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Mr P "radletteer" (UK)
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Winter's Bone
Winter's Bone
by Daniel Woodrell
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A short, dense but great work, 3 Dec. 2009
This review is from: Winter's Bone (Paperback)
This is not a long book and easy to read - and very, very good.
It captures life in the strange, very insular, backwood community of The Ozarks.
Teenager Ree Dolly is our heroine, fighting to save her house from repossession for her mentally impaired mother and her young brothers.
Trying to track down her missing father she encounters a stubborn lack of information and help but gradually earns the respect of her community.
Great story and great writing.


Somethin' Els
Somethin' Els
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £15.95

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hear it now....tumbling down..., 3 Dec. 2009
This review is from: Somethin' Els (Audio CD)
Whilst painting the downstairs loo for Christmas I clapped the headphones on with Somethin Els.
Not my favourite Jack album but lots and lots to love.
A passionate opener in Waiting on a Word and then the boisterous Willpower both with Eric Clapton playing lead.
Ships in the Night is one of the highlights with Maggie Reilly and Jack dovetailing beautifully on the vocals. Truly magical.
Great work on the piano and an all too rare outing on the cello from The Bruce too. All that and a great outro from Mr Clapton.
Peaces of the East is a mainly electronic offering with only Stuart Elliot on drums and Reilly on backing vocals accompanying Jacks multilayered keyboard sounds. An unusual track but all the better for it - "they love their nightmare."
Close Enough for Love is a Jack power ballad - with the Bruce tonsils reaching out plaintively. Strange piano bar jazz middle section with a recording from a party or something that features an argumentative Mrs Bruce if you listen closely.
G.B. Dawn Blues (For Graham Bond) has an appearance by Dick Heckstall-Smith on saxes and stomps along. Great organ and piano from Jack as one has come to expect.
Criminality is another weird one with mainly Jack on the electronics, Anton Fier on drums and Ray Gomez on guitar. It starts off with part of a speech by former Tory MP Douglas Hurd. It doesn't all work but in the main is pretty enjoyable with some fantastic screaming soprano sax by the great Dave Liebman at the end.
Then possibly the best - Childsong - mainly Jack singing and on multi-basses and percussion. Trilok Gurtu and Mark Nauseef are on percussion too. Liebman's sax floats in and out with amazing grace. No other instruments. Its sparse and dense at the same time. Utterly spellbinding. Sublime, restrained singing... The fade out is awesome with Jack freewheeling with help from the amazing Liebman "...tumbling down...... hear it now........." Truly great. I saw a fabulous live version of this performed by Jack and Gary Husband on second keyboard at The Clapham Grand Theatre, London in 1993.
The closing FM is a solo piano composition and takes us slowly down from the serious highs of the previous track.
All in all, despite it not being among my all-time favourites, a great Jack Bruce album nonetheless.


My Song
My Song
Price: £16.27

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Song? Everybody's song., 29 July 2009
This review is from: My Song (Audio CD)
We find Jarrett here with his European quartet, probably a more melodic and restrained unit than his previous American band. Nonetheless it is an album of exquisite playing from all concerned.
The opening Questar is a strong mid-tempo piece with Garbarek's tenor providing a most suitable, subtly-nuanced voice. The following My Song, a balad, is just one of those haunting melodies that gets you. The Norwegian horn player states the theme with beautiful tone and phrasing. Jarrett then plays a short, memorable unaccompanied passage before the band comes back with the melody.
Tabarka is a stunner. Keening Gabarek sax in near unison with Jarrett's piano state the tune fairly briefly before they begin to meander around the theme as if they have played together since birth. Jarrett then opens out into a typical turn, of cascading notes that are so full of expression and passion. Then Garbarek re-enters magnetically and the song gets looser and looser as the sax seeks out a culmination before it floats back gently to the main theme.
The next track, Country, is again one of those melodies you want to whistle along with. Garbarek sets it out and Jarrett meanders around it. Danielsson then shines as his bass leads Jarrett along with aplomb before the leader takes dominance. A sunny day out in a grassy meadow next to a river, with a breeze in the trees.
Just in case it gets too restrained and melodic, Mandala breaks up the album completely with a strident bit of be-bop. Melody goes out the window as Jarrett plays some real hell-for-leather piano before Gabarek chimes in on some wailing and coruscating soprano. The rhythm section are with them all the way as it gets into a brief Coltranish passage before it slows down and takes some deep breaths. This track is not so immediately appealing as the others but is worth the effort as it will soon wins an equal place in the heart.
The closing Journey Home goes back to the earlier tone of things and again is a haunting, longing melody eloquently stated by the tenor sax. It then increases tempo and has other little themes as the piano leads over a strong bass and percussion pulse before Garbarek once again plays with terrific passion. Some six minutes in it all slows down to a wistful new twist to the composition. Jarrett tinkles wonderfully over some exceedingly laid back bass and drums before the sax re-joins. The piece closes out in this slow mode at journeys end. And a fine journey it was.


