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Paul Kinvig (Bournemouth, UK)

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It's a Girl's Game
It's a Girl's Game
by Victoria Shelley
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.97

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She shoots........she scores!, 15 Feb 2012
This review is from: It's a Girl's Game (Paperback)
"It's a Girls Game" is one of those books which falls under the category of guilty pleasure - you know you should probably choose the healthy option butwhat you really want is the sticky toffee pudding! The beauty of Victoria's offering is that it has no pretentions to be anything other than it is - a fun, pacey and entertaining read!

Content is, of course, in the highly topical WAG arena and given recent events has more than a ring of truth about it. The exploits of the three main characters get rather steamy (no bad thing) in places but never drop into gratuity.

A perfect accompanyment to a sunlounger, air journey or lunchtime read with the girls.......go on read it and indulge yourself!!

The Incident
The Incident
Price: £19.48

8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Perfect Blend Of Vision & Nostalgia, 22 Sep 2009
This review is from: The Incident (Audio CD)
The Incident

I am old enough to remember the thrill of rushing to your local record store on a Saturday, buying the latest rock album (often with a gatefold sleeve), running home and listening to it non-stop for a week (whilst you memorised and analysed the lyrics). Those records became rather like a friendship that grew and deepened over the years as you discovered more and more about them.

Porcupine Tree and their latest release "The Incident" fall squarely into that category. It requires, no demands, your full attention because it's about as different from the current disposable 3 minute chart offerings as you can get. It's the difference between Blue Nun & Chateau Laffitte, between a Daihatsu & a DB9, between a knee trembler behind the bike sheds and a night with Angelina Jolie!!

Comprising of two cds, the title track takes up all of CD1. "The Incident" has all the hallmarks of Steven Wilson's genius - gentle reflective movements, raging slabs of guitar, soaring vocals and wierd, left field ambient moments (often courtesy of ex- Japan keys player Richard Barbieri). For me, the standout section of this piece of work is "Time Flies" - a Pink Floyd-esque section reminiscient of Animals but clearly dragged into the 21st century - but I could also talk about "The Blind House", "Octane Twisted" and "Kneel & Disconnect"......!!!!

CD2 consists of the other side of PT - shorter songs of which "Black Dahlia" and "Bonnie The Cat" are classic 'Tree tracks which really should not be overlooked. Imagine the roaring compact sections of Fear Of A Blank Planet and you will be in the right arena.

Lets face it, "FOABP" was overwhelming. This however, is more "disturbing" as it somehow isn't quite as obviously intense - it's more Peter Lorre than Jack Nicholson! For the movie buffs among you, think 10 Rillington Place rather than The Shining!!!

Let "The Incident" take you back to being 16 again with the memory of your first touch of 2112,Going For The One, Dark Side Of The Moon, Foxtrot.........but without the embarrasing haircuts. It is, in reality, nothing short of a masterpiece!

Open Soul
Open Soul
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £7.23

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply a masterclass!, 27 April 2009
This review is from: Open Soul (Audio CD)
It's been awhile ladies and gentlemen and I suspect much water has passed under the collective Kane family bridge but boy has it been worth it. Scotland's own "Gallagher Brothers" return with an album worthy of their mostly considered classic early period works.

Hue & Cry have always been something of an enigma, driven by their creative, spititual and fillial tensions but nearly always producing some of the most sublime pop/soul in decades. Their move into jazz influenced waters later in their career did not cause me (as it did some) to stop "Looking For Linda" but it did appear to be one of the final nails in their commercial coffin.

Returning after their successsful commercial and critical appearance on "Hit Me Baby One More Time" the Open Soul cd is a real gem. Ridiculously hummable songs such as "Plan B, Last Stop and "Fireball" sit very easily with funkier tracks such as "Headin' For A Fall" and "C'mon Legs" whilst those afficionados of their jazzier leanings will find "Twisted Heart" appealing.

Being brutally honest, I don't think their version of Beyonce's "Crazy In Love" works in the same way that their twisted version of Prince's "Sign Of The Times" did so well. It just doesn't hang together and ends up sounding forced.

Still that is a minor gripe as Pat's voice can still charm the angels from the skies (although he doesn't believe in them lol) and Greg's musical talent is top notch - that boy can bang out a tune!

Is it Seduced and Abandoned, Remote or Stars Crash Down? Well no, but that is not a criticism. It's a fine collection of songs from a band who I suspect find it difficult to work with or without each other.

Welcome back boys - just keep things that can be thrown away from them!

Tales From The Beach
Tales From The Beach
Price: £13.68

4.0 out of 5 stars Stick With It!, 26 July 2008
This review is from: Tales From The Beach (Audio CD)
After "Bees And Things And Flowers," I was so looking forward to "Tales" (and maybe that was the problem)that I almost ripped the cd out of the posties hands.

