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Reviews Written by
The BlackFerret "Steve The BlackFerret" (Plymouth UK)

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Changing Horses
Changing Horses

6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Start of the Rot, 9 Aug. 2010
This review is from: Changing Horses (MP3 Download)
I suppose it was always a bit much to expect brilliance every time.

But after their first 4 wonderful albums, this was a disappointment when it came out & hasn't improved with age.

Problem number 1 is that the girls added nothing musically to the band & in fact detracted from Heron & Williamson's musical versatility at times. Both had fine singing voices, shown to great effect hereon with Sleepers Awake. But this was & should have remained The Incredible STRING band, not the Stoned Hippies Vocal Society!

Problem number 2-the measly 6 tracks. They'd previously provided 10 or 11 tracks with albums over 50 mins long in total, so this definitely looked like short change or self-indulgence.

Of the six, Sleepers is top-class, as is the whimiscal and totally bonkers Big Ted. Dust Be Diamonds & Mr & Mrs are just dreary-total filler material.

And then, problem number 3. The other 2 tracks,White Bird & Creation, last over half-an-hour combined. That's one epic too many.

Heron just about gets away with White Bird. And this from the guy who was always supposed to be best at short boppy tunes. HE was actually a trained classical music student & that's why White Bird passes muster.

Williamson, however, said as much in Waltz Of The New Moon on Hangman's in a quarter the time of Creation. Let him into double figures for minutes & he rambles all over the shop sometimes-and Creation is one such example.

A shame then, and a shame now-this COULD have been so much better.

Nebulous Nearnesses
Nebulous Nearnesses

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Pointless!, 8 Aug. 2010
This review is from: Nebulous Nearnesses (Audio CD)
This is OK in itself, but it's rather like Paul & Ringo borrowing a couple of younger musicians & trying to remix/re-record the Beatles.

That's partly why it's pointless.

The other part is that Clive Palmer & Mike Heron NEVER historically were the ISB. Clive & Robin Williamson formed it, Mike Heron joined last in 1965.

On the release of the first album, Clive contributed 2 or 3 tracks & was gone, followed by Robin, before Mike & Robin came back together later in 1967. So, there is NO period in ISB history or even their mythology where they were Mike n Clive & not Robin.

The 2 new people are an improvement on the unlamented Malcolm LeMaistre, I must be honest, but that's no recommendation. Don't waste your money-just savour the first 4 albums when Heron & Williamson were BOTH at their staggeringly highest points of songwriting,singing,playing,stagecraft and sheer genius.

The Hits
The Hits

4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Tottenham Sound Has Crushed The Beatles!, 30 July 2010
This review is from: The Hits (Audio CD)
That was the headline in the Daily Express the week Glad All Over went to Number one here!

This was the same paper whose headline on 1st September 1939 was"There Will Be No War".

Both predictions never fulfilled! But Glad All Over remains a superb example of British 60's beat, as did the later Any Way You Want It.

Even on release, Glad All Over was a dated sound compared to Beatle,Stones & others soon to emerge like Animals, Kinks & Who. Still, it has lasted well, nearly 47 years later, it's a wonderful 2 mins worth!

Unfortunately, the rest of it has NOT. It often struck me on its' release(I was born 1952 by the way)as being decent but dull pop music. The drive in Glad All Over was gone & possibly all the fun with it.

If you want good POP music from that era, Manfred Mann were better then & still cut the mustard now & the Hollies were consistently good and are in retrospect. A little later, The Monkees were perfect pop & remain unsurpassed.

Sorry, but Dave C was never as brilliant as he always thought, and a careful listen to this in comparison to other contemporary acts really gives the game away.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 24, 2011 1:04 PM BST

The Very Best Of Red Lorry Yellow Lorry
The Very Best Of Red Lorry Yellow Lorry
Price: £11.07

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Smashing & ageless, 26 April 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The Lorrys, as they preferred to be known were around quite a while in the early & mid 80's.

Arguable whether they were Goth, Industrial, both or neither.

Doesn't strictly matter-they were one band you could boogie to, or sit around and contemplate the profundity of their sparse lyrics. Or both!

And, best of all, they remain totally recognisable, every track. Simply because singer Chris Reed NEVER turned off his thick West Yorkshire accent on stage or in the studio.

