in California doing my part for the war, a young recruit barely twentysomething and finding solace and understanding of life thru the poetry of this awesome duo. The title song of this album is just that, a canticle. A mystifying tapestry of music and words. It seems odd, but fitting, that this same tune found it's way into the film "The Graduate". To you newcomers, romantics, and poets, You have a treat in store, for every song in this exquisite album tells it's own story, although if you did not come of age in the sixties, you probably won't understand track # 9 ( A Simple Desultory Philippic) but non-the-less, the song was quite fitting to it's time. You probably don't want to know who Robert McNamara was anyway. I wish I could forget! The same goes for track # 12 (7 O'Clock News/Silent Night) That is an actual newscast you are hearing in the background. Beautiful-but graphic. For the rest of us who purchased- and played til we wore it out-The vinyl version of this album, this is a treat. A state of the art remastering of this wonderful album with two bonus performances to boot! The traditional Columbia "360 Sound" is still there, pure and ambient, just like you remember on the LP. Many times, LP remasters to CD are either too strident, or flat and lifeless. Not so this one; The Columbia/Legacy folks really did their homework here; the sound quality is impeccable. If you are, or used to be, a Simon and Garfunkel fan, you need to retire your old LP, and set this one in it's place on the shelf. I might also add here that the artwork and CD labeling is an almost exact re-creation of the original vinyl LP and jacket. You're going to need your bifocals to read it, though. In Sixties lingo: "This CD is a groove, man--a real trip!" You ought to buy it.
SteveSadman More than 1 year ago
I got this album for Christmas last year and boy did I enjoyed it. These two boys' vocal performance was really tender and soothing. I fell in love with their music ever since I watched the Graduate where some songs they had sang were in the soundtrack of this film. "Scarborough Fair" was one of the songs that appeared in the film that was also in the album. My favorites include "Patterns" "Feelin' Groovy" "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her" "A Poem on the Underground Tunnel" and "7 o'clock News/Silent Night" which is a dramatic finale with the two singing Silent Night, a beautiful Christmas carol with a reading of the Seven O'Clock News announcing subjects such as Vietnam, Lenny Bruce's death, and Nixon. I am proud that they were here to provide some wonderful music on various subjects that make people emotional on a variety of levels.
gramma6kids More than 1 year ago
I don't really have anything original to say about a 30 year old album. This is a replacement for a tape that died which replaced a 33&1/3 album that died, and if anything happens to the CD, i'll replace it again. I need Paul and Artie in the house.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago