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The Violet Hour

Clientele Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 13.27
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Music

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Photos

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Biography

"A band out of time, The Clientele conjures the ghosts of chirpy British pop and the mellow, sepia-toned rock of the mid-1960s. Yet, while there are clearly trace elements of Donovan and The Zombies, the band's debt to the past is more about feeling and mood than note-for-note re-creations." ~NPR'S SONG OF THE DAY

"One of Britain’s most unheralded but genuine ... Read more in Amazon's Clientele Store

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for 12 albums, 6 photos, discussions, and more.

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The Violet Hour + Bonfires On The Heath + Strange Geometry
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Product details

  • Audio CD (2 Jun 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Pointy
  • ASIN: B00009Z5H2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 238,366 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Violet Hour
2. Voices In The Mall
3. When You and I Were Young
4. Missing
5. Jamaican Rum Rhumba
6. House on Fire
7. Everybody's Gone
8. Porcelain
9. Haunted Melody
10. Prelude
11. Lamplight
12. The House Always Wins
13. Policeman Getting Lost

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Restless, beautiful chamber pop 24 Oct 2003
Format:Audio CD
the Clientele are one of those bands who seem to inhabit an imaginative world all of their own, completely enclosed and self-defined. It's hard to pin down the mood of this record, there's a strange distanced, almost hallucinatory ambience going on. I can hear some of the atmospherics of Felt here, and perhaps the chamber pop of Love or Cardinal too. It also reminds me of some Flying Nun bands. But the Clientele are definitely their own band, and in my opinion, with the Violet Hour, they've transcended genre limitations and are offering us something with a gorgeous, restless beauty. This is a work of art.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  12 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars grace, sadness and confusion 14 Aug 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The Clientele's gentle pop songs are imbued with the feeling and style of day fading into night, along with the beauty and loss which that experience suggests. All of their releases to date--7"s, EPs, and an album collecting many of their singles--have been gorgeous yet not just so. Their music is consistent enough that there does indeed seem to be a Clientele sound: relaxed, pretty pop songs with hushed vocals and an atmospheric haze. Their songs are about how you feel when you're in a certain place at a certain time, yet the songs themselves also feel occupied, by ghosts or memories. They feel simple yet filled with secrets. Their latest release The Violet Hour, basically their first proper album, takes all of these qualities and amplifies them in wonderful ways. In many ways, it sounds like every other Clientele release, yet it's also a considerable step forward. For while the basic style is consistent with the past (even though it feels in many ways like a perfection of it), the guitar playing is even more moody and seductive, in a way that better plays up the dream-like quality of the band's music, and there's hints of both more abstract composition and more out-there rock n' roll than the group has yet delivered on record. The Clientele has always tried to both soothe and mystify listeners, to make you feel like you've been transported somewhere, and then make you feel out-of-time. Here they do that spendidly from start to finish, while also delivering songs that are loaded with enough pure feeling to send chills up and down your spine. Perhaps the best example (among 13 great examples) is the album's final track, "Policeman Getting Lost." A series of seasonal evocations wind their way through a gorgeous love song and then, after just around 2 minutes, singer Alsdair MacLean gets to the surprising final line, at once dumbfounding and moving: "Inside the fog I saw a policeman getting lost." It's hard to put in words, but the feeling of grace, sadness and confusion in MacLean's voice as he delivers those strange words is the essence of The Clientele.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars After just a few spins, very much worth it 27 July 2003
By jack d. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Have anxiously awaited this release after purchasing all of their previous output. For the uninitiated I would describe their earlier stuff as coming from some lost British Invasion circa 1964-66. Kind of a "I've heard this before but, no, I haven't" sound. This LP is its logical extension.

