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glyn.wilcox@freeuk.com (London Labyrinth)

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Clockwork Orange (Carlos) (Bonus Tracks)
Clockwork Orange (Carlos) (Bonus Tracks)
Offered by games
Price: £19.99

18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A London Labyrinth favourite, 26 Mar 2000
If your curiosity has brought you as far as considering buying this album, there are good reasons to go ahead but be aware of the Warner Brothers 'Clockwork Orange Soundtrack' which I would recommend first. If you have arrived here via the book or the film you may find this music bewildering. If you want a token Carlos album for your collection, Switched On Bach was the biggie and effectively year zero for electronica as a music category in popular culture. Like much of the music here, however, it is kitsch and twee, sometimes interesting, always clever, sometimes unsettling, always soulless. Such shortcomings are very evident on this compilation, stripped as it is of the playful irony afforded by the context of the film or the extraordinary juxtapositions of contrasting sonic assaults featured by Kubrick on the Soundtrack where the classical covers rub shoulders with medieval and Vaudeville numbers, Gene Kelly and far-out Carlos originals. It provided a shocking musical tapestry thirty years ago and still sounds powerful today. The Soundtrack was certainly more than the sum of its parts which cannot be said of this Carlos-only CD. If you know early seventies electro-dilettantes like Rick Wakeman ( Cans And Brahms, Six Wives...), David Bedford (The Ancient Mariner) and even John Barry (The Persuaders), some of the original inspiration can be found here. 'Country Lane' which is absent from the Soundtrack CD had a huge influence on the rash of later synth bands despite its lack of anything resembling a backbeat. I'm sure an enterprising remixer could still make a club hit of it if they ignored the waltz-time opening. The main reason for buying this album, however, is the inclusion of the full-length version of 'Timesteps,' a Carlos original shortened by nearly ten minutes on the Soundtrack. This full version is a fascinating piece in which Carlos manages to keep an eye on fleeting melodies while pushing the envelope with the arrangement to explore the new synthetic palette instead of merely immitating an orchestra. The second to fifth minutes correspond to the abridged version which sounded almost frightening in its originality all those tears ago. I'm afraid I disagree with Carlos, however, when she bemoans the compression and tweaking applied to 'Timesteps (Excerpt)' for the Soundtrack. If you compare the two, the abridged section sounds better mixed and much punchier, especially to modern ears. So, whichever way you approach it, a flawed gem but one which still shines (fairly) undimmed. Buy both.


Play
Play
Offered by Giant Entertainment
Price: £4.75

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A London Labyrinth favourite, 26 Mar 2000
This review is from: Play (Audio CD)
His singing is weak, the beats rather square and the arrangements straightforward yet this is Moby's most consistent and satisfying album. The secret lies in the simplicity and deftness of his touch, a feel for natural dynamics and the killer melodic hooks of the blues vocals he samples. Moby is listed on the London Labyrinth web site which has links to further electronic/sampling maestros.


Let Us Play
Let Us Play
Price: £6.57

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A London Labyrinth favourite, 25 Mar 2000
This review is from: Let Us Play (Audio CD)
This is breathtaking at times. I like albums that immediately sound fresh and original but which also slowly reveal further layers.This has a wealth of ideas, subtle detail and inspired combinations of textures. Challenging but wholly listenable and thoroughly absorbing. Something of an overlooked masterpiece. This is listed on the London Labyrinth web site which features the best links for those who like electronic/sampling maestros such as these.
Glyn Wilcox


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