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David E. Carter (Essex England)

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Boston Tea Party. December 12th 1968
Boston Tea Party. December 12th 1968
Price: £10.37

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Could have been one of the greats, 6 April 2014
Actually, it deserves two and a half stars. This release is just SO frustrating! The concert, what you can hear of it, sounds as though it could have been the Velvets finest hour, one of the all-time great live albums but it is let down badly by the sound quality which is, frankly, very poor. It's a typical fan's bootleg recording on a cheap cassette recorder and it's a terrible shame that an official recording team weren't present that night. The band were smack bang in the middle of their 2 studio albums, "White light / white heat" & their 3rd, self -titled LP. It shows too , by being delightfully schizophrenic, - hard as nails, sharp-edged and aggressive one minute ( 'Foggy notion', 'White light' and 'Sister Ray' ) and tender, fragile and beautiful the next,( 'Jesus', 'I'm set free' and 'Pale blue eyes' ) I much prefer their performance on this to the '1969 live' album , which to my taste is a little too mellow for them ( even though the recording on that album is far superior )
If you think I may be exaggerating about the poor sound, then try listening to tracks like " I'm gonna move right in" & " Beginning to see the light " without reaching for the 'skip' button. I tried so hard to put the fuzz, the muffled distortion and the crackles out of my mind and focus on what music I can hear but it doesn't help. The louder tracks are uncomfortable on the ears and almost verging on the unlistenable.
The quieter tracks are not too bad actually because they are performed so gently that there is little distortion. "Candy says" is of particular interest because Lou sings the lead instead of Doug Yule. These tracks still, however, sound like they were recorded a 1000 metres away from the band in an empty aircraft hangar on a cheap device.
Fans may always dream of what could have been made of this concert. Never mind. It is nevertheless, a curio, a collector's item and is of historical interest , so I suppose Velvets completists and fanatics will be reasonably pleased by it.
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 17, 2014 2:05 AM BST

Dujang Prang
Dujang Prang

5.0 out of 5 stars A ride on the dark side, 7 Jan. 2014
This review is from: Dujang Prang (Audio CD)
This is an album that has virtually no melody, tunes or anything even resembling singing whatsoever. The rhythms are also relentlessly repetitious. Despite all of this, I absolutely LOVE this album!
I look upon this album as a piece of Art rather than music. It's impressionistic and the images conjured up by the sounds chill me to the bone. It's extremely dark, forbidding and cold and yet it's irresistibly fascinating like an invitation to the ultimate white-knuckle ride in Hell! The Cover Artwork also adds to the feel of this album.
This review may seem off-putting but the music is actually listenable. I can't really put it into any more words. It's so difficult to describe.
Try and give it a chance if this sounds interesting to you and oh, yeah,..the sinister "sounds" and "atmospheres" that seem to be constantly in the background ARE actually there!

Double Life
Double Life

5.0 out of 5 stars Double-Wonder!, 7 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Double Life (Audio CD)
A double live album, recorded in the UK , 2001. Incredibly, it's deleted through poor sales. This neglected beauty features Nick, son of Roy Harper, all alone on stage with his acoustic guitar in various tiny clubs and the result is breath taking. Although Nick can't match his dad for song-writing status (well, not many can) he more than makes up for that with his spellbinding assault on his guitar which would blow his dad out of the water (yes, really) Just one man with his piece of wood on stage, yet at times it sounds like an orchestra up there! (Some of this is down to effects, like reverb & delay , obviously influenced by his dad and also, John Martyn.) He also has his dad's voice (fantastic!) but with an octave range that makes you laugh with disbelief!
There appears to be 3 tracks that are novelties at first glance. One is the Monty Python song, "The Galaxy song". Then there's the medley, Elvis' "Guitar man" mixed with Led Zep's " Whole lotta love" and finally " Headless", a 15 minute song where he breaks his guitar strings in the middle of the song but continues singing it for the next 3 minutes while he replaces them to continue without stopping! Give these tracks a listen & I'm sure you'll agree there's nothing gimmicky about them. You'll be too busy picking your jaw back up off the floor!
Finally, the production is top-notch too. The only downer about the whole thing is the price, normally between £25-£45 due to its' rarity.
To summarise, a phenomenal performance and one of the best live albums I've ever heard. Just a shame that so few people have heard this.

