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Profile for Simon Garfunkel > Reviews

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Content by Simon Garfunkel
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Simon Garfunkel (Wimbledon)

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The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series, Vol.12 (Deluxe Edition)
The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series, Vol.12 (Deluxe Edition)
Price: £49.99

67 of 87 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes You Just Find Yourself Over the Line (Take 15)., 6 Nov. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
They’re selling souvenirs to veterans,
They’re gilding the golden goose,
The fortune telling lady
Forecasts copyright abuse.
Here comes the watchful doorman
With a spindled leopard skin,
One hand is tied to the mad-eyed prophet,
The other to where he’s been.
And the Z-gang’s in a turmoil,
They’re lost somewhere they know,
As they watch themselves proceeding down
Exploitation Row.

On the box of minus zero
The lonesome Dutchman pleads,
And the Englishman’s Johanna cries
Will I never be released?
But the organ-grinder’s sympathy
Is for himself so sick
Of all this repetition
And all these juggler’s tricks.
While nine newborn antiquities
Are holding up the show,
They’re blowing up the tickets
To Exploitation Row.

To the cybernetic sweatshop
The mouthpiece gives consent
To trade in the Madonna
For nineteen failed attempts.
Were you expecting six white horses?
The jealous monkey quips,
Can you not read the bottom line
Across his upper lip?
But from railroad eyes in hotel rooms
You can watch the river flow,
If you bite just three more bullets
Here on Exploitation Row.

The ghost of electricity
Howls quietly in her cups:
If they use the word iconic
One more time I may throw up.
You know he once belonged to me,
Beneath the diamond sky,
I set the sparks inside his head
But he drained my batteries dry.
And when there’s nothing left to lose
There’s always something more to go,
When they own all the electrons
Down on Exploitation Row.

Yeah I know exactly how it feels,
Sighs Quinn the Eskimo,
They put me on the cover
But they dropped me from the show.
Back in the vault for forty years,
I watched pretenders sold,
Then lost my old companion
When she finally got paroled.
You’ve really got a lot of nerve
To taunt your backers so,
Is this filed as long-term policy
On Exploitation Row?

In the Oriental castles
The handover’s at dawn,
The auctioneer’s self-portrait
A perfect image of a pawn.
Leave the business to the businessmen,
He smiles but does not sneer,
Then the fiddler steps back to the road,
Exploded conscience clear.
And the old maid taking questions
Is twenty two or so,
She’s never heard of Baby Blue,
Much less Exploitation Row.

Yes I saw your invoice yesterday,
And the sentiment it spoke:
If you don’t like it just don’t buy it -
Was that some kind of joke?
All these versions that you mention,
How many here are lame?
Must I rearrange my senses
And give them all another name?
Right now I just don’t have the strength
To miss the final show;
I’m Mr Jones and here’s my toll
To Exploitation Row.
Comment Comments (34) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 23, 2015 7:19 PM GMT

Epson Expression Photo XP-760 All-in-One Photo Printer with Claria Photo HD Ink, Wi-Fi and Touch Panel (Print/Scan/Copy) - Black
Epson Expression Photo XP-760 All-in-One Photo Printer with Claria Photo HD Ink, Wi-Fi and Touch Panel (Print/Scan/Copy) - Black
Offered by jj-pc-store
Price: £85.00

35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not advised for people with high blood pressure, 29 Oct. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
What's good:-
More compact that most printers, including previous Epsons;
W-fi works well and easy to set up (but see instruction manual under what's bad);
Initial excellent results with photos using gloss paper;
The automatic motorised output tray is a really helpful innovation;
Scanning is reasonable standard.
CD printing is fine if you can get it to work.

What's neutral:
Printer uses different cartridges from (my) previous Epsons, so stockpiled cartridges are redundant.

What's bad:-
Lousy quality with satin photopaper, regardless of setting;
After printing a couple of batches of photos, my machine started scoring the photopaper;
Next it started spewing out a blank sheet of paper for every sheet printed;
The printed instructions appear to have been written by a pre-school child: the numbered instructions run 1,2,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,1,2,3,4,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,1,2,3,1,2;
The Adobe manual is only a marginal improvement on this - when trying to find out how to CD print, there were bits of instruction in various different parts of the manual; these told me what not to do, but not what to do;
Could not get the machine to print CD's using the Epson CDPrint software supplied. The programme didn't acknowledge the existence of the printer. I finally got a CD printed using Accoustica software;
The machine is flimsier than previous Epsons - when you press the power-on button, the whole panel gives;
Epson on-line support varies with who you get. The second bloke I got really did try to help with the CD problem. Here is a transcript of the on-line chat with the first bloke:-

Me: Just got XP-760. Fine except: Latest CD Print software (downloaded after printer installation) does not recognise the 760, only my old Epson printers. When I try to set up 760 for CD print via its touch screen, it tells me to insert a memory card.

