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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Genius-and still alive!!!
Richard Ashcroft has hit the right note with his debut solo album 'Alone With Everybody.' It is a superb mix of melancholy, tranquille melodies and some riproaring tunes. The Verve split and i was gutted to say the least. Their music still lights up my day, but at least Richie is still going. A Song For Lovers was the perfect song to open his solo career with, not...
Published on 2 Sep 2001

versus
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Brave New World
The Verve split during the height of their fame after their masterpiece "Urban Hymns" which left fans excited upon Richard Ashcrofts first solo outing.
He was the spirit of The Verves "Urban Hymns" album with the majority of the songs being credited to him.
Even though it's unfair to compare The Verve and Richard Ashcroft Nick McCabes driving guitar force is...
Published on 9 May 2004 by gav-1985


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Genius-and still alive!!!, 2 Sep 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
Richard Ashcroft has hit the right note with his debut solo album 'Alone With Everybody.' It is a superb mix of melancholy, tranquille melodies and some riproaring tunes. The Verve split and i was gutted to say the least. Their music still lights up my day, but at least Richie is still going. A Song For Lovers was the perfect song to open his solo career with, not dissimilar to Bittersweet symphony with its orchestrial sound.The next two are great songs to chill out to. 'I get my beat' and 'Brave New World' clearly show Richie's new optimistic outlokk on life and show you into the rest of the album, as it becomes a bit more frantic with 'New York' with Richie back to his best droning out "chooooning in New York." Superb. You on my mind in my sleep is gracious and clearly a message to his partner and baby. Then you get the sense that Ashcroft is back to his best with 'Crazy World' with perhaps the greatest lyrics ever "Its burning on my brain loke a desert train locust, i find it hard to love i find it hard to focus" WOW! The next song is a classic. On a Beach is slow, beautiful and uncaring. Money to burn is another single which is rash and hard without ever hitting the peaks you'd like it too. Slow was my heart is absolutely top draw. Beautiful, music to cry to. The lyrics are outstanding. C'mon People is my favourite, it sounds like Verve and it mirrors his on stage shout of C'mon! Then it finishes with Everybody which shows Richie's sypathetic and caring side, the lyrics carefully planned and just hit the right chord. This album is out of this world. Your life is shallow without it! Richard Ashcroft wil surely go down as one of the greatest songwiters and performers ever. He is chronically underrated. Can't wait foir the new material!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Follow up to Urban Hymns, 29 Aug 2008
By 
S. Beck (Copenhagen, Denmark) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
"Alone with Everybody" first soloalbum? The follow up to "Urban Hymns"?
Isn't "Forth" in fact The Verve's follow up to 1995's "A northern Soul"?

Because of Richard Ashcroft's nervousness and reluctance to make "Urban Hymns" his first solo album it is sometimes a bit hard to tell what is verve album and what is solo-albums...

"A northern soul" is a verve album. The original four participated in songwriting and production of the album. The same goes for new album "Forth". But "Urban Hymns" started of with only 3 members; Richard, Simon Jones and drummer Peter Salisbury. And was to be the first Richard solo album. Richard wrote the songs.

A friend from Wigan, their base town Simon Tong was drafted in to play guitar and keyboards.

Back to "Alone with everybody":
A lot of people love this album and quite a few has criticized it for being too slick and mid-tempo. I really like this album. But I must admit that there is a little truth to what the critics has argued.
But to call this album AOR-radiofriedly blah-blah.. is overstating it. The same people gave "Urban Hymns" 6 star reviews for exactly those virtues that they criticized a few years later...

I will in the following argue that this album is the real contender for "Urban Hymns" explaining about a little history and facts and that there is so many similarities on the two albums and how a little editing in the track order and omitting a few songs for a couple of b-sides will make the album truly work to it's best! For the sessions for this album sessions did produce a GREAT body of work!

Many of the songs on this album was recorded for The Verves Urban Hymns but didn't make it. A lot of this has to do with the fact that guitarist for The Verve, Nick McCabe, had returned to the group in the last stages of recording Urban Hymns.

"Urban Hymns" went from the first solo album by Richard Ashcroft to the Verve's third album.

They pulled some songs off overdubbed McCabes guitar on already finished songs and re-recorded some songs and recorded some "new" songs among them "The Rolling People" and "Come on" both from around the time of The Verve's second album "A northern Soul". Two new tracks also came along "Catching the butterfly" and "Neon Wilderness".

