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The BlackFerret "Steve The BlackFerret" (Plymouth UK)

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Greatest Hits
Greatest Hits

5.0 out of 5 stars Flawless, 8 April 2008
This review is from: Greatest Hits (Audio CD)
While there wasn't too much wrong with Black Sabbath after the advent of Ronnie James Dio, or the subsequent return of Ozzie, this original Greatest Hits from 1976, is frankly unsurpassed. It's also unsurpassable!

Virtually everything here was a concert favourite between 1970-75,too. You really did not have to have been to see them live in some dingy place in the West Midlands then to appreciate this. There is just one track after another that shouts top-class at you. And don't forget these guys patented Heavy Metal as well.

Choosing personal faves is hard,but NIB,Black Sabbath,Sabbath Bloody Sabbath and War Pigs will never lose their power. Changes will never lose its' charm(seems a strange word re Sabs, but it's the case), but Iron Man just won't leave my head every time I play this compo!

I wouldn't put anything later down, but this album just hasn't a duff second in its' 55 minutes,simple as that. Sabbath themselves were simple,too:-simply heavy,simply loud,simply bloody breathtaking.

So there's no good reason to ignore this-it's also simply the best of a very good band indeed.

The Definitive Drifters
The Definitive Drifters
Price: £8.42

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Defintive-YES!, 2 April 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Definitive Drifters (Audio CD)
This compilation has the lot.Right through from the very first US single,Money Honey, from 1953, through to their UK revival on Bell in 1973/4,including never-released tracks like Only in America and Up in The Streets of Harlem. Both of those alone were so good you wonder just how someone's thought sitting on them all this years was a good idea!

At various times R n B,Doo-Wop,Soul or Pop, the Drifters were consistently under-rated. Even if in later years, there seemed to be more variations of a group called The Drifters playing live here in the Uk than you or I had hot dinners, the group's spirit always seemed to be there somehow.

They came to embody the excellence of Atlantic Records from the moment There Goes My Baby(1959) finally cracked the Billboard Top 100 in a big way. And yet, listening to all the earlier stuff, they were ALWAYS a thunderingly good sound-their vocal liaisons have never been equalled.

58 tracks-because the booklet lists 58 group members from 1953 onwards! Despite the amazing personnel changes that included the entire group being fired in 1958 & The Five Crowns(including Ben E King) suddenly waking up & finding they were The Drifters, you actually get a wonderful continuity of sound and consistency of performance all the way.

Professional isn't the word-Magic possibly is!

Here's Little Richard
Here's Little Richard
Price: £9.69

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Meanwhile,half a century later......., 7 Mar. 2008
This review is from: Here's Little Richard (Audio CD)
This still rocks!

Ignore the mipsprint-Can't Believe is at track 3, as it was when the original vinyl was released in 1957.

It's worth £60 on London in prime condition,and nearly £200 on American Speciality. Whichever, it's worth every damn bit of it.

Little Richard was selling in bucketloads in 1955-57 and it ain't any wonder. He went like the demented Cadillac or V8 ford in the lyrics of Chuck Berry's Maybelline at everything,fast or slow,blues,rock or ballad. 110 half-a-mile ahead every track!

And now, 50 and a bit years later, how does it feel? RED-HOT!!! The sheer panache and verve of rock n roll has never died, thank God, and Little Richard's pioneering efforts still rock the joint every time it plays.

I advise you to stick with this version,simply because the 12 track original is a perfect work of art.It just doesn't need improvement,believe me,just adding to your collection forthwith!

The Girl Can't Help It [DVD]
The Girl Can't Help It [DVD]
Dvd ~ Tom Ewell
Price: £7.43

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still a star effort!, 26 Feb. 2008
This review is from: The Girl Can't Help It [DVD] (DVD)
This was the very first film to seriously look at rock n roll. You might question therefore what the hell the Treniers and Ray Anthony and His Band are doing in a ROCK film, then,but both had already more than held their own on rock package tours across the USA,so there!

It features a brief glimpse of Eddie Cochran,a briefer glimpse of Gene Vincent,but plenty of Fats Domino and a lot of Little Richard. He is as mental as ever on stage and nearly succeeds in stealing the film with each of his 4 numbers.

The other issue explored sensitively here is one of the greatest mysteries of the 1950's. Why DID so many Hollywood blondes fail to buy their sweaters in the right sizes between about 1956-1960? Alternatively,why didn't these girls find a washing powder that didn't shrink the said sweaters 3 sizes every time?

