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R. Pievaitis "aka richard meadows, BleedTheField" (communing with the arcturians above new mexico)
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Starcastle
Starcastle

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars if you like YES then you will either love or hate this !?!, 27 May 2009
This review is from: Starcastle (Audio CD)
i remember this being advertised the 1st time around in sounds in the 70,s i always thought it looked a great sleeve and a brilliant name.
so it only took me 30 years to buy it but thank god i did.
if like me you love anything from yes in the 70,s upto tormatoe,then you maybe interested in this.
it is an absolute ringer for close to the edge style Yes,no doubt about where these guys were coming from but looking at the release date this is when yes had gone off the rails in most peoples eyes( the tales from topographic oceans/relayer era and then followed by silence with the solo albums following closely) so i suppose starcastle deemed it right for some older style Yes.
BUT CLOSE YOUR EYES AND IT IS VERY SIMILAR.
the bass is squire rickenbacker,keys are organ and moog and the vocals like anderson but not copy cat- just right for the music but not slavishly !
still if like me you always are on the look out for YES type music then this is a godsend.
it is very good but bear in mind it is like a tribute band version of yes.
still if you cannot get enough of that style then you will love it.
i am so glad i finally got around to hearing this album ,i have now bought all the rest of their output.
so if you love classic period YES then you will not go wrong with STARCASTLE.
P.S. how many times have you read that so and so sound just like YES only to buy it and think to yourself "thats nothing like yes ",well i,m pleased to say this one really does sound like Yes- BIG TIME like YES.put it this way once i heard the opening bass guitar sound i had a smile like cheshire cat for the next hour.
go on try it see what i mean !
richard m-p
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 11, 2010 1:49 PM BST


Spiritual Bonding
Spiritual Bonding
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £82.95

4.0 out of 5 stars read this review if you want to buy this cd cheaper, 18 May 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Spiritual Bonding (Audio CD)
one piece of advice to any of you vidna /ambient/e-music fans.if you want to hear this music and also own it on cd, but are not willing to part with anything over £15, i.e. a prudent collector,then may i suggest you buy the compilation of 3 of vidna's earlier work. which, suprise,suprise, contains most of this album and its remastered too.by buying, on amazon, the superb collection called " the subterranean collective"this has most,if not all,of the tracks from this album, as well as 2 other of vidna ealier rare albums.refer to the actual cd for more details.
now that is the way to get to hear the music,so is it worth even buying the cheaper collection?the simple answer is yes,this is a lovely ambient album,no industrial noises or ethnic polyrhythms,just pure synth passages together with vidna's wonderful overtone sounds.
so if you are a completist,like me,then you have to shell out all this dosh ,but if you are wondering what the music is actually like then buy the subteranean collective instead and get two other vidna albums included for the price of one.
your choice,guys/gals.


Song of Times
Song of Times
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £29.95

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars if you like the "sound" of Yes then try this one, 26 April 2009
This review is from: Song of Times (Audio CD)
As a teenager in the mid 70,s i used to read both NME and Sounds and i remember seeing promo adverts for Starcastle in there most weeks.Generally they were along side adverts for bands like Kansas and Angel.Now if ,like me , you have a soft spot for the american version of our "prog rock " when Geoff Barton coined the phrase "pomp rock " in 77 whilst reviewing the latest release by Starcastle called Citadel,then you will love this new album after nearly 25 years of silence.
There is no doubt that the main influence for this "band" is Yes,with the Rickenbacker bass sound of Chris Squire and the vocal timbres and phrasing of Jon Anderson being very prevalent.
It is not a slavish influence though with enough of the bands own personalty coming through as well.
Earlier i used; "band", the reason i did this is that once you look at the musicians involved here,it is quite clear that this was more a project rather than a traditional band effort.With the now deceased bass player Gary Strater being the mainstay.But original vocalist Terry Luttrell is involved also.
As it turned out i never got into Starcastle in the 70,as this was exactly the time that punk sprouted here and we all then spent our pennies on the new wave music rather than old school stuff like this.
However, i never lost my love for prog/pomp rock and now that i am older i am catching up on all the beauties that i overlooked back then.But this album is not just a nostalgia treat it is well produced and sounds very much on a par with more "modern " bands like Porcupine Tree etc etc in terms of production.
So go on buy it and sit back and wallow in the beauty of the songs here and the amazing musicianship that is on offer.you just do not get this level of deep musical listening involvement with too many other genres of music- other than say dark ambient or classical music ?
Beautiful music,well played,produced,sung and presented.
R.I.P.- Gary.
lol
richard m-p


