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Reviews Written by
Sundreamer (Los Angeles, California, USA)

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What Nature Intended
What Nature Intended
Offered by EliteDigital UK
Price: £31.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars So, when's the next one?, 27 Dec. 2007
This review is from: What Nature Intended (Audio CD)
I had never heard of this man until I purchased Marc Cohn's Live `04-`05 earlier this year. Since I have seen him play live with Marc, I can't get enough of him.

The more I listened to Marc's live album, the more my attention was drawn to this amazing guitar line: sometimes gentle, sometimes driving, always clear and melodic but never intrusive. It's easy to understand why he has been invited to accompany so many top-notch performers on tour (for example, Bruce Springsteen and Sting).

Shane brings the same judicious touch to his own music. Granted, Shane's songwriting style heavily favors the nostalgic, yet he is refreshingly fearless in his use of all the modern bells and whistles. (Beatles meets OMD?) Combine this with intelligent, clever lyrics that flash with poetic insight, add a heaping tablespoon of true romantic spirit, and you have the recipe for a unique and intoxicating listening experience. (Samples are on his website. It has an intuitive address. Stay and explore.)

Why only four stars? I'm hoping nature isn't done with Shane yet.


Layali
Layali
Price: £13.73

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hit the ground dancing, 7 Jun. 2007
This review is from: Layali (Audio CD)
Only the comatose could resist moving along to the world beats on this beautiful and exciting album. Unlike dance music that is all beat and bass, one might be tempted to hum along with Cheb Mami's intensely melodic vocals - if one dares.

The whole of Layali is an invitation to celebrate life, so as the sole English line on the album encourages: "Come on baby, let's go dance!"


Item
Item

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get it while you still can, 1 Jun. 2007
This review is from: Item (Audio CD)
There are two tracks that are not on Onetwo's album Instead: Sister (two mixes) and Element of Truth. Element features beautiful violin work by Andrea Fisher. However, I recommend this EP mainly on the strength of Sister - Humphreys' gently epic lullaby to a belovéd lost long ago and too soon.

As of June 2007, Item is in its third pressing (Colour Variant 7), with no guarantees by THERE(there) Music that there will be any more.


Instead
Instead

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Non-tronica Fan Review - Bring an Oxygen Mask . . ., 14 May 2007
This review is from: Instead (Audio CD)
. . . because the air is thin in the Van Allen Belts, where this album will transport and hold you in its all to brief duration. It starts in the nether regions of uncharted cosmos, spiraling across light years, through supernovas and past fiery comets to the general area of Earth, where Brucken's cool, exotic voice (yes, I find her German accent exotic) ponders man's quest to reconcile the incomprehensibly vast with the infinitesimally small (Theory of Everything, Parts 1 and 2). When I previewed Theory-2 on Onetwo's myspace page, I had to own this album. After all, how many really good songs are out there about theoretical physics and string theory?

Humphreys obviously delights in exploring the sonic options available through new technology, giving the album a distant, atmospheric feel, but Onetwo's dedication to old-fashioned songcrafting make their music (this album and its sister EP, Item) the coolest music in my collection that requires no explanation to friends riding in my car.

This is a start-to-finish album with no filler. Here are a couple of other highlights:

Two cover songs form a brief story arc about the intoxicating effects of fame and its soul-crushing hangover. Pink Floyd's Have a Cigar is infused with infectious excitement and wry humor (who knew a four-note solo could be so funny). Cigar segues seamlessly into Chan (Cat Power) Marshall's plaintive popstar ballad I Don't Blame You, comparatively sparsely mixed with Humphreys providing lead vocals in his signature simple, empathetic style.

Anonymous is a lovely tune that is either hopeful or terribly sad. It is a collaboration of Onetwo and Andy McCluskey (co-founder of OMD with Humphreys). This song gives a tantalizing hint at what Humphreys and McCluskey could still accomplish should they choose to bless the airwaves with a new collaboration.

Brucken's voice has been described as the "jewel in the crown" of this album, and I heartily concur with that assessment. For Onetwo's future work, though, perhaps Humphreys will incline his talent in a terrestrial direction and take to the microphone more prominently - because we miss you, far away.

OK, forget the oxygen mask and be giddy dancing in the Northern Lights.


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