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MikiJimi (Leicester, U.K.)

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O. Winston Link: Life Along the Line: A Photographic Portrait of America's Last Great Steam Railroad
O. Winston Link: Life Along the Line: A Photographic Portrait of America's Last Great Steam Railroad
by Tony Reevy
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £22.95

5.0 out of 5 stars for a fan of American Railroading such as myself it was a perfect way to end the year, 3 Jan. 2015
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I couldn't believe my luck when I discovered this item on Amazon UK, for a fan of American Railroading such as myself it was a perfect way to end the year. Although some of the pictures have appeared before, there is much here that is new and as the book is quite large, the size of the prints really do the superb photography justice. The bonus CD is worth having in its own right and some tracks (21 of them in all totaling 50 minutes) are genuinely impressive. O. Winston Link was one of a kind and he will never be forgotten for his groundbreaking and unique night photography and for his very atmospheric sound recordings of some of the grandest machines ever created by man. This beautiful and inexpensive Book&CD bundle is the perfect souvenir to remember him by, allowing us all to experience the special appeal of the Norfolk and Western Railway that enchanted Mr Link and countless others. You too can share in the magic by purchasing this truly magnificent book which I have no doubt you will treasure forever.


Choirboys From Heaven
Choirboys From Heaven
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £14.28

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Album Title Says It All!, 29 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: Choirboys From Heaven (Audio CD)
This is a brilliantly varied example of just how amazing and versatile boy's voices can be. Here we have the ultra-traditional sound of King's College. Cambridge, the beautiful "new world" soundscape of Libera, the incredible versatility of the American Boychoir and the shock (to some!) of hearing the Vienna Boy's Choir performing pop music. Let us hope and pray that the current influx of girls into many formerly all-male choirs does not cause them to suffer the same fate that befell the "Boy" Scouts when that organisation went Co-Ed following years of pressure from the "politically correct" brigade, who do not seem to care or even understand tradition or heritage, yet alone respect it. Just listen to this gorgeous, life-affirming and inspirational music and imagine if sounds like these were lost forever, what a grievous loss to our culture that would be! Please do not assume that I am being sexist here, I am simply telling it like it is. From ancient times the ethereal, other-worldly sound of a boy's choir has been the preferred choice for sacred music, as it was believed to resemble the voices of angels, which contrary to popular belief are exclusively male beings (bet you did'nt know that!) Of course, many girls and women have lovely voices, but the sweet, rich and "fruity" tone of their voices is better suited to romantic or sentimental songs, the unique "edge" and purity of a boy's voice being much more appropriate for spiritual or devotional material. If this magnificent double CD does'nt convince you that this is something that humanity cannot afford to lose, than nothing can! Very,very highly recommended.


Abbey School Choir Tewkesbury - Light of the World
Abbey School Choir Tewkesbury - Light of the World
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £14.83

5.0 out of 5 stars One Of The Finest Choral Recordings Ever Made. Fact., 31 Dec. 2013
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This album is quite simply sensational. If you are searching for a wonderfully eclectic collection of stunning, uplifting music performed by a world-class choir, then you have probably found it. (My other recommendations would be "Illumina" by New College, Oxford, and "Inspiration" by Canterbury Cathedral). "Light Of The World" was recorded not long before the Abbey School closed for good, but fortunately they have been re-born as the equally excellent Schola Cantorum. The boys are now educated in Cheltenham, but choral singing at its finest is still very much alive at Tewkesbury, which is, by the way, a huge, cathedral-sized building and one of the grandest and most interesting anywhere. One of the most striking features of this CD is the utterly perfect sound of the boy choristers, in particular Andrew Swait. How on earth can a 10-year old boy sing like that? I was once a choirboy myself, but these trebles are in a totally different league! However, I must be fair and say that the adult members of the choir are similarly brilliant and that this ensemble as a whole would be very difficult to beat. I would go as far as to say that even if choral music is not really your thing, then this might just be the disc that changes your mind!


A Jewish Celebration in Song
A Jewish Celebration in Song
Price: £8.18

5.0 out of 5 stars A Pleasant And Unexpected Surprise, 29 Dec. 2013
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I really did'nt know what to expect when I ordered this DVD, it was pretty much a leap in the dark. I am not Jewish and I know very little about Jewish music, but I love the Vienna Boys Choir so I decided to take a chance. Good move! This amazing album contains some of the most beautiful music I have heard in a very long time. The songs were written by two American Jewish composers but the music sounds to my ears quite European and rather pastoral on the whole, although there are several lively and jaunty sections as well. There are some stunningly gorgeous melodies to be discovered here and the choir are of course terrific, as anyone who is familiar with them would expect. After I played it for the first time I could hardly believe what I had just heard! And all this at a ridiculously low price too! I would strongly advise all you music lovers out there in cyber-space to put aside all your preconceptions about what Jewish music ought to sound like and do yourselves a huge favour by giving this a try. I very much doubt if you will regret it, it really is a very enjoyable way of passing an hour or so.

Very highly recommended.


