- Audio CD (17 Mar. 2003)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD
- Label: EMI
- ASIN: B00008A8KV
- Other Editions: Audio CD | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 147,877 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Doll Revolution CD
|Price:||£8.90 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details|
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They used to be seen as sex kittens, now on Doll Revolution, they look like the cast of Sex in the City. Yet 15 years after the Bangles' last album, Everything, the California power-poppers breeze back in looking and sounding as though they've been gone a mere 15 minutes. Eloquent, assured and sensual, Doll Revolution is measured yet mesmerising, considered yet colossal. This is one 80s comeback that really is a good idea.
So is this "doll revolution" some LA take on Girl Power? Or a glossy update on Riot Grrrl? Hardly. The Bangles never were ones for manifestos. Melodies are more their game, and these mostly self-penned songs display a beautifully developed sense of songcraft. "Something That You Said" is an exercise in sepia longing, while the sublime West Coast harmonies of "Stealing Rosemary" is a reminder that the quartet originally began life, 20 years prior, as Paisley Underground psychedelics named the Supersonic Bangs.
The gentle ballad "I Will Take Care of You" will have lighters aloft on the comeback tour, yet is also achingly intimate. And the yearning "Single by Choice", glancing back over a life half-done, is both a shoo-in for the soundtrack of the next Bridget Jones movie and also a knowing, experience-heavy poem that they simply couldn't have crafted the first time around. The Bangles have returned older but wiser and there is, as Doll Revolution amply demonstrates, simply no substitute for experience. --Ian Gittins
Showing up fashionably late to board the good ship Revival, The Bangles (Susanna Hoffs, Michael Steele and sisters Debbi and Vikki Peterson), return with their fourth album Doll Revolution. Aided by the starched hair sisterhood of punk-lite amigos The Go-Go's, these two bands, more than any others, span the often unspeakably wide divide between the likes of The Shangri-Las and (splutter), more contemporary lady line-ups such as Atomic Kitten.
Spilling forth from the LA West Coast vibe in 1981, a veritable jungle of pearl guitars and pewter jewellery, debut album All Over The Place introduced a defining sensibility for luxuriant harmonies together with a perceptible nod to the Merseybeat sound.
It wasn't until second album 'Different Light', shaped by the-artist-once-more-known-as-Prince, that chart hits ''Manic Monday'' and ''Walk Like An Egyptian'' all but eclipsed a rich diversity of influence for anaesthetised if affable pop. In the resulting media scramble to deify lead vocalist Hoffs at the expense of the other members, a protracted she-scrap led to the collapse of the group. With the exception of Steele, the rest would pursue various solo projects with muted degrees of success. But not before parting hit ''Eternal Flame'' exploded at the top of the charts in a shower of (bought-in) orchestral strings.
So what we knew as the rise of The Bangles was actually a steady disintegration from their original remit. Having patched up past-wrongs and exhausted raw ambitions (most noticeably Hoffs made a run for screen stardom, stumbled, and fell), 'Doll Revolution' is a fascinating autopsy of parts. The title track itself is a cover of an Elvis Costello track (perfectly suited to the band's disposable/credible schism), while individual members have contributed songs intended for spin-off performance; here 'Banglecized' to form a cohesive whole.
Current single ''Something That You Said'' eases cautious fans into a sense of security, belonging as it does to an MTV world in which muslin curtains billow to the sound of the power-ballad Top 20. Yet it's the less obvious hits that reward on repeat inspection. ''Stealing Rosemary'' could well have fallen from the mouths of The Mamas & Papas, while "Ride the Ride" is a Beatles hit that never was - replete with involuntary bowl cut shimmy-shake. For those of us who wish life could always coast upon the giddy high of the closing credits following some 80s brat pack flick, ''Lost at Sea'' - a collaboration between Susannah and Debbie - includes all the mellow tambourine loveliness you should require... and then some.
Importantly, Hoffs now stands shoulder to shoulder with her colleagues, no more and no less, sharing vocal duties and issuing a parting solo with ''Grateful'': an apparent homage to all things Bangles, and humble to a point. Drinking at the same hippie well that nourished The Byrds, Liz Phair and yes, even the The Dixie Chicks, The Bangles step back in time to glue the broken shards back together. So effective have they been, you can hardly see the cracks. --Bren O'Callaghan
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Top Customer Reviews
'Doll Revolution' belies the 15 years since their last effort in all but lyrical content, which now has the hardened edge of experience stamped on it. It's great to see Vicki Peterson back on form as the band's major songwriter, her 'Single by Choice' being one of her most personal songs to date. The weight of life experience has expanded the band's musical palette and extended their range from the wistful 'I will take care of you' to the storming 'Between the two' via Michael Steele's intriguing 'Song for a good son'.
