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Matt182 (Wales, UK)

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25: The Very Best of a-ha
25: The Very Best of a-ha
Price: 14.86

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Goodbye to A-ha, 30 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This album was released surrounding the bands' final break-up and just after the release of their farewell single. The first ever A-ha album I ever bought was 'The definitive singles collection 1984-2004' compilation album and I have loved this band ever since. Whereas that album has the defining singles and most of them on it from that 20 year period, this album has not just every single ever released by the band, including the final ever song 'Butterfly, butterfly (The last Hurrah) but also a selection of non-singles from each of the 9 studio albums. I think this is the ultimate A-ha collection and was especially attractive to me when it was released as I had collected some but not all of A-ha's albums so it gives a flavour of a couple of the non-singles from those albums. The album artwork follows on from the final album Foot of the mountain with the nature theme but has its own bubble style artwork. The booklet features a welcome informative piece about the band's history.

This album really is a piece of music history and if you have never bought an A-ha album before then it gives you a true slice of the band with not just the singles but album songs as well. The album features edited single versions and remixes which would even appeal to the veteran fan. There are 5 songs from the 1st two albums, 6 songs from the third, 4 songs from the fourth, fifth and sixth, 3 from the seventh, 3 from the eighth, 3 songs from the ninth and final album and the farewell single, which is very melancholy and emotionally stirring for the longer term fans. I think it's a brilliant song to say goodbye.

From the early days of deep 80's synth pop all the way to the modern nostalgic electro of their final album and final single this 2 CD album takes us along the journey of the bands development. If I had to recommend an album to anyone interested in this band then it would be this greatest hits compilation. With 39 songs which take you through the bands 25 year history as 1 of the most successful bands it is an album not to be missed, by new and old fans, even if it's just to add to your collection because it's pure gold! At just 5.07 this album is a no-brainer purchase when 'The definitive singles collection' right now is 9.12! This album has over double the amount of tracks so this is the obvious choice for anyone. This album is compelling evidence that A-ha were the greatest Norwegian band of all time and proof that they are one of THE greatest bands ever.

The Simpsons - Season 15 [DVD]
The Simpsons - Season 15 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Dan Castellaneta
Price: 11.25

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A rocky start which gets smoother, 24 May 2013
We've finally reached season 15 from 2003-2004, even though we're still 10 years behind! The box-set is Otto the bus driver themed with a glossy hologram finish and this time around the discs come in the same cardboard pull-out with nicely coloured pictures of the characters from the show which we've had since season 11 and which was improved for season 12 and has remained the same since.

When I started watching this season, which I haven't watched for years, not since it was first shown on UK broadcasting, I was quietly shocked. Some of the first episodes are downright laughable! Treehouse of horror XIV is very mediocre with Homer becoming death and ordered to kill Marge (in the commentary the crew explain that they didn't know at the time they were copying Family guy), Prof. Frink's dad becoming a Frankenstein creature and Bart and Milhouse getting up to no good with a watch which can pause time. Homer's mother returns in My mother the carjacker which does have a sweet moment here and there but is mostly very average, The president wore pearls is an awful musical episode with Lisa becoming class president and having the characters sing their way through this dire episode. Don't get me wrong this show has had some great songs in the past but none of them appear on this episode! The Regina monologues is a much too highly anticipated episode where The Simpson clan visit London and get in trouble. The gay joke with 2 men kissing each other made me want to wretch! Stupid things like that really let this show down. I also hate repetitive jokes which seem to feature in these later episodes. The fat and the furriest has its moments but it's a pretty silly episode with Homer creating a bear proof suit which was actually based on a guy who made a real life suit to make him indestructible! Today I am a clown is another poor excuse for an episode with the return of Krusty's father and Krusty having his first, TV shown, Bar Mitzvah! Incredibly it was an Emmy award-winner! I can only imagine that would be because it's about social and religious issues.

