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Number 294

Ian Matthews - If You Saw Thro' My Eyes (Vertigo VEL1002)

Following his departure from Fairport Convention in 1969, which was in turn followed by some success with his debut solo album under the guise of Matthews' Southern Comfort, together with a hit single of Joni Mitchell's Woodstock, Ian Matthews made his first record as a solo artist under his own name, the first of two albums on the Vertigo record label. For this 1971 release, Matthews was joined by guitarists Richard Thompson and Tim Renwick and future Plainsong collaborator Andy Roberts. The album aimed to shake off Matthews' country stylings and focused on the emerging singer songwriter scene, reflected in the gatefold sleeve artwork, which showed a pensive song writer bathed in blue, not unlike Joni Mitchell's so named album of the same time, gazing out of a window. One of the notable aspects of this record was the title song, for which Matthews could still enlist the help of Sandy Denny, who would provide those unmistakable broad piano chords and that much missed voice.