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glassman "Richard" (Edinburgh)

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Rufus Does Judy Live at Carnegie Hall
Rufus Does Judy Live at Carnegie Hall
Price: 11.67

1.0 out of 5 stars Wainwright's adenoidal groaning soon gets tedious (and he sings flat on more than one occasion) ..., 14 July 2014
I was given this album as a gift. I'd never heard of Rufus Wainwright and I have to say I took one look at the deeply unappealing portrait and shoved it in a drawer and forgot about it until I came across it again recently. Out of curiosity I put it on my MP3 player and decided to give it the once over to and from work. My verdict? Utter Utter Dross. Wainwright's adenoidal groaning soon gets tedious (and he sings flat on more than one occasion) along with his irritating enunciation (e.g. 'me' = 'muuueeeee', 'jubilee' = 'jubiluuueeee'). This is less a platform for talent than one for overweening ego. Recreating a celebrated concert with yourself as the big star? Pffff. What is it with some of my fellow gay men about wanting to be Judy Garland? I'd have thought we would have grown out of this stage a long time ago - both as individuals and as a community. I suppose you'd have to be a dedicated RW fan to get anything out of it. Just get the music from the original concert and enjoy the real experience.


Short Black Universal Standard Ink Cartridges Pack of 50 For Fountain Pens
Short Black Universal Standard Ink Cartridges Pack of 50 For Fountain Pens
Offered by The Online Stores
Price: 1.27

5.0 out of 5 stars Good value for money - enough to last me for ..., 30 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Very please - they fitted my 40-year old Osmiroid pen perfectly. Good value for money - enough to last me for the foreseeable future.


A Cock And Bull Story [DVD] [2006]
A Cock And Bull Story [DVD] [2006]
Dvd ~ Steve Coogan
Price: 4.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Tedious, 26 May 2014
Tristram Shandy is merely a platform for the overweening vanity of Steve Coogan. Don't bother with film. Boring boring boring.


Arbiter of Elegance: Robert Adam
Arbiter of Elegance: Robert Adam
by Roderick Graham
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 25.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars OK I suppose, 20 May 2014
A passable book for those who wish to know something about Robert Adam and his works. Having said that the text could do with some further editing, containing as it does several spelling mistakes, quite a few historical inaccuracies (Pompeii and Herculaneum destroyed in 29 b.c. plus many about the creation of Edinburgh's New Town) and jarring clumsinesses in the prose style - thus the resulting volume comes across as somewhat amateurish. Furthermore the selection of illustrations is woefully inadequate, the balance not quite complementing the narrative (why all the interior photos of Syon House for instance and non of other places i.e. Mellerstain?)The extensive quotation of Adam's letters though give a real impression of Adam as a fully-rounded human being - I would like to see the complete family correspondence published if the selection contained in the book is anything to go by. I bought this book second-hand for 5. If I had paid any more I would have been sorely disappointed.


The North: (And Almost Everything In It)
The North: (And Almost Everything In It)
by Paul Morley
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 13.60

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bricky old Stockport and more., 23 Jan 2014
First of all this book (hardback) is a beautiful object in its own right - from the atmospheric black-and-white photograph on the dust-jacket to the two elegant fonts used in the text. In my experience a beautiful book is a rarety these days.

Like Paul Morley I was born in the south but was brought up in Stockport and now live many miles away (much further north in my case). In some respects I found The North an uneasy read in some parts as I am roughly the same age as the author and shared a lot of the difficulties he experienced (suicide in the family, unhappy at school, feelings of not fitting in, unsatisfactory relationship with my father). Furthermore I had an indirect but traumatic link with the Moors Murders, which because they overshadowed the 60's (especially in this area)cannot in all honesty be omitted in any account of the time (but this is mercifully only briefly touched upon). In other respects it was a pleasure to be reminded of the Stockport we shared then although I lived at the other end of town from the Morleys in 'dowdy but proud Edgeley'. This is no cosy tin-bath-by-the-fire-on-Friday-nights, we-were-poor-but-happy, north of England memoir seen through the lens of a Lowry painting. His warts-and-all portrayal of the curate's egg that was, and is, Stockport is spot on - writing as he does of its centuries-old history, its occasional joys, the beauties of its surroundings, and the dispiriting drabness of some (if not most) of its areas. (Although I cannot agree with PM who hates Stockport Town Hall, to me it's wild -like Christopher Wren on acid.)