'Tis the fifteenth season once again has its moments and has some impressive animation but Homer making this mistake being so selfish as to waste all the Christmas money on 1 present and then stealing all Christmas presents is not the type of guy we once knew. I don't like what they've done to Homer from taking him from a decent guy with a good heart who is dumb to just an A-hole!
Through most of the episodes I did feel like I was watching a rip off, poor man's version of Family guy. The show should stick to what it's good at and stop trying to fit in with what is so popular because this is nowhere near as smart as Family guy when they try to be. I do think The Simpson's is better than Family guy, but only when it's not trying to be something it can't be!

Luckily the rest of the season does have some half decent episodes which save it for me. I (doh)-bot, Diatribe of a mad housewife, which sees a very surprising, dumbfounding return for Dr. Marvin Monroe who turns up at Marge's book signing! When Marge asks why "I haven't seen you in years", he replies "I've been very sick"! Well yeah we thought you were dead - Unbelievable! I believe this is the last time we see him to date. I think they really jumped the shark with that! Magical history tour, Co-dependents' day, The wandering juvie, My big fat geek weeding ( with a funny parody version of 'In the jungle' sung by Bart and classmates trying to win Miss Krabappel back after she decides to get with Comic book guy). This is the same episode which features a guest appearance from Matt Groening as himself at the comic-con. Simple Simpson and The way we weren't are also highlights.

Once again the days of old with Matt Groening appearing on most commentaries is well gone with Matt only appearing in 5 commentaries and once again Al Jean takes the helm. I used to really enjoy the commentaries but when I listen to them now I get bored quite easily. Besides there being an interesting fact and a laugh here and there they are nowhere near as fun as they used to be for me. The extras have the usual animation showcases, original sketches, commentary on every episode (need I say), commercials, deleted scenes and a language feature in 4 different foreign languages. This can be amusing! The unusual ones features commentary on a lot of unusual animation over the years, Living in the moment, which has pictures celebrating the 500th episode and All aboard with Matt is the name of the creator's introduction this time around.

Overall I think this season is a must-have for any serious Simpsons fans but it's definitely not got a list of episodes which are top quality. The poorer episodes are surely outweighed by the better ones and even though this season does have a terrible beginning it got much better to my relief. It's a shame that this show has become a parody of itself and hasn't stuck to great writing and honourable stories, which make it a ghost of itself, turning to trying to compare with the top rated show Family guy which is a shame. The more recent episodes I have watched on TV which I believe were from season 20 now were much better, so recently this show has troughs and peaks and as a fan I don't know where I stand!

Every Which Way But Loose
Every Which Way But Loose
Price: 0.79

5.0 out of 5 stars Clint and Rabbitt!, 23 May 2013
I watched the movie 'Every which way but loose' last night for the first time. The theme song featured at the introduction immediately attracted me. The movie itself is a fun comedy with Eastwood as a street fighter and featuring an extra intelligent orang-utan and is well worth the watch! The song really sticks in your head and has a cool country sound to it with a pretty simple but very effective and catchy chorus.

Heart Attack
Heart Attack

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Givin' me a heart attack!, 23 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Heart Attack (MP3 Download)
I'd heard a song or 2 of Demi Lovato's before and this song is awesome and really grabbed my attention. The song is about not letting yourself fall in love because you don't want to get hurt. Demi has a knack for writing meaningful pop songs. I am not saying every song of hers is like that but this one definitely is. It's got a great sound to it and her voice is incredible. The chorus has these powerful vocals and the "attack" vocal lifts me off the ground as a listener and then wraps itself around you. It's stunning! I hope she keeps writing decent pop music with a meaning, unlike most of the rubbish in the charts these days. It's great so congrats Demi.

