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Ryan Douglas "halmyre" (Milton Keynes, U.K.)

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Give The People What They Want
Give The People What They Want
Price: £7.03

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kinks stride confidently into third decade, 23 Sep 2011
I have been a fan of The Kinks for a long time, but like many people I hadn't gone much further than the sixties hits. With recent Davies brothers documentaries on the TV and the splendid job done with these reissues of the RCA and Arista years, I decided to explore further.
This album in particular caught my attention because I have never heard The Kinks sound so heavy and aggressive. The tunes are still there of course but this is an out and out heavy rock sound- Mick Avory's drumming sounds fantastic. As much as I love bands that have their own sound, I love bands more when they take brave bold steps and rip up the rule book- this album exemplifies that!
For me the stand out tracks are the fantastic opener Around The Dial, Killer's Eyes, Destroyer and the wonderful song of consolation that closes the album Better Things. Elsewhere we have more disturbing fare in A Little Bit Of Abuse, about domestic violence and Art Lover, a creepy song about a man with an unhealthy fascination with young girls! This album will no doubt divide fans of the band, but for me its a winner, a tuneful, exciting album that improves with repeated listening!

Scenes From A Marriage [DVD] [1973]
Scenes From A Marriage [DVD] [1973]
Dvd ~ Liv Ullmann

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A pleasent journey through the mill, 24 Sep 2009
In writing this review I am assuming that the reader has a real interest in the films of Bergman. If you are starting out on your Swedish odyssey or are looking for your next Bergman fix then this is a superb choice. As with many Bergman films you are right in the middle of the turmoil, but if you persevere you will be richly rewarded. The film was originally a six episode TV mini series and indeed the film is structured in the same way with six distinct chapters. Though there are many strands to the film, the central theme is the marriage between Marianne (Liv Ullman) and Johan (Erland Josephson). Marianne is the dutiful housewife who dotes upon her children and her husband and is happy with things as they are. Johan on the other hand is the tired breadwinner going through a midlife crisis. His solution is to initiate an affair with a younger woman and eventually leave Marianne to live with the younger model. Marianne is devestated by this betrayal and her world is turned upside down. The magic of this film is Liv Ullman's portrayal of a woman wondering what her place is in the world and eventually through trials and tribulations stands tall and independent. Johan meanwhile soon realises his mistake (typical man!) You may think I have given too much away but believe me there is much to marvel at that a simple review can't tell you- watch it! The acting is superb and as with many Bergman films it is the women who have the strongest and most engaging roles- Liv Ullman is an amazing actor and should be as well known as her Hollywood contemporaries.

Gold [Australian Import]
Gold [Australian Import]
Price: £10.03

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfectly compiled!, 7 Oct 2007
What can be said of Tears For Fears? They have never been flavour of the month, they are never mentioned as a genre-defining, or era-defining band. Certainly they have not been elevated to any legendary status regardless of two U.S. number ones. So much the better (in my personal opinion) because if they were constantly analysed and examined many would become quite sick of them. Tears for Fears were smart, always keeping their distance for the ugly freak show that was 80's pop. Instead they crafted thought provoking music and a string of excellent albums. Allow me to indulge in a short history. Through the 80's the band created three superb albums, The Hurting, Songs From The Big Chair and The Seeds Of Love, this last album costing the band a great deal of money and their partnership, Smith left under accrimonious circumstances. This left Orzabal to go solo with the moniker and produce two light weight rather pretentious albums in the early 90's- Elemental and Raoul And The Kings Of Spain. Tears For Fears then went into an extended hibernation and to everyone's eternal surprise the duo reunited and released the excellent Everybody Loves A Happy Ending in 2004. This compilation compiles all the singles released under the Tears For Fears name, all the biggest hits and those that politely popped in and out of the charts with the minimum of fuss. The overall picture is very satisfying, moving, thought- provoking, charming, wierd and at times tongue-in-cheek. I would recommend this compilation to any fan of the band or those with a love of pop music and are willing to have their eyes opened to how powerful this music can be.

