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S. Owadally "treble1999" (Cardiff, UK)
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Youth & Young Manhood
Youth & Young Manhood
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.98

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Add "grittiness" to the "New Rock Revolution", 29 Aug. 2004
This review is from: Youth & Young Manhood (Audio CD)
Hailed as "The best debut album in 10 years" by NME, this album clearly is a must-have. Although I would put "Is This It?" slightly ahead of this album, there is nothing else close. But the Kings of Leon are simply the perfect addition to the excellent "New Rock Revolution" headed by The Strokes.
Different to New York's finest because of their gritty, grimy Southern style, the Kings of Leon have put together a masterful album to open their careers. Although some have said that "Dusty" and "Trani" are just 'fillers', I think that is completely wrong. "Trani" is one of the standout tracks on the album. A tale about a shambolic, drug-dependant life in some shady town, it's greatness is surely backed-up by the fact that the Kings usually finish their live sets with it. They did in the 3 gigs I've seen them in and I believe their setlist changes regularly except for "Trani" being last.
One thing it does have over The Strokes' debut is the introduction. The first few seconds of debut albums are surely a "hello" to the musical audience, and I've never heard an album open with such emphatic sounds. The first bars of "Red Morning Light" then turn into one of the best songs of the year which is sure to get your feet tapping the floor.
The most unique thing about the Kings of Leon is their tales of seedy and shady lives. Songs like "Joe's Head", where Caleb tells the story of a man putting a bullet through another man's head for "laying" his girlfriend and then lighting up a cigarette, are things you wouldn't want to subject anyone below the age of 14 to. Also, "California Waiting" leaves me breathless everytime after hearing it due to the sheer intensity of the final outbursts of Caleb on the track. Crying out "Can I get back my lonely life, he sounds like some form of dying rodent.
But we mustn't forget the great music to go with the twisted stories. Some of the gritty, dirty rock and roll riffs on this masterpiece have you reaching for your air guitar just as much as you would with the Stones, AC/DC or Led Zeppelin.
After seeing them last week at the V Festival, I am eagerly anticipating the new album. Some of the new songs played were a class apart from anything in rock and roll at the moment and "A-Ha Shake Heartbreak" will certainly be hailed as just as good of a follow-up as when The Strokes brought us "Room On Fire". Two great bands complimenting each other. If you like The Strokes, you need this album. If you don't like The Strokes, you also need this album. Get it before the new album and listen to the raw rock and roll brought to you by Nashville's finest sons.


Up All Night
Up All Night
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £1.26

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Believe The Hype, 29 Aug. 2004
This review is from: Up All Night (Audio CD)
When I first heard "Stumble and Fall" on the radio months ago, I thought it was a great song. The name Razorlight didn't appear for a while then untill I read in a magazine about Johnny Borrell's declaration about his genius. Which made me dislike the band.
But upon buying this album, that all changed. This is awesome and definately the album of the summer, possibly the year. With the immiment arrival of The Libertines' second album, Razorlight may be overshadowed by their fellow Londoners, but it'll take nothing away from this album. It has all the makings of a great debut album.
As has been quite regular with great debuts, the title track is amazing. Just like with The Strokes and The Libertines, the title track is an amazingly well written song, both lyrically and musically. The singles definately stand out. Although Borrell's lyrics may be quite "what you see is what you get" (or maybe "what you hear is what you get") i.e. one-dimensional, "Golden Touch" is beautifully written. There is nothing wrong with one-dimensional lyrics so long as they are good, and the excellent storytelling of the "Girl with the Golden Touch" is as cooly romantic as anything done by The Libertines, the band that people say they are imitating.
My personal favourite however is "In The City". An amazing story again, with the superb diversity in the pace of their music and also an absolutly awesome guitar riff make this song the standout one. Infact, the riff is probably the most pleasing 15 seconds or so on the album and also the part where you are guaranteed to just go absolutly mental to, whether you are driving or partying.
A 4-star rating only because of the fact that the lyrics are pretty one-dimensional and also that the dreaded fade-out is incorporated too much! But without those two flaws, there would be no room for improvement. Enjoy this album for a long time untill album two comes out. The stories told are excellent and the music is delicious!


