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Grace Poole (Manchester, UK)

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Alison Gardiner Traditional Advent Calendar: Country House Christmas
Alison Gardiner Traditional Advent Calendar: Country House Christmas
Offered by Alison Gardiner
Price: £7.25

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Advent Calendar I have ever had!, 3 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Really loved this Advent Calendar... the whole Country House theme was wonderful. It was exciting to open each window as the pictures were so detailed. Each picture corresponded to the area of the house too .... so you had the maid and butler below stairs bringing the food and drinks... and the children in the attic getting ready for Santa etc.
A brilliant concept and we will be keeping it to put up next year as it looks just as good now all the doors have been opened!

50 Words for Snow
50 Words for Snow
Offered by produXa UK
Price: £6.49

5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MellowEarPleaser, 30 Dec. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 50 Words for Snow (Audio CD)
After Director's Cut, which I really did not like, I wanted to make very sure that I liked this album before buying!!! So I listened to the preview streamed on NPR.

It's definitely a Grower!!! I usually either like music instantly or not at all. But the album has a real jazz feel, and with Jazz or Mellow Music I do have to hear it a few times. I listened to it about three times and then left it a couple of days. Then found myself wanting to listen to it again as I had lots of gorgeous refrains running around my head. So I bought the album and Wow I really love it !!!!! and am SO pleased to hear that Kate has not lost her magic.

'Snowflake' is beautiful and I love Bertie's choral vocals!!

'Lake Tahoe' is hauntingly familiar and reminds me of another of her wonderful tracks 'Under the Ice' from Hounds of Love.

I love Kate's husky voice on 'Misty' and it's nice to hear just Kate and the piano for much of the track.

'Wild Man' is catchy and playful and really gets under your skin and the chorus reminds me of 'Life on Mars' by Bowie.

My favourite track of the Album is 'Snowed in at Wheeler Street', a duet with Elton John who sounds awesome. They blend together like milk and honey - really gorgeous vocals!! I love the whole concept of lovers divided over time, keep meeting but being torn apart. Very catchy backing riff that will stay with you for days!!

I have to admit that the first time I heard '50 Words for Snow' I thought it was really silly, but then after listening more carefully to the words I got the joke!!! If like me, you protest that the whole 50 Eskimo Words for snow is a misnomer, then take another listen. The words are made up of phrases to do with snow. I just love anklebreaker!!! icyskidski!! "meringuerpeaks" "bad for trains" "swans-a-melting" - genius!! and the melody has grown on me too - a very clever track - I do love Kate's humour!!

The finale 'Among Angels' is a song of hope and comfort. Again mainly just Kate and the Piano at her very best!!

I think when you choose a theme for an album then you are taking a huge risk. It can be quite restrictive and make you lose track of the musicality and lyrics. But I think with 50 Words of Snow, Kate has pulled it off beautifully - I love it !!

The Tourist [DVD]
The Tourist [DVD]
Dvd ~ Johnny Depp
Price: £3.49

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Escapist Fun, 1 Aug. 2011
This review is from: The Tourist [DVD] (DVD)
I know this was panned at cinema but I enjoyed it!! It's escapism and refreshing to have a plot that doesn't need painful concentration. It reminded me of Roman Holiday and had a Classic feel to it. There were some gorgeous shots of Venice.

Without giving too much away and keeping it as simple as possible: Elise, played by Jolie is a mysterious woman who is being watched by Secret Services. She picks out Frank (Johnny Depp) on a train from Paris to Venice to fool the Secret Agents into thinking that he is her boyfriend who is an International thief who has diddled some Russians out of a lot of money!! Frank is therefore inadvertently drawn into a web of intrigue and both he and Elise begin to fall for each other.

It might not be everybody's cup of tea but if you want something easy-going, fun and cinematic then give it a whirl.

Four Christmases [DVD]
Four Christmases [DVD]
Dvd ~ Reese Witherspoon
Offered by Qoolist
Price: £1.14

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Christmas Comedy!, 30 July 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Four Christmases [DVD] (DVD)
I could have been put off this film by some of the negative reviews but I actually loved this film!!! Thought it had some really good LOL moments. It keeps up the pace the whole way through too and I didn't clock-watch once, which is good sign! Vince Vaughan and Reece Witherspoon seemed an unlikely couple but they worked together.

I enjoyed the whole story concept. How many of us would love to visit all our relatives on Christmas Day!! As both Kate and Brad's parents are divorced it means visiting four separate parents and their partners/family. It's chaotic but very funny. Also it avoids some of the more obvious cliches such as trying to eat four Christmas Dinners which has been done before!

