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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh dear, oh dear... I love this yin!
OK. Sopranos. Love the theme tune. Go to University. Hit the music store. Find Sopranos soundtrack CD. Find out who did the theme tune. Buy their album. Love the cover. Love the CD design, too. Then I actually play it. Converted - good gospel, it seems like. U don't dans 2 tekno - laugh my head off. That sets the scene for the rest of the album. It's superb; the music...
Published on 7 April 2001 by kal.jerico@lineone.net

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Quick delivery, but scratched
I was really pleased to find this CD on Amazon and it arrived on time, but 2 tracks won't play. One of them is my favourite of course! I suppose it was too good to be true.
Published 2 months ago by John&Sue


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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh dear, oh dear... I love this yin!, 7 April 2001
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
OK. Sopranos. Love the theme tune. Go to University. Hit the music store. Find Sopranos soundtrack CD. Find out who did the theme tune. Buy their album. Love the cover. Love the CD design, too. Then I actually play it. Converted - good gospel, it seems like. U don't dans 2 tekno - laugh my head off. That sets the scene for the rest of the album. It's superb; the music grabs you and the lyrics are funny. I've played it to my friends; we find ourselves singing 'U don't dans' and quoting Mao Tse Tung Said at random intervals. It is, quite frankly, superb. La Peste is a lot more like the Sopranos theme, though - this CD has little to do with that sound. Which isn't a bad thing; they do both sounds superbly.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moments of distilled beauty, 22 Mar 2006
By 
D. Carter "gangesred" (Totalitarian London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
I'm not exaggerating when I use the word beauty in connection with this album. It's quite possibly my favourite album, and even though it has a tongue-in-cheek sensibility about it, I take it seriously as a work of art and musical achievement. I played it on my 5.1 surround sound system for the first time the other night, and it opened up an entirely new level, the sound was almost divine. A3 have incredible ears for music and are clearly accomplished at all kinds of composition because these songs work so well on so many levels that you'd be forgiven for thinking they knew something the rest of us didn't.
There are no bad songs on this album, not even marginally weak ones. 'Converted' gets things started in terrific fashion, following on to the exceptional 'Speed of the Sound of Loneliness,' The Sopranos theme 'Woke up This Morning' (preceeded by an excellent skit-like bridge)and track after track of inspired sound and lyrics.
Another great asset to the CD is that you can play it low and just relax to it, or hike up the volume and turn your bedroom into a nightclub (especially with a surround sound sub woofer beating the crap out of the walls and floor!) Just try 'Mao Tse Tung Said' on this sort of a setup without repeating the track at least once. I defy you!
It's an album I couldn't tire with if I played it 24/7... If it's not magic at work here, it's something pretty close.
Love to the 3.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Among the most novel and refreshing records of the mid-1990s, 20 May 2003
By 
setmajer "setmajer_" (Dixon, IL United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
On Exile, the Alabama 3 mix the soundtrack of the American heartland--country and western--with their own techno/house beats, gospel, blues and keen-edged satire into an album as fresh as it is fun.
The album kicks off with 'Converted,' a beaten-but-not-broken gospel hymn of renewal, then proceeds into a stellar cover of 'Speed of the Sound of Loneliness.' In a music market saturated with angst-y alternarock songwriters, the songs are refreshing for the veritas of their world-weary vibe. Track three is the best-known of the 3's songs, 'Woke up this Morning.' The track is an ominous, rolling blues number fully deserving of the fame it garnered as the theme to HBO's "The Sopranos". Other highlights include "Mao Tse Tung Said," a syncopated socialist rant that opens with a monologue of Jim Jones invective; "Sister Rosetta," a grinding blues number reminiscent of the Rolling Stone's "Miss You"; and "Hypo Full of Love," a hilarious send-up of AA, evangelical Christianity and drug culture.
While the band's schtick can grow wearisome and may put off more conservative listeners, the rowdy gallows humor belies the sophistication of the band members. Patience and careful listening will be repaid with solid musicianship and rapid-fire literary, political and pop-culture allusions, some of which require an astounding degree of literacy to grasp. This is no novelty act. It's a group of highly intelligent, talented musicians and writers operating in top post-modern form. Think hyperlinking applied to music, or Beavis and Butthead songwriting: the commentary <is the entertainment.
The Alabama 3's wit, humor and musical talent has inspired a dedicated community of fans. This album shows why.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best live band in the country!!!, 23 April 2007
By 
J. Finlayson "janetville" (Scotland UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
Alabama 3 are, in the words of The Guardian newspaper', 'the best live band in the country'. This album has most of their singalong crowd favourites, including 'Woke up this morning' of Sopranos theme tune fame - buy it now and be converted.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On constant rotation for nigh on 3 years already, 19 May 2003
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
and that should say it all. Same w/'la peste' (almost 2 years) and 'Power in the Blood,' (almost a year). Out of the over 600 CDs we have, those three are played and played and /played/ and we've not gotten tired of them once, yet.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Get Converted…, 4 May 2004
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
I couldn’t help thinking that 5 years after its original release this was going to sound rather dated. When the band themselves describe this CD as Country-Acid-House Gospel music you can’t help but fear that it’s all going to sound a bit of a mess in 2004.
Not a bit of it though. And then you realize that it could never sound dated. It was unique when it came out and it remains so now. If it does have a problem it’s that it has a slightly comedic feel to it, almost spoof like. A shame really because most of the music here is actually quite beautiful.
You can start off quite jaded but as soon as the opener ‘Converted’ kicks in you’re starting to sway. The most beautiful track here is ‘Speed Of The Sound Of Loneliness’, listening to this you realise that it just doesn’t matter if music is hip or trendy. You just have to ask ‘Is it any good?’ After its use in ‘The Soprano’s’ you should really be sick of ‘Woke Up This Morning’ but it still works powerfully. The cacophony which introduces ‘Mao Tse Tung Said’ shows a funky side almost reminiscent of ‘My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts’ by Byrne & Eno, and the Grand Ole Opry would no doubt cry out for something like the Nashville sound of ‘The Old Purple Tin’. Tragically ‘The Night We Nearly Got Busted’ is not a song about an almost successful attempt at kidnapping a boy band.
Mr. Cynical (that’s me by the way) was honestly expecting this CD to sound horribly embarrassing, and to be well past its sell by date. That it doesn’t is a credit to the originality on display here, and although the album does tail off towards the end, you’re always left with a smile on your face.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb., 2 May 2001
By 
R. Appleton (S PDX, OR) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
OK.. like a lot of people.. I watched the Sopranos' thought.. this is good.. the music is good.. lets try the Soundtrack, instead, I bought La Peste.. and my life literally changed.. I live on a mountain in N Wales, crank the volume up.. til the pottery shakes.. and.. just sink into the music. Exile is better.. far better. but. on a different type of note. Whilst both albums are fantastic, and, the louder that you play them, the more levels of music and vocals appear dangling off the bottom. You aint heard these albums? what you been doing??
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars yeehaah! South London rides again!, 7 Feb 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
the first time I heard this album was at 4 in the morning in a friend of mine's bedroom.I didn't realise it at the time but I was in the listening to a work of genius....well if not genius then definitely quite goodness. Most people will know "woke up this morning" the albums anthemic Soprano's soundtrack number. But this album is at it's strongest whlist being at it's lightest.The anti chemical opus that is"don't dance 2tekno" is inspired. And whichever warped mind managed to make Nancy Griffiths sound funky"speed of the sound of loneliness" deserves to be shaken by the hand! this is a great album with only one or two lowlights.If you liked the Happy Mondays and you like your music to be a mixture of gospel and country funk ...then this is the album for you
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The last step in a long journey? Perhaps., 1 Oct 2006
By 
Jim Reaper (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
This cd was first encountered on the jukebox of my favourite watering hole in Edinburgh,thanks to the then manager "Barnacle Bill" who was an early convert, sometime in '97 and the funky,swampy,dancy groove has been with me ever since.We played it to death and back again spending a fortune in the process and then i got round to buying my own copy and proceeded to do the same at home!Such genuine originality is indeed very rare these days and i must agree with other reviewers who comment on the paucity of real talent in popular music these days and the formulaic persuit of a tawdry buck.

