16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 22 August 2002
The Shamen like their protagonist "Ebeneezer goode " suffered a common problem "...very much maligned and misunderstood" This Album 'Hempton Manor'1996 only serves to underline the point . While most would have cast a wary ear towards the band having only heard their radio friendly contributions to the pop world via tracks from their commercially triumphant chart album Boss Drum , it would sometimes seem at best that the band were a flash in the pan quirky pop group. Hempton manor then serves as a very striking contrast that they were indeed that but so much more . For the buyer wondering what to expect in the light of their radio hits , prepare for a mind altering departure. Hempton Manor is an entirely instrumental long player , released at a time where tension was mounting between the band and thier record company for NOT making pop music, Hempton delivers a 10 track array of infectious dance grooves sometimes drawing upon the massive Drum and bass scene of the time , then delving into the depths of deep melodic techno in others. What is very apparent is that a definative quality of music resides throughout , this is something that the shamen always had under their proverbial belts and perhaps the least recognised facet of their dynamic as a band . From the opening riffs of the first track Freya you will feel that you are about to be sent on an audio voyage into trance laden audio space , the album manages to deliver a highly enjoyable ride from start to finish . If you thought the shamen were just a pop band , prepare to be pleasantly surprised. For those who are more familiar with the Shamens discography Hempton manor will remind you how well they transported you deep underground. Essential listening.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 16 December 2002
Hempton Manor is an undiscovered artistic work of classic proportions. It is a melodic instrumental fusion of techno, trance and drum and bass. Before you say "but I don't like that repetitive rubbish" think again. This is not average commercial fodder. Whilst there is repetition, it is tempered with intelligent and complex variations. It takes several un-interrupted plays to appreciate its brilliance but at the same time it is quite accessible. If you are looking for quality music in this kind of genre, this is an absolute "must have" for your collection. It is as good as, if not better than, for example, any Orbital album. There is not one duff track. A consistent undeniable quality pervades the whole album. Innovative, intelligent, infectious rhythms combine with "layered" melodies to give an audio treat that you will play for years to come.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 19 March 2002
Did you think Shamen was boring and cheesy dance from the early 90's? Let me convince you this is not all of the story. This classic trance album from 1996 will make your mood swing into funky flashbacks. If the shamen did not have this bad rumour of beeing a cheezy pop band, this would pop the top10 list of many trance heads out there already. But sadly enough, it seems like it passed along with not much of a rejoice. Lay down, take a deep breath and close your eyes. Pieces eat first: Indica, Kava, Freya
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 16 February 2011
A timeless journey of trance like tunes,, showing a more dance oriented aspect of the Shamen ( no vocals) Sounds as fresh today as it did all those years ago ... Played to persons much younger who are amazed that us oldies had a few tunes back in the day of glow sticks, smiley faces and that sense that we would change the world. Darken the room and drift to a land far away mushrooms optional :0) .