Mozart: Vesperae De Dominica [Edward Higginbottom] [Novum: NCR1388]
Mozart: Vesperae De Dominica [Edward Higginbottom] [Novum: NCR1388]
Price: £13.25

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mozart + New College Choir = Perfection!, 14 Dec. 2013
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The music of Mozart is elegant, melodic and endlessly inventive and the Choir of New College, Oxford is, in my estimation, second to none. So, put those two elements together and good things are going to happen! This is most definitely the case with this superb recording, which features two of Mozart's finest choral works framing an excellent instrumental Sonata. I especially like the balance between instruments and choir, which is spot on. Some of the vocal parts are really quite challenging and difficult, especially so for the soprano soloist (Inigo Jones) who has to negotiate some very tricky sections. This boy has a strikingly beautiful tone to his voice, which is bright and crystal clear. Just listen to, and be amazed by, his vocal gymnastics in the "Laudate Dominum",which he performs faultlessly.
The good work that Edward Higginbottom has achieved with the choir over the years cannot be under-estimated. He took one of the best choirs in England and evolved it into the world class ensemble that we can all enjoy today.
I very much hope that more Mozart magic will come from New College, as they obviously have a genuine affinity and understanding of his work. I would also like to congratulate Novum, New College's record label, for producing very attractively designed (and practical) CD covers, which have a neat "gate-fold" style and come with copious and informative notes and translations of texts.


The Sublime Treble Voice of James Rainbird
The Sublime Treble Voice of James Rainbird
Price: £5.10

5.0 out of 5 stars The Boy With The Golden Vocal Chords, 9 Dec. 2013
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Wow! This boy can SING! His voice is not only pure and clear, but his breathing control is so good that he can produce considerable volume too when the need arises. The songs are nice and varied with everything from Bach to Britten and much else besides. There is a nasty technical fault on track 3 (it will make you jump if you are using headphones!) but if you just skip that one short song, the rest of the album is excellent so I have still given it 5 stars. Standout tracks for me are "Come Again" (check out those sustained high notes that James nails perfectly every time), "Sure On This Shining Night" (haunting and strangely hypnotic) and "The Revival", which was written by the pianist on this recording, Michael Stuckey, who very sadly died soon after this was recorded. If you have even the slightest interest in the unique sound of a boy treble in full flow, I can most definitely recommend this as an excellent choice and at a bargain price too.


Mozart: Requiem
Mozart: Requiem
Price: £13.65

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Ever Recording Of A Masterpiece, 9 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Mozart: Requiem (Audio CD)
As the greatest musician who ever lived lay dying, with his recently commissioned Requiem Mass incomplete, Mozart gave instructions to his Musical Assistant, Sussmayer, as to how he wished his final work to evolve. This magnificent recording features this "original" score (one of many) and to my ears it definitely has all the hallmarks of a genuine Mozart composition. New College Oxford are very enthusiastic about Mozart's music and this shines through very brightly on this gorgeous CD. All the soprano solos are performed by boy choristers (a practice with which Mozart would have been very familiar).The boys sing beautifully with remarkable confidence and self assurance, but also with real sensitivity and feeling. They are a credit to the choir and they make a valuable contribution to the overall excellence of this disc. The choir are faultless and the instrumentation and sound balance are perfect. If you are looking for an authentic, brilliant and above all, deeply moving account of this important work, then look no further. 5 stars? This deserves all the stars in the Milky Way!


Delta Machine
Delta Machine
Offered by jim-exselecky
Price: £9.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark and Delicious!, 16 Jun. 2013
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This review is from: Delta Machine (Audio CD)
Incredibly, this is the third Depeche Mode album from the same production team. I say "incredibly" because they are all totally different. No repetition here! The only similarity really is that they are all utterly brilliant ."Playing The Angel" and "Sounds Of The Universe" spawned such gems as "I Want It All" and "Fragile Tension" and "Delta Machine" as a whole is arguably even better. Although there are a few lighter moments here, the album is predominantly quite dark and intense, but that is NOT a criticism! It is well worthwhile getting this special 2-disc edition because although the bonus disc has only 4 tracks, they are unmissable. Dave Gahan's voice has never sounded more impressive and the music is fascinating and hypnotic. It is a rather hard to define mixture of Rock, Pop and Industrial Techno, but whatever you want to call it the result is very pleasing and I can thoroughly recommend it to anyone who enjoys intelligent, meticulously crafted music that you can experience rather than just listen to.


English Electric
English Electric
Price: £6.45

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars English Electrifying!, 16 Jun. 2013
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This review is from: English Electric (Audio CD)
If you think that OMD are an 80's band, then think again! If anything, they sound even more futuristic now than they did then! This gorgeous album is chock full of catchy melodies, powerful rhythms and spaced-out samples and effects. Stand-out tracks for me are the epic "Metroland" and "Stay With Me", but the entire disc is very satisfying and rewarding. If you don't know much about OMD, then this would be a very good place to start!


The 2nd Law [Digipack]
The 2nd Law [Digipack]
Price: £17.34

5.0 out of 5 stars Rewarding and Spectacular Modern Rock At Its Best, 24 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: The 2nd Law [Digipack] (Audio CD)
Muse are the finest rock band on the planet right now and this is their finest album to date. As usual, Matthew Bellamy sings his heart out and the powerful "Supremacy" is the perfect opener. The stirring Olympic song "Survival" is preceded by the loveliest prelude that Rachmaninov never wrote! Other influences can be heard on the album, particularly U2,Scissor Sisters, Brian May and George Michael, but this is NOT a criticism! "Explorers" is dreamy, sad and very beautiful but everything leads up to "The 2nd Law" itself, which comprises the final 2 tracks. Its chilling message is a stark warning about what could happen if we continue to rape the Earth and plunder its resources. This is thoughtful, intelligent rock music that has no equal. A happy surprise is the inclusion of 2 excellent songs written and sung by bassist Chris Wolstenholme. His plaintive, choirboy-like vocal on the lyrical "Save Me" contrasts sharply with the strident hard rock of "Liquid State". This guy is brilliant and I really want to hear more of his work! "The 2nd Law" is very polished and dramatic but also very accessable so it should win Muse many new fans as well as delighting existing ones, such as myself! This album is definitely one of my all-time favourites.


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