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Failure
Failure
Price: £5.94

5.0 out of 5 stars Atmpospheric, 26 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Failure (MP3 Download)
I hadn't heard of Jason Hausman before, not until guitarist Dave Foster, who plays lead guitar on the title track ,posted the haunting video which accompanies the song on facebook.
The collection of songs on this excellent and in my opinion far too short album of around 20 minutes are extremely atmospheric and worthy of film soundtracks. For me, my favourite track on Failure is 'Confessions Over the Grave' which doesn't last long enough, which of course is the art of good song-craft, leaving the listener unsatisfied and begging for more. One of my favourite guitarists, Marillion's Steven Rothery features on a couple of tracks, who politely adds to the atmosphere of the songs, not scrawling all over the pieces with ripping guitar solos.
A brilliant album, but make the next one longer please Jason?


Back To Front - Live In London (2 CD+2 DVD  Deluxe Edition) [2014] [NTSC]
Back To Front - Live In London (2 CD+2 DVD Deluxe Edition) [2014] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Peter Gabriel

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I think you have to love Peter Gabriel to enjoy any of this DVD, 26 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A concert my wife and I had bought tickets for, but were unable to attend as my wife had been diagnosed with breast cancer and was about to undergo chemo treatment. Gladly, the concert was filmed and eventually became available on this marvelous CD/DVD set. I have followed Peter Gabriel's solo career since I first saw him on his rather low budget 1st album tour in 1977. My, how things have changed in comparison to the early years!
I am obviously biased, but Peter, entertaining as always, has the crowd in the palms of his hands right from the very start, starting off with an acoustic flavour to his songs, and gradually becoming more and more electric. For me though, things wouldn't be the same if Peter's long time stooge and bassist Tony Levin wasn't there with him on stage, and for that matter guitarist David Rhodes, of whom I have fond memories of falling off the stage when he was in the band Random Hold supporting the Gabriel 1980 tour.
However, I think you have to love Peter Gabriel to enjoy any of this DVD, I can't persuade a non Gabriel fan to purchase this set, but I can recommend it to someone who is thinking about seeing him at the end of this year on the second phase of the So- Back to Front tour. I'm happy to say that my wife and I will be seeing Peter this year, I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 12, 2015 7:00 AM BST


Carol of the Bells
Carol of the Bells

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Versatile Band., 17 Dec. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Carol of the Bells (MP3 Download)
I love Marillion, they are Britain's best kept secret and a band that are consistently and prolifically making original music. Even when Marillion make a cover version they pull out all the stops and make the song their own; their version of Carol of the Bells is no exception.
The special thing about this download is that it all proceeds go to a special friend of the band.
Buy it? You won't regret it!


Overtaking On a Bend
Overtaking On a Bend
Price: £7.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Overtaking on a Bend a 5* album!, 1 Jan. 2012
Regular fans and gig attendees of Marillion, Fish and Steve Hogarth will have become familiar with Jo McCafferty as a support act with her songs. With just her voice and guitar; Jo projects her songs strongly in her live sets and one would be forgiven in believing that, that would be enough to get the message over. With `Overtaking on a Bend' Jo McCafferty's latest offering; she has proven otherwise by recording with a full electric band!
Overtaking on a Bend is an album of mostly new material; but there are a handful of reworks of songs that were originally recorded with vocals and guitar only:- `Dangerous Ground' and `Page 94' are good examples of the complete transformation from solo to full band treatment!
For me, there is not a single dull track on this wonderful album and the songs I would recommend listening to are `Becoming Myself Again', `Half of One', `Running out of Air'(which I think is single material) and `Faster in the Dark'.
Jo has been writing songs since she was a teenager and her first offering `Nothing Whispered to Katy' originally released in 1993 as a cassette only release is now available on CD.
I have been fortunate to have seen and met Jo a number of times and she has never disappointed me with her performances; I can recommend her live album `Live at the Moorings' as a taster to whet one's appetite before a Jo gig.
I can also recommend these albums Papercuts & Lime Radiaxial - Jo McCafferty cd
You can find out more about Jo here [...]


Performance
Performance
Price: £11.30

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars LET HE WHO IS WITHOUT SIN CAST THE FIRST STONE OF BOOTLEGS NOT BOUGHT!, 24 July 2011
This review is from: Performance (Audio CD)
Being a VdGG fan that missed out on the golden era of this band and didn't actually get to see them until 2005 at the RFH; I have for the last 30 years or so been collecting any form of live performance of them whether it be a dodgy VHS, compact music cassettes or vinyl bootlegs. And so I am used to hearing some great performances even if they are of awful recording quality at times; how else would I have got to hear a 1968 performance of `An Epidemic of Father Christmases'? There is a brief snippet of this Christmas `Top Gear' session with John Peel on `Time Vaults' but that's about it really; interestingly there is a brief section of `Man Erg' in this little bit of Christmas fun; the song itself not appearing itself on vinyl until 1971

Regarding this album `Performance'- although I haven't listened to it, it would appear to be the soundtracks of the videos that are already available on various DVDs that seemed to emerge around about the time VdGG reformed in 2005. Peter Hammill warned all fans against buying these DVDs as the band had absolutely no involvement in the issuing of them. I can say however that I (as with a lot of VdGG fans) did not heed Peter's warning and bought them regardless. I had already got most of it on VHS but these are of a much better quality. Where else would you get to see excellent 1970 performances of `Darkness (11/11)' and `Whatever Would Robert Have Said?' other than these sources? Should we deprive ourselves of these moments that would otherwise have gone up into thin air if they hadn't been recorded and gladly not erased? It is a shame then that Guy, Hugh, David and Peter hadn't been shrewd enough to secure all of these treasures for us to buy with the comfort in knowledge that the band themselves would benefit from the purchases of them. It's curious that Nic Potter, David Jackson and even Peter's top chum Judge Smith showed absolutely no compunction in appearing for interviews on one of the later DVD incarnations `Inside Van der Graaf Generator'. Incidentally PJH, we are all still waiting for a legit and VdGG endorsed DVD of the 2005 tour; preferably the RFH!