Chicago
Chicago
by ʿAlāʾ Aswānī
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Culture clashing at Chicago College, 7 Sept. 2008
This review is from: Chicago (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This flawed book follows various characters linked by their connection to the histology department at a Chicago University. In the main they are Egyptians studying or working in America but their wives, lovers or colleagues are interspersed with - white - black and Jewish characters, providing a complex canvas for our author to create his work.
He builds up our knowledge of this cast, with the Egyptians being more and more influenced by the "sinful" ways of Americans.
I quite enjoyed it but because he uses a post 9/11 setting for obvious reference points about the way Muslims may be seen by Americans, I found myself feeling that the story and characters would have resonated more truthfully if the story had ben set in the 70s.
It all ends up centred around a visit to Chicago by the Egyptian President. Its then that things start to unravel for our characters.
Enjoyable but not as good as I had hoped it might be.


Strange Celestial Road
Strange Celestial Road
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £11.17

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cosmic, 17 May 2007
This review is from: Strange Celestial Road (Audio CD)
I have come to Sun Ra music fairly recently. This is a great album. I agree with the other 2 reviewers. To describe what it sounds like? Well try combining Herbie Hancock's Crossings with Zappa and The Mothers' Burnt Weeny Sandwich and you are in the same universe. Just.


Cream - Royal Albert Hall - 2,3,5,6 May 2005  [DVD]
Cream - Royal Albert Hall - 2,3,5,6 May 2005 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Cream
Price: £9.24

12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cream always rises to the top...., 5 Jan. 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was only 15 whem Cream were in Scotland in 1967. I did not even know they were there. Caught them this time on May 5 show. Went expecting them to be only so, so.
To my amazement and delight they were truly awesome. Played far more songs than they used to. Older, wiser, drug free, they were just magnificent all things considered.
This is a must buy DVD. Great sound quality from the greatest band of all time.
Far superior to 1968 Farewell Concerts. Far, far, far superior. Really.


Jack Bruce - Live At Canterbury Fayre [2002] [DVD]
Jack Bruce - Live At Canterbury Fayre [2002] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Jack Bruce
Offered by inandout-distribution
Price: £13.29

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars King Jack The Bruce, 23 Nov. 2005
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Jack and his splendid band The Cuicoland Express are on top form here. 10 songs stretch over 90 minutes. Difficult to pick a highlight as it is all amazing but Theme For An Imaginary Western takes a lot of beating. Jack is in fine voice, full of power and passion. The other musicians are up to the task. Three percussionists give this band its unique feel. I was lucky enough to catch them live in London in 2001. This was a great band on one of their last outings before Bruce had a liver transplant before re-surfacing magnificently in the Cream reunion in 2005.


First Meditations (for quartet)
First Meditations (for quartet)

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar, 14 Oct. 2005
Possibly the greatest Coltrane album. Certainly the best I have heard. Love and Serenity are just utterly amazing. Full off wild, musical passion. You can almost see blood pouring out of the sax. The other guys are amazing too. An emotional tour de force. Building on Crescent and A Love Supreme this one goes way out to a different galaxy. Dont miss out! Sign up for this amazing journey, now.


Kelly Holmes: My Olympic Ten Days
Kelly Holmes: My Olympic Ten Days
by Kelly Holmes
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Golden Moments, 24 Aug. 2005
Despite being written very much like a piece for a school magazine this is good stuff. In fact the easy, unaffected manner warms the heart. If you are an admirer of this superb middle-distance runner give it a go. Kelly is the best track athlete us Brits have had in a while and is deserving of a special reverance.


Live On The Old Grey Whistle Test
Live On The Old Grey Whistle Test
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £43.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars He was Stoned!, 12 Jan. 2005
I remember seeing the first half of this offering on the telly in 1975. It features Carla Bley and Mick Taylor. Jack had to be led to the electric piano for the first track as he was very obviously stoned. Although the playing is pretty good considering, Jack's singing is pitiful. I saw them the following day at an open air concert at London's Crystal Palace and they were so much better.
The second half features the band including Billy Cobham, Clem Clempson and David Sancious. This part is a lot tighter and the singing a lot better. Guess the concert was approached with some clearer heads.


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