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The evil hippy

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Cop/Young God/Greed/Holy Money
Cop/Young God/Greed/Holy Money
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £22.95

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars apocalyptic, 21 July 2007
amount of tracks:29
excellent:17
v.good:6
good:3
fair:3
poor:0

if there was ever a soundtrack to hell and your very worst nightmares rolled into one then this is it. the first album, 'cop' is just about as intense as music could ever be. the three tracks from the 'young god'ep are slightly more ragged. 'greed' and 'holy money' are just as powerful as 'cop' but slightly more refined musically with 'coward' being the stand out track. play it at full blast and try not to kill yourself afterwards! honest - this band were something else. michael gira was, and remains , a real genius. this is quite incredible, awe-inspiring stuff which sounds like nothing before or since. this band have spawned a whole host of imitators, none of whom have come close to matching them (though 'neurosis' have come close - another band worth checking out)in this crummy world, this act were never gonna be big. it makes me sick though, how they remained underground and unknown by the 'masses' when crap like nirvana break through so big. i guess thats just the way it work in this bull**** industry. whatever. buy this immediately, turn it up to 11, turn off the lights. i guarantee your life will never be the same again


Nevermind
Nevermind
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £5.93

7 of 40 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars was it really that good?, 21 July 2007
This review is from: Nevermind (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:12
excellent:0
v,good:0
good:3
fair:9
poor:0

ok - lets look at this albums relevance and the so called grunge scene. nirvana were NOT the first band on the scene and nothing they did was original. so how did they become so massive? well, its just another one of those great mysteries of the music world. in the 60's and 70's very few great bands were left behind at the expense of lesser artists. from the 80's onward though that started to be the norm at its gotten worse as years go by.
this band and album are probobly the best example. the playings alright and the songs are ok in parts, but the exaltations given to this act are just way,way out of proportion to what they really warrant. this album is just average. thats it, no more no less. compare it to the offerings from contempories like alice in chains,pearl jam and soundgarden and it pales into insignificance. yet people lapped it up in their millions! why why why?! i dunno, i really dont. but i guess its the same reason that dog**** like u2, green day and, god help us, the foo fighters, are the biggest acts in the 'rock' (i use that term sarcastically) world today. while truly essential, genius acts like swans, masters of reality and kings x are left floundering in the underground. what the f*** is it all about people? the best songs nirvana ever recorded were the three covers from the meat puppets and leadbelly that were featured on the unplugged thing. thats the true evaluation of them. cos their own material was basic
and unremarkable. as for the endless whittering about kurts angsty lyrics, i suggest you listen to swans from 5 or 6 years previously if you want dark, foreboding lyrics with true value. i put this album and this band exactly on par with oasis. a very ordinary couple of bands who got very very lucky and built entire careers on ripping off other peoples riffs, melodies and ideas. what a f****** world


6 6 6
6 6 6
Price: £6.99

4 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars one classic track cant save it......., 12 July 2007
This review is from: 6 6 6 (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:23
excellent:1
v.good:1
good:2
fair:4
poor:15

hmmmm....not sure what other people are hearing here. prog? well, i wouldnt call it that. in fact im not sure what id call it, but its neither prog nor rock. its a sometimes very twee collection of directionless songs which sound mostly like jams. the musicianship is pretty average really and its not really very interesting listening, in fact , a lot of it is plain embarrasing.
HOWEVER....2 tracks rescue it. firstly the 17 odd minutes of 'and all the seats were occupied' is actually a quite happening peice and has some real nice touches. the musicians involved also seem to have found their feet here, remembering how to play their instruments properly, and go off into some wild places - especially the drummer. the standout track though, and head and shoulders above everything else on here, is the album closer 'break' - this was released as a single back in 72 and it is a truly sublime peice of music with a thouroughly wicked guitar solo. this is well worth the price of admission to the album and this is a five star track. in fact, it doesnt even sound like the same band! as for the rest though.... i dunno, explore if you like, but dont expect too much
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 14, 2010 11:42 PM GMT


Soldiers Of Rock: The Anthology
Soldiers Of Rock: The Anthology
Offered by johnny8640
Price: £39.75

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a very pleasant surprise, 6 April 2007
amount of tracks:32
excellent:8
v.good:5
good:11
fair:8
poor:0

