Various Artists – The Great White Dap EP

EP Review | Ghosts From the Basement | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5

Wrapped in a sleeve that parodies the 1970 Island sampler LP Bumpers, The Great White Dap is released in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Bristol-based independent label Village Thing.  The four-track sampler EP of the same name, released in the early 1970s as a showcase for the label’s first four albums, is updated here with six tracks this time, presented as the ‘great granddaughter’ of that initial release and which features some of the label’s most notable musicians, Wizz Jones, Ian A Anderson, Derroll Adams, Steve Tilston (with Dave Evans), Al Jones and The Sun Also Rises.  There’s some tasty acoustic sparring between Ian A Anderson and Ian Hunt on “Time is Ripe”, the song that contains ‘A Vulture Is Not A Bird You Can Trust’ lyric, which became the title of his 1971 LP, and again on “What Would You Be?” this time with Steve Tilston and Dave Evans, the song being an outtake from Steve’s debut An Acoustic Confusion sessions, never before released until now.  Other highlights include Wizz Jones’ optimistic “When I Leave Berlin”, featuring the Lazy Farmer band and Al Jones’ “Tell the Captain”, which references to the label’s home town.  Produced by Anderson, the EP is a reminder of the thriving Bristol folk scene in its heyday, yet sounds refreshingly good today.         

Choice Track: What Would You Be (NSV 509)