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Sentinel (Essex)
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Boulevard de L'independence
Boulevard de L'independence
Price: 15.58

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm a Convert!, 12 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As a lover of Diabate's classic kora albums, such as 'Mande Variations', or the exquisite 'In the Heart of the Moon' with Farka Tore, I was wary of any kind of 'fushion' approach which might overwhelm the delicate subtleties of the kora. However, the positive reviews here won me over. At first, I confess, I thought I'd made a mistake, as the blast of trumpets which begin the album seemed way out of kilter with the delicate singing voice of the kora which follows.
I was still uncertain by the end of the album.

However, a few plays later, and I'm a covert. The sheer excitement & electricity of the performance is captivating, and either the balance of instruments improve, or the ear adjusts as you listen on, till the last few pieces seem more beguiling and addictive than ever. I was genuinely sad when the cd finished; happily unlike a live performance, I could immediately play this again. Wonderful!


Another Setting
Another Setting
Offered by MUSIC-4-THE-MASSES
Price: 34.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Voice v Guitar, 9 Aug 2014
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This review is from: Another Setting (Audio CD)
There are those who love Vini's voice & his guitar playing, and there are those who feel the former can't really compete with the sublime sounds of the latter. I have to confess that I was disappointed that his voice takes precedence, to the neglect of his gorgeous guitar sounds, on this album.

Happily, the final seven tracks redeemed the situation for me, with 5 'Portugese' and 2 further instrumental tracks, which were well worth the wait. As you know, even a little of what Vini can do with a guitar can go a long way, and these final tracks are really lovely.

And if you love both, well you're in clover!


Anker  CB310 Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo for Desktop with Water-Resistant and whisper-quiet Keyboard Design
Anker CB310 Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo for Desktop with Water-Resistant and whisper-quiet Keyboard Design

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super, Stable Combo., 4 Aug 2014
When our last keyboard letters started fading away, I was about to replace it with another cheap corded board; however my wife fancied the idea of this wire-free combo. I was sceptical, as our mouse still worked perfectly well, but what a well of ignorance I lay in!

I'm now fully converted to this great set, as the keyboard is much quieter, and more importantly, much more stable than our previous one, which tended to slip & slide around a lot. Secondly, the mouse is also a much more stable, solid-feeling bit of kit, which I enjoy using. My accuracy level has improved as a consequence (not that it was ever very good!), and this has been a real bonus, as I have a permanent tremor in my right hand ( 'benign essential tremor' I was told in the hospital; the doctor didn't think it funny when I told him I didn't find it very benign or essential...).

Anyway, the point of this is that hopefully anyone who has similar problems may also find this an improvement on a cheap wired combo. I used to have great difficulty with using the mouse to point & click with accuracy, and had often to start again; this is much better. I'd also say that neither of us have had problems with the correct symbol appearing ( I note others had difficulty with or @ symbols), so all appears well.

An impressive combination, and excellent value for money.


The Very Best Of Cat Stevens
The Very Best Of Cat Stevens
Offered by Sent2u
Price: 7.25

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Stuff!, 26 July 2014
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This is a very decent collection of Cat's songwriting abilities, spanning 60's-80's Almost all of his best known, or hit material is here, and the sound quality is very good, cut at quite a high level, so very immediate. There's also a booklet giving some helpful background to some of the price he had to pay for fame, and an update on where his life/career is now.
Sadly, although his album 'Foreigner' is give a short paragraph, none of the tracks on it appear in this collection. I think 'Later' from that album much better than some of the weaker tracks on here. In fact, I still enjoy the album as a whole, particularly 'Foreigner Suite', but that's probably just me...

Still a very good collection & recommended.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 9, 2014 12:45 PM BST


7 Classic Albums Volume 2
7 Classic Albums Volume 2
Price: 18.17

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Getz, 26 July 2014
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This is another great bargain from Real Gone Jazz. Okay, the packaging & supporting information as usual leave much to be desired: you get recording dates (that for the Dizzy Gillespie album is out by two years!), personnel, track titles and their running times, and that's it. Oh, and the 4-cd jewel case may be prone to arriving with spindle damage.

However, with music & price this good, it's easy to say 'so what'! What we have here is another great selection of Getz albums, the majority highly recommended in 'All your Music' and 'Penguin Jazz Guide'. Getz' ground-breaking 'Focus' is here (where he improvises over an orchestral score; forty years ahead of Garbarek's own experiments with the Hilliard).

If you enjoy Bossa Nova, you have a choice of two albums: 'Jazz Samba' with Charlie Byrd (the album which started the trend with 'Desafinado' and 'One Note Samba'), while there's a surprisingly 'Big Band Bossa Nova' in which the delicacy of the music making survives being swamped by the brass section, in a subtly arranged production. The former album has an exquisite performance of 'Baia' to send shivers down the spine.