It may not be everybody's humour judging by some of the reviews! but if you enjoy a lighthearted and somewhat quirky comedy with a story behind it then I think you'd enjoy this. It made me feel Christmassy anyway!!! Will definitely be watching this one again!


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Fantastic Soundtrack, 21 Jun. 2011
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This review is from: Camelot (MP3 Download)
I started watching Camelot a few weeks ago and really liked the music in each episode. Then I heard the gorgeous track 'Be My Light' and just had to find out what it was. It took me a while as I was unaware of this album. I was really pleased to find it and the whole soundtrack. I also love 'The Beach', 'Drowning of Excalibur' and 'Gawain and Arthur Duel' - very beautiful tracks. I downloaded the whole album and am very pleased with it. Classic Stuff!

Director's Cut
Director's Cut
Price: £6.59

8 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Be Kind to My Mistake?, 28 May 2011
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This review is from: Director's Cut (Audio CD)
Firstly I have to say I am a HUGE Kate Bush fan and I absolutely LOVE Aerial. Also I haven't just skimmed through the tracks, I have listened to them all right through several times!!! But I really wish I hadn't bought this album. Oh Kate!!! what have you done! It's never a good idea to Go Back! Especially when you had reached the degree of near perfection that you had with these tracks. And if you are going to re-do a piece of work then you have got to make it far better or else what is the point. Sure these versions might have more personal meaning for you, but then does that automatically make good listening for others? Anyway, I didn't heed the bad reviews, got carried away with being a devoted KT fan. So here goes my track by track view.

'Flower of the Mountain' - was originally the track, Sensual World. These lyrics (an excerpt from James Joyce's Ulysses) are the ones she wanted to use originally but was at the time refused permission. After a few listens, I much prefer the original which is tight and the lyrics fit better! I don't like the new vocals on this one. It might be because it's a different key? There's a difference between writing new stuff in a lower key and taking old stuff and altering it. It won't always work and I'm afraid it doesn't here.

'Song of Solomon' The original is a favourite of mine. I think this is one of the better tracks on this album but I prefer the original and not sure that this version brings anything different to it? I also feel this track has a 'Cheap Make' Keyboard sound to it.

'Lily' - the original is my favourite track on Sensual World Album, so was a bit worried about a remake. But I have to say, yes it's different and I love it in a different way! Love the Whoo Whoo's at the end. And the shouty bits sound like Talking Heads 'Born Under Punches'. At least I would want to listen to this version as well as the original which is a good sign!

'Deeper Understanding' - Oh dear! I really do feel that this track (another favourite) has been butchered! This version does nothing for me at all, in fact I find it too painful to listen too. Yes it's fun! ... and her son Albert helps on the Chorus with a 'Sparky the Magic Piano' voice. Yes I'm old ... if you don't know about Sparky the Piano ask your grandparents or look up on You Tube!!!

'The Red Shoes' - I love the original. On this version some of the layers have been stripped away, but unfortunately the soul of the song has been taken away also! In the original I love the way the music builds to a climatic crescendo at end.

'This Woman's Work' - is Haunting! to the point of being disconcerting! Yes I know it's meant to be .... but it has a kind of creepy, nursery, feel to it and not sure whether I like this or not. Upon a few listens, I do not like it! Listening to the original makes you realise how bad this track is. Again, the dreaded 'Cheap Make' Keyboard sound comes to mind. I don't think the original can be bettered. Full Stop!

'Moments of Pleasure' is Kate and her Piano and a lot of emotion. I don't like the heavenly choirlike chorus backing, yes I get what she is trying to do - it is about people she has lost - but it just doesn't work. I have to say, the vocals are pretty dreadful on this track and I can't listen to it as it taints my memory of the original. I think again the original version is one that can't be improved upon. P.S. Have listened to this again and the sound quality on it is SO poor. I presume the needle stuck in the groove sound effect is for 'ambience' but Kate's voice has a strange Tweety Pie quality. It's really odd!! I have tried loads of different Equaliser settings and also turning Equaliser off. It sounds like Kate is singing, "Thumb moments that I've had, thumb moments of pleasure. I think about uth lying, lying on a beach thumbwhere" This is really bad! I don't like paying out good money for a recording I could have mixed better myself !!!

'Never Be Mine' - I love the original. So again I was worried whether it would be murdered? Although it's not that bad, some of the best bits of the original, the incidental refrains have been stripped and after a few listens I much prefer the original.