Is This It?
Is This It?
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.98

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Debut In History, 29 Aug. 2004
This review is from: Is This It? (Audio CD)
Although released a long time before now, I feel this album deserves a review from me. Before I heard this album, I was listening to Hip-Hop music. Once I heard this, I was converted to the great sounds of rock and roll. This album is special.
When you listen to the guitar music from the years before the arrival of Julian, Albert, Nick, Nikolai and Fab, you will descend into a monotonous, bored misery as you trail through endless "Dad rock" and poorly written songs. This album kickstarted the greatest music form ever.
Still arguably the best band on the planet, when The Strokes delivered this delicious album of exquisite music, the expectation was immense. And it certainly lived up to it.
Songs like "Soma", "Someday", "NYC Cops" and "Hard To Explain" are like showcases for each band members incredible talent, while no song is stolen by any member, for The Strokes' greatest quality is the fact that they are a band of frontmen. When this was put in the mix, the vocals were lowered to the same level as the music. This is what makes them stand out. They're not just a one man band.
My personal favourite song, "The Modern Age", produces one of the best ever guitar riffs as well as the mesmerising and seemingly lazy lyrics of the genius that is Julian Casablancas. The technical ability from each band member on this one song is enough to set them apart from any band on the planet right now.
Although many people are trying too hard to be "cool" and "indie" by going against popular opinion and claiming that bands such as The Libertines, The Von Bondies and Razorlight are better than The Strokes, it is simply not true. Great bands though they all are, none of their albums compare to this truly heroic debut classic.
Finished in epic style with the insane and wonderfully titled "Take It Or Leave It", this album is an absolute must-have for anyone who hasn't got it. Not that there is any reason why one wouldn't have it. Of course, you have to then go and buy "Room on Fire" as well, but this album set the wheels in motion for the second revolution of guitar music that we are seeing now.


Room On Fire
Room On Fire
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.96

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There should be a "6-star" rating especially for this, 25 Aug. 2004
This review is from: Room On Fire (Audio CD)
Although I bought the album on release day, I'm only now writing a review. Probably because I've just been listening to it all this time.
This album brings back the saviours of guitar music. The Strokes came with "Is This It?" and completely refreshed the music scene. Taking it away from the boringly tedious heavy sounds of the Nirvana wannabes and the horrific sound of Nu-Metal which should be buried very very deep underground. "Is This It?" was indeed IT for poor guitar music.
With such an emphatic debut, The Strokes bore a massive responsibilty to the music fan. They needed to reproduce another great album to show that this music is back and here to stay. Many came in between to strengthen the resolve against the evils of music. In a sort of Lord Of The Rings-esque alliance against the darkside of music. The Hives, White Stripes, Ash, The Libertines... Albums were coming out to bring this great music from back from when it died along with the Stones.
When "Room on Fire" came, I believe this won music back for a long time. This album is incredible. If you put it in your CD player, and turn it up fully before playing, the first bars of "What Ever Happened?" make ornaments shake. The first howl of Julian, screaming "I wanna be forgotten/But I don't wanna be reminded" blow you back from wherever you are into the nearest wall. As with the songs on the debut, every song ends abruptly. And the end of "What Ever Happened" is met with, arguably, the best rock n roll song of the last 5 years. "Reptilia" is one of the most energy-fuelled, geniusly-created, technically-masterful songs ever. Aptly, the chrous ends with some of the most fitting words for a song and album like this, "The wait is over/I'm now taking over/You're no longer laughing, no/You're not/Drowning fast enough" Without saying it in so many words, The Strokes know they are wiping out all contenders to this amazing music.
To write a full review of this album would mean a huge paragraph about the sheer beauty of each song. But that can't be done. "Automatic Stop" starts with some of the most mind-whirling, reggae influenced guitar sounds you'll hear. "12:51"'s genius guitar effects are bettered nowhere and it's beauty is so short-lasting that you're left craving for more. "Under Control" is their first experiment with the "slower" style of music, and it is delicious. Fab's drumming on the next two songs, "The Way It Is" and "The End Has No End" is impeccable. The guitar work done by Nick, Albert and Nikolai all the way through is exquisite. All wrapped up in the glorious fact that The Strokes put everything at the same level in the mix. There is no frontman; they all appear at the front of the sound. Julian's moans blend in beatifully with Albert's guitar work. Fab's drumming and Nick's guitar seem to be coming from one same, mutated instrument. The Strokes are a band of frontmen.
Add to this amazing music the fact that these guys are the coolest and sexiest men ever to enter the arena of rock n roll and you have a great band with a great album. Also, remember that this band does not need to get wasted on drugs to write incredible music. They gett a little drunk on stage, but at least we're pretty safe in the knowledge that they won't go killing themselves because life is "too much". These are the men who are glorified for their music, not their cowardly drug addicitons and suicides.
Roll on album three, but this Room will still be on Fire come that time.


