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Tourist

3.9 out of 5 stars 87 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (31 Jan. 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EMI
  • ASIN: B0006OL5CC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (87 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,698 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

Athlete, the South London fourpiece comprised of childhood friends, return from the massive success of Vehicles & Animals with another album of catchy well-written indie-pop tunes on Tourist. This brand-new collection of Britpop-scented good-natured songs includes the brilliant single, "Wires".

BBC Review

Athlete have come of age on Tourist. Gone are the lazy laid back beats that pervaded Vehicles& Animals, "El Salvador", "Shake Those Windows" and"You've Got The Style". Also absent is the dizzy persona trying to suss out what life's all about.

They've developed on this, their second album, but there's an overriding sense of melancholia, so much so that initially the album proves quite difficult to listen to. "Wires", the first single, is about singer Joel Pott's recollection of his newborn daughter being rushed into intensive care. Unlikely indie song material indeed, but the beautiful poetry combined with a contagious catchiness has got everyone singing under their breath.

The unassuming voice of Pott slurping up to each note can sometimes get a bit too much, like talking to someone with low self-esteem, but when he sings on "Trading Air": "Someone better help me disarm myself, I don't want no-one else, All I want is you", I kind of think he means it. The love expressed on this album is not just this year's; it's a daily, toilet cleaning, baby sick wiping endurance type love.

The band are clearly trying out new ideas on this record but the splicing of a gospel choir onto the second half of "If I Found Out" is somewhat incongruous. It just jars: indie bands and gospel choirs don't go, as the gospel choir invariably makes the band look a bit weedy in comparison. "Ooh you gotta have soul" could have been tacked onto any of the songs, and makes you want to grab some Southern fried chicken.

Final track "I Love" combines the best components of new and old style Athlete: a tiny acoustic guitar, in a shimmering sampled background, with Joel giving a perfect sense of wellbeing in loving everybody here. Then a laidback beat cuts through from the old days, the upwards lilt returns into Joel's voice and coolcasio beats come in.

Ultimately, the songs here are intelligent, relating more specific personal experiences yet crediting the audience with the ability to understand them, something that marks them out from their less risky contemporaries. A nice evolution. --Lucy Davies