And that gives everything the Lorrys did a very special edge. Same effect as Dylan, Tom Waits & Rod Stewart in their respective spheres.

Just a shame The Lorrys' record sales didn't reach those levels, then. But you can still enjoy them, so what are you waiting for?

Top Ten Hits Of The Sixties
Top Ten Hits Of The Sixties
Price: £1.26

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This item deserves a certain something................., 22 Jan. 2010
-----------preferably burial!

If anyone in the cast list here is a supergroup, I'm the King of Iceland!

Only the Ventures(long-lasting) & Gerry and the Pacemakers(3 no. 1 UK hits) get remotely near the definition. And then, yes, not ONE is the original recording.

Give it a wide berth, this is just total pants.

Singing the Blues
Singing the Blues
Offered by Squirrelsounds
Price: £4.69

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Could be the one!!, 9 Jan. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Singing the Blues (Audio CD)
This is not just cheap, it's got a mass of early Tommy Steele material that just never surfaces elsewhere.

That includes all the tracks off Tommy Steele Story EP's Vol 1 & 2, the 10" album soundtrack of The Duke Wore Jeans, plus every single B-side from Rock with The Caveman through to Talahassie Lassie.

And, folks, throughout that period, Tommy was the only British rocker, period! This is not all rock, but a whole bundle of it is & it still sounds as home-made and fresh over half-a-century later.

In fact, listening to it all again(and I was only 4 when he started!!), it's surprising how my impression that he had his own take on Rock & wasn't driven by copying anybody was the correct one. He went on to greater things, not just in music, but as an artist AND a sculptor, who's exhibited in both media, too.

And listening to this, you may also agree with me that the talent was there from the start, together with that irrepressible South London humour. Yes, I'm from that neck of the woods, too & proud to be when I listen to Tommy.

Offered by MediaMerchants
Price: £9.98

6 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A disgrace., 4 Nov. 2009
This review is from: Coda (Audio CD)
One album that should NEVER have been released.

You might note from my other reviews that I reckon Zep were going off from HOTH. Agree with that or not, you will doubtless agree that Zep didn't release anything here at the time for one good reason.

THEY thought it wasn't good enough. Which is the only reason you need to consider if you're thinking about buying it.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 26, 2012 11:04 AM BST

In Through The Out Door
In Through The Out Door
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £11.14

1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just look back & compare..........., 4 Nov. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: In Through The Out Door (Audio CD)
Yep, just drop this on after or before that(ie I-IV(any one of that quartet).

This is just quite good heavy/prog rock(mainly) played by robots.

That was inventive,keen and cutting edge musicians.

Jesus, they sound drained all the time.

I've given this 3 stars, because the inherent class is still distinguishable & because I've too much respect for Bonzo to admit this is an unworthy epitaph to him.

Offered by NextDayEntertainment
Price: £5.98

7 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Time to pack up,gents!, 4 Nov. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Presence (Audio CD)
Candy Store Rock is a splendid little rocker. Elvis would have been quiet proud of it, I'm sure.

The rest? Seen the T-shirt,Played the film,,,,,,

Apart from the Nicholas Parsons/Joan Collins lookalikes on the cover, there's nothing else intriguing on here.

There's also no energy or verve in the band anymore outside of CSR. That's unforgiveable.

Don't waste your pesas or pence on this.
Comment Comments (10) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 3, 2015 2:43 PM GMT

Physical Graffiti
Physical Graffiti
Price: £18.60

13 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nearly saved the day, but......., 4 Nov. 2009
This review is from: Physical Graffiti (Audio CD)
By now, Zep were just into total excess & thinking they were the greatest show on earth, and so a live double had to be followed by a studio double.

Yeh, I went out and bought this on the day of release and struggled with it as a package. 34 years on, I wouldn't bother buying it-thank god for Downloads, eh?

There is one very good to excellent album here that could have kept their greatness going. But it starts to drift, mainly on the 2nd disc, and we are back to musical painting by numbers and fillers galore.

Pity, because they do cover a number of styles on here, most of them very well. But that need to do 80 mins worth instead of 40 or 45 does for its' chances of greatness, I'm afraid.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 25, 2013 9:03 AM GMT

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