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Five Leaves Left [Original recording reissued, Import]

Nick DrakeAudio CD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)

Price: $6.66 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 10 Songs, 2003 $7.99  
Audio CD, Import, Original recording reissued, 2003 $6.66  
Vinyl, 2013 $26.34  
Blu-ray Audio, 2014 --  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Time Has Told Me 4:24$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. River Man 4:18$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Three Hours 6:12$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Way To Blue 3:08$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Day Is Done 2:25$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. ' Cello Song 4:44$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Thoughts Of Mary Jane 3:18$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Man In A Shed 3:51$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Fruit Tree 4:45$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. Saturday Sun 4:02$1.29  Buy MP3 

Amazon's Nick Drake Store


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Nick Drake - Tuck Box Animated Product Shot


Nick Drake's avid cult following continues to grow as does the list of contemporary artists who cite the legendary singer/songwriter as an inspiration--from R.E.M., Paul Weller, Travis, Portishead, The Coral and Coldplay to David Gray, Super Furry Animals and Beth Orton. Now a new "best of" compilation, A Treasury (Island/UMe), released September 28, 2004, brings Drake's ... Read more in Amazon's Nick Drake Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Five Leaves Left + Pink Moon + Bryter Layter
Price for all three: $24.83

Buy the selected items together
  • Pink Moon $8.19
  • Bryter Layter $9.98

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 6, 2003)
  • Original Release Date: 1969
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Import
  • Label: Island
  • ASIN: B000026FOA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,826 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
185 of 188 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A troubled cure for a troubled mind May 7, 2005
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
When my good friend Phil recommended this CD to me, he helpfully provided a product advisory. "I'm warning you," Phil emailed. "It's really melancholy stuff, so make sure you don't have any sharp objects lying around when you listen to it."

Like any good Irishman, I love mournful music, and I have a particular weakness for suicidal musicians, especially the ones that died too early to suck. So Phil's words of warning were like catnip to me. Move over Joy Division, Nirvana, and Elliott Smith; make room in the Case Logic for some Nick Drake.

I soon found that Phil was right--and wrong.

On one hand, "Five Leaves Left" feels like the saddest CD ever recorded. You can't fake these emotions; every poignant lyric, every aching guitar chord, and every weeping cello proclaim that this is the voice of a troubled and self-critical soul. Nick Drake died of an overdose at the age of 26; oddly enough, of his three albums, this first one sounds most like a suicide note.

Granted, there's some debate among his fans as to whether his death was indeed a suicide, whether the overdose was accidental or deliberate. On one hand, he OD'd on antidepressants, even though barbituates were available, and he didn't leave a note. On the other hand, he'd already written "Fruit Tree."