Considering that many of the songs on this album were from the period of Urban hymns and that the band on "Alone with everybody"consisted of Peter Salisbury, drummer from The Verve, and BJ Cole, pedal steel player who replaced Verve guitarist Nick McCabe on the last part of the Verve's tour for "Urban Hymns", and that it also has the engineer and co-producer Chris Potter and string arranger Will Mallone doing what they did on "Urban Hymns" makes it kindda hard to say that this is the first solo album.

I know it is in name. But to me and I believe a lot of Verve fans this is really the second soloalbum with help from Verve drummer Peter Salisbury, Chris Potter and Will Malone all key players on "Urban Hymns".

As the second soloalbum it makes perfect sense. It has the same multilayered production of "Urban Hymns" relying, for the most part, on midtempo songs with string arrangements. The difference is that Richard plays the guitars assisted by pedal steel player BJ Cole instead of Nick McCabe and Simon Tong. And there is no doubt that Richard has a lot of the same effect pedals as Nick McCabe using the guitar to paint colors like McCabe more than playing the correct chords and licks. Richard's guitarplaying is great, turn up "New York" and "Crazy World" in the layers of production is great distorted guitar roles!

Pino Palladino is playing bass and does a fine job laying down the groove with Peter Salisbury.

There is a lot of similarities on the two albums. The difference is more in the mood. There is a more upbeat feeling on "Alone with everybody". The songs lyrics are indeed a little happier. There's more "Lucky man" ("Urban Hymns" track)than there is "The drugs don't work"/"Velvet Morning". The balance is a bit more on the dark side on "Urban Hymns".

For my personal taste a couple of tracks shouldn't have made it, "Slow was my heart" and "On a beach" should have been b-sides and instead two of the b-sides "Precious stone" and "Make a wish" should have gone on the album instead. The tracklist should have been:

Crazy world
A song for the lovers
Brave new world
New York
Precious Stone
I got my beat
Make a wish
Money to burn
You on my mind in your sleep
C'mon people
Everybody

This tracklisting makes for a less slick a bit less mid tempo ballads album. It's a bit darker and the dynamic is better I think, it makes it more natural when more upbeat stuff sets in. I have always liked this album a lot and has always been a bit frustrated to find out where it kind of went off. I like the songs i would have preferred off the album.

But to get that "blue/big/personal" (how do you describe Ashcroft & Co.'s great sonic abilities) feeling of a cohesive album I think my changes a for the best.