Tom: Thank you for contacting Epson's UK Customer Interaction Centre based in Telford, Shropshire. My name is Tom
Hi. In order to print on the CD I would recommend you install the Print CD software on a computer and then print from there directly. Please confirm your operating system type, e.g. Windows 7, Vista or Mac OS Snow Leopard (10.6.x)

Me: Windows 7. That's what I've tried to do.

Tom: Please use the following link to download the software you require:

Me: I've already downloaded it. Problem came post-download.

Tom: I would recommend viewing the following article, this will help you resolve your query. Please log off from this service to follow the steps outlined in the article:
We have had no response from you; if you still require assistance, please respond to continue the chat session.
Your session will end shortly; should you wish to return to our Epson online chat service, please reconnect via, quoting your session ID. Lines are open 9am to 5:30pm Monday to Friday.

Me: Article doesn't solve problem. It's about the MO of earlier models. I've printed CD's without problem on my PX650 and 660, but the 760 doesn't register on CD print.

Tom: Okay I would recommend you uninstall and reinstall the printer driver using the latest version of the printer driver
If the printer is not listed then that would indicate it is a driver issue so uninstalling and reinstalling the driver should resolve that for you.

Me: Do you mean go back and reinstall the printer software from square 1?

Tom: Correct yes

Me: What about the thing with the printer asking me to insert a memory card. Does the 760 only do CD print with a memory card inserted?

Tom: That is when you want to print from a memory card to a CD on the printer itself
No you can print a CD using the print CD software on your computer without a memory card inserted
I recommend that you log off and try this. We hope your issue is resolved shortly but please reconnect to our online chat service if the problem persists
Is there anything else I may help with?
Your session will end shortly; should you wish to return to our Epson online chat service, please reconnect via, quoting your session ID. Lines are open 9am to 5:30pm Monday to Friday.

Me: Thank you. I will include a transcript of this chat on my Amazon review.

No amount of re-downloading and re-installing solved the problem. The printer has gone back to Amazon - not because of the CD problem but because I don't want score lines across my photos.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 16, 2016 5:05 PM BST

Dyson v6 Absolute Cordless Vacuum Cleaner - Silver & Pink
Dyson v6 Absolute Cordless Vacuum Cleaner - Silver & Pink
Offered by euroelectricals
Price: £359.99

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant First Impression, but Fatal Design Flaw, 17 Oct. 2015
A joy at first, and might continue to be for dogless people with a home that's 99% pristine before they start vacuuming. But the dust receptacle is no bigger than the one on the hand-held baby Dyson, and the joy was soon tempered by having to carry a plastic bag round the house, emptying the thing after every two minutes of vacuuming. Even then the V6 constantly went into cut-out mode signifying blockage - the blockage always round the tiny valve which admits the dirt into the receptacle.
If I didn't have so much respect for Mr Dyson's accomplishments, I'd put the whole thing down as a con. It's clear that the dust receptacle is far too small and feeble for its task but, of course, the smaller the receptacle the greater the suction. It's like breeding a racehorse that will win any race as long as it's less than 50 yards long.
What they have got right is the battery: the charge lasts long enough to get round a three bedroom house, and if you've got anything bigger you've probably got someone else doing the vacuuming anyway.

byteStor Pro 128GB USB 3.0 High Speed Flash Drive - Red
byteStor Pro 128GB USB 3.0 High Speed Flash Drive - Red
Price: £22.45

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Far, Brilliant, 10 Jun. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was wary of the 128gb capacity in case it was too ambitious for what is a physically a very small device.. But it worked straight off without argument, Transferred a massive amount of data which all still looks intact a fortnight later. Speed seemed fine.

I've had other flash drives that made a good first impression, but then became useless a couple of months on. However, this Bytestor seems to be related to Integral. The casing is identical to some Integrals I've had for a while - and they've never made a wrong move. Unlike a recent Transcend, and a Corsair Voyager which went terminal after a few months. I also tried an I-Boutique, but that at least had the decency to never work at all.

The Traveling Kind
The Traveling Kind
Price: £9.99

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great album, stupid packaging, 31 May 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Traveling Kind (Audio CD)
I think the reviewer who calls Emmylou's voice 'seriously shot' just likes the look of the phrase on his screen. Her voice is better than ever. In fact everything about her has - with only a couple of lapses in forty odd years - just kept getting better. There's always been an unimpeachable integrity about Emmylou Harris; it's survived the Nashville machine and it's helped make her one of the most attractive women on the planet. As to this album, I was engaged by it straight off - which I wasn't by 'Old Yellow Moon.' The latter mainly sounded to me like a disposal bin for songs that hadn't hacked it to a solo album. 'The Traveling Kind' has strong songs, strong arrangements and a cohesion that transcends the 'two greats re-united' hype. OK, it's not Red Dirt Girl. But you couldn't make an album like that more than once in every twenty years or so.
The reason for docking a star is the packaging: one of those dreadful slip cases, not much better than a Sunday Mail freebie - i.e. you can't extract the CD out without getting fingerprints on the playside and scraping it against card which is hard enough to scratch but soft enough to dog-ear. But then that's marketing: the CD jewel case was just too functional to stay sexy.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 27, 2015 5:40 PM GMT