But after a couple of listens I was ready to consign it to the "looks like they are on the downslope" section of my cd collection.The more laid back acoustic groove of what I thought was merely a stop gap release in "Bees....." remained and I was left thinking, where had they left their funkiness?

HOWEVER......I am happy to report I was very very wrong. Having stuck with it "Tales..." is actually a very mature collection of songs from a band who are at the top of their playing/singing abilities. The first 7 tracks demonstrate what the album is all about - the songs aren't as immediate as, say Eleven or Positivity, but "N.O.T" and "I've Been Waiting" are real head bobbing growers. Tony Momrelle appears to have been posessed by the spirit of Stevie Wonder on "When The Sun Comes Down" but Imaani and Joy Rose are not overshadowed either - especially on "Silence Of My Mind" and the hauntingly beautiful "It May Rain Sometime". In fact it's Maysa's voice that sounds as if it's lost some power compared to earlier releases.

The big plus point as well is that the songs really work live - as an attendee at the July Concorde 2 Brighton gig I can testify that "N.O.T" will be a favourite for years to come.

But don't form an opinion until you've played it at least 10 times - sometimes the best things in life are worth waiting for!

Falling in Between
Falling in Between

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They've done more than "Africa........", 16 April 2007
This review is from: Falling in Between (Audio CD)
It must be galling when you've been producing consistently brilliant albums for the past 20 years and the main response to your body of work is "Didn't they do Africa?" Yes they did - in 1982!!! But you get to a point when it doesn't matter, especially when you can sell out staduims in Europe, Japan and the Americas! "Falling Inbetween" is the album Toto can now make having been freed from the shackles of a massive label. All the traditional fare is there - soaring hooks, brilliant playing and spine tingling backing vocals - but the songs are examples of their varied influences. It's almost as if they went -"This is us, like it or not - BUT WE HAD A BALL MAKING THIS!!!

The title track kicks off in superlative mode, quite proggy in a catchy sort of way, then Lukather chucks in a riff, heavier than a Celebrity Fit Club contestant and the floor gives way!! Other stand outs are "Bottom Of Your Soul", "King Of The World", and the jaw dropping "Taint Your World" which had a guitar playing friend of mine almost throwing his guitar across the room as he tried to learn it!! Imagine Van Halen crossed with Toto's innate sense of melody and you are there. "Let It Go" is almost jazz fusion in feel but again has a killer hookline that pulls it back from self indulgence.

I unashamedly love this album and having recently seen them live, the songs really translate to the stage.

Yes they did do Africa (and Rosanna) but you will be missing out on so much more if you don't investigate this album. Sheer class my friends, sheer class.

Scream & Whisper
Scream & Whisper
Price: £26.41

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scream it or whisper it - it's a belter!!, 14 July 2004
This review is from: Scream & Whisper (Audio CD)
Having raved over "Messenger" and been, on reflection, slightly disappointed with "Far From Over" (in fact I actually thought it was when he split with the major label) I am glad to report that Mr McCain is back with an absolute belter. For those of you not in the know think Hootie & The Blowfish, Dave Matthews, Vertical Horizon with a bit of Springsteen thrown in and you'll be in the right ball park.This is an album stuffed full of great tunes with intelligent lyrics played by musicians who appear not to feel the need to prove how talented they are but instead let the songs breathe & therefore talk much louder on their behalf.
It's fairly obvious that Edwin has beaten some significant personal issues and fallen back in love with writing playing & singing - just listen to "Coming Down", "Shooting Stars" or "Wild At Heart" for the evidence. Two stand out ballads - "Say Anything" and the destined to be classic "Couldn't Love You More" are the real instant stars whilst the cd ends with a blistering version of "Maggie May" on which he sounds so much like Rod that you start to believe that human cloning has already been successful!!
If you like passion, ability, sensitivity, meaningful lyrics & great melodies in your music, go buy this cd now! If not, there's always Busted!

Price: £11.86

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Songs with more hooks than an anglers fishing basket!, 7 Dec 2000
This review is from: Messenger (Audio CD)
I bought this on the strength of the US single - I Could Not Ask For More - and it became one of my albums of 1999. Imagine overtones of Hootie plus Vertical Horizon with the lyrical sensitivity of James Taylor and you're not far off. Stand out tracks are the haunting "Promise Of You" and the very BIG "Go Be Young" whilst "Wish In This World" and "Anything Good About Me" have bigger hooks than an anglers fishing basket!! His talented band play the tracks without falling into the trap of "overplaying" and Edwin's voice is superb throughout. All in all a gem for those who like great songs with melody and crunch!!!

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