It's a credit to other actors(Tom Euell & Edmund O'Brien)and the rock acts that you can concentrate on their performances,at least sometimes,without forever wondering why Jayne Mansfield looks like she's been shot in the back with a couple of guided missiles. The question does come back to haunt you occasionally, just like the ghost of Julie London & her hit recording of Cry Me A River keeps haunting Tom Ewell,until he finally pulls Jayne!

Anyway, it is a fun film,the music is wonderful and the fact is most people concerned acted as if this was something we'd all soon forget in a few months. Maybe that little error of judgement is why it's still so fondly regarded;every one had a darn good time making it,and most people have had a damn good time in the last 52 years watching it!

The Rough With The Smooth
The Rough With The Smooth
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £11.64

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tragedy!, 22 Feb. 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's unbelievable this band should never have got going properly;they rocked then & I suspect 20 years later,they still could. Time for a re-union tour,gentlemen?

All their 3 singles are here,together with 8 tracks that might just have made the album they never got to release,plus bonus extra mixes etc. Got to say,it's still all absolutely brilliant-astoundingly clean sound, mixed with dirty sleazy performances and lyrics.

Right,this is YOUR chance to rediscover ROCK with a capital R. This is simply far too good to ignore,especially when a couple of million sales might get that revival tour going-go on,tell all your friends as well!

And stick to the facts-there was much more to them than Coming on Strong,as this album proves. Even so,that WAS one of the greatest singles of the last 3 millenia & you get a long alternative mix of it here as well as the pure original.


Price: £7.97

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blimey!, 20 Feb. 2008
This review is from: Gold (Audio CD)
Even as a Cream fan from right back in 1966,I'm amazed at how good they still sound now.

Even better,I'm gobsmacked at how well this compo is put together. It scores heavily by lumping the life stuff to one side ie CD2. Cream were astounding live,most nights,BUT they could also ramble on,and they were never made for very long tours,but the live disc happily captures energetic and challenging efforts.

In the studio, they were 2 different bands. As a heavy clue,their 1st record,the single Wrapping Paper was more like the bloody New Vaudeville Band! But,as the subsequent studio albums showed,all that proved was their ear for a good pop tune and they had a decent number of chart hits to show for it.

They also knew how to hammer something we'd never heard of before out of one old blues tune after another. This was mainly on the 1st LP Fresh cream, but was still there on the 3rd,Wheels of Fire in Born Under a Bad Sign.

That album also revealed a new drift into descant tunes across Pete Brown's surrealist lyrics in numbers like As You Said,and that part doesn't get a look in here, although Politician isn't that far removed from the genre, ditto Deserted Cities of The Heart.

In fact,the choice of tracks is excellent-it genuinely goes right across each album AND picks up another flop comparative flop of a single in Anyone for Tennis. It DOES commit one unforgiveable sin in ignoring that 45's B-side,the Incomparable Pressed Rat & Warthog,but you can still get that,as you always could,on Wheels of Fire,so we'll let it off!

So,essential is the word-without this,about 95% of decent Rock music 1968-2008 would never have happened. Get a copy now & let it inspire your own creative juices,too!

A Piece of Yesterday - The Anthology
A Piece of Yesterday - The Anthology
Price: £8.77

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First class!, 2 Feb. 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's quite some achievement to compile such a decent selection of a genius like Al Stewart and this double comes very close to doing it.

The rights to Orange,Past Present & Future and Modern Times lie elsewhere & 1984's Russians & Americans,too. But, everything else is here AND an Alternative version of Soho which shoulda been a single-top 10 material!

Also included are Helen & Cassandra and The Coldest Winter in Memory,which never made it onto any album. Both are massively good,and how they've lain mouldering in the vaults so long is beyond belief.

You also get Bedsitter Images title track & Denise at 16, from the original release(1967) and none of the new tracks or remixed stuff on that album's 2nd release in 1970. Good idea,I say,because it showed the limitations placed on Al by a major contract. Ever since, he's tended to follow the advice of a title from the next Album-You Should Have Listened to Al!!

And, the simple result of that is one great album after another. His detached style of commenting on his own experiences became far more heartfelt, and his breadth of understanding and eye for detail in his historical works is simply amazing. The old ballader style of, say, Sir Patrick Spens, D'ye Ken John Peel etc has been brought into modern times by Al Stewart,because his lyrics are as good as that traditional poetry.

Not to mention his musicianship! Well,I ought to,but just try listening to this compo twice & concentrate on the music only 2nd time-you;ll be stunned at just how good it is.