Didnt know anything about this band until i got this. of course, i was aware of the gurvitz brothers from their solo work, baker gurvitz army, and of course, the gun. but somehow this all passed me by at the time for some reason. anyway, i checked it out and boy...this rocks! - the playing is excellent throughout, especially the guitarwork, and the majority of the songs here, i guess,a compilation from all their albums, are very strong. bit of a mystery why they didnt break through but they wouldnt be the first good band to be bypassed by the industry. The music? ok, heres the weird thing. this band , through the course of these two albums, manage to sound like almost every american based classic rock band from the mid to late 70's you can think of. boston/kansas/bachman turner overdrive/journey/peter frampton etc - but the thing is - they pre-date them!(and theyre english!) if these tracks had come out in 1980 rather than 1971/72 youd think this lot were jumping on the bandwagon, but it seems they anticipated the sound 4 or 5 years before it arrived! other bands ,contempory to them, that they resemble, are the likes of cactus and the james gang. even e.l.o on some songs! All in all then , a very interesting mix. im just sorry it took me so long to discover them!

since reviewing this album ive been listening to it a lot and it just gets better and better. i would give it five stars if amazon would allow me to re-grade it. it has some truly great songs on here. there are songs herein that , if the likes of razorlight or snow patrol would release now, then they would have number one hits and the press would be gushing themselves (not that they, or any other pop band today, have the class to write songs like this) - what a waste. i cant believe this lot didnt break through. buy this anthology immediately!


Our Mother The Mountain
Our Mother The Mountain
Offered by johnny8640
Price: £12.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars just brilliant, 28 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Our Mother The Mountain (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:11
excellent:6
v.good:2
good:2
fair:1
poor:0

this is probably the best of all townes albums, though just like all his work, there are one or two inclusions that aint that great. this however, gets 5 stars from me cos the great outweigh the ok more so here than on any of his other offerings.
lets get the 'ok's' out of the way first - 'be here to love me' is an almost light-hearted opener which doesnt really say much to me. 'like a summer thursday' has a nice tune and melody but upon closer inspection veers toward sentimentality which takes the edge of it somewhat. still nice though.'she came and she touched me' has an interesting theme but tips its hat lyrically too much towards dylan for my liking. 'my proud mountains' is drawn out and slightly overstays its welcome whilst not saying very much, whilst 'why shes acting this way' is another dylan-ish lyric that kinda drags on a bit much too
dont get me wrong though, all the above mentioned are still very nice songs that rise head and shoulders above 99 per cent of the competition! its just that they dont measure up to the truly great remaining 6 tracks

starting as they appear ' kathleen' is a glacial-slow mournful song which must rank as one of his bleakest ever tunes, with a truly great couple of opening lines and a very nice orchestral back-up.'our mother the mountain, is a very strange number with an extremely unsettling lyric 'second lovers song' is a poignant little song which is the only one i can ever recall whereby a man is telling his woman NOT to worry about her past, and that hes not jealous and loves her regardless! the diametric opposite of the usual take on this subject! only townes, with his lovely voice and melodies and exquisitely styled wordplay, could have got away with a song like this. 'st john the gambler' is the highlight of the album and is one of townes finest ever songs. another very bleak number that conjures up all kinds of images with its beautiful, truly inspired lyric. 'tecumseh valley' paints another bleak picture and finely illustrates townes gift for storytelling. finally 'snake mountain blues' is a tour-de-force of bitterness and despair with one of his greatest ever lyrics. 'when i die lord she'd weep, she'd weep and she'd mourn, as soon as i was buried, she'd forget i'd been born' tell it like it is townes!

what an album. what a man this was. dont delay , get this as quick as you like. in fact, buy all his studio albums, cos theres gems on all of them all.


Delta Momma Blues
Delta Momma Blues
Offered by momox co uk
Price: £7.31

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars inconsistent, but timeless classic from a great songwriter, 28 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Delta Momma Blues (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:10
excellent:2
v.good:3
good:1
fair:5
poor:0

first things first - amazon have given the WRONG traclklisting for this album above - the listing theyve given is for the album 'flying shoes' another very good album but not the one we are concerned with here