'Top of The City' - I have to admit that the original of this was one of those very rare KT tracks that I would always skip, so I was interested to hear another version. Would I like this one? Don't know why but it reminds me of The Who. I can almost hear Keith Moon on drums and John Entwistle on Horns. LOL. But I'm afraid I would still skip this track.

'And So is Love' - I don't like the vocals on this. The best bit of the original track is when Kate belts out at top pitch "and so is love" but here it is a lower key and just plain dismal - like a burst balloon!. But you can hear Eric Clapton on guitar which is nice cos his playing was almost drowned out on original with so many layered tracks.

'Rubberband Girl' - I love the original. This is very different. It's got a 70's Rock feel to it. I think of Rolling Stones and The Who? It's fun but prefer the original. The original is so tight and has so much energy which I'm afraid has been lost in this new version.

A lot of the tracks reminded me of bands of 70s and have just read that the album was recorded in analogue rather than digital to give it a 'warm' feel, so maybe that's why it reminds me of music made in the pre digital era? A lot of people have commented on bad mixing. Well if it is recorded in analogue then just maybe that is why it doesn't sound good on all our new digital equipment!! Another good reason not to go backwards. Yes maybe something was lost in the transition from analogue to digital but you can't really change technology. It's like making a film in 4.3 because you want to harp back to the old days. But it won't look good on Widescreen!!!

I kind of get what Kate was trying to do with this album. Some of the originals, at the time, I thought had too many layers especially of the Trio Bulgarka and it spoilt the purity of Kate's voice and drowned out some of the other instruments. But maybe the wrong bits have been stripped away and the wrong bits added in. I don't know! I think she should have kept her vocals as they were personally. Anyway, I'm really sorry Kate!!! I don't like this album!

I do love the digital booklet and it's nice to see that her son Albert has participated a little in the making of this album. He is credited for a few bits and bobs, such as the Computer voice in Deeper Understanding and is dressed as the Rook in the photos! Cool!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 18, 2012 1:04 AM GMT

Live At Red Rocks [DVD] [2006]
Live At Red Rocks [DVD] [2006]
Dvd ~ Stevie Nicks
Price: £3.99

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stevie Nicks at Her Best, 9 April 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a great DVD. Stevie Nicks is Live at Red Rocks in 1987 and definitely at her peak. It captures the 80s, the adrenaline rush, the clothes, the hair! The sound quality is good, nicely filmed with lots of close-ups of Stevie and the band. It starts off with one of my favourites 'Outside The Rain', then 'Dreams', 'Talk To Me', 'I Need To Know', 'No Spoken Word', 'Beauty and The Beast', 'Stand Back', 'Has Anyone Ever Written Anything' and big finale 'Edge of Seventeen'. Special Guests, Mick Fleetwood and Peter Frampton. Stevie is joined by the wonderful backing singers, Lori Perry, Sharon Celani and Elisecia Wright. Altogether it makes for an uplifting, exhilerating performance!

Metallic Spheres
Metallic Spheres

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relax, Turn Off Your Mind, Float Downstream, 9 April 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Metallic Spheres (Audio CD)
Wow! I love The Orb and I love Pink Floyd. So to have the two combined is for me, pure bliss. There are hints of Echoes in the album and if you can imagine that combined with the ambient, almost 'trippy' Orb, then you get the picture. I have to admit that when I first listened to it, I wasn't sure whether I liked it or not, but it is definitely a grower and now I do love it. It has a calming, meditative effect and no matter how stressed I am, 30 minutes or so of this album and I am taken into another dimension and completely chilled out! Great Stuff! I bought the 3D Special Edition one. It's designed for headphones and it does sound brilliant. Surround Sound without annoying the neighbours!

Bosch KGV Series 53-BS-84 Top and Middle Freezer Basket with Handle
Bosch KGV Series 53-BS-84 Top and Middle Freezer Basket with Handle
Offered by WowDiscounts
Price: £33.44

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fits Perfectly, 9 April 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
We have got a Bosch Classix Fridge/Freezer. When one of the drawers broke I didn't think we would find a replacement. But was pleased when I found this on Amazon and read the other reviews. It fits perfectly, I think the drawers are probably a standard size which is good if you need to replace it.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 4, 2015 11:52 AM GMT

Sony 25pack Spindle 4.7GB DVD-RW
Sony 25pack Spindle 4.7GB DVD-RW
Offered by Annova (UK) Ltd
Price: £16.98

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reliable DVD-RW's, 9 April 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I always buy these Sony DVD-RW's now. My Panasonic DVD Recorder/Player is very fussy about which blank discs I use. I have tried other makes, but my Recorder either spits them out or else doesn't finalise properly. These have been 99% perfect! and for the price I think that is pretty good.

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