Whenever one of these albums appears on a site like Amazon it is bound to get purist reviews of outrage; but there always appears to be a certain amount of stones being thrown about in glasshouses. "Let He who is without sin cast the first stone of bootlegs not bought!"

There won't be many VdGG fans that would buy an album like this in preference from the original studio recordings and people only buy them in train spotter's anoraks. I wouldn't dissuade `must have' collectors from buying this album; but I can say that the recordings work better in conjunction with the videos.

NB: For anyone interested in reading about the history of VdGG, I can recommend the books `Van der Graaf Generator - The Book' by Jim Christopulos and Phil Smart and `The Lemming Chronicles' by the fine actor David Shaw- Parker.

Van der Graaf Generator - The BookLemming ChroniclesThe Vernham Chronicles


The Last Adventure
The Last Adventure

5.0 out of 5 stars This won't be Doris's Last Adventure!, 3 May 2011
This review is from: The Last Adventure (MP3 Download)
The Last Adventure is for me a showcase of some of the finest vocals Doris has given for the studio and Dave Beeson's guitars are truly dynamic. For me, the highlights of the album are `What Are You Saying', `the title track `The Last Adventure', `Latest Fantasy' `Work In Progress' and `Why Are You Still Here'; but it has to be said that all the songs on this album are of the finest quality and great care and consideration has been taken to the arrangements. The song `Get a Life' is a high octane rework of a song that appeared on the album `Driving' in an acoustic format with just Doris on Vox and acoustic guitar. I thought the acoustic version was already powerful but this new incarnation is colossal! There is plenty here on this album to attract a wide range of tastes, neo prog fans will find this album a delight, with perfect passages of softness and then sudden hard hitting power. Indeed, Muse fans would most probably find themselves comfortable with track 10 `Why Are You Still Here' (although Muse fans would probably like to kill me for labelling their favourite band as `neo prog'!)
Don't take my word for it, have a listen!

PS. Doris Brendel's DB album 'Driving' is excellent and well worth buying too!


The Vernham Chronicles
The Vernham Chronicles
by John Saunders
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A REVIEW FROM THE BOOKBAG, 18 Mar. 2011
This review is from: The Vernham Chronicles (Paperback)
Length:: 1:18 Mins

I am John Saunders, I am the author of 'The Vernham Chronicles'; here is a nice review from Sue Magee of The Bookbag.
Now read on...

Set amidst the rolling British countryside around Vernbury Vale is the little village of Vernham. Anyone who lives in a village will recognise it immediately, with its cobbled streets and Tudor buildings. There was some damage during the war (which might, or might not have been down to a lighthouse folly constructed by a local landowner on his lake) but the gaps have been filled with some beautiful, er, mock Tudor buildings. Almost unique and nearly beautiful as the village is, it's not the star of The Vernham Chronicles. The stars are the people who live in Vernham.

For the sake of the people who live in Vernham I want to make it clear that they are just like the rest of us, only more so. They have their foibles, but then, which of us doesn't? They're steeped in the past (and occasionally in alcohol) and have nothing to do with technology. I'm sure that we've all longed to be free of mobile phones and computers at some point - but the Vernhamites take it several steps further. They won't have anything to do with one pound coins - or outsiders if they can get away with it.

The Chronicles are a series of loosely interlinked stories which don't really go anywhere except possibly round again to see if what you read the first time really was true. There's the policeman who's also a flasher - complete with artfully designed clothing to make the act simple to perform. Such exhibitionism is the norm in Vernham, but no one takes offence, not least because of the possible repercussions. There are regular cultural events in the village including the annual mystery tour, which is more of a mystery because the coach driver could get lost on a straight road.

I looked at The Vernham Chronicles for the first time last night and I really had no intention of reading it, but the book had other ideas. Well, just one chapter, then quickly expanded and before I knew it I'd turned the final pages in the early hours of this morning. It's not the plot that keeps you going, because there really isn't one. It would be superfluous. The humour is gentle - from the reason for the villagers having Norman Wisdom to the raunchy page nine glamour model Corrie Nation. She used to be Corrie Nation-Street but her agent told her that it made her sound like a soap opera.

It's said that in times of war people turn to Jane Austen for her gentle humour and a reassurance that all will be well in the world. The Vernham Chronicles had a similar effect on me. The humour tickles you relentlessly and won't let go even when you scream for mercy. It's kindly humour though: you laugh with people rather than at them and you're left with a feeling that you could live in Vernham and know that you might not be accepted, but it would be because you were an outsider and not because you're in any way different. That's their kind of logic.

I'd like to thank the author for sending a copy to the Bookbag.
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