Has any musician penned a more convincing suicide note? I doubt it. "Safe in your place deep in the earth/That's when they'll know what you were truly worth." I'm sorry, Ian Curtis--"Closer" may come close, but nothing's more depressing than that. And unlike, say, Elliott Smith, whose pop sensibilities often contrasted his morbid lyrics, every note of this song amplifies its mournfulness.
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70 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Time has told me you're a rare, rare find.." September 4, 2002
Format:Audio CD
Whether you know it or not, you've heard Nick Drake before. Maybe it's from his other albums, maybe it's from that VW commercial, maybe it's just the sound of that quiet bleakness we all feel when sadness comes to the door and doesn't want to leave. This music lives with all of us. It exists in quiet lonely nights, chilly autumn evenings, and the muted grey of the world when it's been raining all day. During his too-short musical career, Nick used music to look at those little feelings we all have and give them an exquisitely beautiful voice.
Ok, fine, I'll start talking like a normal person now. I realize those comments seem a little silly. It's easy enough to describe how this music sounds, but it's not as easy to convey the emotional impact it might have. Everything about this 40-minute jewel is beautifully composed, elegantly performed and topped off with Nick's simple understated lyrics, which read as well as poetry. His voice and guitar (pretty tricky guitar work, too) are backed up by changing accompaniments: some electric guitar and bass at times, some flute, some quiet conga percussion at others, and most often a smooth string section providing just the right bittersweet background. It's quiet folk melancholy with an addicting quality that can't really be explained. Not everything here is quite as sad as "Way to Blue" or the eerily prophetic "Fruit Tree," either. "Saturday Sun" adds some relatively upbeat jazzy piano, although it remains low-key to the end. "Time Has Told Me" is uplifting in its timeless simplicity. "Man in a Shed" is a wistful boy-girl tune, but the theme is as un-cliched and downright humble as I've ever heard it.
Five Leaves Left was Nick's first album, and overall the most realized - he took over a year putting it together after all.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deceptively Simple June 11, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Before reading an article on Nick Drake in Entertainment Weekly I'd never heard of him or his music. The article praised his brilliant musical talent and I was intrigued enough by the album synopses to by a CD. When I first listened to 'Five Leaves Left' I wasn't swept away. But something about it made me immediately listen to it a second time. Upon listening to it again I disovered depths to it that I didn't catch the first time. And each subsequent listening has revealed more and more depth. 'Man in a Shed' is one of the most buoyant love songs I've ever heard. The lively guitar picking is remarkable. 'Saturday Sun' perfectly captures the mood of waking up slowly on Saturday morning.
Sure, there are other artists who have silken voices and beautiful guitar playing but Nick Drake has something more. Maybe it's the melancholy, maybe it's the brief moments of optimism, but something about his music pulls you in and makes it hard for you to want to leave. It's a shame that his music wasn't really appreciated in his time but sometimes it takes a distance of years for a genius to really receive his due.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who Is This Nick Drake? December 1, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Nick Drake, it seems, was a gentle soul with a genuine gift who labored under a crippling depression before dying at an early age. The brevity of his career, his cult-like status, and the circumstances surrounding his short, sad life could be seen as providing fertile ground for a lot of romantic mythologizing. But really, all that's needed to tell the story of Nick Drake is his music I guess. I bought FIVE LEAVES LEFT never having heard a note of Nick's music, intrigued by what I'd read. The first thing that struck me was his voice. It has a hollow, whispery quality to it, but with an underlying richness and loose, easy phrasing. The songs are gentle and melancholy but never self-concious or cloying. The conviction of Nick's delivery gives them an emotional weight, once you are drawn in by the voice. The fact that he recorded it when he was only twenty years old is remarkable. "Time Has Told Me" has a very relaxed almost country feel to it and is a fine love song born out of the pain of experience. "River Man" is almost certainly the stand out of the entire album. It weaves a hypnotic spell and although I'd be hard pressed to say what it's ABOUT, I can say that like all great pieces of music it is an event which makes you FEEL something, even if you're not sure what it is. "Cello Song" and "Three Hours" have the strongest folk flavor to them and feature some fine finger-style guitar work from the singer. The strings on "Way To Blue", "Day Is Done" and others give the songs a strong melancholy feel which lightens up a little towards the end of the collection. "The Thoughts Of Mary Jane" is more wistful and "Man In A Shed" is a little on the jazzy side. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant. a must have
haunting. brilliant. a must have.
Published 1 month ago by Ken McA
5.0 out of 5 stars guitar voice and arrangements :)
wasnt sure id love this as much as pink moon
as its different, but its wonderful.

instead of just nick drake and his guitar, theres some added orchestration,... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Melyssa
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic!!
Debut album from Nick Drake...classic, guaranteed to go down in history as one of the best. Although i prefer his Pink Moon album to this, this one is still incredible in it's own... Read more
Published 1 month ago by denny hanley
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome CD!
This cd has a very eclectic sound to it, each song is slightly different format than the last. All of the songs have their own unique charm and I am very glad I bought this cd. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Charles E. Hawkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Great CD!
I'm amazed that I haven't heard this music before now... this is a fantastic album. Maybe moody and definitely melancholy, but great guitar work and production with tons of emotion... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Haamundegg
5.0 out of 5 stars yes
amazing stripped down album. friend turned me on to Nick Drake a while back; first album of his i've downloaded. love it
Published 8 months ago by lacy
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic
Songs that will always be there, from a genius who wasn't being appreciated in his own time. Nick Drake had a way to paint auditory pictures both in his lyrics and music that will... Read more
Published 9 months ago by egil odegard
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Leaves Left
This album, as with all of Nick Drake's work is amazing. This has beautiful arrangement to Nick's beautiful arrangements. I have the album, and it plays beautifully. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Suzanne
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice on vinyl
Finally, this great unknown classic is available again on vinyl for those of us that missed it when released. Sounds great!
Published 11 months ago by Lyn035
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this song I have it on my phone now I use it for decompressing...
Love this song I have it on my phone now I use it for decompressing when I over the edge
Published 11 months ago by Christopher J. Anderson
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