Anyways, with a few changes in the track order and two b-sides and two songs off This is indeed a GREAT album and the REAL follow up to "Urban Hymns".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as melancholy as the Verve albums, but just as beautiful, 24 Jan 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
Ashcroft is finally back with the long-awaited new album. His lyrics here seem less Blake-esque than his work with the Verve; he's turned into Keats! This album is an open-love letter to Richard's wife Kate, alongside being a paean to the uncertainty of life. This change has given fans a beautiful emotive album. I find tracks 9, 10, and 11 exceptionally good. One amazing song is Crazy World (6), which is a tribute to feminism and a celebration of love itself. The best song, in my opinion, is track 7, On A Beach, which has to be one of the most glorious love-songs ever written. Ashcroft is on fine form here, making the most of his god-given talent: his voice sounds rather like warm maple syrup.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Brave New World, 9 May 2004
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
The Verve split during the height of their fame after their masterpiece "Urban Hymns" which left fans excited upon Richard Ashcrofts first solo outing.
He was the spirit of The Verves "Urban Hymns" album with the majority of the songs being credited to him.
Even though it's unfair to compare The Verve and Richard Ashcroft Nick McCabes driving guitar force is missed greatly. For the most part the album is overcoated with strings and
despite some wonderful melodies and key changes as seen on "Brave New World" and the Motown vibed "C'Mon People We're Making It Now" you always feel that the albums lacking something.
It seems to be crying out for a Rolling People or a This Is Music. There are also no stand out songs on it, it floats along nicely giving you a fairly chilled out feel good experience but nothing really to kick you in the face or send the shivers up your spine as sngs like The Drugs Don't Work or History did for you.
It's not without it's merits, Ashcroft certainly still has a fantastic songwriting ability and he still has one of the finest rock and roll voices around today. It's certainly a plesent listening experience though nothing to make you sit up and take notice.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real solo album, 26 May 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
Many people think that The Verve was Richard Ashcroft but to overlook Nick McCabes' contributions would be foolish. McCabes' sublime guitar work gave The Verves' work a powerful yet totally unique sound and so when listening to Alone With Everybody one must do so with no pre-conceived ideas about its sound. Alone With Everybody is Ashcrofts album, he plays most instruments on every song but with all due respect Richard is no genius like McCabe. The songs are now driven mostly by Ashcrofts voice, moving away from the powerful melodic guitar lines. The new arrangement works however, due probably to the heartfelt lyrics. This is an album through which Richard looks to a happy future with his wife and child, moving away from the darker earlier Verve work. The songs move from upbeat pop with A Song For The Lovers and C'mon People to beautiful ballads like You On My Mind In My Sleep and Slow Was My Heart. However the closing Everybody hints at his past melancholic epics but this time the sadness is laced with hope. Overall this is a new direction for Richard Ashcroft and it is a direction in which he should continue. The songs capture a new side to his music and I for one cannot wait for more solo works from the great man.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!!!!, 11 April 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
Being a fan of The Verve, this cd was awaited with great interest...and I am very happy because Richard Ashcroft's this new cd did not disappoint me a bit. This is simply great. A Song For The Lovers, Come On People, I Get My Beat, Everybody, Money To Burn and You On My Mind In My Sleep...are superb..which doesnt make the rest any less from Great!!...this is a must buy for all the fans of The Verve..the ones sad about their spilt up...this will cheer ya up!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the Year, 13 Dec 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
With this first solo album Richard Ashcroft has confirmed himself as the musical genius of the last decade. It is far superior to 'Urban Hymns' or even 'A Northern Soul' although I doubt that anyone will ever come up with a song as masterly as 'History' again.
He has produced a much more upbeat album, which I have owned for almost six months, and has never left my CD player for more than a few days at a time. While 'New York' is decidedly poor, tracks 1, 5, 7, 9, 10 and 11 are all great and I play them repeatedly. Of these six, 'On A Beach' and 'Everybody' stand out a mile and why neither was released is beyond me.
Despite strong competition from 'Coldplay', this is clearly the album of the year and, although I cannot seriously compare it to 'Rubber Soul', one of my all-time favourites.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be regarded as a classic, 27 Jun 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
It is a sensational achievement that Richard Ashcroft has been able to follow-up the epic 'Urban Hymns' album with this equally creditable effort. Musically, this bares no resemblance to 'A Northern Soul' or 'A Storm in Heaven' which both flourished with turbulent guitars. It is most comparable to the quieter moments on 'Urban Hymns' such as 'Sonnet,' 'Space and Time' and 'Lucky Man.' The use of lush strings, melodic guitar riffs and ambient drum beats is astonishing. 'I Get My Beat' is beautifully layered with voices and strings. 'Crazy World' balances this with pulsating guitar riffs and a jaunty rhythm. 'On A Beach' is closest to the Verve as it is a more dreamy and elegant version of 'Lucky Man.' This should be the soundtrack to the summer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It keeps on growing!!!!, 19 April 2001
By 
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
I've had this album for a year now. I bought it on the day it was released, my initial hope was that this album was going to be in the style of the Verve's Urban Hymms, which was an awesome LP!! Having listened to it the first time I was initially disappointed only because I was anticipating another Urban Hymms. However the more I listen the better it gets, some of the tracks are powerfully uplifting like Song for the Lovers and Crazy World(which is my personal favorite). Brave New World and Your on my mind in my Sleep are beautiful love songs that really express Ashcroft's love for wife. Richard's distinctivly powerful vocals make each track his own. I still listen to it now which goes to show what such a wonderful LP it is!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Uneven but worthy, 14 Nov 2000
By 
This review is from: Alone With Everybody (Audio CD)
Must admit I had this album for a while before it really began to grow on me. The standouts grabbed me immediately: the beauty and simplicity of Brave New World and the relative energy of the first single Song for Lovers. New York took a while to grow on me but is currently one of my favorites - nothing like strolling through Union Square on a sunny day with this cut blaring in my headphones. It may be a little cheesy, but at least it actually captures some of the spirit and vivacity of this town (compare it to the similarly titled must have been asleep-at-the-wheel track on the new U2 album). The whole album is listenable - but he could do with the help of the aural equivalent of a book editor.
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