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Reviews Written by
Ben Bottle (Gloucestershire)

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Gathering Light
Gathering Light
Price: £14.05

5.0 out of 5 stars I agree with the majority, 18 Jun 2014
This review is from: Gathering Light (Audio CD)
Okay - so I am leaning on other rpositive eviews and being lazy.
This is an excellent album - and one that I hesitated on.
Strong musical passages and great performances.
I know some have alluded to the instrumental sections; personally, I love this sort of thing and "A State of Grace" is (for me), magnificent! Enrico Pinna on Guitars, Gonzalo Carrera on keyboards excel but it is Ian Harris on drums who cracks a furious pace!
I believe that Carrara and Harris have moved on but what a record to have made.
Just great! And - I agree with the majority.

Ode to Echo
Ode to Echo
Price: £13.32

2.0 out of 5 stars Found it disappointing and uneventful., 13 Jun 2014
This review is from: Ode to Echo (Audio CD)
I am weary of Glass Hammer – they are drifting towards the banal.
Believe me, I take no pleasure in my displeasure of this album; I am very much in agreement with Mrs G A Sherwin.
It doesn’t have the substance of their earlier material, and, if this is them “moving on”; then it is time for me to move away.
I am no fan of Jon Davidson’s voice and the usually correct and refined production is noticeably absent. The band may have been excited by this – I am not.
They SEEMED to peak with “Inconsolable Secret”; thereafter I sensed a decline?
Of course, and as always, this is merely my opinion, but I think long time GH followers MAY become disenchanted? (Then again, they may not!)
Sorry – didn’t work for me, hope it works for you?

Stanley Clamping Mitre Box 1 20 112
Stanley Clamping Mitre Box 1 20 112
Price: £11.38

2.0 out of 5 stars No man enough - poor quality construction., 7 Jun 2014
I guess this a question of what one expects. Well - don't expect too much of this.
I'm sure it's okay for little, incidental jobs with small stock wood, but generally speaking - it ain't man enough,
The hard, brittle plastic construction is unsuitable and the saw grooves are way too "tight".
Bad buy and not at all suitable for what I wanted.
Can't say as I am impressed, but I have to honest, I should have taken more notice of other reviews and realized that "my job" required more - much more!

Draper 55076 Mega Mitre Box (325 x 180 x 60 mm)
Draper 55076 Mega Mitre Box (325 x 180 x 60 mm)
Price: £5.85

2.0 out of 5 stars Not up to the mark - not sturdy enough, 7 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Maybe - you gets what you pays for. This did not do the job for me.
For "bigger" projects - like wide skirting, or lengthy pieces, this is next to useless.
Perhaps my expectations were to high and for little bits and pieces this may be adequate.
Anyway - steep learning curve!
To be fair - I should have given it more thought? Never-the-less, for me - 2 stars!

Romántico: Romantic Solos for Classical Guitar
Romántico: Romantic Solos for Classical Guitar
Price: £6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A fine and articulate musician, 6 Jun 2014
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I was only recently "introduced" to Michael when he did an informal recital in Gloucester Cathedral. An impressive setting for such a talent.
He has a wonder technique and displays an intense passion for his music.
This is a fine collection and a very good introduction to his work. I am not aware of any other recordings available at this time.
Displaying a mellifluous grace, he caresses every note.
I get the feeling the best is yet to come and I would like to see a CD made available.
His performance at the Cathedral was an hour that went by all too quickly. It ended with an inflamed and stunning version of "Asturias" by Albeniz, which is included in this collection.
I did not give 5 stars because I felt that under the circumstances, it might appear almost sycophantic. But I strongly recommend this and will keep an eye on this excellent musician's future - I believe it will bring increasing success and recognition.

Keter XL Store It Out
Keter XL Store It Out
Price: £110.00

2.0 out of 5 stars Looked good - at first!, 24 April 2014
A COMPLETE waste of money!!
It SEEMED fine; at first, then bits started to break away.
It is NOT very sturdy and initial impressions were wrong!!
Not impressed at all.
Cheap and cheerful! Well - maybe not so cheerful?

