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Michael John (London)

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Alternative Light Source
Alternative Light Source
Price: £7.99

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Leftfield album since Leftism, 13 Sept. 2015
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Alternative Light Source has a similar epic quality to Leftism, taking you through a variety of atmospheres and soundscapes, but somehow preserving an overall integrity which I felt Rhythm and Stealth lacked (despite some of its excellent tracks). When I first bought A.L.S. I wasn't so sure about it, but have since spent several months listening to the whole album while travelling around London on tubes and buses - and even the Thames Clipper river boats. It always seems to fit the mood and the geometry of the city around me: the buildings, streets and tunnels. This sounds a bit pretentious, but I'm just trying to give a context for my comments. There are some great, pumping house tracks like Little Fish and Shaker Obsession, but there are also terrific, less hard-edged electronic tunes. Bilocation is a particular stand-out, with that beautiful vocal. And then you've got a more quirky element with the weeja-woojah type sounds and mad lyrics of Head and Shoulders. Shot through A.L.S. are layers of background sounds and samples that it takes a while to pick up on, but the work that's gone into the album really shows. The whole thing fits together as an aural trip like Leftism does, and I just want to stick it back on again when I get to the end. That is always the sign of a good album.


The Mother [DVD] [2003]
The Mother [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Anne Reid
Offered by wantitcheaper
Price: £14.24

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another darkly enjoyable Michell/Kureishi exploration, 20 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: The Mother [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This is definitely worth seeing... for several reasons. Anne Reid's performance is superb, so if you want to leave the saccharine of "Last Tango in Halifax" behind and voyage further into the sexual/companionship needs of older people, this film will give you plenty of food for thought. Secondly, there's Daniel Craig... enough said, really. This kind of role he took on, before he hit the really big time (and I'm thinking too of movies like "Love Is The Devil", playing opposite the other half of the Last Tango equation, Derek Jacobi), accounts for some of his best work. Then of course you have the Hanif Kureishi/Roger Michell collaboration... always quite dark, exploring adult issues head-on that many film makers go out of their way to squirm away from... but all in a well-constructed, nicely paced way. If you liked "Le Week-End" and "Venus", give this a go without hesitation.


Thera-Band Flexible Exercise Band - Heavy, Blue
Thera-Band Flexible Exercise Band - Heavy, Blue
Price: £15.96

5.0 out of 5 stars Complete relief for tennis elbow, 9 Mar. 2014
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I gave up playing tennis ten years ago because of my sore elbow -- but the Thera-Band has changed all that. It's now seven months since I started playing again, and thanks to the (simple) exercises I've been doing with this, my arm is absolutely fine! Couldn't recommend it enough.


Blackboard Jungle Dub [10" Vinyl]
Blackboard Jungle Dub [10" Vinyl]

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another great voyage into the roots of dub, 9 Mar. 2014
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To understand what a massive impact this album has had you just have to consider how many times you've already heard the opening line, "welcome to Blackboard Jungle". This work casts a long shadow for sure, but it's also an extremely accessible dub album, with plenty of bounce and plenty of bite. If you're a fan of King Tubby or early Perry, then this is a work you should lock horns with. The content is superb but I've given it four stars instead of five simply because I think too much emphasis has been placed on packaging. I'm not sure that the album needed to be broken up into three 10-inch records. A single or double LP would have been fine. Sadly this is the way a lot of vinyl is going these days: you pay maximum dollar for something that really does not have to be so elaborate. I know I need more exercise but I'm getting off the sofa too often to change sides...


Persol Mod. 0714 Sole Aviator Sunglasses, 24/31
Persol Mod. 0714 Sole Aviator Sunglasses, 24/31
Offered by International Sunglass Center
Price: £103.95

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb shades, 14 Feb. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Persol Men's Sunglasses (Apparel)
These sunglasses are the best I've ever had, and given that I've used shades by firms like Ray Ban, Bole, Blinde, and Randolph Engineering, this is something I never thought I'd find myself writing. There are several reasons why I'm praising them so much. First of all, the lenses are excellent. The tint is perfect and the optical quality is great. Secondly, the fit. I have quite a large face and therefore Wayfarer-type shades don't work for me - but because these are bigger, almost aviator-style lenses, they do the job exceptionally well. Thirdly, the build quality. The frames are absolutely beautiful... hand made? You betcha! The metal inserts that hold the things together are a work of art in themselves. And finally, the folding system is wonderful. If you like Brompton bikes, you're gonna love these shades. All in all, I think Persol have absolutely nailed it with these Havana 714s. No wonder Steve McQueen wore them - they're an absolute treat!