So, it's not perfection,but it's quite near it!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 27, 2012 2:29 PM BST

Out Of The Past [DVD]
Out Of The Past [DVD]
Dvd ~ Kirk Douglas
Offered by somethinginmyeye
Price: £15.50

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diamond Jubilee time!, 18 Jan. 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Out Of The Past [DVD] (DVD)
This film is now 60 years old.

Time to get a copy & celebrate. You WON'T be disappointed.

There are 3 compelling reasons. First, good film noirs either have a slow progression of inevitable events that hurtle the characters to their doom, or they have a manic sequence of events as the world goes suddenly mad;this one has a stonking mixture of both.

Second, events usually unwind once the female is heavily involved in affairs. If you think Claire Trevor(Born to Kill) or Peggy Cummins(Gun Crazy) were girls to avoid, Jane Greer in this film is one to run away from-if you can! You get the feeling she is one you'd still feel compelled to commit murder for, to stop her from killing you!

Third, the eternal triangle here has 3 very sharp sides. It ain't just Robert Mitchum loves Jane Greer, and Kirk Douglas ditto-1947 Hollywood or not, the 2 male leads are possibly more than best buddies,too. Most interesting variation, this, and subtely etched on by director Jaques Tournier, who was still producing great films 10 years after this(Night of the Demon).

As if 3 superb performances wasn't another definite reason to buy, Steve Brodie, as a creepy Dudley Doright Forest Ranger trying to get the nice country girl, Rhonda Fleming, away from Bob Mitchum is a minor but much appreciated role. Another sign of a good film noir is that black and white become very blurred and interchangeable.

Well, that's enough-the plot you can find out for youself-you surely don't need any more reasons to buy, do you?

Les Vacances de M. Hulot [DVD] (1953)
Les Vacances de M. Hulot [DVD] (1953)
Dvd ~ Jacques Tati
Offered by Super Duper
Price: £23.65

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank goodness-it's the original!, 15 Jan. 2008
The best thing-this is the original FRENCH print. Not a bad idea, because many Gallic nuances went out the window when the background radio prigrammes were dubbed into an Ersatz Third Programme and the archetypical can't-relax-for-a-moment businessman who's ALWAYS wanted on the phone becomes Herr Schmidt and not the transatlantic Mr Smith!

The full, original soundtrack is also here-or at least a serial number of varations of Alain Roman's theme are-that WAS the original soundtrack! Who cares-it's such a lovely tune, in total keeping with the entire ambience of the movie.

M. Hulot also almost manages to charm the lovely young French lady in the movie. No mean feat, considering he's the living incarnation of how ex-President Gerald Ford was described 20+ years later-unable to chew gum & fart at the same time; using the phrase"accident-prone" about M.Hulot is the understatement of the last millenia & possibly of this one,too!

You also have the strange feeling that every one of the fellow holiday-makers, or the staff at L'Hotel Du Plage, will think back, in the coming winter, to their quinzieme en vacance avec M Hulot. And you also know, every one of them will be wishing, secretly or openly, that they'll soon both be hearing the sewing-machine-on-wheels and also seeing the hen-house-on-wheels as M. Hulot's 1924 Amilcar hoves into view next summer!

I won't bother detailing how the movie evolves. It's just unlike any other, even other Jacques Tati's. Let me just assure you it's not only the best film ever made, it's also still screamingly funny throughout & remains so after many,many viewings!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 21, 2008 4:43 PM BST

The Belles of St. Trinian's [DVD]
The Belles of St. Trinian's [DVD]
Dvd ~ Alastair Sim
Offered by 247dvd
Price: £6.91

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flaming poetry!, 15 Jan. 2008
Yes, it's a genuine work of art.

Inspired by cartoonist Ronald Searle, who caricuatured his hideous Japanese POW camp guards as horrible little English school-"gels", St Trinians is typically English. It also contains every filmic cliche known to man, and then some!

Despite which, its' charm,mirth and general appeal remain undimmed. A distinguished cast totters between completely inspired anarchic lunacy, surreal interruptions from staid educational Civil Servants, the inimitable Spiv, Flash Harry, and occasional realisations that they are actually supposed to be the voice of authority-well, intermittent realisations, anyway!

Not only should it never have worked, despite Alistair Sim,Joyce Grenfell, Beryl Reid, Hermoine Baddeley and George Cole in the cast, it should, after 54 years, be fit for the dustbin. Is it hell! I've just laughed my socks off at it for the 99th time this weekend, which is not bad for someone who never attended such an establishment(good job, with MY five-o-clock shadow!!).

Please give yourself a treat soon and relive a truly funny film-it's an enduring gem;as Shirley Bassey sang-Diamonds are Forever!

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