Waterloo Sunset: The Very Best of The Kinks and Ray Davies
Waterloo Sunset: The Very Best of The Kinks and Ray Davies
Offered by b68solutions
Price: £8.49

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How do you really buy their best?, 11 Feb. 2013
I remember the early 70's when the 6th or 7th "best of the Kinks" compilation had already been released leaving me thinking that their label, "Pye" were really milking it a bit. 40 years later and we have what seems like the 500th version of their greatest hits! Actually, this is very good and contains the majority of their better known hits as well as some great under-represented songs from the 70's. I'm also impressed by the "London" sequence of songs on disc 2 including the gorgeous "Postcard from London" I assume that the idea to include this theme was due to Ray's involvement in the Olympics. Another big plus for choosing this collection is the inclusion of "Did ya" One of the Kinks' last (and best) ever recordings. Similar to "Sunny afternoon", virtually as good but very difficult to find or download.
SO,..How do you buy ALL of the Kinks' best recordings? It's a mind-boggling task but I have been a fan since "you really got me" was released. ( Yes, I AM that old!) For the very casual fan, I would recommend just this one alone or maybe just " The Kinks' singles collection" which is a no-messing chronological collection of all their single A-sides up to 1970. If you want to be a much more devoted fan and want to sort out the many wonderful neglected nuggets from their back catalogue but also to avoid the turkeys ( Ray Davies IS human after all!) Then I would suggest buying selected complete albums ( most can be picked up very cheap) and choosing the best tracks to download from the rest. I would LOVE to be given the job of compiling a 5 or 6 CD box set of the Kinks' career. It would be a killer!
Anyway, the essential albums : " Face to face", " Something else", "Village Green preservation society", "Arthur", "Lola vs Powerman", "Muswell hillbillies" and of course, this collection or "the singles collection"
Now the odd tracks. I would definitely recommend about 30 or 40 but I'm just going to mention about a dozen.( A great rating review of every track they ever made can be found on "Uncut" magazine "ultimate music guide" issue 12) Anyway, here goes,:
"Sitting In my hotel" , " celluloid heroes", "sweet Lady Genevieve", "Juke box music", "God's children", " The way love used to be", " A rock n roll fantasy", " Living on a thin line", " Out of the wardrobe", " Missing persons" " I need you", " Sitting in the mid day Sun" Also, if you can get hold of them, the last two studio tracks they ever cut, the wonderful, out-with-a-bang, " Animal" & " To the bone" ( Seemingly only available on the expensive, but excellent,live double, " To the bone")
OK, phew! Happy listening all! GOD SAVE THE KINKS!

Mr. Bongo's Brazilian Beats - 8CD Boxset
Mr. Bongo's Brazilian Beats - 8CD Boxset
Price: £20.26

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't beat this bargain!, 25 Jan. 2013
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For the price of a double CD, this has got to be the greatest bargain I have ever had the pleasure to come across. Constant high quality music(8 & half hours!!!)throughout, the music covers 4 decades of just about every latin groove you can think of, climaxing with a DJ party mix of many of the best tracks already featured. Outside, the snow is lying thick in minus temperatures but listening to this with my eyes closed, everything is suddenly becoming warmer & lighter and when your hips start to instinctively twitch, then you know your hooked!
If you have any sort of attraction to Brazilian music at all, then at this price, simply buy this.Don't hesitate. You will NOT be disappointed!

