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Paul Rance (Whaplode Drove, UK)

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Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [VINYL]
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [VINYL]

6 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good, But Not Even The Beatles Best, 21 May 2007
'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band' is often regarded as the greatest pop and rock album ever made, and also as an unsurpassed example of a concept album, though it wasn't really a concept album!

This album came out during the middle of The Beatles golden period of creativity - after 'Rubber Soul' and 'Revolver', and before 'The White Album' and 'Abbey Road', and showed the Fab Four's bold inventiveness.

Indeed, an album beginning with an upbeat, offbeat song about a Sgt. Pepper, leading into Billy Shears and Ringo Starr's gentle rendition of 'With A Little Help From My Friends'. It's from there, though, that the concept part of the album breaks down, though when Ringo sings, "get high with a little help from my friends" at the end, then in's a clue that something psychedelic may follow. And what a wonderful masterpiece it is, as John Lennon's love of words is utilised to the full in 'Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds', which remains one of The Beatles most popular songs. The underrated Paul McCartney rocker 'Getting Better' follows, then the dreamy 'Fixing A Hole' - one of the weaker songs on the album.

The mini musical soap opera 'She's Leaving Home' sees Paul's voice, and dramatic, beautiful strings and mellifluous harp, bring the haunting lyrics to a wonderful pitch of searing emotion. The counterpointing between Paul and John is also superb. Another masterpiece. 'Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!' is another unique song - psychedelia at the circus, and vivid lyrics!

George Harrison's rather profound slice of Indian-influenced mysticism, 'Within You Without You', begins side 2 of the original vinyl album, which is then followed by the lovable eccentricity of two gentle favourites 'When I'm Sixty-Four' and 'Lovely Rita'. A rooster then crows his head off introducing 'Good Morning, Good Morning'. A song about everything and nothing, with John being playfully enigmatic. A menagerie ends things, and a clucking chicken introduces a vibrant 'Sgt. Pepper' reprise, ingeniously blending into the opening note. A nod at George for some lively guitar work on these two tracks. 'A Day In The Life' is a suitably magical finish to the album, with lyrics about every aspect of life amidst spellbinding sounds. John Lennon's vocals are as entrancing as they had ever been up to this point with The Beatles, and Paul's jaunty middle section is a neat contrast.

Sergeant Pepper, Billy Shears, Lucy, Mr. Kite, Rita...All life is here in this musical English fairytale for all times!

- Paul Rance/

Bill Oddie: How to Watch Wildlife, Part 1 [DVD]
Bill Oddie: How to Watch Wildlife, Part 1 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Bill Oddie
Offered by globalmovies
Price: £18.99

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bill Oddie - Wildlife's Champion, 16 Feb 2006
Bill Oddie was a popular face on British TV screens in the 1970s, as one third of the very popular comedy trio, 'The Goodies'. Now he's carved out a career as a wonderfully entertaining and informative wildlife presenter.
His 'How To Watch Wildlife' series continues in the vein of his previous wildlife shows. He shows us a lot of wildlife - from birds to mammals, to all kinds of weird insects and crustacea - in various locations. But what makes these programmes so watchable, is that he doesn't focus so much on the gore and ugliness of nature, but the uplifting beauty of it. The boy's a national treasure.
Paul Rance/

The Small Press Guide 2003: The Complete Guide to Poetry and Small Press Magazines (Writers' Bookshop)
The Small Press Guide 2003: The Complete Guide to Poetry and Small Press Magazines (Writers' Bookshop)
by James Feeke
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Small Press Guide 2003, 12 Feb 2004
Probably the best guide of British and Irish small press publications. By definition, most of the publications featured have a circulation of under 1,000, and for writers and poets these are the best places to get published early in a writing career. So, an invaluable guide for aspiring writers and poets. Some way out there publications are featured - along with more mainstream titles. Good value.

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