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The Soft Machine Operator (COVENTRY, WARWICKSHIRE United Kingdom)
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

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X-CERT 2: The British Independent Horror Film: 1971-1983 (Hemlock Film)
X-CERT 2: The British Independent Horror Film: 1971-1983 (Hemlock Film)
by John Hamilton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.88

4.0 out of 5 stars A good overview for 'enthusiasts' and novices., 20 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As I've been following horror movies since the 1980s, there was a lot in this book I already knew about (Such as Norman J Warren and Pete Walker) but at the same time the insight into the making of some of the lesser known seventies horrors is quite interesting, especially the AIP stuff like Madhouse, Horror Express, and that deliriously mad 'Horror Hospital'. I didn't read the book from start to finish, but dipped in and out based on what took my fancy. The author has researched well and there are plenty of anecdotes and stories from the sets, plus the background behind the financial arrangement and other problems. I particularly enjoyed the story about how Peter Cushing was persuaded to remain in Spain to film 'Horror Express' after telling the producers he was pulling out by Christopher Lee just telling him that 'I'll see you at work tomorrow' after a meal out.

What is also interesting is how the book charts the decline of the UK horror industry as its film industry collapsed. The US backers pulled out due to tax changes, leaving film-makes with virtually no money. Given this, some of the work produced is pretty miraculous.

A lot of his will probably not be new to horror enthusiasts, but even so, it's a well written book and nice to have around to dip into. One thing it made me do was revisit some of these old horror movies. Even better, it made me appreciate that whilst the critics savages a lot of these films, there's a lot of good stuff from this period.


Just Us [VINYL]
Just Us [VINYL]
Price: £19.84

5.0 out of 5 stars Challenging, Noisy and Rewarding, 20 Dec 2014
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This review is from: Just Us [VINYL] (Vinyl)
An incredible journey! I dont know what the individual tracks are on this, as it's difficult to know when things begin and end, but it doesn't matter. The opening track is an electric guitar based cacophony that sounds improvised, leading into industrial sounding tracks with what appear to be hammers clattering metal, jagged piano riffs and rumbling bass lines. At one point (Maybe track 3?) there's a gentle acoustic guitar based track. Towards the end there's a quiet passage that leads to what sounds like a saw being used on a tree trunk.

This is a challenging, noisy and rewarding trip. The band are capable of moving swiftly from avant-garde sounds to acoustic ballads and revisit their past along the way with the metal bashing. It's definitely more like early Faust albums in this respect, perhaps Faust IV or the Faust Tapes. If you like that period of the band, then you'll love this. Surprisingly, I found it quite good to chill out.


Christmas Evil (You Better Watch Out)
Christmas Evil (You Better Watch Out)
Price: £7.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Good music, but short., 20 Dec 2014
Be warned: there is only about 12 minutes of music on this album, and it appears to have been taken directly from the film soundtrack itself and features incidental sounds and crackles (Of the optical track?) That's not to say the music isn't fine: it is creepy piano/synth based sounds that are quite eerie and easily as good as anything else from the 1980s. It's just short, and this doesn't justify the cost.


Integral SD (Secure Digital) Single Slot Reader
Integral SD (Secure Digital) Single Slot Reader
Price: £3.45

5.0 out of 5 stars Well made and reliable, 20 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Not had a single problem with this device. It works on Macs, PCs and also with Linux virtual machines running on Macs. It looks a bit like a USB memory stick. It only takes SD cards, which shouldn't bother most people. For the price, this is excellent, well made and reliable.


Carte Noire Mixed  Coffee Capsules 53g (Pack of 4)
Carte Noire Mixed Coffee Capsules 53g (Pack of 4)
Price: £11.16

4.0 out of 5 stars Good substitute and a range of strengths., 16 Dec 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A nice mix of tastes. I particularly liked the 'five' and 'seven', nice smooth coffees with a decent frothy top when made as an espresso. The 3 was a bit too watery for my tastes. The 9 is pretty strong, sometimes hits the spot! Overall, a good mix of different tastes. Not as good as the authentic Nespresso capsules, but still worth picking up.