For those looking for the simple pop of 'Eternal Flame' I suggest one of the many Best of compilations, but for those who love the Bangles or just love well-crafted pop with an edge, this is a fascinating CD and a great achievement.
This album is mostly rock based, and many of the tracks are an excellent blend of the acoustic & electric guitar with the mandolin and even some piano backing. Even if your not a Bangles fan, this is a wonderful collection of songs about what it's like to be young, old, single or in love.
The Bangles always had an instantly recognisable sound; the interwoven melodies of their voices that glide and soar, supporting the rocky/pop sound of their guitar driven music let you know it was the Bangles right away, and they continue that tradition on Doll Revolution, only they're doing it a lot better now than they ever have been.
There is a definite change in feel to the style of the songs though. 90% of the songs on D.R. are written by the Bangles themselves, and this is a good thing. Some of the songs here have a lot more of a personal feel about them; Single by Choice, Nickel Romeo & Grateful for example, all draw on personal experiences from members of the band, and D.R. is a lot better for it. D.R. swings from the rocky/pop songs that the Bangles do so well; Something That You Said, Rain Song, Ride the Ride, Here Right Now, and Tear Off Your Own Head through to the sublime of Lost at Sea, I Will Take Care Of You and Song For A Good Son, with the only poor track being Mixed Messages. All of the songs have the distinctive Bangles 'feel' to them though, and if you own any other Bangles LP's, then you won't be disappointed with this. None of their individual performances have weathered with age, and are quite the opposite; they're all better now than they were way back when. Their voices are just as strong and melodic as ever, the music just as powerful and moving as it always was, and, it has to be said, but they look a lot better now too. The Bangles truly are back, and hopefully Doll Revolution is only the first chapter in what promises to be the comeback of the century.
Highlights of the set are the tracks featuring Susanna Hoffs on vocals, her voice still containing that mixture of warmth and vulnerability that helped make pop tunes like "Manic Monday" and ballads like "Eternal Flame" so successful. I am really surprised that the first single from the album, "Something That You Said" was not more successful commercially, but, perhaps, the heartfelt "I Will Take Care Of You" would be a worthy follow-up, maybe even returning them to the Top Ten. At the very least, it might draw more people's attention to an album which certainly bears repeated playing.
At times, with Hoffs away from the mike, the sound strays just a little close to 90s Fleetwood Mac for comfort, but, of fifteen tracks I would only consider two - "The Rain Song" and "Between Two", to be filler. Other highlights include the imaginatively-produced "Stealing Rosemary", the crisp "Mixed Messages" and the cleverly-structured closer, "Grateful".
So many comebacks are ill-advised. This album will undoubtedly prove to be a welcome surprise to those keen, like me, to re-investigate this sound from part of their teenage years.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
So great to have The Bangles back, with a new album and what a cracker!!!! "Doll Revolution" hits the ground running, what any self-respecting
comeback album should... Read more
surprisingly good, dark in places...bit of a throwback to "All over the place"Published 10 months ago by kevin hall
Got this via download and what's not to like about the girls and their easy to listen to songs while imagining Susannah Hoffs breathing down your neck.Published 23 months ago by Fireblade
its great, I always liked the Bangles...Miss Hoffs was on my "would run away with" list...in 1984 though. Read morePublished on 31 Dec. 2013 by Paul Bunn
I think the best Bangles Album to date.Their just getting better an better. Heard a few of the songs on youtube, an just had to buy the cd. Something That You Said is a great song.Published on 25 Nov. 2012 by eamonn o'leary
I was searching for a Bangles album to buy and was going to buy "Different Light" which had some tunes I already knew but I spotted this album on Amazon's web site which I never... Read morePublished on 28 Mar. 2011 by Rosendo
Boy, has it been a long time since the Bangles split up. Despite doing their own solo projects (with limited success) they have come back together like nothing ever happenned. Read morePublished on 24 Jan. 2004
So, The Bangles are back. On hearing this album, the first reaction is, "Why?".
Why has it taken them so long to record a new album? Read more