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LRJ Burne (London, England)

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Nothing But Trouble
Nothing But Trouble
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £19.98

3.0 out of 5 stars A disappointing follow-up, 8 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Nothing But Trouble (Audio CD)
After a brilliant debut record, I found this second outing from Blue Murder to quite disappointing. It's strange how it manges to sound so similar to their self-titled release, yet at the same time so much less exciting. While nothing on it is particularly bad, it all sounds sort of bland, very little actually jumps out, and nothing reaches the heights of their first album.

Nothing's Real (Remastered Edition)
Nothing's Real (Remastered Edition)
Price: £9.69

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Preferred it to their first, 8 Feb. 2015
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21 Guns' debut album Salute is often praised as being a great album that failed because it was released just a few months too late - it was an impressive slice of classic rock, but by the time it came out, grunge had already killed the genre.

Personally, I enjoy Salute, but I find this second album to be notably superior. It's got a harder sound, with a greater number of rocking tracks and fewer sappy ballads, which I felt were too abundant on the band's previous record and hurt it with their prevalence. The second half in particular is impressive; everything from the title track onwards is really good rock n' roll. Scott's guitar playing feels a lot more comfortable than on Salute, and he spends a bit more time doing his thing, which is welcome. The inclusion of a few demos (on the remaster) is also a nice bonus, but there's nothing particularly revelatory among them.

Worth a look if you like late-period classic rock, and it's certainly one of the better albums to come out of the Thin Lizzy alumni (although it's still got nothing on Blue Murder's self-titled debut).

Dirty Fingers
Dirty Fingers

4.0 out of 5 stars Great Gary Moore Rock Album!, 9 July 2013
This review is from: Dirty Fingers (Audio CD)
Despite being a big fan of Gary Moore's work since secondary school, particularly with regards to his hard rock music, I'd never listened to this album until now (mostly because it seems to be so hard to come by).

And it's great! I don't know why this album was skipped over when Gary's back catalogue was remastered and re-released in 2002, because frankly I find it to be the best of his early 80s albums. Great tracks from start to finish - it's very rare indeed for me to like every song on an album, but this one came close to achieving that. It's your typical hard rock Gary Moore, with big riffs and frantic solos. In particular his own version of Nuclear Attack blows (nukes?) the version he recorded with Greg Lake out of the water. The cover of Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood is awesome too.

The only other thing to note is that, to me at least, Gary's singing sounded a little strange on this. It was almost as though he was putting on some kind of accent, I've never heard him sing in this fashion on anything else he's ever done. In fact, I initially thought he'd got a guest singer in to record the vocals, but quite often a familiar trait will come through and you can hear that it's still Gary. It's not necessarily a bad thing, just unusual and unexpected.

If you like Gary's other rock music, particularly his early 80s sound, definitely try and track down a copy of this one.

Lockout [DVD]
Lockout [DVD]
Dvd ~ Guy Pearce
Offered by Qoolist
Price: £1.69

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars By no means exceptional, but great fun, 21 May 2012
This review is from: Lockout [DVD] (DVD)
We've all seen this movie many, many times before... A reluctant hero, wrongly accused of crime he did not commit, is given a near-suicidal mission to rescue the president's daughter from a bad situation in exchange for his freedom. It's basically Escape from New York with only minimal alterations.

What makes this film worth watching is Guy Pierce's character. He's certainly no Snake Plissken, but he's great fun to watch as the gruff, sarcastic anti-hero Snow... and the fact that literally every line he has is either a one-liner or a witty comeback only adds to the fun - the man would mock you if you asked him the time of day. He pulls the film along no matter how generic and forgettable the situation surrounding him gets.

The only real disappointment I found with the film was that the special effects were occasionally somewhat lacking, particularly during the frantic CGI car chase scene in the opening minutes. It looked as though it belonged in a music video more than a feature film, and seemed like it had been added at the last minute because the director felt he needed an action sequence to spice up the beginning of the film. It was a disappointment, but it didn't hurt the movie overall and the effects in the rest of the film were actually rather good (I know this film was made on quite a limited budget).

