Pentangle Albums Ranked

Pentangle (or The Pentangle ) is a British folk-jazz band with an eclectic mix of folk, jazz, blues, and folk-rock influences. The original band was active in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and a later version has been active since the early 1980s. The original line-up, which was unchanged throughout the band’s first incarnation (1967–1973), was: Jacqui McShee (vocals); John Renbourn (vocals and guitar); Bert Jansch (vocals and guitar); Danny Thompson (double bass); and Terry Cox (drums). The name Pentangle was chosen to represent the five members of the band and is also the device on Sir Gawain’s shield in the Middle English poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight which held a fascination for Renbourn. In 2007, the original members of the band were reunited to receive a Lifetime Achievement award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and to record a short concert that was broadcast on BBC radio. The following June, all five original members embarked on a twelve-date UK tour. Here are all of Pentangle albums ranked.

Enjoy listening to this British rock band. Click below and enjoy the folk-rock fusion music of the Pentangle.

10. Open The Door (1984)

“The standard of the songs is strong and Jacqui McShee’s vocals sound wonderfully rich and accomplished throughout the course of the album. I find her skilful vocal phrasing on ‘Sad Lady’ to be extremely impressive ! Some of my other favourite songs here include the beautiful ‘ Child of the Winter’ , the sole instrumental ‘The Dolphin’ , ‘Lost Love’ and the gentle ‘Taste of Love'( sang by Bert Jansch) , whilst the Jansch penned ‘ Lost Love’ is also a stand-out track for me.”

9. Pentangling; The Collection (2004)

“Hauntingly beautiful, technical genius. You don’t even need to be a folky to admire it. Bert Jansch and John Renbourn were already icons when they joined to form Pentangle, revered in English and American folk circles. The addition of Jacqui McShee gave them one of the sweetest and purest voices you will ever hear in your life. The bass and drum underpinning added a hip, jazz sensibility that made for a group nobody could quite define.”

8. The Lost Broadcasts 1968-1972 (2004)

“The recording quality of this is a little patchy, the playing of course is exemplary. I would say that if you are not a completest you may not want to run to the asking price. As there is a good live set on Sweet Child, that may be sufficient. Myself I’m afraid curiosity always gets the better of me, so I had to have it. I don’t play it every week, but it is there when I want it, and it is PENTANGLE after all.”

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7. Light Flight: The Anthology (2000)

“Regardless of the importance of Pentangle as a group, this fine compilation gives its listeners a taste of jazz-folk-blues-pop fusions in tasteful acoustic arrangements and committed performances. Jacqui McShee’s crystal clear vocals blend well with her male counterparts John Renbourn and Bert Jansch; along with the virtuoso guitar-playing of Renbourn and Jansch, Danny Thompson’s bass, and Terry Cox’s drumming. It’s easy on the ears and very, very British–very groovy combo playing!”

6. Reflection (1971)

“This blues influence is seen especially in the harmonicas that enhance the albums’ two most outstanding songs. The stately “Will The Circle Be Unbroken”, originally a hymn, is the finest song on the record and, if not excessively “spiritual” does have a mysterious beauty to it. The closing title track, though eleven minutes in length, thanks to danny Thompson’s double bass manages to make a remarkable number of variations on the same theme without being repetitive.”

5. Solomon’s Seal (1972)

“This is a nice collection of British folk music that showcases the flute-like voice of their female singer. All singers did a fantastic job of drawing interest in the 1960–1970 time period to sometimes ancient folk songs. I think that the Queen of England honored Pentangle for their efforts.”

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4. The Pentangle (1968)

“Folk, blues, jazz & rock fusion from the late sixties at its best. Beautifully orchestrated and performed. A true reflection of quality music in that genre from that era. These comments from a 60’s generation musician/composer.”

3. Cruel Sister (1970)

“Adding electric guitar for the first time to the already ethereal atmospheres of  Basket Of Light , though many fans did not appreciate it, makes Pentangle’s sound much deeper. This was clear from the way in which the voices and instruments interweave on the epic “Jack Orion”, which actually never gets boring owing to the fact that the sections do not repeat: they vary with guitars, voices, recorders many times. The title tune was almost as dreamy as Laura Nyro’s “Brown Earth”, even if built from a quite different story.”

2. Sweet Child (1968)

“Classic folk album from Pentangle. Half live, half studio, it’s an excellent document of one of the genres top groups. After, Basket of light, it’s Pentangle’s most essential album.”

1. Basket Of Light (1969)

“A wonderful album but perhaps a little dated now. Pentangle was very much a band of their time. I remember seeing them perform most of the songs from it live at Brighton Dome. I visited Bert Jansch’s grave at Highgate Cemetery recently.”