That the A3 have achieved some measure of recognition through association with The Sopranos is a good thing but it is by no means everything they should be due.It is the sheer eclecticism of their sound on this cd that is simply staggering. At times you have that almost swampy feel that you got from such 60's artist as Tony Joe White and his excellant Polk Salad Annie,with the tightness of such legendary performers

as Donald "Duck" Dunn and Steve Cropper.The backgound to the spoken intro of the very first song "Converted" illustrates this perfectly. This cd feels to me like the logical end point in the progression that began with that whole white soul sound that came out of Memphis and Muscle Shoals and featured the likes of such underrated and undersung artists as Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham and the already mentioned Tony Joe White. The accessability of the obviously techno (not a genre thats ever moved me by the way)influenced dance elements of this disc just embellish an already great sound to the point that without it it wouldnt be A3,and the acclaim they've justly garnered would be undeserving without it. As many have said before me here there are no weak tracks and i will only repeat whats already been said by higlighting the likes of "You Don't Dance To Techno" and "The Speed Of The Sound Of Loneliness" which is an excellent cover of the John Prine original.

I'll just end by adding that again in agreement with some other reviewers La Peste whilst a good record in its own right had maybe too much to live up to after this masterpiece.Also i have not to my discredit yet seen them live so if they ever read this,more gigs in Edinburgh please!!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So original, so rule breaking, 12 Dec 2003
This review is from: Exile On Coldharbour Lane (Audio CD)
Given the various descriptions of acid house, tekno, country, marxism, polemic etc you'd have thought this an unbearable mess.
Wrong-diddly-wrong-wrong! It's just fantastic. Highly original, great to listen to - wonderfully different.
"Ain't going to Goa" is a classic and "U don't dans to tekno" is a top (but sad) tune.
P*ss on Pop Idol - buy it!
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