Foot Of The Mountain
Foot Of The Mountain
Price: 10.26

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Walking down the mountain for the final climb, 20 May 2013
This review is from: Foot Of The Mountain (Audio CD)
Foot of the mountain is the ninth and final studio album by Norwegian trio A-ha. It was released June 2009 and follows 4 years after their comeback album Analogue. With the band knowing this would be their final album, it seems to me that they tried to create a sound which would please the old fans, with the style being somewhat reminiscent of the 1st 3 albums and the closest to the earlier material than any of the albums up to now. They also were catering to new fans and were fitting in with pop acts in the charts at the time, because electronic music was at the top of the charts when this was released with acts like La Rue. The electro sound is reminiscent of the synth pop of old but it isn't like the early albums at all. This is not synth pop it is electro, which is quite different. This is a much more updated sound which fits in with modern music and chart sales. I don't believe the band were trying to relive the glory days at all, they were just giving us a taste of what was so great about them back then and were going out with a sound the band would want to me remembered for. Magne describes the album; "It's an album that incorporates the key elements that first defined the band: soaring vocals, synth hooks, yearning lyrics and melodic melancholia". It is the band trying to be at their best and going out on a high and what they do is done very impressively.

Foot of the mountain was a pleasant surprise for me as the 1st single and probably the strongest, best song on the album. The piano intro is brilliant and leads us into a great pop song with a powerful chorus with amazing, soaring vocals from 1 of the greatest of all time Morten Harket. The song is about the madness of modern life and getting back in touch with nature. The album artwork has a unique quality to it with its cartoon feel with differing sized shapes and colours and nature display throughout the booklet, inspired by the title single. The album is 10 tracks long which is reminiscent of the first 3 albums, which this style is compared to.

The bandstand begins with beeping, keyboard sounds into a mid-tempo electro track. It's a very mellow sound with a great chorus. Lyrically I enjoy this too and it takes me to the bandstand on the pier of a local seaside town and sparks up nostalgia. It has a romantic, affectionate quality to it which is very easy to listen to. Riding the crest is much faster with a fast beat and catchy chorus with decent vocals, which is certainly suitable for it becoming the single. What there is - a slower mid-tempo track again with lower vocals at the verse which leads up to a higher pitched chorus with a very pleasant sound. Towards the end there is a moodier feel with low vocals in the background over the chorus. Foot of the mountain is the standout track. Real meaning has a twangy sounding synth with a romantic feeling at the chorus and feelings of hurt and despair in the verses.

Shadowside is 1 of the best on the album with an atmospheric, moody feel to it with Morten singing about how he doesn't want to go back to a darker side which is ruining his relationship. The chorus is really strong and has the type of power to it which takes you somewhere else. There are some proper high pitched vocals from Morten when he takes it up a key towards the end showing off his talents. This is the 2nd longest on the album at 4:55 but it doesn't feel dragged out, just atmospheric with the strings nearing the end. Nothing is keeping you here is another decent song about the need to move on. It's got attractive, soft feeling lyrics relating to nature and details about everyday life. Mother nature starts with a pounding bass line and then has a Chinese sounding synth. It's really upbeat and fun to listen to and lyrically interesting too. Sunny mystery is penned by Magne Furuholmen and is a significant, interesting track. It starts of with just Morten singing and then Magne provides backing vocals from the 2nd verse which immediately gives it a different sound to the rest. Start the simulator is an experimental song and tops off at 5:17. It has a soft feel to it after the twangy intro. Paul wanted to make a heartfelt song with technical language, inspired by the Apollo space programme. What Paul set out to do he achieved and maybe some people will embrace this experimental, different sound and side but I am not a fan. It's the worst song on the album which is pretty boring to listen to. I love a good mellow track but this doesn't keep me exactly engrossed throughout. I guess I do have respect for this song and understand the need to experiment but it doesn't work for me.

Paul had voiced his frustration years before this album had been released about how the band could rarely meet to share and record their ideas as they were all working on different projects, and when Paul was ready the other guys hadn't been. Paul is the main songwriter for the album with 4 songs being solo written by him and 5 being co-written. The album does have that classic A-ha sound to it and as Magne said it has those yearning lyrics, a lonely feel and melancholy as well as some very impressive vocals. This is what the fans wanted and I am pleased as a fan with this album but there's something about it which doesn't share the magic of the earlier material and the nostalgic feel the music created on this album doesn't quite live up to what this band once were.