Control Point (Shadow Ops)
Control Point (Shadow Ops)
by Myke Cole
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice blend of genres, 7 Aug. 2013
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Myke Cole has carved out an interesting science fiction niche by blending magical fantasy with hard-core military action... and he obviously knows the latter like the back of his hand, so in that respect the book has a nice authentic feel about it. I'm not really a massive fan of the sword-and-sorcery genre, but I was pulled along by his energetic writing. Several moments stand out, like the body horror of a scene set underground, in which the protagonists tackle a powerful shape-shifting enemy who nearly turns them all into a bucket full of butcher's off-cuts. I had a slight problem with the "rage against the machine" attitude of the central character, which I thought sometimes became a bit tiresome... in general, though, a fun read.


Crazy Clown Time
Crazy Clown Time
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £8.46

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Take a ride down a dark, dark road..., 7 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Crazy Clown Time (Audio CD)
If you love the movies of David Lynch, and you like to put some music on in the evening and just let it take you wherever, then "Crazy Clown Time" could be just the thing for you. There's a diverse range of musical styles and the effect is as unsettling as, for example, the sudden switch to Polish dialogue in "Inland Empire", or the blue box/Silencio sequence in "Mulholland Drive". But like those films, the overall effect is rich and stimulating, and it's a CD you will find yourself playing again and again. If you want easy listening give this a miss... but if you feel ready to ride the runaway Lynch express blindfolded, check it out!


Battle For Seattle
Battle For Seattle
Price: £8.49

4.0 out of 5 stars Not hardcore reggae, but still an enjoyable listen, 4 April 2013
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This review is from: Battle For Seattle (Audio CD)
I'd better confess from the outset that my taste in reggae is more in the dub direction - so for me this album, while beautifully made, isn't quite pushing all the buttons. That said, it's a fine album of tightly-arranged covers of Nirvana's hits, properly "reggaed up". Little Roy's great voice takes a lot of the angst out of Kurt Cobain's lyrics, which is slightly disconcerting when you've become used to the original delivery. This is not an album for skanking out with your psychonaut mates at four in the morning, it's more like a good soundtrack for the rescue and recovery operation the following afternoon. Think Jerusalem by Alpha Blondy, rather than The Dub Factor by Black Uhuru, and you'll not go far wrong.


The Demolished Man (S.F. MASTERWORKS)
The Demolished Man (S.F. MASTERWORKS)
by Alfred Bester
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another slice of Bester brilliance, 4 April 2013
Anyone who's read The Stars My Destination already knows the incredible inventiveness that lies behind Alfred Bester's work, and this book taps into the same resources. Whereas "jaunting", or mental teleportation, was one of the cornerstones of that novel, in The Demolished Man the foundation concept is that of "peepers", people born with a gift for reading the minds of others. What you get as a reader is a fast-paced, very slick novel with plenty of twists and turns... basically a high-concept game of cat and mouse, but done with real style and finesse. The other weird thing about Bester's books is that despite the huge advances in technology since they were written, they don't feel at all dated. Treat yourself to this without any hesitation.


The Orbserver In The Star House [VINYL]
The Orbserver In The Star House [VINYL]
Price: £22.60

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Top rankin!", 16 Feb. 2013
This album for me is one of the most important I've come across in a while, breaking new ground both in terms of dub reggae and The Orb's more traditional ambient material. It's seriously dancey with hard-edged, bass-heavy grooves all the way through, and the palette of industrial-type sounds and atmospheres is incredibly rich and dark (in a good way). It's dub for sure, but dub with seriously deep house overtones. Couple that with The Orb's uncanny knack of chucking in superb little slivers of audio oddity every once in a while, and you're off to a great start. Then add Lee Scratch Perry's brilliantly off-the-wall, blown-out proclamations and "orbservations" (pardon the pun), and you've got an album which will make you smile as you bounce around your living room (or wherever you're listening) in a blissed-out state. You'll soon be singing along with LSP: "I am the man in the moon..." Top rankin' indeed!!


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