The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
by Dan Brown
Edition: Paperback

5 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will the "holier-than-thou" art folk please be quiet?, 25 Aug. 2004
Despite hearing much discontent from the "art" circles about this book, I decided to read it. To my suprise (or maybe not) the holier-than-thou gang were misleading.
For the first time, I read a review from an obviously well-informed (on the Grail topic) reader on this site (David from Surrey)that it is very good for the reader first diving into the topic. It is exactly that. Actually, it is a fascinating book.
As an avid reader of factual books rather than fiction, and a History student, I rarely read fiction books, though I am often criticised for it. However I was recommended this book by a friend and knowing little about the subject of the Grail, I thought it would be interesting. I am an ardent beliver that the Church is more of a damaging and deceitful institution in soceity than is is a valuable one, so a book on the topic of the age old cover-up of the Church interigued me.
The crossover of fact and fiction in this book is played perfectly by Brown, who's storyline, I feel, was excellently gripping. I read this book coer-to-cover for 10 hours straight and could not keep away from it. Clearly, to the art-folk, this makes me a Philistine; but aren't we all to them.
Some of the reviews on this site and also some I've heard elsewhere by those who turn their nose up at those who don't specialise in their subject are merely more ignorant than they think, insulting the intelligence of others. Contrary to their view, I urge anyone to read this book who is weary of conspiracies throughout history. For me, like David from Surrey hoped, this book has encouraged me to read further into the mysteries that lie beneath history. Although I knew a little about this, the book has encouraged me to go deeper.
Added to that, I was not a keen admirer of art. However I have been woken up to the meanings which some paintings can have. The Mona Lisa, The Last Supper and Madonna of the Rocks are all explained in this book and I guarantee that for anyone like me who was not a fan of art before this, the meanings behind these works will fascinate you.
I saw the book as having three levels for the young reader, or the "beginner" as they call it:
i) A deeper view into the hidden mysteries of one of the greatest consipracies in history
ii) A fascinating wake-up call into the meaning which art can have
iii) A gripping story line.
Forget what the 70 year old "scholars" say. Those who have studied this for years and years, calling themselves "experts". Any "expert" would not talk lowly of a big-selling book which could spread word of this dark side of the Church and one of the greatest cover-ups ever.
Read this book. Let it be a starting point in learning about the truth and let it entertain you with a great story.


JUSTICIA GLOBAL: Liberacion Y Socialismo (Ocean Sur)
JUSTICIA GLOBAL: Liberacion Y Socialismo (Ocean Sur)
by Ernesto Guevara
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Further Reading For Heavy Che Enthusiasts, 13 Jun. 2004
This is a pamphlet not recommended for beginners to Che Guevara.
However, if you are well read about the Heroic Guerilla, then this is a must read document.
It gives extra depth to Che's beliefs and his plans for Cuba and the World and answers some questions that you just can't find in biographies.
Compelling and inspiring reading.


The Dodo: Extinction in Paradise (Lost Worlds)
The Dodo: Extinction in Paradise (Lost Worlds)
by Errol Fuller
Edition: Hardcover

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sickening Condemnation of Man, 13 Jun. 2004
For anyone interested in slaughtering our species (I don't mean literally), this book is excellent.
Informative yet not too scientifically detailed, "Extinction in Paradise" is an insight into how man has tragically changed the course of this earth. Such a unique animal in such a unique place, the Dodo would surely have still been a treasure for this earth, despite many people saying it has only recieved such a high status because of it's extinction.
This book also helps bring to an end the incorrect myth that the Dodo was a stupid and unintelligent bird. For those in the know about the Dodo, it is known that the unique evolution of the bird actually showed it to be a very intelligent bird, however this will introduce that fact to many people.
Highly recommended as an introduction to what is a very important issue.