Soul Cages
Soul Cages
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 9.42

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A deep, mournful album, 7 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Soul Cages (Audio CD)
Sting's debut and second album were released 2 years after each other so for this album to be released 4 years after in 1991 you know he must've put a lot of effort and time into the music. In 1987, not long before the release of Nothing like the sun... Sting's mother passed away. Six months later his father also died from the same disease and this obviously hit Sting hard. He suffered writer's block before realising he had to write a song about the death he had endured, which would help him to grieve. This song was "Why should I cry for you" which is 1 of the best on the album. Apparently this album was created in just 3 weeks with the rest of the songs flowing easily and clearly quickly from him after that first hurdle. Because it was written to help Sting come to terms with his parent's death and grief it is a very different album to the 1st two. It is very reflective where Sting refers to his father; his dreams of sailing and escaping, a lot of sea and maritime imagery, death, and is a very emotional and quite sorrowful record.

The album has just 9 songs on it but clocks in at 48:10 because a few of the songs are quite long with 4 of the songs being around and beyond 6 minutes. The album's artwork is very reflective of the music with the front cover having a picture of a beached boat with what looks like graves behind and inside little images of boats and graves. The back cover's song list is written in a text that is so light anyone will struggle to read it. Don't get why they did that.

The album is centred around a boy called Billy which is an alias of Sting's he's created so that the songs are not too personal and he can hide behind this fictional character. The album opens with some mournful sounding pipes courtesy of Kathyrn Tickell on Island of souls. Sting adopts his character Billy where he speaks of his father who is a riveter which is reflective of Sting's childhood with his father being a shipbuilder. It's slow and very mellow, almost haunting, just like the rest of the songs. All this time, which is the 1st of the 4 singles is much more upbeat and pop. It speaks of religion, nature and how Sting wishes to "bury the old man... at sea", and it's very evident he must be speaking about his father. Mad about you is my favourite on the album and 1 of my all time favourite Sting songs. The sound is amazing and the lyrics are meaningful about a man in pain longing for the woman he loves. It's based around a biblical tale and has some references to biblical subjects. The whole song is very moving and at the middle 8 where the saxophone comes in (courtesy of Branford Marsalis) is especially so and hits me everytime. Jeremiah blues (part 1) is something of a mystery to me as the title suggests there are a number of songs with this title but there aren't. Maybe he wrote another part that didn't make it onto the album. This song is moderately upbeat and the lyrics are quite thought provoking. Towards the end of the song there is some solo guitar which changes the mood. Why should I cry for you is 1 of, if not the most emotional and moving Sting song. Sting was having trouble mourning the loss of his parents and this song asks if tears would help and whether they'd want him to cry anyway. This song has a lot of sea imagery too.

Saint Agnes and the burning fire is an instrumental track which has a very classical sound to it with lots of strings (guitar and mandolin). Saint Agnes was a Christian martyr who died at the age of 14; I researched it! Don't know exactly why he chose to name this song that. This once again leads to the religious background of Sting's. The rest of the songs have that same mellow feel and are long, maybe longer than they need to be. The wild, wild sea is about the character being lost at sea and his father rescuing him. The title track The soul cages is another single and has quite an upbeat sound with a great guitar riff. The accent Sting adopts is strange as he doesn't even sound Geordie. It actually reminds me of Andy Summer's accent so I don't know the idea behind it. The chorus is repetitive and simple but that's Sting all over! It works. The lyrics refer to the fishermen and the sea. The end has Sting referring back to the first track The island of souls with the same lyrics but changing "world" for "sea" hence the whole album tying together. When the angels fall is quite uplifting but going back to a far slower sound with a piano backdrop. Lyrically it seems to be about accepting the death of his parents and trying to move on. It's the longest song at 7:48. From 5:30 the only real lyrics are the repetitive chorus and the song is dragged out to a slower and more mellow, quieter sound as it goes on and ends with a drum beat.