Brief Nocturnes and Dreamless Sleep (Limited Edition)
Brief Nocturnes and Dreamless Sleep (Limited Edition)
Price: £17.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! They go from strength to strength., 17 Mar 2014
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A bit late posting this. However, I just wanted to express my feelings about this album.
SB are one of the most consistent bands around. They did not suffer the loss of Neal Morse and Nick D'Virgilio's departure has not hurt at all.
Strong compositions and first class musicianship are the mark of this band!!
"Newbies" - vocalist (and guitarist) Ted Leonard and drummer Jimmy Keegan join the stalwarts - Alan Morse, Dave Meros and Ryo Okumoto in delivering powerhouse performances. Sheer class.
Stand out - for me are the anthemic "A Treasure Abandoned" and "Submerged".
It amazes me how these guys keep pumping out quality. Okay - a few blips here and there; possibly - but still a strong unit.
What next? This will take some topping, but if anyone can do it - The Beard can!!!

Man On The Rocks
Man On The Rocks
Price: £12.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I can't believe I am giving this four stars!, 3 Mar 2014
This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
Okay – I am very much “old school” Oldfield and must concede that I, personally, have chunks of his post 82 output somewhat unpalatable; but that it possibly because, of my prejudices?
But – fair dos – this ain’t so bad. (Gosh I cannot believe I’m saying this!). In fact it is a pretty good Pop/Rock album with Mike opening up and really sharing.
Actually – it is, in many ways the "Mike Oldfield Band"; with the admirable vocals of ‘young’ Luke Spiller (The Struts)taking a real lead; backed up by session stalwarts Leland Sklar on Bass and John Robinson on Drums; with keyboard player Matt Rollings and guitarist Michael Thompson. Quite a band!
The album consists of 11 pretty decent MOR/AOR songs finely produced by the master Stephen Lipson; nothing REALLY standout, but generally quite pleasing. Actually, I started to find that the song “Sailing” got locked in my head!!
I see other reviewers have taken a closer look at individual songs so I won’t bother.
Not bad Mike; not bad at all! Quite refreshing really!!
(I can’t believe I am giving this 4 stars!!)

Moonrise Kingdom [Blu-ray] [2012] [Region Free]
Moonrise Kingdom [Blu-ray] [2012] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Bruce Willis
Price: £7.00

4.0 out of 5 stars A comedy? Quirky and offbeat certainly., 13 Feb 2014
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To be honest, I really did not know what to make of this film after the first watching.
I enjoyed it, but didn't find it that funny!!!!
The performances from the leads - Willis, Norton, Swinton and Murray are rather sublime but it's the strangely enigmatic acting from the 'young newbies' Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward that steal the show as two pubescent children taking comfort and solace in each others company as they escape the strangeness of their lives. Pursued by their respective so-called "responsible adults", (that's the funny bit, I suppose?), they desperately try to find consolation in an effort to make some sense out of their muddled lives.
I had to watch it three times before I could come to a conclusion - it is a good film; in my opinion a very thought provoking one.
Perhaps I took it too seriously? However, I found it hard not too!
Good film - not what I expected, but I think I got much more out of it because of this.

Price: £16.99

6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's - okay!, 28 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Kaleidoscope (Audio CD)
I really did not want to be the first to review this and reading the two reviews - SO FAR; I feel more comfortable with my opinion.
First off - I do not question the pedigree of the band. Who could? Top rank team.
Polished, accomplished and super slick.
But - is this becoming too formulaic?
Maybe I am changing - but I am starting to find it all a little bit tedious. Maybe I am tired of super slick 'perfection'?
Kaleidoscope is 'classic' Transatlantic - it sounds pretty much like it's predecessors - two lengthy tracks with three shorter ones in the middle.
The quality is there - and, the quantity; but it just seems to be wearing out; a bit too repetitive.
This will not endear me to the hoards of Transatlantic faithful but - sadly; it's how I feel.
The bonus CD - and I usually look forward to their covers, also seems below par. "And You And I" is okay - but "Can't Get You Out Of My Head", "Conquistador", "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Tin Soldier" are not what I'd call complimentary.
With "Sylvia" - the Focus classic, the band sounds as if it is struggling a bit and King Crimson's "Indiscipline" is awful! "Nights In White Satin" finishes it all off in a reasonable fashion.
Sorry - it's okay. But I am not sure where I will go with Transatlantic from here - IF they ever make another album?
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 28, 2014 10:21 AM GMT

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