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King of Nothing Hill CD

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Product details

  • Audio CD (9 Sept. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Mute
  • ASIN: B00005YXGW
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 18,697 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Cinematic Soul
2. Whispering Streets
3. Black Amour
4. When Darkness Calls
5. The Second Stain
6. Twisted Smile
7. Le Matin Des Noires
8. That Fool Was Me
9. The Crime Scene
10. Cold Comfort

Product Description

Product Description

BARRY ADAMSON The King Of Nothing Hill (2002 UK 10-track CD album housed in a fold-out digipak picture sleeve with fold-out tracklisting insert CDSTUMM176)


The King of Nothing Hill is light on instrumentals--there are just three--and eschews guest singers, with Adamson once again handling vocal duties. His voice ranges from a consumptive Bourbon-soaked drawl à la Tom Waits, to a bizarre almost Neil Hannon-esque croon. Sonically, Barry's magpie tendencies are as eclectic as ever, with his obvious affection for Blaxploitation soundtracks ("Cinematic Soul") and boudoir balladeers such as Barry White ("Black Amour") especially to the fore. Thematically, the album explores the perpetual struggle between good and evil through a series of Phillip Marlowe-style "whisky and wry" narratives. "Twisted Smile" even gets a little political, lines such as "It's England's green unpleasant land", recalling Infected-era The The. With The King of Nothing Hill, Barry Adamson has delivered a Shaft for the Playstation generation. --Chris King

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 Oct. 2012
Format: Audio CD
Brooding noir vocals and then he stretches his larynx to sing as he launches into exotica; to bring about a picture of red dangling lampshades, smoking guns, whiskey decanters couched in big fat Havana cigars, all brooding around a pool shoot at 3am in the deepest darkness. Stories about life flowing past relentlessly in the slow lanes. Doused with a hint of sexuality splashed across the face, forever looking backwards in the mirror to the big themes in life - where it all began, slowly based in a heavy scent of sexual heat. These tunes marked a departure into a sombre reflection upon a life lived.

Great album, detailing a presumed auto biog take on a past culled from funk wah wah, bass deep grinds into where the red neon night meets a glazed morning as the shutters finally let the light in to meet Barry White sitting on the sofa.