The album itself is very personal, very moving and thoughtful but I think it might take a bit of growing on you because besides the singles the songs are slow and centre around the same themes and subjects. The songs don't vary well from track to track like on his previous and later material. I think it is a great album and a piece of the man himself who wrote the album to help himself get through such a terrible time in his life. You do have to be quite a serious fan to enjoy it.

"Busted": The Official Book
"Busted": The Official Book
by Peter Robinson
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Be blown away by Busted's bangin' official book!, 3 May 2013
If you were a fan of Busted then you would already own this like me. It is a must have for any serious fan of the band with life stories from each member about many topics. The book begins with each of their history, statistics, albums that changed their life, icons and a reference from someone they know. The stories are really interesting and may just change your mind about who these boys are. The guys are very open and candid about their past and how they grew up and what we have here isn't just another way to make money for the record company but an honest account of the boys lives and autobiographies, their thoughts about band life, life in general, obviously music, recording the debut album, the singles, touring and how the band came together. It's not just media fodder for promotion. In the 'girls' section Charlie states "I was fourteen by the time I had my first girlfriend" - wow shocking! I nearly fell off my seat! The funniest bit is about an account of Charlie seeing Danii Minogue at a party and when he walks past she apparently goes "Fwoaaarrrr"! The integrity of that such account can be left to the reader!

Among the chapters; Making the band, What I go to school for, Busted: The album, Busted in the house, Girls, On the road, Time out and looking to the future, there are comments from editors, the record company, TV networks, paper's comments about the band and their early songs and the story of the real Miss Mackenzie. The book is 76 pages long and is a decent size, so this isn't just a short read and the book is overcharged, this is a decent sized book and it's well worth buying. If you are a fan then it should keep you pleased for a while. There are so many great full-colour photos on every page, which, if you haven't got this book, then many of them you wouldn't have seen before so that's a treat itself.

With in-depth details and interesting facts and stories about the band it is a book that you don't want to miss out on! It's a book you will find yourself looking through time after time. The only thing I would like to complain about is that on the blurb it says "It's all here.... Why do they jump up and down so much?". Well I have read this book at least a couple of times and I never did find out the answer to that question!

East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon
East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon
Price: 9.38

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Transformation of the new sound, flavour of the old, 1 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
2 years after their 1988 album Stay on these roads, which was a bit of a mixed bag, the band move into the 90's with this 1990 album East of the sun, West of the moon, with a new sound and a new look. The new look is clearly represented on the front cover and in the booklet Magne looks especially different sporting long hair and a full beard. After their 3rd album the band must've sensed a change in the music scene with synth driven pop going out and with their choice to create a far different sound, which fits in with indie and alternative. Even though the sound of the music has changed, what the band haven't done, which so many bands do when they decide to change their sound/style is to write completely differently. I think it is a huge mistake to change how you write lyrically, even with respect to a new sound when that is 50% of what attracts the fans in the first place. A-ha have not done that and even though they have stepped far away from songs like Touchy and You are the one, it still has that melancholic A-ha flavour all over the songs. The songs have a more mellow and mature sound and aren't quite as catchy. The last 3 albums were produced by Alan Tarney (amongst others) and this time they've used 2 different producers; Chris Neil and Ian Stanley, which was surely a positive move for a different sound.