John Lennon & the FBI Files
John Lennon & the FBI Files
by Phil Strongman
Edition: Paperback

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Tragically Familiar Story.. A Wonderful Book, 13 Jun. 2004
The assassinations of heroes are all too familiar. The political leanings of those heroes are also all too familiar. However, this hero was bigger.
This book shows the sickening reality of the world we live in and the bigotry of it's leaders. John Lennon was a hero to millions of people for more than one reason. A real man who's disciples were real people, Lennon was, when you think about it, a very powerful man. And powerful men are not liked by the establishment.
This book, as well as giving an insight into the FBI's surveillance of the great man, mentions a very interesting and sickening method that the CIA uses for it's killers. As I have read about JFK, RFK and MLK killings before, this concept was not new to me, but for a reader new to this thing, it is unbelievable. However, you must read this book to understand it.
This book helps us get closer to the answer tot he question "Why was Lennon killed?" As the book reveals, our government as well as the Yankee government will probably continue to keep us from getting the full answer, but this is another piece in the puzzle. Excellent.


Elephant
Elephant
Offered by Bridge Media UK
Price: £4.16

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album For A Generation, 13 Jun. 2004
This review is from: Elephant (Audio CD)
As we, the new generation of rock and roll listeners, look back on the past generations, we pick out the highlights of them; the best albums. We look to the Stones' "Let It Bleed" and "Exile On Main Street", any of the Hendrix classics, The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper..." or "Revolver", Dylan's "Blonde on Blonde" or "Times They Are A Changin'". When the future generations look back to our generation of rock and roll, this album will be the pinnacle.
Along with The Strokes' "Room on Fire", "Elephant" will define this great age of guitar rock we are going through. Forget the boring riffs of Franz Ferdinand and the unfunny irony of The Darkness, this is real rock and roll we are talking about.
From the very first second of this album, it is history in the making. Opening with a song like "Seven Nation Army" immediately sets this album apart from anything else. When Jack seemingly gets lost in his guitar between the 2nd and 3rd verses of this epic song, it is about 15 seconds of pure genius. To go through the highlights of this album in one review would mean going through absolutly every song as this album is not one to buy for just one song. Immediately after the near orgasmic excitment of "Seven Nation Army", you are given around 3 seconds to breathe untill Jack fires at you again with absolutly insane guitar sounds for "Black Math".
"There's No Home For You..." then breaks in with it's eerily similar sound to "Dead Leaves..." from White Blood Cells. Almost a sequel to "Dead Leaves..." it sounds like Jack has gone insane and turned into a Freddy Mercury/Jimi Hendrix type alter ego character.
As you travel further into this masterpiece the beautifully delicate "You've Got Her In Your Pocket" will almost bring you to tears untill, 2 songs later, you hit "Hardest Button To Button". Wonderfully simple with lyrics that are strangely incredible, "Hardest Button.." is the first of three consecutive songs which will tear your speakers up; that's if you don't through sheer mental excitment. "Little Acorns", with it's misleading intro, blows up into Jack showing he is truly the modern day Hendrix. If you had to choose a "best" song off this album, it arguably comes next in the exquisitely short "Hypnotize". Starting with the screech of a guitar and ending with the howling Jack White, this song is an absolute gem in this generation of rock and roll which sadly will not be found by much of the masses. Too bad.
For anyone who hasn't got this already, this is a must have album. It will surely be looked back upon by generations of rock and roll fans as one of the most amazingly written masterpieces ever. Our modern day gems, to go alongside Dylan, Hendrix, The Stones, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin etc. are The White Stripes and this is, to date at least, they're iconic album.


JFK [VHS] [1992]
JFK [VHS] [1992]
VHS
Offered by Discountdiscs-UK : Dispatched daily from the UK.
Price: £4.96

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Film of all time, 25 Jan. 2002
This review is from: JFK [VHS] [1992] (VHS Tape)
This is the greatest film of all time. Even if you're not interested in the actual assassination of JFK, this film could then become a fictional film, and would still be the greatest film you'll ever see. And if you are interested in the assassination, then it is even better. A must have


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