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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their best album. So there.
Counting Crows' first album, August & Everything After, was a fine debut. It contained some truly memorable songs such as "Round Here" and "Mr Jones". But taken as a whole album it was disappointing. It contained a few lacklustre songs and there was no real "light and shade".
So then three years later, they released this album, and...
Published on 26 Feb 2002

versus
1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars bit samey
This album is not as punchy as the last one. I found themelodies are not as catchy and they don't stay in your head like theie older stuff has. My favourite on this album is Goodnight Elizabeth - it has more of that grungy sad feel to it like their previous songs. Their style hasn't changed at all and the songs sound the same as their others in terms of tone and style...
Published on 8 Oct 1999


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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their best album. So there., 26 Feb 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
Counting Crows' first album, August & Everything After, was a fine debut. It contained some truly memorable songs such as "Round Here" and "Mr Jones". But taken as a whole album it was disappointing. It contained a few lacklustre songs and there was no real "light and shade".
So then three years later, they released this album, and what a change has taken place. Gone is the bare bones production of T-Bone Burnett, replaced by the sympathetic, but still fairly raw, sonic honing of veteran Gil Norton. Adam Duritz's songwriting is flawless and the (vastly underrated) band play as a far more pleasing whole. It is my favourite Counting Crows album and one of my favourite albums of all time.
It opens with a "Strawberry Fields"-like organ line, leading into "Catapult", a song in which Duritz sets up the mood for what follows, singing "What a big baby / Won't somebody save me please?" Duritz's voice, while never pitch perfect, is nevertheless ideal for this sort of song, positively crying out in loneliness and desperation. "Someone should be with me here / ('Cause I don't wanna be alone)."
"Angels of the Silences" is the first song that tells you this is going to be a different ride than the previous album, with it's punk-esque guitar and frantic pace. It's followed by the most Country-esque song on the album, "Daylight Fading".
The sequencing of songs on the album is slightly odd, because we're still just getting into it. "I'm Not Sleeping" is memorable for it's piercing strings line and it's insomniacal lyrics, possibly written in frustration at four in the morning! "1-2-3-4-5-6-7 am / All alone again." The strings fairly throb in sympathy.
"Goodnight Elizabeth" is next and it's an album highlight for most, showcasing Duritz's songwriting at it's most beautiful but vulnerable. "We couldn't all be cowboys / So some of us are clowns". Great stuff! It also showcases David Bryson's wonderful guitar playing - I really think the band deserves more credit than they get. Yes, it's Duritz's show but these guys are a phenomenal support cast.
Next is one of my favourites, "Children in Bloom", with Duritz returning to his favourite theme of dislocation and uncertainty. "I gotta get out of this sunlight / It's melting my bones." The opening chord is stunning and the closing guitar solo is inspired. It's a perfect song.
If you want to understand just how far Duritz's emotional state has moved on since the last album, you only have to contrast "Mr Jones" with the next song, "Have You Seen Me Lately?" In "Mr Jones" Duritz sings "We all wanna be big stars . . . " In this song Duritz ruminates on the possibility that he is merely a voice on someone's radio, singing to his fans "You got a piece of me / But it's just a little piece of me." It shows his disillusionment perfectly, while set to one of the bounciest and light-hearted tracks on the album - a great juxtaposition.
On "Miller's Angels" Duritz's voice has rarely been bettered. When he sings "In the shadow of God's unwavering love / I am a fortunate son" even a cynical atheist like me is moved to tears! A wonderful piano and voice track, with a superbly subtle backing from the band, it's another highlight.
For me the next two tracks are the centrepiece of the whole album. "Another Horsedreamer's Blues" is a stunning song, telling a story of a gambling dreamer. Duritz sings the line "One of these days she's gonna throw the whole bottle down" with such rage in his voice. There's a gorgeous Wurlitzer electric piano line on this song.
My absolute favourite song on the album is the title track "Recovering the Satellites". Duritz is back at the theme of displacement, singing "It's a lifetime commitment / Recovering the satellites / All anybody wants to know is / When you gonna come down?" Anyone who's been there knows what he's talking about . . .
"Monkey" is a Ben Fold's-esque piano number (he even mentions Fold's name in the song!), and "Mercury" is another song in the country vein.
"A Long December" is Duritz doing what he does best, a wonderful conversational piece ("It's been so long since I've seen the ocean . . . I guess I should") with a piano part to die for.
So how do you end a perfect album? With a perfect little song. "Walkaway" is 1:10 of genius, just Duritz's voice and Bryson's guitar, sending us on our way with "Someday I'm gonna stay / But not today".
I can't even begin to describe what effect this album has had on my life. I bought it when it came out and I've been listening to it constantly ever since. It never loses it's appeal and always lifts my spirits. It's glorious.
That's all. So there.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another classic album, 16 Jun 2007
By 
G. L. Williams "simplygregguk" (South West England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
After hearing Mr Jones i decided to get the Counting Crows first album 'August and Everything After.' That album blew me away and made me an avid fan of the counting crows. The next step was to buy this album, their second studio album.

