Anne Briggs’ second album appeared in 1971, but in sharp contrast to her debut, where she’d sung traditional music with scarcely any accompaniment, this was virtually all contemporary material, most of it self-penned, with Briggs playing guitar and bouzouki.
Included was the title track, which had already been covered by former boyfriend Bert Jansch, and showed Briggs to be a writer of some power (although, to be fair, Jansch’s slower, more reflective version remains the better), and it’s also the standout among Briggs’ material, followed by “Wishing Well,” where Jansch gets the co-writing credit. “Ride Ride” is a pastiche railroad song (obviously British railways don’t have quite the same appeal), and the opening “Sandman’s Song” harks back to innocent childhood, albeit a rather strange one. The choice of covers is far from obvious, but very tasteful. Steve Ashley’s “Fire and Wine” could almost be a traditional piece, while the perkiness of Henry McCulloch’s “Step Right Up” works well with Briggs’ artless voice.