In Hearing of Atomic Rooster
In Hearing of Atomic Rooster
Price: £8.24

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars one of the worst albums ever made ?, 24 April 2009
Before i get a hammering i am not being contoversial just for the sake of it.Perhaps i should set the scene ?
Back in 1976 in Leeds we had a great independant record shop called "Scene and Heard"at the rear of Debenhams.
Well, every now and then they had a stock clearance with a huge box containing all lps for 50 pence.This week it must have been a quiet week for the only albums in the box were loads of this record.
I remember the moment well as when we were looking at the cover they were playing the section form "Roxy and elsewhere" by Zappa when he says "jazz ain,t dead yet it just smells s little !"
To this day i,ve never forgotten that line and where i hear it- at the time i did not know who it was or what album it was from - only taken me 30 years to solve that one !?!?!
Back to the subject- so as we did not have much money, only enough to get the bus fare back home to Morley.My friend and i decided that it couldn,t be all that bad and bought a copy each.I had heard little bits of Atomic Rooster on the legendary Alan Freeman show on saturday afternoon and i did like Deep Purple and the likes( hard rock) .
Once we got home we played the disc and sat there waiting for the heavy bits to kick in- where was the guitar,it seemed to be dominated by Vincent Crane's Hammond organ(again we were big Gibson guitar fans- Led Zep et al )and the Hammond was not our fave instrument( apart from John Lord's, as he put it thru a 100 watt marshall stack anyway !).Onto side 2 - still nothing.the songs were juvenile and similar to one another.
The one that stands out to me still is the truly awful"Black Snake"-with its idiotic refrain of "black snake caught in the long grass" ad infinitum !
It made me feel ill it was so.....bad,now we realised why there 20 copies in the bargain bin- it was not worth anything.
I then did something i had never done before and have never done since ( in respect to the artist) but i slung it out of my friend's bedroom window( as you do at the age of 13 ) and it went for miles down the road like a saucer.
So i have told you the truth as to how i felt about this record.It was showing the truly worst of the heavy/hard rock/blues scene that in less than 12 months later would be blasted into space by "New Rose" and "Anarchy in the UK "- which sounded so fresh and alive compared to this deadwood.I still bought the good old stuff but the arrival of punk rock really did give the "rock royalty" a damn good clearout.
This album is one of the worst examples of a dying ,boring "art form "of the early/mid 70,s.
I would advise anyone who is not a collector or completist to avoid this like the plague.
This is my own honest opinion and any other views are acknowledged- it is a free world( well not everywhere !)
lol
richard m-p
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 2, 2011 7:54 PM BST


The Downward Spiral [Deluxe Edition] [HYBRID SACD]
The Downward Spiral [Deluxe Edition] [HYBRID SACD]
Price: £20.98

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the classic albums of all time !, 22 April 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
i came into the world of NIN rather late,not until i read about this sacd in fact,well what on earth have i been missing ?
so immediately after listening to this wonderful album i then decided to buy all the NIN back catalogue and came across the whole unique musical world of trent reznor.
but anyway back to this album,now i did not hear the original version of this album but having heard a few multi channel sacds i will keep to the actual point of this review i.e. if you want to know about how good this record is then read the reviews of the standard issue version,i will keep to how good this sacd is.
well ,so far many of my sacd purchases have been a little bit of a letdown.some times you buy one and it is not in surround,e.g. the sacd version of peter gabriel's album number 4 is NOT IN MULTI CHANNEL.yes it is a sacd but not in surround.
quite frankly i am becoming quite bemused over the amount of technical jargon and insider knowledge that is now needed to work out whether you will hear the disc in good quality or excellent quality,is DTS better than dvda? what about 24,48 96 bit resolution etc etc,i always thought dts was the better option but seemingly no.dvda in 96 bit would be bettr,well can we please have one industry standard ?
thank god that this disc is the best of all types, don,t ask me why, but it is.if you have a proper sacd player then you will be presented with one of the highest quality recording i have ever heard.ever !
obviously, you also have the excellent second disc with the rare versions of various b sides remixes and the joy division cover version which is very good indeed.
but for any hifi nut who has the real gear then this one sacd will show you exactly what a good multichannel will do.if you only ever buy one sacd( which,of course you wil not if you have paid out all the money for one !!!!) but make this sacd one of your first purchases and it will not let you down.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 19, 2009 4:00 PM BST