I didn't really know what to expect, did i want an album that was the same to the first, or a new sound? What i got was something in between, and the results were once again spectacular.

The thing that made me love August and Everything after was the intro track 'Round Here' and i thought that the band would need to start the album in emphatic fashion in order to impress me. The first song on this album is an instant classic, called 'Catapult' it is such a fast intro that you will feel like you are hurtling along at a 100mph!

The album continues in this vein with 'Angels of the silences' and 'I'm not sleeping' but slows down for the beautiful 'Goodnight Elisabeth' which reminded me of 'Sullivan Street' from the first album.

But for me, the album peaks half way though with the stunning 'Millers Angels.' he song is so good i cannot describe it!

The title track is another highlight and will get you tapping along for a long time.

The major disapointment for me was the next two songs. 'Monkey' and 'Mercury' are the weakest counting crows songs that i have heard and in my opinion should have been omitted from the final listing.

However, this album finishes emphaticaly with 'Walkaways' and left me with the urge to get more albums from this band.

Please buy this and their first album. Your hearing senses will never be the same again.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OH MY GOD, they did it again, 22 Aug 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
This album is amazing, saying that though, all the counting crow albums are so good. They are my favourite band by a considerable amount and thats because they have everything, talent, songwriting ability, good sound and most of all emotion. This album may be heavier than all the others but its still fantastic and listening to songs like a long december and good night Elizabeth only make you in awe of the genius of Adam Duritz. These are the ultimate band if you like the sound of goo goo dolls,nine days, matchbox 20, stroke 9, creed or vertical horizon. you will not be dissapointed, go for it!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Listen to it a couple of times..., 23 Aug 2006
By 
Ms. E. C. Dinsdale (Hampshire, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
I became a huge Counting Crows fan about 5 years ago, and the first purchase I made of theirs was-of course-'August and Everything After' and naturally, I was amazed!! I then had to go out and buy 'Recovering the Satellites'. I hurried home to put my new album on and to be honest, I was quite disappointed-it sounded really to different to 'August' and I was convinced that it would never grow on me. However, I persevered and listened to it a couple more times and I started to properly listen to the music and the lyrics and something just clicked-I loved it!! It may be different to what you are used to if you only have 'August' at the moment, but it has to be said that the change is not a bad one at all-if anything, it could be said that it is even more mature. The song and music writing is as good as ever and Adam Duritz is-of course-still fantastic!! As I listened to the album more and more, I began hearing and noticing new things-its one of those albums that you think you know really well and then one day when you put it on, you hear something that you'd missed before-you just keep discovering new things about each song and I think that is the beauty of this album!! Outstanding tracks to listen out for on the album are "Angels of the Silences", "Goodnight Elisabeth" (my absolute fav on the album-a really beautiful track), "Have You Seen Me Lately?", "Recovering the Satellites" and "Walkways". "Walkways" is a really clever song, it is purely acoustic with Adam singing over the top and its only just over a minute long!! "'I gotta rush away', she said, 'Been to Boston before, and anyway, this change I've been feeling, doesn't make the rain fall'"-brilliant track!!

