Today, we move onto Nick Drake’s second album, Bryter Layter. It is his most upbeat work. Some are downright pop, like “Hazey Jane II.” And it’s amazing how well they work. Joe Boyd produced Drake’s first two albums, but on this album, it meshes; it becomes part of the music rather than spice dumped on top, which is how the first album feels to me.
Let’s listen to Drake’s take on one of the great pop song genres: “I could have been different for you if you had just let me know.” The song is, “One of These Things First.” What I most like it is the resignation: he doesn’t seem too keyed up about it. What the hell? “A whole long lifetime could have been the end.” That’s a great, incisive line.