The album starts with probably the best and stand-out song which is their cover of The Everly brothers' song Crying in the rain. As soon as the sound of rain (which sounds like its marching!) and claps of thunder begin it transports the listener to a moody, atmospheric feeling. I think this is an amazing cover and it suits the A-ha feel and style, with Morten's vocals shining, it's very moving. Early morning is the real taste of the band's new sound and it's a good tune with high pitched vocals, a good sound and a decent chorus. I call your name features saxophone which is a new step for the band! It's got this cool, jazzy, swinging feeling to it and is really good. Slender frame is quieter with subtle piano and guitar at the intro which builds up to a catchy and solid chorus. The title song has a 1 minute intro and a very mellow, soft sound with its acoustic guitar backdrop. From the bridge it gets more exciting and a little louder.

Sycamore leaves is 1 of my favourites with a great rhythmical guitar sound and without a chorus it's quite interesting as the verse and the chorus are interconnected. With its dark lyrics and moody sound it is a definite highlight. Lyrically it appears to be about the singer fearing he's discovered a dead body below a pile of Sycamore leaves. Quite different. Waiting for her is a romantic track with soaring vocals by Morten, which starts quietly and then builds up to a great rhythm with real drums. I like the "I'm telling you" lyric. Cold river's intro sounds very 80's but clearly has real drums, a great bass line and guitar at the forefront. It's a very cool, rhythmical song with a simple but great chorus and is 1 of my favourites for sure. There are themes of regret and loneliness in the lyrics as well as some humour and this is a perfect example of how the style has changed but lyrically it's all A-ha. The way we talk is a short 1:30 Magne Furuholmen penned track with Magne on lead doing talking vocals at the verse and a simple sung chorus. It's got a very simple sound to it too with just the piano and light percussion. Yes Rolling thunder is incredibly reminiscent of Crying in the rain with the same backdrop of rain and thunder at the intro and outro. I find it funny that the band would have 2 songs about raining on the same album! Maybe this song was inspired by Crying in the rain. The piano is mostly more upbeat than track 1 but is similar. The last track (Seemingly) Non-stop July is a very mellow, smooth sounding song with a nice feel. It's very candid with Morten saying "yeah" before the songs starts, signifying he's ready to record his vocals, which I like. From the middle 8 there's a speech in it with a man shouting about "Endless pain, endless pleasure" which gives it a different mood. I don't know who it's by so it remains a mystery to me.

This album has 11 songs on it which is their first to go beyond 10. Very 90's! The band moved away from using synthesizers and relying on electronic beats and used real instruments throughout the album, which you can really hear, which helps you appreciate the instrumental side more and expresses Paul and Magne's talents a bit more. I think whereas Stay on these roads had great singles - Stay on these roads, The living daylights, Touchy, You are the one, most of the other tracks were very average. This album is more consistent and overall better. It's a really decent step in a different direction and was a good choice for the band, updating their sound to appeal to the new decade's listeners. It may be a changed sound and a matured band but it's a strong A-ha album that didn't disappoint. It was quite a risk for the band to change their sound like this with many fans liking them for their catchy upbeat tunes, which this album doesn't have much of. I'm sure it probably alienated some at the time. The album does have great moments like Crying in the rain, I call your name, Sycamore leaves and Cold river. It has its weaker points but most of the album is a strong, decent effort that left me impressed.

Live: A Ticket For Everyone
Live: A Ticket For Everyone
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 5.81

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bust a move - Live! Unnecessarily manufactured., 27 April 2013
This live concert album recorded during the Manchester leg of their A Present for Everyone tour, which was the predecessor for the subsequent live DVD featuring an extra 4 tracks and bonus material, was released on the eve of Busted's impending break-up and it seemed the record company knew all about it, releasing the band's first live album which features all the singles, serving as something of a greatest hits live edition. The album was released on 1st November 2004 and as well as having all the singles, there is 1 other song from their latest album A present for everyone, their cover of The Undertones' Teenage kicks, which they performed at The Brit Awards.; I know I am in a select few people when I say this but I think their cover is far, far better than the original, with a much more rock sound, and there's the studio version of their movie theme tune Thunderbirds are go!. The album only made it to number 11 in the UK chart.