Unit One - Series 1 [DVD]
Unit One - Series 1 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mads Mikkelsen
Price: £9.94

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does Not Need a US Remake, 26 May 2015
This review is from: Unit One - Series 1 [DVD] (DVD)
Like probably most people who've seen the Bridge and The Killing, I couldn't face going back to standard US fare. Of the Danish stuff I've so far viewed in an effort to capture that sheer degree of engagement, Unit One has come nearest. Clever plots, some incisive politics, interesting and very non-standard characters (apart from Gabby and Johnny who I think are supposed to be irritating), plus a lead female who's not crazy, just does her job and doesn't have to keep reminding everyone she's a woman (as in the worst of the bunch so far: Those Who Kill). Plus, unlike The Killing, there's not a lot of time spent with people gazing meaningfully into the middle distance. Can't fault it.

The Concise Untold History of the United States
The Concise Untold History of the United States
by Oliver Stone
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.18

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's so far the other way my county's gone...., 5 May 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a well written, well researched book with admirable economy of style. It gives credit to the handful of US politicians who have attempted to check the excesses of their country, and is very clear on those responsible for the excesses. If you had any lingering notion of the USA as kindly old Uncle Sam who wouldn't hurt a fly unless he really had to, this should leave little room for doubt that Uncle Sam is the worse kind of abuser - with all the attendant self-righteousness of the classic abuser. From this book it's clear that the death toll, torture rates and straightforward decimation of entire countries at the hands of the US rivals Nazi Germany for mass atrocity in the name of ideology - and that the real starting point was the dropping of atomic bombs on Japan when it was already negotiating for surrender. The book also shows that turning a blind eye on the grounds that it's 'OK as long as it's not my back yard' is naive; that any country moving too far left for US comfort could be the next victim. As to the UK's role, there's little for Brits to be proud of in this book.

Standing In The Breach
Standing In The Breach
Price: £9.18

5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous, 26 Dec. 2014
This review is from: Standing In The Breach (Audio CD)
This is a joy. Unlike 'Time the Conqueror', I was sold on first hearing. Wary because the cover pic hinted at another human rights over music project, I regret only my delay in buying it. If you loved Late for the Sky - and who couldn't? - the only excuse for not loving this would be that some of the arrangements are just a tad derivative of Late for the Sky. But that's fine with me. The songs stand on their own. Anyway the likeness of the arrangements seems to have been intentional: there's even that exquisite lead guitar on 'Walls and Doors' that I assumed was David Lindley until I saw the name Val McCullum on the credits (and no trace of David Lindley, unless he's moonlighting as Val McCullum).

As to Browne's voice, it's better than ever. It can't be easy being an old West Coaster, but Jackson Browne is certainly not falling back on old glories. This would stand up in any era, and I think would pass the current acid test: i.e. Pete Waterman wouldn't like it.

The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11
The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11
Price: £81.80

11 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Bob's Pension Supplement, 8 Nov. 2014
The forty year saga of official Basement Tapes releases has indicated that Columbia/Sony lag well behind the bootleggers in terms of giving fans what they want. It's never been clear whether this was down to ignorant compilers, commercial keep-something-for-later strategy or just our Bob's usual contrariness. The first official Basement Tapes release in the mid-seventies omitted two of the best songs from the original acetate (available to chosen ones in the music industry but not to fans): I Shall Be Released and Quinn the Eskimo. Given that the latter was one of the characters depicted on the cover, this was either stratospheric incompetence or a sadistic taunt. The album also opted for inferior takes of Too Much of Nothing and Tears of Rage, all in all leaving you better off with the bootlegs. Over subsequent years we got further official Basement dribs and drabs distributed over a couple of expensive boxset compilations. This finally gave us I Shall Be Released in 1991 but, till now, never the right take of Quinn the Eskimo..

Forty years on we get the whole thing offered us for around a hundred quid - or an alternative sampler with a haywire tracklist begging to be passed over in favour of the hundred quid job. In the meantime, anyone who really wanted the Basement Tapes proper would have bought the Tree With Roots bootleg set, This had 107 tracks, fine sound and a price tag around £20. Trouble is this new Sony cash-cow has a couple of dozen more tracks.

If you're trying to decide whether to buy it, there's another reviewer here who has a very fair point: much of the Basement Tapes was just a bunch of blokes displaying the effects of easy access to Bob Dylan's wine cellar. The other thing to bear in mind is that, a long time ago, Dylan acquired last-word control of his releases. So the ridiculous price tag is something he has some responsibility for. The question is: do you want to spend six hours or so listening to the revelries of the billionaire who's ripping you off?
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 17, 2014 12:05 PM GMT

Nero 9 (PC CD)
Nero 9 (PC CD)

1.0 out of 5 stars Less a Programme Than a Virus, 1 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Nero 9 (PC CD) (CD-ROM)
The worst piece of software I've ever encountered. The previously simple task of grabbing a track from CD now makes filling in a tax return look straightforward. It's apt that Nero was the bloke who fiddled while Rome burned.

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