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By M.D. Smart TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 5 Feb. 2005
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It seems to me that every guitar-based indie/pop group that happen to release a ballad immediately get dismissed as a "Coldplay wannabe". Don't misunderstand, I'm not knocking Coldplay; those of us who've grown past the 'fashion victim' stage find it intensely ironic that Coldplay, who were Britain's Brightest Hope a few short years ago, are now looked upon as the Antichrist - and all because they committed the cardinal sin of becoming POPULAR (how dare they). Keane have already joined them, Franz Ferdinand are on the verge of a backlash and in time Bloc Party (and anyone else who catapluts to mainstream attention this year) will surely face the same fate. No, I'm not knocking them, or Keane, or any of the others. I just find the critics' (and some Amazon reviewers') lack of imagination depressing.
To me, 'Tourist' shows a touchingly straightforward, down-to-earth honesty that makes it more affecting than many of the albums it's been lumped together with. It's quite a different prospect to 'Vehicles and Animals', more solemn and serious, more earnest. However, I can't imagine anyone who enjoyed Athlete's debut not liking this - even if their immediate reaction is mingled surprise and disappointment at the lack of uptempo songs. The heartfelt single 'Wires' is a good indication of what to expect and also the album's finest track, but there are plenty of other gems here such as 'Chances', 'Tourist' and 'Twenty Four Hours'. Look beyond the meaningless labels so beloved of the critics, and you won't regret it.
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By A Customer on 24 Jun. 2005
Format: Audio CD
The standard thing to think before purchasing any album is assuming it will all be similar to it's first single, although in many respects it is, Athlete have conjured up a handful of bright and breezy numbers to add to the slower styles portrayed magnificently in 'Wires'.
Chock-a-block with engaging piano riffs to accompany any emotion or feeling - be it downheartedness, love-sickness or optimism - 'Tourist' is sure to remain at the top of your CD pile for a lengthy amount of time.
All of the songs lay claim to expertly controlled use of guitar, piano and the odd sound affect combined with sincere, honest and true-to-life lyrics which can easily be related to, which forms the structures of a wonderfully produced indie-pop creation and potentially the album of the year so far.
The pick of the bunch include the second release 'Half Light' - possessing portions of sunny and cheerful melodies and clever lyrics accurately sung by lead vocalist Joel Pott. Other stand-out tracks include 'If I Found Out', again jovial aided by the inclusion of a gospel choir providing brilliant atmosphere, 'Modern Mafia' a catchy tune based around electric guitars forming the loudest of the lot and 'I Love', a gentle album finale carefully performed to great effect.
All in all this album could push Athlete into the league of other indie sensations such as Coldplay, Radiohead and Travis and I feel they could fair well up there with the best of them...
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Format: Audio CD
Athlete's new album Tourist is destined to be the huge breakthrough the band are obvioulsy aiming for. This is backed up by the top 5 success of it's first single Wires and also the fact that the album entered the UK Chart at No.1 recently. Despite this commercial success the album is quite a diversion from the debut Vehicles And Animals.
If you were expecting more of the same fun quirky pop music that made Vehicles And Animals such a delight then you will be initially disappointed with Tourist. Only Modern Mafia sounds as if it would fit in on that album. The rest of the songs on the album are more ballad like songs. If you like Wires you'll probably like the majority of the songs here. In my mind, the band have changed their style to try and become a larger name. In a sense they are trying to become Coldplay or at least aim for the same sort of fans they have. While in no way is this a bad thing, the only problem is that Athlete aren't Coldplay and the album suffers for that. Most of the songs are not instantly catchy with the exception of Modern Mafia.
If you pereseve with it though, the songs will grow on you considerably and it will be an enjoyable album if a little lifeless. However, it is this type of music that seems to generate large sales figures.
In summary i'd say buy it regardless as it is a decent album but if you're a fan of Vehicles And Animals don't buy the album expecting an exact replica because this is a band developing into something else rather than sticking with the same sound that endeared people to them in the first place. Instead they will attract an even larger fanbase while keeping many who originally loved them.
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By A Customer on 1 May 2005
Format: Audio CD
This wasn't bad. Easy to listen to and there are a few good tracks, but i really was expecting more. Wires, Half Light, and Tourist are the best tracks and Yesterday Threw Everything At Me is good, but this album is a bit too serious for me. What happened to Westside, El Salvador and Out Of Nowhere, those types of songs are why i love you!
It was a disappointment, but its still a good album. If you like this, you'll love Vehicles and Animals, their first and best album.
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Format: Audio CD
I had heard of Athlete and had heard the song 'Beautiful' from the first album, and liked it, but I suppose I never really bothered to find out more. I don't listen to alot of radio now as I don't get time, but I do listen to a little Virgin FM when I am drving. I kept hearing 'Half light' and the tune was going around and around in my head for days before I found out who sang it. I thought that I must find out more about Athlete. The next day I heard 'Wires' as I was driving on my own, and for some reason I listened to the lyrics, as much as the melody and by the time the song finished I was actually blubbing, big wet tears! It's ages since a song has moved me so much on one hearing. It was enough for me and I bought the album the very next day. I absolutely love it! Yes, it lacks a little variation but I can certainly listen to a whole album of ballads if I'm in that sort of mood. These are all top quality and I love Coldplay for the same reason. I don't want to compare them to Coldplay, though. It's not fair to pidgeon-hole bands. Modern Mafia breaks it up a bit without blasting your eardrums. A don't know about 'lifeless' as one reviewer called it, if a song can reduce you to tears with its sheer emotion, I don't think you can feel more alive than that. I recommend it anyway. If you don't buy it, at least listen to 'Wires'. I think it's essential.
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