If you're able to enjoy a decent action movie with a likeable hero that otherwise lacks any originality I'm sure you'll have fun with this. If that isn't your thing then move on.

Expendables - Extended Director's Cut [Blu-ray]
Expendables - Extended Director's Cut [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Sylvester Stallone
Price: £7.50

40 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A better version of the film, 3 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
First of all, if you're looking at this review for the Director's Cut, you've probably seen The Expendables already, so I shan't bother talking about the pros and cons of film itself. Instead I'll stick to why, in many people's opinions (including my own), this is the better version of the film.

To be honest, the vast majority of the changes made here are quite small, but it's definitely a case of the whole being greater than the sum of it's parts. A lot of the new dialogue is not only funnier than what was in the theatrical version, but much of it also serves to make the characters more interesting and well-rounded; while I'm not going to claim they're now deep, thought-provoking and complex people (after all, this is still an action movie), they do seem more human and less like the cardboard cut-outs they were before. Sly has also tinkered with the editing in some of the action scenes, and while it may not be easy to spot what exactly is different, the sequences as a whole flow more easily and seem a bit more lucid.

The major changes involve the new opening credits sequence and the new soundtrack applied to the big finale, and how you feel about these differences will probably be down to personal taste more than anything. While I liked the new footage used during the opening credits, I felt the choice of music was out of place and was trying to make the scene far too downbeat. Conversely, I thought the use of Shinedown's "Diamond Eyes" over the final firefight was a big improvement - it gave the scene a lot more energy and to me the rock soundtrack made it feel far more oldschool (which was surely what the entire movie was trying to be, right?). I'm aware that this last change in particular has caused some mixed reactions, but personally I was pleasantly surprised by how well it turned out.

Bottom line, if you like the film, this is the version to own. It still has it's faults, but it just feels that bit slicker. If making-ofs are your thing, the Inferno documentary included here is also very good. On the other hand, if you didn't like the film to begin with, I very much doubt this Director's Cut will change your mind.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 19, 2012 3:29 PM BST

Skid Row
Skid Row
Price: £5.64

4.0 out of 5 stars Great, but not as good as I remember, 24 April 2012
This review is from: Skid Row (Audio CD)
When I was a teenager I loved this album. I'd never heard of Skid Row until a girlfriend played me a few of their songs, and soon after I went and bought their début album and was hooked on it straight away. I played it to all my friends, many of whom also loved it and went out to buy it.

Sadly, listening to it now, it's not quite the masterpiece I remember it being. Some of the lyrics are pretty trite, and several of the songs are a little dated and forgettable. However, that's not to say it's a waste of time - several tracks are still just as awesome as they ever were (particularly Youth Gone Wild and the absolutely superb 18 & Life), and gems like those more than make up for the album's shortcomings. Any fan of Guns N' Roses or other similar mid-late 80s rock bands will certainly enjoy this CD.

A great first album from an underrated band, it's well worth picking up for the few songs that rise above the rest and into brilliance. You might also try checking out the band's follow-up, Slave To The Grind - a little heavier, but slightly more consistent.

Price: £4.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ruined, 15 April 2012
This review is from: Scarface (Audio CD)
Oh dear.

Unfortunately this is not the soundtrack to the movie Scarface. It's actually the songs from the film remixed with horrendous techno and dance beats laid over the top that totally ruin the feel and style of the songs. Granted, the original Scarface soundtrack is a very dated album, but surely that's the point? In many people's minds Scarface symbolises the 80s as much as Miami Vice, and to take that 80s feeling away from these tracks is to take away the essence of the album, as well as its connection with the film.

The only good thing I can bring myself to say about this CD is that the extra guitar solo heard in Paul Engemann's "Push It To The Limit" in the film has been added back into the track here, but its pretty much irrelevant as all of the other additions have ruined the song.

Do yourself a favour, avoid this 'remastered' album and track down the original version.

Thief [Composed By Tangerine Dream]
Thief [Composed By Tangerine Dream]

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Be careful which version you buy..., 3 April 2012
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Before you buy this album, a word of caution - there are actually two different versions of this soundtrack with two different track listings, and annoyingly the track that seems to be the most sought-after by fans of the movie is only on one of these releases. To make matters worse, it can be somewhat tricky to tell which version of the album is which, particularly when, as here on Amazon, the track list is not displayed.