that townes was a truly great songwriter there can be no doubt. as a storyteller in the folk/country tradition hes up there with the best. what let him down was that for every work of genius theres something very ordinary right next to it. all his albums suffer from this, some more than others. when his work is at its best its probably the best theres ever been, eclipsing even dylan,young,williams,nelson. and every album has at least one truly great song on it so they are all worth buying.its just that theres a lot of stuff out there that frankly is just plain ok and not a lot more- though townes voice and delivery always makes even his mediocre songs at least worth a try, its very frustrating to sit through his albums and be hit with such extremes of quality within the space of one or two songs
this album is a good example. while none of townes work can ever be described as 'bad' - there are definately some tracks here that just dont do much. the album starter 'ffv', a traditional song, is a strange start to the album, being an obscure kind of lyric and frankly not that interesting. 'turnstyled,junkpiled' and 'where i lead me' are ok but not that great. whilst 'brand new companion' and the title track are just boring blues numbers that add nothing to the mix at all.
that leaves 5 tracks, but now things get interesting - 'only him or me, and 'come tomorrow' are just townes and his guitar talking love and broken hearts and both are extremely effective little numbers, townes voice at its poignant best. 'tower song' is more of the above but more so and is a heartbreakingly sad song. the best is saved for the last two songs on the album though, namely 'rake' and 'nothin' - starting with the latter, rarely has there been a bleaker song anywhere than this. a fantastic, poetic lyric delivered in a monotone drawl that reeks of loneliness and despair. and the former, 'rake' well, this has got to be one of the best songs ever written with a truly beguiling lyric charting the torments of a mans life.
im a great fan of townes van zandt, and when hes at his best, as in the 5 songs mentioned above, theres no one around to touch him. but its one thing to be a fan and another to just blindly say that everything he touched was great, cos it plainly wasnt. but every album hes made is worth buying simply because among the inconsistencies there are songs of true greatness - some of the greatest songs ever written. and for that reason they are all indispensible works. what a legacy. what a great loss.
a man who was basically ignored during his lifetime but who was truly one of the best songwriters who ever lived


A Beard of Stars [Expanded Edition]
A Beard of Stars [Expanded Edition]
Price: £6.73

21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lost genius., 27 Mar. 2007
amount of tracks(not including bonus tracks):14
excellent:9
v.good:1
good:2
fair:2
poor:0

in the annals of music history there are five songwriters/songwriting teams from the uk who reign supreme. bowie,lennon/mccartney,davies,jagger/richard, and marc bolan (with roy wood and donovan close behind) bolan, however , eclipsed them all (even bowie) with the inventiveness and downright strangeness of his lyrics and melodies. never has there been a talent more under-rated than marc bolan. so many people only know him only for his chart hits (which were all FANTASTIC slices of pop rock by the way), and are completely unaware of the incredible diversity of this mans work, not only on the first four epic t.rex albums , but also on the otherworldly four TYRANNOSAURUS rex albums - this one, a beard of stars, being the very best.
ok....his lyrics ARE strange, out dylan-ing dylan with ease, but its not so much the wordplay as the quite incredible melodies and hooklines that are present within every song that are really something special, along with a voice that sounds like no one else before or since. in fact, NO ACT has ever come close to sounding like any of bolans projects. its very significant that bands tend to steer clear of covering his songs. of those that have attempted, ALL have failed!
But back to this album, its a quite extraordanary trip, ranging from the totally off the wall to exquistive peons to love such as 'dove' (surely one of the purest and most heart wrenching songs ever recorded) the highlights here are so many that im not even gonna bother listing them. suffice to say that this album, along with the other 3 tyrannosaurus rex and first 4 t.rex albums, are absolutely indispensible peices of masterwork. my only complaint here is that theres an inferior version of 'once upon the seas of abyssenia' included as a bonus. theres 3 or 4 versions of this song about, my advice would be keep looking until you find the definitive one - youll know it when you do!
marc - rock on brother, not everyone out here has a short memory. this day and age with the sad state everythings in, maybe youll never gain the recognition you deserve. but there'll always be some of us out here who KNOW the truth


Antony And The Johnsons
Antony And The Johnsons
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £11.69

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars very interesting - but approach with caution, 24 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Antony And The Johnsons (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:9
excellent:6
v.good:0
good:3
fair:0
poor:0

heard so much about this guy that i had to check this out. wasnt expecting much, being as, a)im deeply suspicious of modern music anyway, especially those that win mercury awards, and B) he looks uncanilly like matt lucas from little britain. HOWEVER! i risked a tenner, and im glad i did. amidst the dross around today in the likes of timberlake/beyonce/coldplay/pop idol etc ad nauseum, this is like a breath of fresh air. a lot has been mentioned about his voice but i dont find it that extreme at all. in fact, in terms of tone,technique and delivery, it is so reminiscent of nina simone that this guy could be impersonating her. whether he is doing this consciously or not i dont know, but im pretty sure he must be aware of this fact. the music gives a nod to scott walker at times, but overall the songwriting is very reminiscent of nick cave. in fact, if cave had ever written an album for simone - this would be it. im not quibbling here though, as i think this album works very well and i salute this act. in fact i like it so much i intend to buy the follow up album. it IS an acquired taste, but if you dig simone and cave at their most introspective, and also similar emotive artists such as nick drake and leonard cohen, you will definately enjoy this. the writing and arrangements are very good and the musicianship, whilst sparse and understated, is very nice. for once a genuinely talented act. a liitle gem of an album