Roberts Travel Pad Bluetooth Speaker with Built In Rechargeable Battery
Roberts Travel Pad Bluetooth Speaker with Built In Rechargeable Battery
Price: £80.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Sound Quality, perfect for home or holiday use., 26 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I doubt this would win any design awards: it's a brick shaped speaker about 1.5 times as long as an ipod and about 3/4 of an inch thick. The speaker is surrounded by curved rubber, which makes it very easy to hold, and there's a connector for a lanyward (Although none was supplied.) at one end. Controls consist of 4 buttons: a power button, a phone button and two buttons for volume. There's a LED that comes on when you're at the highest volume and a battery indicator. On the side is a 'power lock' button (So you can make sure the device doesn't come when something presses against the button, perhaps when you're travelling with it in a bag), a USB connector for charging and an audio input (A cable is supplied.)

The first thing you notice is that the speaker is quite heavy and solid, and the buttons are good quality. Pairing to an iOS device was simple and took seconds: a bluetooth logo flashes to indicate the speaker is available and remains solid when paired. Use the NFC logo on the back to pair automatically. Easy to use.

The sound quality was excellent: I played some early Pink Floyd on full volume and it sounded clear, but with a little bit of distortion occasionally so I turned it down a touch, and their latest album's ambient sections sounded good as well. You could easily use this in an environment with a bit of noise (Such as when cooking). Battery life is good as well, and having an indicator of the level is a bonus (I have other BT speakers that don't tell you this! They just cut out when the power goes.) Battery life is good as well.

I can't really fault this: the sound was good, the build quality is high and the battery life long. Perfect speaker for taking away (I like the power lock feature) but also good as a replacement for desktop computer speakers if your computer supports BT.


SanDisk Extreme SDHC 32 GB UHS-I U3 Memory Card 60 MB/s (SDSDXN-032G-G46)
SanDisk Extreme SDHC 32 GB UHS-I U3 Memory Card 60 MB/s (SDSDXN-032G-G46)
Price: £24.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Good speeds and high capacity, 21 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I did some tests on this and got 46MB/s write speed and 76MB/s read speed, which seems pretty decent. Copying a 2.2GB file took about 40 seconds and was perfectly playable. The capacity means you can record a lot of HD video in a video camera, and it worked fine in a variety of devices such as music players and digital video cameras. Came with the usual plastic case and a small area on the label you can write on. It'll take some time for me to fill this one up!


Carte Noire No.6 Lungo Nespresso Compatible Coffee Capsules 56 g (Pack of 4)
Carte Noire No.6 Lungo Nespresso Compatible Coffee Capsules 56 g (Pack of 4)
Price: £11.16

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Drinkable, better than other 'fakes', but could be better., 18 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
As with number 10, the capsule fit well into my 3 year old Nespresso machine, although they do sometimes get stuck and have to be manually pushed down after use. These are 'Lungo' size. The taste isn't as strong as the number 10, in fact it was a little watery and bitter, but I did get a hint of the smoky woodiness. Prefer number 10, but these are okay 'fake' capsules, better than the others I've tried. I find the real Nespresso capsules have very powerful taste that these lack.


Carte Noire No.10 Espresso Nespresso Compatible Coffee Capsules 53 g (Pack of 4)
Carte Noire No.10 Espresso Nespresso Compatible Coffee Capsules 53 g (Pack of 4)
Price: £11.16

4.0 out of 5 stars Smooth, nice coffee taste, but a little watery., 15 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've tried a few of the 'clone' Nespresso capsules, and they're main pretty unsatisfactory compared to the Nespresso capsules. The Carte Noire ones are probably the best I've had. For a start, the capsules always fit well (I use a 2 year old De Longhi Machine.) unlike others, which sometimes don't. The coffee comes out very frothy with a nice crema. Initial tasting are that it's a little watery (I like the thick taste of Nespresso capsules) but there's a nice intense coffee taste, with a hint of dark chocolate, and it's also pretty smooth. I can easily drink these as espresso. Some of the other capsule brands I can't, and generally use them as the basis for a milky drink or Americano. I'd quite happily use these capsules.


Really Useful Plastic Storage Box 35 Litre Xl - Color: Clear
Really Useful Plastic Storage Box 35 Litre Xl - Color: Clear
Offered by Ryman Stationery and Office Supplies
Price: £14.99

5.0 out of 5 stars The XL is perfect for storing LPs, 13 Nov 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I got this box to store LPs in - if you want to do this, make sure you get the XL size, as it has a taller lid so you can fit records in. These are really, erm, useful. No, seriously, they're good quality, sturdy and the lids snap close tightly. Even better they can be stacked and piled in corners neatly.


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