Glance
Glance
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £11.68

4.0 out of 5 stars great album, but totally different to what came next, 17 April 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Glance (Audio CD)
now let me say that if you have come across rose via unholy majesty and hurricane then you may not appreciate this one ?
this, i think, is her debut on park records and is in the vein of the folk singer songwriter,with elements like joni mitchell coming in now and again and her own mother also.her voice is a marvel and is very powerful and capable of much emotional expression as shown on most of the songs .
the subject matters in the songs are very mature and handled in a sensitive manner unlike people like say avril lavigne.
the backing tends to be samey with not too much variation between each track comprising acoustic guitar,lovely bass playing,slight keyboard/synth phrases now and again.
on 1st listen my favourite is "individual" which is reminiscent of early beatles or crowded house.the song is very catchy with a wonderful chorus.i wonder if she still performs this one in her live set ?
i also picked up on "conscience" and "his music" as standout tracks on 1st listen but i am sure the others will come into their own upon further listens.
now the problem comes because rose is now no longer following this style of music at all and anyone buying the next one "hurricanes" expecting more of the same would have their head blown off.
she is now embracing the drone/doom/heavy progressive rock area.personally i find her new music very challenging and much more to my own liking than this debut.
i like to be challenged when listening to music,however it does all depend on my mood at the time,as always but beware those expecting more folky music on say unholy majesty,you would probably run a million miles or die on the spot.
so if you like soft,well written lyrics( which she still has obviously) and a very good voice then you will love this,but tread with care on the follow ups - if you are into "soft" music.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 19, 2009 3:53 PM BST


Unholy Majesty [VINYL]
Unholy Majesty [VINYL]

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lovely gatefold sleeve - just as they used to be !, 17 April 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Unholy Majesty [VINYL] (Vinyl)
for full details of the album content refer to the cd reviews but i am purely looking at the vinyl version is it worth the extra cost etc etc.
the quick answer depends on whether you like vinyl over cd.i have bought both versions of this album,as the cd came out first,usual these days but remember the mid/late 80's the vinyl used to come out first so thats what i bought and then as the cd s became more available i then bought the cd version- talk about making more money for the record companies !
but more fool me i suppose. however, i became aware of this via rose kemps own myspace page- it was released late last year(08) and IS very limited to 500 copies on blood red- i think there was another colour also but the red( the one to get) was limited to 500.
the quality of the album is top notch.it is a beautiful gatefold as such it presents the cover painting in much better resolution and quality.
there are no other extras but the quality of the music is fab-u-lous.
if you have a decent ( or any, for that fact !)turntable( record player in my day ),then give it a treat try this out for a powerful explosion of pure power.go on girl- rose you are my no. 1.


Alone Together
Alone Together
Price: £11.98

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars like a fine wine - grows better with age, 16 April 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Alone Together (Audio CD)
i must thank robert above for highlighting this fabulous record here.
based solely upon his comments i decided to buy this cd and before going on a trip to the lake district i put it on my ipod (on aac 320) and played it whilst there.
now i will be very honest here and say on first listen,maybe i was not in the right mood or whatever ,but i was a little bored.
i thought ,oh here we go another neo prog-marillion,porcupine tree copycat band.i do think the vocals do have a touch of early Fish about them on first listen.there is the usual highly produced drum sound,the meduin gain-set guitar,the usual "modern" keyboard style.i thought it was jigsaw piece prog,or prog by numbers so to speak.the songs seemed to just meander for ever and go nowhere.

was this the same cd that dr robert had spoke so highly about - cause he is usually right on his subjects ?i,ll admitt i was a tad grieved.

however,lets move on 4 weeks and to now.last night i re-read the review and decided that i must have missed something somewhere.so i went outside of my house at near dusk with a drink and my trusty pipe and played the songs again on my ipod.
this time round( the drink was only orange juice i,m afraid due to my illness thats all i can have - see other entries for more details)the songs came to life straight away,they jumped at me with vigour and verve.
how strange is that- has that ever happened to you before?
very odd indeed.
but this time around i can totally agree with roberts comments.the record is a fine example of a modern prog( there are no trad. moog/mellotron sounds so lets not class it as neo prog) it is in the vein of riverside/P.T. rather than glass hammer/early spocks etc etc.but maybe i was not in the right frame of mind or is it that when you hear some tunes they take a little while longer to register in your brain function than say something by elton john.
but i can only reiterate the above review but with the proviso that maybe like me it may take some time for the tunes and musicanship to shine thru.
now that its hit me,i can wholly say go and buy it along with experiments in mass appeal by frost as one of the finest example of modern prog.very classy indeed.