There's also 'Recorded Fall' with Bob Brookmeyer, with oustanding chemistry & playing from both the valve trombone & tenor sax (& Steve Kuhn on piano), and an even balance of bop & ballad. Another wonderful collaboration is 'At the Opera House' with JJ Johnson, with the interplay being a thing of tender wonder, helped by sensitive support from Oscar Peterson. 'Diz & Getz' is another heavyweight pairing, but less successful to my ears. Dizzy's rasping, edgy performance finds an echo in Stan's playing, and though there's no lack of energy here, it feels a ragged, uneven performance., even with Oscar Petersen's band providing the engine room.

This only leaves 'Getz in Stockholm' (1956), which is probably my favourite album here, despite the very stiff competition. The support from Gunnar Johnson (bass), Anders Burman (drums) & Bengt Hallberg (piano) is impeccable, and this is a beautifully rich & warm performance.

There's some lovely music-making here, across a range of styles, influences & collaborations, with Getz 'lovely sound' at its warm heart. Well worth investigating at such a modest price.


The Very Best Of
The Very Best Of
Price: 6.40

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Parker, 22 July 2014
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This review is from: The Very Best Of (Audio CD)
As a long-time Parker fan I'm delighted to celebrate this truly excellent 'very best of', a compilation which lives up to its name. There's some really lovely stuff here, with all Parker's classics culled from 4 albums.This representative collection includes the driving excitement of 'Heat Treatment' & 'Hey Lord, don't ask me Questions', the depth of 'Howling Wind' and 'You Can't be too Strong',to the langorous beauty of 'Watch the Moon come Down', and the rich, velvety texture of 'Black Honey'. A double album with 35 tracks, and a very decent booklet which gives helpful background, and even running times, is a superb bargain at such a modest price.

This is a great introduction to Graham Parker & his studio work,with very good quality sound, and if you enjoy this I'd suggest you explore his thrilling live performance on his sizzling The Parkerilla album, and some of his solo work.


Red Pump Special - 40th Anniversary Edition
Red Pump Special - 40th Anniversary Edition
Price: 13.11

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Stuff, 21 July 2014
Just realised that I've owned this vinyl album for almost 40 years (sigh), and can finally celebrate its arrival on cd. The sound quality is very good, and it's probably Rab's most upbeat album overall. Even 'Sittin in the corner Blues' has a bounce to it, while 'Branch' has a lovely lilting lift, and 'Clear Day' is just a gorgeous celebration of the feeling of being alive, while the philosophical 'Tomorrow is Another Day' shrugs off present disappointment.

However, it has its share of darkness, as in the affecting 'Wrong Joke Again', the homesick pull of 'Frisco Depot', and the elegiac 'Sketcher & the Last Train'. The only track which doesn't bear listening for me is the clunky 'Diamond Ring', but the rest of this album still has a fresh, newly-minted feel to it.

Nevertheless, I feel a little disappointed that a '40th Anniversary Edition with new artwork' doesn't deliver more. Bonus tracks only include 2 new songs, 'Wait Down Here' which is decent, and 'What's the Matter' which shouldn't have been included given Rab's very poor singing. The supporting notes add little, and the text is repetitive (editor needed), and the lyric sheet (which came with the vinyl album) is not included.

Still a lovely, lovely album, but only 4 stars to reflect an opportunity missed...


Berlin: The Downfall 1945
Berlin: The Downfall 1945
by Antony Beevor
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the End, 11 July 2014
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As masterful an account as Beevor's classic 'Stalingrad', this substantial history recounts in meticulous detail the last phase of the doomed Third Reich. Beevor's grip of strategy & its absence, tales of crucial contributions on all sides, the political & military perspectives, paint a rich & complex picture. However, it is the smaller more individual accounts which anchor the larger perspective, and infuse it with the colour, the inspiration, pain & suffering, and make this account come vibrantly alive. Superb.


Live in London The BBC Recordings 1972-1973
Live in London The BBC Recordings 1972-1973
Price: 9.30

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Simple & Intimate beauty, 11 July 2014
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Having discovered Judee's very impressive studio albums recently, I was attracted to her more stripped down recordings for the BBC, which rest wholly on her voice, & her guitar/piano for their effect. These recordings have a simple & intimate beauty, with some of her most affecting pieces, The Kiss & The Donor, having an even more powerful impact as a result. Her interview with Bob Harris, though a little clumsily handled by the interviewer, also gives a valuable insight into the creation & purpose behind the songs, and Judee's sensitivity & intelligence.

The production values of this set are also due praise, with a valuable & detailed booklet giving helpful background, and the artwork of the whole package is very sympathetic. My only reservation is the limited amount of material here, as some songs are repeated three times, and I feel only The Kiss is powerful enough to withstand this over-exposure. An achingly beautiful collection nevertheless.


Silverline HA03B Hardwood Claw Hammer 8oz
Silverline HA03B Hardwood Claw Hammer 8oz
Offered by tooltime uk ltd
Price: 4.44

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bang on the Nail!, 7 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I wanted a hammer which was less than a full-weight one, but heavier than smaller ones I use for putting up pictures etc. This one proved perfect, and is beautifully balanced, and weighty enough to perform a range of heavy & lighter work. Even my wife likes using it.


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