Halfbreed
Halfbreed

19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a contender for the greatest blues-rock album ever, 24 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Halfbreed (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:8
excellent:4
v,good:2
good:0
fair:2
poor:0

i was first introduced to keef hartley way back when when my older brother played me 'the time is near' album - as i was a sabbath freak at the time it kinda went over my head a bit with its jazzy-rock content, but there was a certain feel about the content that appealed to me anyway. then i was introduced to this album and it cemented my initial feel for the band. there are four truly great songs on 'halfbreed', the remainder is not far behind in terms of quality but slightly more conventional in terms of structure, whereas the four im gonna mentioned are slightly more inspired.
'too much thinking' is simply a fantastic peice of music, beautifully played and structured with a great lyric and really powerful vocals from the very underrated miller anderson who shines throughout this album
'leavin trunk' is a mose allison blues number which is transformed here into what is probably the heaviest take on the blues ever recorded, with a riff to die for. as heavy as sabbath, it really is a sonic boom of a track that stays controlled whilst being super-heavy and manic. just brilliant
'born to die' is another lengthy blues trip, slower and more traditional in its approach but still very dense and dark and these two tracks have to be among the best white-man take on the blues ever recorded , up there with creams finest moments
'just to cry' is a more lightweight, jazzy kind of number but has a lovely melody and lyric

these four songs are absolutely essential listens for anyone into good music. the musicianship is absolutely flawless throughout and this a fine example of just how great music was back in the late 60's/early 70,s. of the remainder, there is a pretty directionless instrumental which slightly lets things down. plus two great kicking blues rock numbers, 'sinnin for you' and 'think it over' - like i said earlier, these are not far behind the others but fail to stand out as much cos theyre approached in a more traditional and typical blues rock manner for the time. this doesnt however, detract from their quality, and if you dig straightforward pumping blues rock you'll love these. whether youre a metal fan, prog,rock,blues,folk, or whatever - you'll love this album and especially these four great tracks from a band who should have been huge. an absolutely essential album. and oh, i hit the wrong button when i submitted this review, it shoulda been five stars!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 22, 2009 3:16 PM BST


Sweet Silence
Sweet Silence

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars out on its own, 9 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Sweet Silence (Audio CD)
amount of tracks:12
excellent:6
v'good:0
good:3
fair:3
poor:0

now heres a real bizarre offering. i remember seeing this band on top of the pops way back doing a song called 'romeo' which was so sickly sweet i wanted to throw up, but then not longer after saw a review in sounds of this album which raved about some of the content being so heavy it made ted nugent look tame. heady claims indeed! intrigued, i thought id better check it out
what we've got is a really strange mix of heavy rock,pure pop,cockney music-hall, folk whimsy and prog rock with ancient medieval overtones! confused?! you wait till you hear it! its so far off the radar that its impossible to pigeonhole it into one genre. nothing wrong with that, but ultimately its probably the reason why this lot never really took off. never has there been an album that can thrill you and alienate you within the space of a few minutes
where to start? well, the said journalists review must have been referring to the title track which for sure is 6 minutes of pure rock mayhem, this being mr big however, its not exactly straightforward! this being the only track in history where the singer sings one minute and makes farting noises the next! - the track 'enjoy it' is a great little rock number though, with terrific playing and singing and a nice lyrical sentiment. so too is 'appeared a shining throne' which is the highlight of the album. a true prog masterwork with quite unsettling eastern/medieval/spaghetti western type chanting throughout! weird as hell. other highlights include 'violet may', a true cockney pantomime/music hall singalong with trad folk overtones(!), and 'for the fun to find' which is a madness song 4 years before madness even formed! in fact, if anyone out there knows any of the madness boys, tell them to check this track out and cover it, cos its a sure-fire number one hit for them. its a madness song, pure and simple!
well' the brains behind all this mayhem was one 'dicken'- they made a few more albums after this, none of which managed to be quite as eclectic and downright strange as this. where this guy is now i dont know, but man, what a talent. approach this album with caution folks, and be prepared to hear what youve never heard before. it doesnt always work. there are a few tracks here that are just too off the wall, but it deserves the 5 stars just for being so damn diverse so do check it out. its probably the most 'out-there'peice of work youre ever likely to hear
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 5, 2010 2:56 AM BST


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