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Becoming a Jackal [Limited Edition]

Villagers Audio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
Price: 8.54 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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From the very first seconds of Becoming a Jackal, he’s got you. A faint drone of organ, joined by eerie strings and a cascade of piano that collectively casts a Hitchcock movie shadow before a hushed voice asks, “Have you got just a minute? / Are you easily led? / Let me show the backroom / Where I saw the dead / Dancing like children on a midsummer morn / And they asked me to ... Read more in Amazon's Villagers Store

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Becoming a Jackal + Awayland
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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 May 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Limited Edition
  • Label: Domino
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 46,722 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Villagers - The day of the jackal 22 May 2010
Format:Audio CD
The recent great news that BBC Radio 6 music is to be saved warmed the cockles of many a music lovers heart in the UK particularly those who seek out new and original music. Listening to the channel recently a song came on which was clearly an outright classic; a lost gem perhaps from Paddy McAloon, a new song from Andrew Bird or a neglected find from the vault of the late great Elliot Smith? As it turns out the song was "Becoming A Jackal" from Dublin songwriter Conor J O'Brien who records under the name of Villagers and whose band has recently supported those cherished dilettante's from Kendal - The Wild Beasts. As we speak this wonderful debut album sits on top of the Irish album music chart (Week ending 20th May 2010) proving yet again the impeccable musical taste of our chums across the Irish sea who we can just about make out from some parts of Wales on a good day.

Becoming a Jackal is an album bursting with O'Briens' vivid narratives, gripping poetry and melodic depth. As a debut album it oozes such confidence that O'Brien could claim this has his fifth album and not a single eyebrow would be raised. True the album gets off to a rather strange start with opener "I saw the dead" which is an ever so Gothic rolling piano ballad but which grows on repeated listened. It is followed by the already mentioned gem of a title track and other little jewels quickly follow not least the incredibly strong set of songs that compose the middle part of the album. The "Meaning of ritual" stars with a slow organ which reminds me of a James Yorkston song and builds into a delicate confessional ballad which really exposes the complete shallowness of the work of those other pretenders the Morrison's, the Merriweather's and the horrible Nutini.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh my godness 14 Oct 2010
By Linzal
Format:Audio CD
When you listen to a new album and it is like falling in love, spending the day thinking about when you can next listen to it. The rising flutter in your stomach, feeling sick and tingling and elated and excited all at once. The haunting melodies and darkly lyrical poetic words - the music creeps up through my flesh, crawls through my veins, settles in my elbows and knees and runs rings in my mind. Something primal, urgent and real yet simultaniously haltingly ethereal, mystical and beautiful.

This sounds like an awful lot of prentious rubbish, but it is what I actually wrote after two days of first listening to this album. A month or so on prehaps my attitude has tempered a little and some logic has crept in, but I'm not sure I wanted it to. This is by no means a flawless album, but it is one that speaks to you (it does to me at least). There are some very special moments - particularly tracks 1, 2 and 4. Though for me I think track 8 Pieces, is one of the best things I have heard this year. There should be more howling in songs in general.

There is something quite special about this album. It is also really quite unnerving.

"Before you take this song as truth, you should wonder what I'm taking from you. How I benefit from you being here, lending me your ears, while I'm selling you my fears"

I have clearly bought into Conor J Obrien's fears wholesale, but I fail to see how one cannot when he a is a purveyor of such sincerity.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new voice in town 6 May 2010
Format:Audio CD
Villagers is Conor O'Brien. I heard this round a PR person's house and scribbled the following: Blue Nile, Jeff Buckley &
Steve McQueen Prefab Sprout.

As anyone who saw him on Later will know, he has a voice and a confidence that is almost otherworldly.

The songs on this album unfold like moments of the day dissolving into dreams. Lead single Becoming a Jackal has a chorus that stays
swirling around your head for days. The kind of tune you find yourself humming without knowing where it came from.
Well it come form here, this incredibly assured debut.

At times the lyrics sound very abstract, other times very everyday. Surrounding them is some incredible shimmying music.

O'Brien's voice carries the whole thing and the record is full of unexpected twists and turns, marrying strange chord changes with his
Irish lilt.

a record to really lose yourself in.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sublime. 10 July 2010
By BigRich
Format:Audio CD
I've had a habit in the last few months that has restricted my intake of new music. A copy of the Beatles anthology 3 (a truly exceptional works, it goes without saying)has been kept at all times in my car. When new albums have been brought in (including some very, very good ones such as Beach House and Shearwater's recent efforts)i've inevitably eventually thought, this is great, but i'll just listen to that take of Blackbird one more time, and then the moment for that particular new album has kind of gone. It's a bit like going to a friend's house for a dinner party but taking Raymond Blanc with you to cook your own meal if the level of satisfaction dips below an acceptable level at any given moment. This hasnt happened for the last week or so, and the reason is this incredible album from Villagers- the trading name of Mr Conor o'brien i believe. 11 tracks, not a duff moment throughout, songs that slowly burn away in your mind when you're not listening to them, making you wonder "where did i hear that piano sequence?" before realising ,no, it wasnt on the Beatles anthology, it was on Becoming a Jackal. TBA3 has been removed from the "glove box". This is my new bench mark of song writing genius for 2010. Simply sublime.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice!!
Like it, may not be for everyone but it's a good mix and sits well in my slightly...ok very...eclectic music mix
Published 1 month ago by D. Powell
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb debut
For a self-penned, self-recorded effort this is quite impressive. Try not to let the dark opening track put you off (and it is an odd choice to kick off with) - come back to it... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Craig Tankard
I bought this album after reading the above reviews and was expecting some previously unheralded masterpiece. Read more
Published 12 months ago by threewiseninjas
5.0 out of 5 stars Lyrical
I love the sound of Connor's voice, and love the lyricism of the poetry. Played it loads and heard new things each time.
Published 13 months ago by dicoll
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Cheerful but musically very clever
Not the kind of subject matter to prompt a sing a long but excellent songs nevertheless. Definately recommended but I prefer their second album.
Published 17 months ago by Gerard Kelly
5.0 out of 5 stars Live show was a good lead in
I first heard about this band when they supported Elbow at their Brighton live show. If I had to describe the album I'd say - Fantastical storytelling with a folk rock feel. Read more
Published on 4 Aug 2012 by Mr. G. A. Green
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful album
This is an amazing album with songs sung in the most gorgeous sweet voice. I would recommend it to everyone; young or old, no matter what your taste is. Read more
Published on 30 May 2012 by Jabberwocky
5.0 out of 5 stars Ivor Novello winner - give it a listen
I am not sure how I feel about music reviews. I think you either like stuff or you don't and who is anybody else to tell you otherwise. Read more
Published on 7 Mar 2012 by Jodri
2.0 out of 5 stars Not good enough
Music not good enough. Lyrics not good enough.

I often buy albums from Amazon's recommendations with great sucess in the past, but sadly not with this one. Read more
Published on 6 Jan 2012 by D. Cressey
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant
I'm so pleased to have discovered Villagers and this album. It's nothing short of genius, with variety, emotion, passion, and just fantastically written lyrics and music. Read more
Published on 8 Nov 2011 by El
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