So, do not despair!! If you already have it or are going to buy it-you may fall in love with it straight away!! Its true that you can really tell a distinct difference between this album and 'August', but I think it's a good thing because it shows that they are moving onwards and upwards and at least it can certainly be said that their songs do not sound the same!! 'August' was a fantastic debut for the Crows and in my opinion, it will never be bettered-so I am just thankful to the guys for doing their best and coming up with a brilliant second album!!! But take my advice-if you think you don't like it at first, just play it a few more times and you will understand why everyone thinks its such a good album!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A more sinister follow up to August and Everything After., 8 Aug 2001
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
Listeners might be forgiven for expecting a dissappointment given the acclaim that surrounded 1993's August and Everything After, or perhaps just maybe more of the same. Their debut was very much a summer record; a blend of acoustic guitars and mandolins layered beneath Adum Duritz's floating voice. It was Duritz's striking vocal depth which gave the first album it's identity. Recovering the Satellites doesn't rely so heavily on Duritz vocal talent. From the very outset- the haunting organ that opens Catapault- this album is built on a range of musical experiments that range from the heavy guitar rock of Angels of the Silences- the first single- to the dry modern folk of Millers Angels. This is a dark record, the lyrics read like a collection of ghost stories and the haunting vocal finds it's proper home in the heavier overall sound. The songwriting only slips a little when it descends into country, but this only happens once (on Daylight Fading, another UK single release)otherwise the record stays away from the twanging guitars that betray the bands mid-western origins. Overall Recovering the Satellites is a very well written, performed and produced record (Listen for the spiralling stereo guitar on the title track) and evidence that old musicians in a young band can be a formula for critical success, even if the misplaced publicity campaign over here destroyed any chance of a commercial one. Some better chosen simgles and Counting Crows might have enjoyed a larger slice of the limelight they deserve.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Arguably their best album...., 23 Feb 2010
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
Having purchased this CD when it was released in 1999, it is without doubt one of my favourite recordings (by any band), one that I always come back to every now and again, but always enjoy more than the last time.
There are so many great tracks on this album, and the instruments are layered beautifully and blend seamlessly. Each track sets a different mood and the tempo's are varied, which in my humble opinion puts it above "August & Everything After" on which certain tracks can appear a little to familiar to the last.

It really seemed to be a natural progression for Counting Crows and one that shows a great maturity.

A must buy for any fan of great music.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heavier, but still great., 28 Nov 1999
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
Those who have August will find this album much heavier. However, with brilliant tracks like 'Angels Of The Silences, 'Goodnight Elizabeth', and especially 'A Long December', this is not a bad thing. It is a long album, but you can never have too many tracks from a band like Counting Crows, as each track is so different. Another great album from the Crows.
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5.0 out of 5 stars showing the diversity and once again brilliance of the band, 21 Mar 2000
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
many, when asked claim for this album to be not as good as the first, august and everything after. it depends on how you look at it. no, it is not like august and everything after, musically, it is much better. the songs are more complex, tunes are varied, but the same passion, the same feel, the same emotions are there waiting to take you away. Adam and his merry men have once again produced an album of utter class, and brilliance, where they show how far, as a band they have come. the sad song 'millers angels', is beautiful, where as 'have you seen me lately' and 'angels of the silences' are angry howls of a song. and one of their most underrated songs 'recoveing the satellites' just has a bit of everything. once again, the word perfection is all that needs to be said
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5.0 out of 5 stars the best cd i ever bought, 27 Aug 2000
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
I discovered Counting Crows when my sister bought the sheet music to August and everything after. I immediately loved the style of music and that album was my favourite, but my sister has it so i only have tapes of it. When i bought Recovering The Satalites I felt that the music was more upbeat, but loved every single song on it. Goodnight Elizabeth has to be my favourite, but I find no faults with any of the songs. A well deserved 5 out of 5.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You're Kareem Abdul-jabaar!, 27 Feb 2002
By 
Wicker-king (North London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Recovering The Satellites (Audio CD)
Although not as universially astounding as the first album, Recovering the Satellites is still one of the best albums out there and consolidates Adam Duritz's place as one of the most gifted voices of his generation and you can't help but imagine if Bob Dylan played electric instruments he'd sound something like this.
This album takes you everywhere from the hard-rockin', gut wrenching angst of Angels of the Silences through to the more somber and heartfelt Goodnight Elizabeth that is so great it has been known to bring a tear to my eye. The standout tune for me, however, is Another Horsedreamer's Blues shifts through so many gears musically and lyrically tells a story most people can relate to and compares to Crash Into Me by the Dave Matthews Band in sheer flare and style.
Counting Crows raises the bar and anyone who can appreciate music can appreciate them on a number of levels. If you're still not sure about them August and Everything After is probably more accessible but why waste time, buy them both.
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