Turn on the lava lamps and relax into his custom built reverie.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "arcmanage" on 8 Oct. 2002
Format: Audio CD
Barry Adamson has definitely surpassed himself with his new release 'The King of Nothing Hill'. Definitely his best album since 'Oedipus Schmoedipus'. From the dry humour on the Barry White style 'Black Amour' to the darker 'I Love Paris' instrumental, this really is the cinematic ride of your life.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 16 Sept. 2002
Format: Audio CD
I'm not sure that I could categorise this album . . . jazz, hip-hop, funk, rock, pop, punk . . . they are all there. The production is fantastic and I can easily imagine some of this appearing in films (noir). Not having heard of Barry Adamson before (amazingly), I bought it on the strength of a newspaper review. So, in response to DC of the Sunday Times, I must say that I whole heartedly agree with your closing comment . . . 'a wonderful, must buy album'.
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6 of 22 people found the following review helpful By K. Ward on 2 Oct. 2002
Format: Audio CD
hmmm...not all newspaper reviews are right...which is a shame because this could have been another Morphine or Natacha Atlas (some of my dad's other 'Review Discoveries') But it isn't. I like some of it. The instrumentals are really quite interesting, definitely a potential for some theatre/film soundtracking there, but I don't like the pseudo-Barry White thing he has going on.
The music is interesting from a sampling point of view. I like the mismatched sounds and the fact that he's not afraid to have a full blown string section, even though it is cheesy.
Ultimately, I think it's his lyrics that let him down. It really is cliché after cliché.
Some of it did sound like the Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me soundtrack though. Which is a good thing. But that's already been done now, I would have liked something different.
Having said all that, I do quite like the last track (Cold Comfort) if only because there's a voice that isn't Barry's on it.
I think Barry Adamson should sell his music to car companies so they can use it in adverts.
Just my opinion...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
glasswerk review 9 April 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Original Bad Seed member, film score composer and songwriter Barry Adamson returns with new album 'The King Of Nothing Hill' on Mute Records, his first new material since his 1998's release, 'As Above So Below'. Opener 'Cinematic Soul' is energetic '70s soul, pure funk all over, and sets the dark overtures for the rest of the album. 'Whispering Streets' is of a similar ilk, a relaxing blend of bouncy ragga beats and luxurious vocals. The velvet vocals of single 'Black Amour' is unashamedly reminiscent of Barry White, and this serves to add to the cinematic sounds that envelope the track. 'When Darkness Calls' is immersed in dark rhythms and soaring guitars, and 'The Second Stain' is an intensely dark swing tune with some piano tinkerings which only multiplies the eerie effect that this song radiates. 'Twisted Smile' and 'Le Matin Des Noire' trickle along with the same macabre concentration, and 'That Fool Was Me' is a more jazzed-up affair. 'The Crime Scene' opens with a sound of gunfire and helicopters circling overhead, and is the most upbeat track on the album, with spine-tingling violins and repetitive beats not a million miles away from drum 'n bass, and the beautiful 'Cold Comfort' brings the album to a close. Barry Adamson has made an album of grief-stricken songs and heartfelt instrumentals, and filled it with uncompromising, cinematic musical styles to touching and passionate effect.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Adventures in a Murky World 5 Sept. 2002
By "grannanima" - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I have been a fan of Barry Adamson since I picked the Lost Highway soundtrack back in 1997 where I first met the man through his contribution to that disk. I think the first thing many fans will notice when they get their hands on his latest is that this album seems to be not quite so dark and brooding as some of our previous jaunts through Barry's Murky World.
I must confess I was more than a little bit worried about what I had gotten myself into when I heard the John & Yoko style kid's sing along chorus to the album's up-tempo funk opener "Cinematic Soul". This definitely didn't seem to be the Barry Adamson that I had grown to know and love through tracks like "Mitch & Andy", "Jazz Devil" and "Can't Get Loose".
But thankfully the albums 2nd track returns us to familar territory with the tale of the life of a hitman in "Whispering Streets". Black Amour is just that Barry doing his best impression of that Barry White. A great grooving and gyrating piece of phat phunk.
Throughout the rest of the disk Barry takes us once again on a voyage to Hell's Martini bar, where Barry and his HepCat buddies keep the soul flowing black, think and inky (and Frank, Deano & Sammy perform twice daily). Tunes like Le Matin Des Noire& That Fool Was Me really keep that Lucifer's Lounge feeling going while The Crime Scene feels like it could have been lifted from the soundtrack to the original Shaft.
Overall fans if you enjoy Mr Adamson's work, or that of guys like Nick Cave and Angelo Badalamenti (the guy who score's all David Lynch's movies) then buy this CD, slip into into a black tux, some cool cool shades and grab yourself a drink (and well you at it grab me one. Single Malt, preferable Glenmorangie or at least Black Label Johnny, on the rocks) and prepare to bask in the black radiance of the King Of Nothing Hill
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Hello, I'm John Shaft..No you're not, you're Barry Adamson! 12 Sept. 2002
By Takis Tz. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Or is it Barry White? Wait, wait...Let's put things in perspective here. First of all, if there is one thing to be expected from Barry Adamson albums is that you can't know what to expect. Now, this is not necessarly a good thing or a bad thing.
In Barry's case though (and his fans, and I too being one, know that) it has proven to be mostly a VERY good thing. And, if there is something that definately characterises this man's music then it would be its darkness, whether he tackles alternative rock, jazz or electronic domains or whichever musical field.
In "King of Nothing Hill" Barry Adamson surprises. Already on the cover of the CD the "hints" are obvious: the artwork is a direct reference to 70's funk-psychedelia, and if you take a look inside (in the booklet) you will notice a photo of Barry's that looks like he has gone Shafty.
Has he? Yes. Completely? Well, it depends what you mean with that. The "King of Nothing...." is a funky record. Check that. It's a very funky record. The darkness isn't gone of course, how could it, but you will hear Barry doing his best imitation of the other Barry on a coupla songs (Barry White if the name rings a bell). A perfect imitation at that, too.
But, Adamson isnt an imitator. He might admire certain people, and we all do, but he has never been accused of lack of originality.
In this album tha funk is dirty and groovy like hell. Slick hitmen carrying their shade through the siren-rideen streets of the ghetto. Haunting conversations with Adamson being the narrator. Again, what will come to your mind is "blaxploitation" and being that this was the intent this LP succeds 100% at what it's getting at. Most of the songs could be seen as the soundtrack of a movie of that era. Most of them are great soul or funk songs. And all of them have that certain touch to remind you they have been written "today" and that they have been written by Barry Adamson.
I remember the last outing of Adamson's, a jazzy, abstract, and of course, dark effort, that was great to listen to, very innovating and one of the best "undiscovered" albums for that year. This time the case might be very much the same.
This guy wont hit the mainstream, ever, and thankfully so, because his music isnt for everybody's ears. There is too much quality in his albums for that.
But if you have discovered Barry Adamson already, you know that each album he brings out has "musical genius" written all over it.
The "King of Nothing Hill" is easily one of the best albums of the year. You wont hear it on the radio and chances are you dont have friends who will introdude it to ya. So go on then. Do yourself a favor and go discover an album and an artist that the industry cant find a way to make money from. That's usually a good criterion.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Marvelous record 24 Dec. 2005
By Thger Kari Jensen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Almost everything about this record screams dark funk and soul, from the cover to the inlet, and it carries through to most of the tracks. However, fans who likes the funky side of Barry Adamson might not enjoy the last half of the record, while fans who like the dark and murky side might not enjoy the first part.

While this diversity usually is one of the best sides of Adamsons talent, it is a problem that he has divided the album up like this, so that you cannot put it on if you're in the mood for either some funk or some murky tracks. You have to be in the mood for funk, slowly shifting into murky soundscapes. And let's face it, you never know when you're going to be in that particular mood.

So if i could rate each track as a single entity, i might have given this record five stars, cause they're all absolutely brilliant, but since i'm rating the record as a whole, i have to give it 3-4.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
excellent 10 Aug. 2010
By Bill Your 'Free Form FM Print DJ - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
It's hard to say that the first track on King Of Nothing Hill, "Cinematic Soul," replicates the sound of the 1970s article. The wha whas, the organ, the narration: all the ingredients are here. But the big digital production-giant-lets you know this is from the age of digital, not analogue, CDs, not LPs.

But that's just fine. I don't think Barry Adamson is into time travel. He is more into essence. Bringing all his influences into one big tent--a brand new tent. On Nothing Hill, he does that perfectly: funk, spy fare, purple velvet love machine soul: maybe Adamson is sitting in the type of room I am now, filled with falling stacks of John Barry, Quincy Jones, Barry White, Lalo Shifrin, and a Monk, a P-FUnk and a Coltrane on the top of each toppling pile of hundreds.

Not all of these records are apparent on Nothing Hill, but trust me, you don't know some of this music without knowing a lot more of it. Guys like this don't buy an album here and there. Trust me. I was at this when I was in Pampers.

Unlike me, Adamson picks it up and runs with it. Does he wear his collection on his sleeve: no doubt. A big digital one, probably glows in the dark. Good for him. Real deal or no, this is one hell of a lot of fun.
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