Seven
Seven
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £67.95

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars what a pleasant suprise - one hell of a voice, 30 Mar. 2009
This review is from: Seven (Audio CD)
having been a fan of the genre of the so-called "prog rock", for want of a better term,since 1974 i am always on the look out for any new band or artist that seeks to rejuvenate or merely resurrect the genre.
with this in mind i bought this album on the original label F2 when it first came out.i am ashamed to admit that it has then slipped into my cd collection without me ever playing it- i,m sure we,ve all got these cds that you buy and somthing else comes long and you totally forget about it - in my case i also bought deadwing by PT and then bought all their back catalogue or as much as i could afford !
however i placed this album, their second after the double Revolutions also on F2, on my ipod today.my god what have i been missing.this is superb.
the vocals are truly outstanding,christina booth is one of those wonderful british singers with a pure voice,like annie haslam,sandy denny,kate rusby etc etc,very nice to hear in these days of fake ,computerised vocals from the likes of the X factor brigade.
unlike one of the chaps above me who says there one or two nods to the past i have to disagree, there are massive debts to the past.
namely,the influence of both Yes and Genesis,in terms of the keybord sounds- you get the mellotron and the moog,both staples of Wakeman and in the 2nd song the guitarist does a passable attempt at Steve Howes sound on Gates of Delerium from Relayer- you know the stabbing telecaster on a tight reverb sound he loves.
what the hell i,d rather hear weeks of this type of music rather than the limp and sterile sound of most of todays so called rock crowd- the Killers anyone- what a load of hype.
there is nothing of any progression here hence my concern about this type of music being called "progressive rock music"- lets get this right - in its day in 1971-74, it was truly progressive,this is NOT. it is a very good pastiche of all the elements that made up the music we all love so much.
it is really retro rock - to coin a phrase.for some the epitome of pure evil i,m sure ( if you got into the year zero stuff you,ll know what i mean )but for those of us that didn,t really believe parsons and burchill this is like going back in time.
Magenta are one of the better retro bands i can think of - along with Morse era- Spocks Beard, Glass Hammer and Flowerkings.so pretty good company i think.
overall ,of its kind,one of the most accomplished albums for some time.
i must now go and buy the newer albums and complete my collection.
overall,pleasantly suprised.
yours
richard m-p
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 18, 2010 11:02 PM GMT


The Annie Lennox Collection (2 Cd + DVD)
The Annie Lennox Collection (2 Cd + DVD)

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars fabulous music but confused about the dvd contents, 21 Mar. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
help,i am just about to order this 3 disc package,mainly for the music which looks to be a fab-u-lous selection of annies best work.
but i am getting really confused over the inclusion or not of the "love song for a vampire "video.
now if you look at the FULL listing above ( click on the option and you get the whole list) it states it is track 10 on the dvd.so why are people here ,namely mr woolf saying that it is not on the disc !!!!
if you also play the promotional video on this Amazon page above- the one that shows the cover art with the brian adams photo,it DOES show the love song for a vampire promo vid is included.
so far so confused.
well i suppose i will have to wait for my copy to arrive in the morning and check it out myself !?
but if it isn,t on the 3rd disc - amazon ,expect some serious complaining from me about the Trade Description Act.you cannot simply go around puting wrong information on a website and AGAIN on the promo film for the same product on your website and expect to get away with it.
however if love song for a vampire IS on the dvd disc then what the heck are these people here on about ?
so i,ll post again tommorrow,-expect some reaction one way or another.
p.s. why cannot people get the facts right in the first place and then it all makes one little less problem to carry round in your head.
i do try to de clutter my brain everynight before going to sleep as there is so much trivia swimming around in our world today.
as regards the packaging again i will report back in the morning when this beauty arrives.
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 18, 2010 11:05 PM GMT


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