Chances are, if you're looking at this, you're either a fan of the movie or a follower of Tangerine Dream's work, so I shan't bother to review the actual musicianship on offer here. Instead I'll offer some words of advice regarding the different releases. If, like me, you want the own music from Thief's final scene ("Confrontation" by Craig Safan), then be sure to by the CD marked on the front cover as the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, with James Caan's credit at the top. Unfortunately this seems to be harder to come by than the more recent remastered release, credited solely to Tangerine Dream, which does not contain this track; in it's place is a longer version of the track "Beach Theme" called "Beach Scene" (the latter is in fact closer to what is heard in the actual movie). Hopefully this advice will help prevent anyone hoping to hear the guitar-laden conclusion to the film from being disappointed.

Deep Rising [DVD] [1998]
Deep Rising [DVD] [1998]
Dvd ~ Treat Williams
Price: £9.48

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Immense, 8 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Deep Rising [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
I should probably clarify my above rating. If I were to judge this film on it's technical merits, it's critical quality, it'd get... maybe 3 stars out of 5. But if I were to rate it for how much I enjoy watching it? 5 is starting to get close...

Everyone involved with this film is clearly having a great time with what they have. And that is where it really succeeds - it KNOWS what it is. It's not going for Oscars, or even any awards at all, it's just trying to make you have a good time. It makes no attempt at rising above it's station; I often find that is where 'bad' movies fall down, when they try to be too serious or deliver a message. This is just a party from beginning to end.

Moreover, the acting, dialogue and effects (if sometimes dated) are markedly better than you can usually expect to find in this kind of film. Just about every actor/actress here has scored a major Hollywood role at some point, so you'll recognise the faces. The fact that their characters are so stock is just part of the fun. In Deep Rising, 'an English accent' counts as characterisation, and it's a hoot. Stuff spectacularly explodes, monsters ooze slime everywhere, and the bad guys bring some very serious Chinese firepower to the proceedings. Most importantly, it never feels cheap.

I could go on and on about all the things I love in this film, from the corny, intentionally bad one-liners ("Now what?"), to the genuinely inventive deaths (toilets still make me laugh), to the over-the-top, comedic gore. I guess the only thing that I really need to say is definitely check this one out if you think you can laugh with it. There's a time and a place for your Shawshank Redemptions and your Killing Fields, but for the other times, slap this one on. Preferably surrounded by like-minded guys and a crate of beer.

Black Rose
Black Rose
Price: £16.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 7 Feb. 2012
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This review is from: Black Rose (Audio CD)
I find that I don't normally agree with the general consensus regarding a band's greatest work, but in the case of Thin Lizzy's Black Rose I have to agree with the masses - this is their best album.

Coming at the tail end of their peak period, which started with the underrated Fighting, Black Rose is the last truly great Thin Lizzy album, before the band began it's gradual, but notable, decline. The recruitment of Gary Moore on lead guitar palpably breathes new life into the band, and his effect on their material is obvious. His love for his Irish roots (and for writing songs about them) is clear and as a result many of the tracks have a distinct Celtic flavour, particularly the finale piece Róisín Dubh. The relationship between Phil Lynott and Gary Moore was always volatile (causing the latter to join and then quit the band on three separate occasions) but it is clear that musically the two made a brilliant team.

After the mess that was made of the prvious three Thin Lizzy deluxe remasters, with incorrect tracklistings and false claims that the audio mixes used were new, Thin Lizzy have finally been given the treatment they deserve with Black Rose. The studio album has never sounded better, and the bonus second disc contains many unreleased and/or hard to find songs, including Thin Lizzy's recording of Don't Believe A Word in its slower form, as originally penned by Lynott. A comprehensive booklet with extensive notes on the recording period is also a great addition, and I admit I usually don't even look at that sort of thing, but found the insight very interesting (and quite candid).

In summary, this is Lizzy's finest hour. If you only buy one Thin Lizzy album, make it A Rock Legend.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 19, 2013 8:38 AM BST

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