The album's artwork has pictures of the boys playing their instruments and photos of them onstage. The album's length is a mere 43:05, which doesn't include the whole concert and is suitable for the fans with a less significant attention span!

The album begins with 2 and a half minutes of just fans screaming and echo effects from their singles, which may put you into that concert atmosphere and give anticipation the 1st time but is quite boring to relive everytime you listen to the album and you'll probably end up skipping it. Then begins the intro to Air hostess which starts us off very nicely. Yes the songs do sound similar to the original versions and there are no significant changes, but isn't that what most people want when going to see a band anyway, especially their teenage audience, which made up about 95% of the fan-base? The concert is performed well and the guys can definitely play their instruments, no matter what any of the haters say, but my problem is that besides the 1 non-single addition of the terrible That thing you do and the great Teenage kicks cover the album just sticks to the singles. My other issue is that with a live concert the boys should be able to be less restricted and shouldn't have to conform to the record label's ridiculously clean standards. It's completely shocking how they can't use any swearing or sexual words at all. It's far worse than on the albums. There was a considerable amount of censorship on their second album (which was understandable) but surely in concerts they shouldn't have to still be squeaky clean because people should expect different live. If you've heard on the album then why remove it from the concert?! The label were clearly holding this band back live by moulding them into something they weren't. A clear example of this is on What I go to school for where on the single version Matt says he wants to get to the front of class "to get the best view of her ass" but he can't say that live! Why?! He then cheekily slips in 'boobies' instead afterwards!

Charlie and James sound good live (besides James doing some whiney "Lets go" lyrics etc.) but Matt sounds quite basic live. He said on the `Present' thankyou's about the production making him sound good and I can see why. I know he suffered with addiction and heavy smoking for years and it was clearly taking its toll on his voice here. The introduction to Who's David is great with Charlie asking if anyone in the audience is called David and James showing his sense of humour, starkly aware of his band's fan-base and concert goers with "Yeah, are there any girls out there called David?!". Oddly enough on Thunderbirds Charlie says the word 'ass' - maybe he was told not to but ignored it; it's very strange how he can say it in that context but Matt couldn't say it! You said no is my favourite but I think this live version is quite a mild performance of the original. On year 3000 at the start of the second verse the music drops out for Simpson's voice, which is a nice touch, but at the lyrics "triple breasted women..." the boys completely change the lyrics "Totally naked', where it sounds like Matt and James drop out and Charlie shouts "with their titties out"! Now I don't know if he was meant to say that or he didn't give a damn at this point but that's quite a significant point! At the bridge Matt and Charlie amuse themselves by repeating a lyric, which is a funny moment. It's good hearing the fans singing along to the 1st verse of Sleeping with the light on and it's quite nostalgic. That's it for the concert and whereas the studio version of Thunderbirds ruins the atmosphere it is definitely one of their best songs.

I never did bother to get the DVD version of this concert and I don't know if I ever will but if you haven't got that then this is a must-have for any fan of Busted. Seeing as this was recorded towards the end of their career it's quite historical really. It may not be a showing of the greatest live band or three-piece live act ever and these guys weren't exactly amazing live, but to be fair 2 of the boys were 21 and Simpson was still 19 here so it's not bad either! As I've said too they were really not helped by the label either who didn`t give them the room to meet their potential. Definitely worth the buy even just as a collection piece.

A Present For Everyone
A Present For Everyone
Price: 6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A developed sound but not as impressive as the debut, 20 April 2013
This review is from: A Present For Everyone (Audio CD)
Just over a year after releasing their hugely successful debut album the band released their second album with the lead-off single Crashed the wedding which went straight to number 1. This song about a guy who lost his girlfriend and then decided he couldn't let her marry this other man and decides to stop it had that Busted sound and attitude but was somewhat of a development, representing the new sound. The album's title is humorous. as it was released not long before Christmas 2003 and obviously many people were going to be getting it as a Christmas present. On the back there is a ribbon wrapped around it. According to Wikipedia Simpson said that it had some "harder, Good Charlotte type vibes coming through on this album". I think that is a crazy statement because it's nowhere near their sound! The album's clearly influenced by rock and punk but it's got that same pop sound written all over it. The album does have an edgier sound with teenage themes of lust, sex (far more obvious this time round), break-ups, insecurities and once again; school life. Tom Fletcher from McFly, who was a previous member before the band made it, co wrote 8 of the 13 tracks on the album, while among other writers, She wants to be me and 3am were co-written with production team The Matrix.