The first thing you notice is that the musicianship has improved and the lyrics, while often hard to distinguish, are more mature. The arrangements are more complex and more delicate (heavier emphasis on quieter moments and acoustic guitars) with the guitar parts layered quite intricately. The pace is as languid as ever, perhaps even a bit more so. I found myself wishing a few more tracks had the quicker, more "up" tempo of say "I Had To Say This" or "Joseph Cornell" from "Suburban Light". That is perhaps my one complaint: I miss the more easily accessible hooks of their earlier output.
But it's more of a mild grouse than a fair criticism. The hooks are there but more subtle and you can't fault the band for growing and becoming better musicians. Their studio technique has certainly improved but a bit of that fantastic "hiss" is still there, thank you very much. The jangling electric guitars are now overdubbed in abundance and sound fantastic.

Like early R.E.M., Clientele songs have a "sameness" on the first spin. That is why repeated listens to earlier efforts were so rewarding. I'm not terribly familiar with this CD yet (only 3 spins as of now) but I wanted to give a quick thumbs up to what I feel is a criminally under appreciated band. I'd give it 3.5 on first blush, which I am sure will grow to a 4+ since all Clientele music grows on me with time. On general principle Clientele releases should get a 5 since they, to my knowledge, are the only band mining this great niche of sound and doing it so well.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If Syd Barrett...... 9 Mar 2006
By M. Kearney - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is real nice, gentle, well crafted psychedelia. Sounds like it fell right out of the '60's. If Syd Barrett hadn't had mental problems/became an acid casualty, he might have fulfilled his potential, and ended up sounding something like this. There's a fair bit of melancholia here, but it's not as sad as it SOUNDS. I also hear some Robyn Hitchcock & John Lennon influences. Beautiful, shimmering vibrato guitars and breathy sung-spoke vocals abound here, as on all Clientele albums. The place I would recommend to start, though....is with the more recent "Strange Geometry", which is sheer genius.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars After just a few spins, very much worth it 27 July 2003
By jack d. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Have anxiously awaited this release after purchasing all of their previous output. For the uninitiated I would describe their earlier stuff as coming from some lost British Invasion circa 1964-66. Kind of a "I've heard this before but, no, I haven't" sound. This LP is its logical extension.

The first thing you notice is that the musicianship has improved and the lyrics, while often hard to distinguish, are more mature. The arrangements are more complex and more delicate (heavier emphasis on quieter moments and acoustic guitars) with the guitar parts layered quite intricately. The pace is as languid as ever, perhaps even a bit more so. I found myself wishing a few more tracks had the quicker, more "up" tempo of say "I Had To Say This" or "Joseph Cornell" from "Suburban Light". That is perhaps my one complaint: I miss the more easily accessible hooks of their earlier output.
But it's more of a mild grouse than a fair criticism. The hooks are there but more subtle and you can't fault the band for growing and becoming better musicians. Their studio technique has certainly improved but a bit of that fantastic "hiss" is still there, thank you very much. The jangling electric guitars are now overdubbed in abundance and sound fantastic.

Like early R.E.M., Clientele songs have a "sameness" on the first spin. That is why repeated listens to earlier efforts were so rewarding. I'm not terribly familiar with this CD yet (only 3 spins as of now) but I wanted to give a quick thumbs up to what I feel is a criminally under appreciated band. I'd give it 3.5 on first blush, which I am sure will grow to a 4+ since all Clientele music grows on me with time. On general principle Clientele releases should get a 5 since they, to my knowledge, are the only band mining this great niche of sound and doing it so well.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Smashing 5 Jan 2005
By Nicholas David Cardwell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The Violet Hour is one of the most cohesive albums by a band in years. Nicely non-linear dynamics like a post-modern version of The Kinks Face To Face without the rockers. The Clientele are incredible and hopefully will keep up the good work. There is nothing like riding a vintage Vespa or a Lambretta in full mod kit and gear at an ungodly rainy moonlit dark hour of the morning listening to this album! Its like a soundtrack from a haunted memory of British Invasion pop rock shot through an absolutely smashing movie scene! The Clientelle are an awesome prescence. Bottom line: buy this album now!
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