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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The strongest Eitzel-solo record so far..., 13 Feb 2003
By 
Jason Parkes "We're all Frankies'" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: 60 Watt Silver Lining (Audio CD)
60 Watt Silver Lining is for me the strongest Eitzel record so far- though parts of West, most of The Invisible Man & all of Songs of Love (released when he was still in American Music Club) are of high quality.
This album has plenty in common with AMC's final album San Francisco- Daniel Pearson & Bruce Kaphan surviving from the AMC years. The album opens with a cove of Goffin/King standard No Easy Way Down- kind of Eitzel carrying on where he left off with AMC (see the cover of California Dreamin'). It's a great version that gives way to crowd noises & the joy that is second track Sacred Heart.
This ranks up there with my fave Eitzel songs: Western Sky, Gary's Song, I Broke My Promise, Over & Done, Faux Pony, Sworn & Broken, Anything. The words stem from diaries of an AMC tour, a bit like REM's E-Bow: The Letter; a stream of consciousness & poetic repetition: "waiting with the others at the Sacre Coeur...waiting with the others/listening to Messiaen in the dark/at the Sacre Coeur". The phrasing of Eitzel's vocals really do it for me here, as great as Elvis Costello on Mighty Like a Rose (1991).
The rest of the album is as great- Always Turn Away & Saved a jazzier take on songs such as GratitudeWalks & Fearless; Cleopatra Jones is a tribute to the blaxploitation classic of the same name, sounding like the meeting point of Talk Talk circa Colour of Spring & 1994's How Many Sixpacks...
There are plenty of gorgeously bleak downbeat numbers- Everything is Beautiful, When My Plane Finally Goes Down, Aspirin, Mission Rock Resort & my fave Wild Sea (which follows the dark side of California, referred to in I Broke My Promise- staring into the ocean: "laughing in the ocean...the wild sea rises...buried deep in the tide"- up there with books like A Confederate General, Big Sur & Already Dead in terms of Californian poetics (the lyrics also remind me of albums like Astral Weeks, Hips&Makers & Disintegration).
60 Watt Silver Lining is one of the great 1990's male-singer/songwriter albums- easily up there with Mighty Like a Rose, Time Out of Mind, Grace, Magic&Loss, The Boatman's Call, Laughing Stock, I see a Darkness, Beyond the Sun etc. In the charming film Beautiful Girls (1995), Uma Thurman describes perfection as "the sunday papers, Martini, Van Morrison", well this is "Rebel Inc Press book, fresh coffee, sunday morning"...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gem of a record, 15 Feb 2013
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This review is from: 60 Watt Silver Lining (Audio CD)
For me this record is up there with the best work of American Music Club.
Some people may disagree as musically it is something of a departure from AMC and the excellent guitar work of Vudi.
I was a late comer to this record for some reason as I have alot of Marks solo work but this one is now my favourite. The jazzy backing group really compliment his vocals to the maximum with quite a few of Marks trademark goosebump moments which I love.
Starting with the Goffin/King classic No Easy Way Down, it is on a par with Dustys version, no better praise I can give. Great vocal performance by Mark.
Then onto the rest of the record,all penned by Mark.
The whole record is very strong but my personal favourite is the sublime Mission Rock Resort. Never get tired of listening to it and glad to see it bak in Marks current live set.
To sum up, if you like emotional music sung from the heart with lyrics that you can relate to then i'm sure you will love this record.
Hopefully one day the world will wake up and give Mark his dues
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 18 Oct 2014
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This review is from: 60 Watt Silver Lining (Audio CD)
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60 Watt Silver Lining
60 Watt Silver Lining by Mark Eitzel (Audio CD - 1996)
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