Coney Island Baby
Coney Island Baby
Price: £5.27

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A reason to love Lou, 10 Aug 2007
This review is from: Coney Island Baby (Audio CD)
Lou Reed needed to make this album. His previous work, the infamous Metal Machine Music had alienated all except the chin-stroking arty brigade. No one in their right mind would call that collage of feedback and screaming a work of genius, however bold and unprecedented. So with his recording contract with RCA hanging by a thread, mounting legal battles, no money and no guitars all Reed had was music.
What we have in Coney Island Baby may appear to be typical Reed fare- biographical songs of growing up and the environment of his youth delivered with lyrics that cut you one moment and amuse you the next. However it is the wonderful music that really delivers the punch of the album, but in a much more gentle and tuneful way than the Reed we know, or tend to pigeon-hole. The musicianship is wonderful, drummer Michael Suchorsky is superb and entwined with Bruce Yaw on bass you have a powerful musical muscle- Reed has always known how to put together a great rhythm section. Reed's guitar work is better than ever and he sings with genuine warmth, though thankfully without twee sentimentality.
I rate this album as highly as any of Reed's great works- Transformer, The Blue Mask, New York and Ecstacy, and of course the Velvets! Too many people still think of Reed as the man who wrote Perfect Day and I would recommend this album to any Reed fan or those who think he went nowhere after Transformer. Reed's career is an embarrasment of hidden riches and here's an absolute gem
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 27, 2013 7:04 PM GMT

Between Tides
Between Tides
Offered by mrtopseller
Price: £7.00

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blissful, 28 May 2007
This review is from: Between Tides (Audio CD)
Before I discuss the music let me dispell two myths around this music. Firstly, Roger Eno is not working in the shadow of his brother Brian. Roger Eno is a composer and as such this album should be viewed as a contemporary classical work. Secondly, although this album is very tranquil and contemplative it should not be seen as 'new age', a term I personally loathe.

The brilliance of this music is its simplicity and evocative power. The concept behind the album is of the world (specifically England) emerging from the Dark Ages and into the age of Enlightenment. A weighty topic to be sure, but on listening you are aware of things changing and evolving, as the album title suggests. Add to this a parallel fascination with the changing seasons and you have and album full of contrasts. Titles such as 'Dust at dawn' and 'Almost dark', 'The Frost' and 'Sunburst' take the listener from day to night, from winter to summer, and back again.

It is a very English sound akin to Vaughn Williams in its pastoral atmosphere, evocking a lost world, or maybe one that never existed, moving forward yet romantic and nostalgic.

I would recommend this album highly to those who love classical music or those who are yet to dip their toe, as it contains tunes that will become familiar and may in time become close to your heart.

Original Folk Blues...Plus
Original Folk Blues...Plus
Price: £9.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Let's Talk It Over..., 9 Mar 2007
Let me state first off- I'm no blues expert, but having read a few magazine articles and music compendiums down my local library on our man Hooker I thought I'd try this compilation. Originally released in 1954 on the Modern Label this selection compiled songs Hooker had recorded between 1948 and 1954. Ace Records (always a label to be trusted for quality) re-released it in 1994 with six bonus selections of the same period.

If you are a blues fan, or even just a fan of music that speaks to the listner you cannot help but be "hooked!" This is one man and his guitar for ten of the eightteen tracks, accompanied only by beer bottle tops stuck to the end of his shoe tapping the floorboards- just fantastic! Even when he is accompanied by other musicians this is still Hooker's show and the force and conviction in his delivery is startling, hypnotic and at points, scary!

Hooker was a one-off his story cannot be repeated as he is of a generation of blues musicians who brought their craft to the wider world and influenced the course of popular music. Sounds heavy I know, but this music is great regardless of the baggage of history- sex, love, murder and drinking never sounded so good!

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