The Definitive Folk Collection
The Definitive Folk Collection
Price: £6.86

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Star Collection, 15 Nov. 2012
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Like another reviewer, I don't have an authorative knowledge of Folk music but I do like a bit of June Tabor ,Bert Jansch or Sandy Denny. I took a chance on this because of the cheap price & a glowing review and I must say that it is a truly wonderful compilation. The packaging is a little sparse without any detailed info which probably accounts for the price but the quality of music inside is top drawer.
There's barely a reel , jig or rustic "Hey nonny-ho!" in sight ( not that I have anything against that sort of thing) as nearly all of the songs here are of a similar pace. "Mournful" is probably the word I'm looking for.
A thoughtful , moving , heart-rending set. My only regret is that it wasn't decided to expand this into a multi-disc box set. A good companion to this is the similarly titled " The folk collection" Also a "Topic" project. A 2 disc set released 1999 ( TSCD707/8 )

Psychedelic Pill
Psychedelic Pill
Price: £6.91

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Neil, the mad axeman, 3 Nov. 2012
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This review is from: Psychedelic Pill (Audio CD)
I must admit, I was kinda expecting to be disappointed with this album. I came to this conclusion after seeing the playing times for some of the tracks, expecting a lot of indulgence. Happily, I was pleasantly surprised by what I heard. His voice sounds as youthful as it did 40 years ago and the harmonies are spot on.
Of course,fans of Young the balladeer in particular may tire of his guitar excursions and believe me, there's a helluva LOT of guitar here. Personally, I have no problem with that even when he doesn't seem to know he's going to end. I have always loved the sound of his guitar playing and I think this album ranks well with "Weld" and "Ragged glory"
I immediately got into "Driftin' back" (forget the epic length, just "turn off your mind, relax and float downstream" and I'm sure you'll enjoy it!) Also, the title track (the heaviest use of phasing I've ever heard on a song since "pictures of matchstick men!") The welcome change of pace with "For the love of man" and the sprightly "She's always dancing" I was also amused by the sonic meltdown ending of "Walk like a giant" No wonder the man's got tinnitus! Crazy!
Overall, a fine album. Recommended.

The Studio Albums 1968-1979
The Studio Albums 1968-1979
Price: £27.02

27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Magical Mitchell, 3 Nov. 2012
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I won't try to give a thorough critical analysis of all the music in this set. It would be too exhaustive and I'll leave that to others who are more accomplished at that sort of thing than me. What I will say is that this is possibly the best box set feature on one particular artist I have ever purchased. Well, including all of Joni's albums from this particular period is a very safe exercise because all of her work during this period was consistantly of the highest quality.
The box set design is simple (a flip-top box) but gorgeous with replica card sleeves complete with gatefolds. It would make a wonderful Christmas gift for anyone who has just touched the surface of her music and has loved what they have heard so far.
So, in a nutshell, here's sublime music in a tasteful box at a mouthwatering price , so why only 4 stars? Basically, it's the display of lyrics. I just can't read the majority of them, especially the ones printed on dark backgrounds and as any Mitchell fan will tell you, awareness of her lyrics is essential. It would have been nice to have had a seperate booklet with all the lyrics clearly displayed and much larger but then her songs are so wordy that the booklet would probably make the box set twice as large as well as expensive, so I suppose you can't have it both ways.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 6, 2013 8:56 AM GMT

The Soul Of A Man
The Soul Of A Man
Price: £7.27

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Burning Soul, 28 Oct. 2012
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This review is from: The Soul Of A Man (Audio CD)
My favourite bluesman by a distance. His frightening throaty roar duetting with the sweetness & light of Willie B Richardson is almost schizophrenic , like acid moving alongside honey. his recordings were the epitome of the deepest soul music in the line of spiritual blues. This is the sound of a man exposed , begging on judgement day. Oh yes, and his slide guitar is exquisite also. Burning soul indeed!

Beaphar Gentle Leader Large Black
Beaphar Gentle Leader Large Black
Price: £7.99

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worked like magic, 23 Jan. 2012
We brought home a 5 year old labrador from a rescue centre 3 months ago and trying to control his pulling on the lead has been a nightmare. he's as strong as an ox, pulls with all his might and watching my wife being dragged around like a rag doll was the last straw.
I had big doubts about the "leader" being successful, but after only 2 walks with the device on , the results were astounding. On the first walk, he made a couple of mild attempts to get it off, but soon realised that it's very comfortable if he doesn't struggle or pull. By the 2nd walk, he was walking like a dream!

One little tip. Take a small tub of treats with you when you take him out. Give him some plus a lot of fuss when you first put it on and some more every 200 metres or so. He'll soon associate the "leader" with something nice.

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