Despite the book's title though, be warned, this is a personal view of the North using Stockport as a kind of fulcrum, not all areas and aspects of the north of England receive an equally detailed scrutiny. Perhaps it should have been more correctly called The North West, but that would have been less in-your-face as the stark two-word title as it now stands.

I found the style of writing rather bewildering to start with consisting as it does of long, meandering, sentences some involving lists of seemingly random words and phrases, and several sub-clauses. Once I had perservered though I found it had a flow which bowled me along to some surprising places. For instance I've never really been keen on pop music and know very little about it (I had more conservative tastes and preoccupations compared to PM) but I found myself absorbed by his memories of the gigs of Bowie, Marc Bolan, and the Sex-Pistols despite myself. Similarly I don't know Liverpool very well, nor did the 1960s Merseybeat/Beatles sound appeal but the prose-poem chapter devoted to Liverpool was, for me, the highlight of the book.

I was fascinated too by the liberal sprinkling of facts (presented intriguingly in reverse chronological order)that punctuate the text chronicling the history and culture of the north: its battles, its food, its entertainers, its riots, its literature etc etc.

In many ways this is a book of the familiar and unexpected. I would recommend it should be approached without any preconceptions about biographical or historiographical style (or notions of what prose is or of poetry). I recommend you take it as it is and enjoy the highs and lows of the ride (like the North come to think of it).


In Search of Rex Whistler: His Life and His Work
In Search of Rex Whistler: His Life and His Work
by Mirabel Cecil
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 28.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sumptuous treat, 8 Jan 2014
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I've always loved Whistler's work since I bought a postcard of his painting of Haddon Hall when visiting Haddon as a schoolboy. His work is an interesting reminder that not all taste in the 1930s involved Art Deco and Clarice Cliff. I love the atmosphere of wistful yearning for the unattainable that haunts his work, a mix of gentle sorrow and distant laughter amongst things baroque. Also included in this book is his ephemera, exquisite vignettes on letters or left in visitors' books. One get the impression Whistler was a kind and sociable human being apart from being a gifted artist. His death in action at a early age heightens the poignancy that haunts his work. Although some people today, I would imagine, would see his output as elitist (he worked largely for aristocratic patrons) and little more than decorative, his relevance today lies in the importance of the imaginative life and the possibility of an alternative to the mundane and dispiriting.


John Piper: The Forties
John Piper: The Forties
by Glenn Sujo
Edition: Paperback
Price: 18.15

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful publication, 8 Jan 2014
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A lavishly illustrated book with informative text about the artist and his works. I'm delighted with it (a late Christmas present) and have been poring over it since it arrived this morning. I particularly enjoy Piper's haunting painting of buildings with their fascinating assembly of slabs of light and surprising colour. The images of blitzed churches are eerily atmospheric and lift the squalor of man-made destruction into something beautiful and unforgettable (the paintings of the ruins of Coventry Cathedral are particularly moving).


Music From Baz Luhrmann's Film The Great Gatsby
Music From Baz Luhrmann's Film The Great Gatsby
Price: 12.29

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Let's murder the Jazz Age, 27 Aug 2013
Once again ubiquitous pop music thrusts its ugly head where it's not appropriate. I thought Marie Antoinette was bad but this?

What a horrible soundtrack. A cocophany of screeching ugly sounds, which completely detracts from any sense of period. Why is shouting down a microphone admired as good singing?

Even the sound of Porter, Gershwin and Berlin et al spinning in their graves couldn't drown out this dismal racket.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 8, 2014 5:06 PM GMT


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