In the thankyou's every member says that he prefers this album and had far more fun making this one. Maybe that is so but overall I don't think this has such a promising sound that the 1st one did. The debut was much more polished and had a stronger all-round feel to it. This one is quite rough around the edges and more experimental and diverse. I didn't see it in my early teenage years but this album is profoundly sexual throughout a good few of the tracks, which reflects their attitude as guys still going through the later stages of puberty!

Air hostess starts us off with the sound of a plane taking off followed by a guitar riff and some shouting (much more of that this time around, which reflects their aspirations for a heavier sound). With its cheeky and lustful lyrics like "I want you to thrill me here" and "I messed my pants when we flew over France" it smacks of Busted with a refreshed sound. I'm not so sure about the "Na na na na" vocals at the end, clearly influenced by Blink 182's earlier material, which Matt name-checks in his thankyou's. Crashed the wedding is 1 of the best with an energetic sound and attitude throughout, with a catchy chorus. Who's David (UK number 1 single) starts quite slowly and quietly but gets heavier before the catchy chorus. I like "I've got proof because the word's going around", which isn't proof at all! This reminds the listener of teenage gossip. She wants to be me is a crazy concept about a girl obsessed with her boyfriend enough to want to be him. Not 1 of the best and with its edgy sound and peculiar lyrics it takes the band further away from their original sound. 3am is a way different pop ballad with a catchy chorus and a desperate feel. The record label clearly aren't letting them write as they wish with swear lyrics blanked out, just like with She wants to be me and Falling for you. Falling for you just might be the catchiest song on the record with a great guitar riff in the intro and a rhythmic sound that doesn't stop, like a speeding car. Once again the song has some potentially dodgy and provocative lyrics; for instance in the chorus "My bed is wet don't know how" and "I said are you the **** I paid to come and **** me!". That thing you do I detest and always have done! Everytime I hear this song I need a sick bucket at hand! If you can imagine the cheesiest song ever and then times it by about 100 then you get this! Yes it's teenage and sexual but that doesn't help it at all. Worst song.

Over now really changes the vibe with a slower sound that builds to a decent chorus (need I say catchy?!). Not 1 of the best but it's good and a vast improvement on the previous track. Fake is mad - I don't understand how the record label wants to blank out swear words but is happy to allow this Matt penned track about not being able to give a girl an orgasm! Humorously it references `Harry met sally' in the bridge. It's catchy and has got a really upbeat chorus that sticks in your head but it's not really suitable for the younger crowd. Meet you there is my favourite song on the album. With it's simple but effective acoustic sound and refreshingly honest lyrics it really is impressive. The boys all have a solo song with just their vocals with Why being the first written by Charlie and his brother. With it's slow acoustic sound at the beginning that builds up to a heavier chorus and a somewhat complex lyrical fashion you can clearly see that this guy is trying to break away from the pop punk/pop rock sound. At the middle 8 it sounds like he's singing underwater first of all and then gets heavy. Loner in love penned by James's BFFF is a very honest track that I could completely relate to back then. Some of it is cheesy but it's outweighed by its humour. Better than this is Matt's turn and it's a pretty mediocre track. Can't break through is James' and is an improvement but is pretty unexciting again. Nerdy is a big highlight, once again about school life with the boy obsessed with a girl (relatable!) who doesn't think he's good enough but it's got a great lyrical twist at the end and a great sound throughout.

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