This trio of Scunthorpe multi-instrumentalists John Gladwin, Edward Baird, and Terry Wincott had an epic command of various little heard instruments in rock music. Lute, theorbo, cittern, tabor, harmonium, and crumhorn to name a few, were joined by standard folk instrumentation in a tapestry of sound that recalled early Renaissance music. This was a group was appropriately highly learned, and not afraid to show it.
Their first proper releases Amazing Blondel, Evensong (1970) and Fantasia Lindum (1971) matched sonically the neo-bard look the band portrayed in cover and performance. They existed so eruditely out of the loop of other English folk-rock groups that they were deemed overly pretentious. They were so decidedly soft from the rock loop as well, even though tour mates like Free championed them, that they were written off as fey dandy weirdos. When your “hits” included madrigals and hymns (like in the video shown at the end, a track from 1973’s England) it was increasingly hard for the rest of the neo-folk boom to accept them as part of the fold.