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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still as good as ever
In the late 80's I picked up the Blue Nile album Walk Across the Rooftops and it became one of my 'must take with me to college' tapes.

For some reason I never looked to see what had happened to this band and just assumed they would have split up. That was until I heard the recent excellent duet by Texas 'Sleep' with Blue Nile's Paul Buchanan. A search on...
Published on 9 July 2006 by J. J. Kelly

versus
21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars WARNING- THIS IS CD HAS EXTREME COPY PROTECTION
Although i think the album is fantastic and can't fault the band for this, however the cd i bought was severly copy protected and would only play on 1 out of 8 cd players tried in, this includes; sacd players, dvd players car cd players and computers among other players. It would also not play on a friends Quad 77, player. THis disc is not marked as copy protected, and is...
Published on 13 Sep 2004


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't worry..., 1 Sep 2004
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
After seeing some less than enthusuastic reviews of High I couldn't help be a little concerned that maybe the album would fall short of expectations. In the circumstances finally hearing the record was even more of an enjoyable an experience, because in no way is High a let down.
In many ways, as an album it reminds me most of their debut, A Walk Across the Rooftops, which can only be a good thing in my view. Without giving a track by track account, all I can say is that this is a stunning collection of songs, with in my opinion no weak links. The lyrics are particularly impressive throughout in their simplicity and beauty.
After the ever so slight disappointment of Peace at Last, High is a remarkable record. We are lucky they exist.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High At Last, 18 Nov 2005
This review is from: High [Digipak] (Audio CD)
Distinctly familiar melodies, lyrics and sounds usher in what is perhaps my favourite and most played album of the last two years.
Combining the aching poetics of the best of 'Hats' with the adventurous electronic landscapes of 'A Walk Across The Rooftops' and the sonic clarity of 'Peace At Last', for me, 'High' is a potent and emotionally vital synthesis of the best of the Blue Nile's previous albums.
The exquisite domestic musings of opener 'Days Of Our Lives', alongside the heartbreakingly fragile 'Because Of Toledo' and the epic title track provide my personal highlights.
A productive band, maybe not. An important one, always.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blew me away..........as they usually do!, 5 Sep 2004
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
I suppose I could be biased, being a fellow Glaswegian, but I don't think so. There is no one in this world that matches what Paul Buchanan can make me feel with his achingly beautiful voice. This album has been a long time coming - but it has been well worth it! 'High' has nine exquisite tracks. 'Stay Close', 'I Would Never', 'Broken Loves' and 'Because of Toledo' are favourites. Heck, I love them all!
If you've never listened to a Blue Nile album, do yourself a favour and order it now. You will find yourself lost in an album that is fantastically rich and soulful, yet incredibly uncluttered. Roll on 2011 or 2012 when the next installment will be due.....or hopefully sooner.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not quite High enough, 1 Sep 2004
By 
RodThePlod (Driffield, East Riding Of Yorkshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
Each one of The Blue Nile's albums has been a 4-star as each one has promised more during listening than it actually delivers by the end. They're like books that you can't put down, with passages that you read over again, but somehow, what you're looking for and expecting is never quite found.
None of the albums has consistently good songs but the 5-star feeling comes through two or three engaging tracks and the mesmerising vocals of Paul Buchanan.
"High" is less colourful than its predecessors and I think this may be as a result of a deliberate aim to achieve subtlety and intimacy. I miss the accents of brief sparkling guitar riffs and imaginative percussion. The textures are flatter - the same journey but a different topography. It's just a pity there isn't a "Stay" or "Love came down" on this outing - these more upbeat songs are where Paul's voice really comes into its own.
I'm finding the mix frustrating - strings are well back and overly muted, the bass less prominent and not so rich. The piano voice is unsatisfying except perhaps on the first track, "Days of our lives". This track, together with the last are the highlights for me. "She saw the world" almost takes off but not quite. These feel almost like sketches for songs which given say another 4 or 5 years work, may have been improved upon ( tongue firmly in cheek ).
A thoroughly enjoyable album - I'm sure the next one will take us to the 5th star.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh Yes, 31 Aug 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
We have waited and now we are rewarded. These guys wrench your gut with the first syllables that Paul Buchanon utters from his blessed larynx. The emotion is so intense, the observation of everyday life so acute that every lyrical passage brings an extroadinary vividness to this beguiling 9 song collection. One could argue that they have not progressed since Rooftops, or that their recent interview in The Times which likened their work to painting the roof of the Cistine Chapel sounds like monstrous flatulence. However, the first listen of this will have you begging for forgiveness that you doubted the passion and commitment of these wonderful men. Personally two tracks stand out more than anything else: "Broken Loves" and "Because of Toledo". The first being vocally reminiscent of "Downtown Life" with a repetitive keyboard melody, the second haunts with acoustic guitar washing over images of an America which is broken and desolate. The finale "Stay Close" has me thinking that how can these guys articulate through simple lyrics and relatively simple chord changes a piece that leaves you throat welled up as the first chorus ascends so wonderfully. I urge you to buy it, and if you have'nt bought the others to go out right now and buy the complete back catalogue. Breathless
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HIGH - Higher - Highest: Another great collection, 4 Feb 2008
By 
Mr. Derek Denton (South Lakeland, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
I bought this after HATS and WALK ACROSS THE ROOFTOPS. For me HATS is more accessible and its appeal more immediate. By contrast, it takes longer to get into HIGH, but give it time and it will grow on you, as it did me. From the dramatic, tolling keyboard backing of The Days of Our Lives, and on via the gentle rolling strings of I Would Never, to the tripping, melodic She Saw the World, the music and lyrics draw you on, intrigued. By the time you get to the last track Stay Close, you realise you've had a spell put on you. Later, you will play it again, and again, and you'll be out there looking for the other Blue Nile albums if you haven't already got them.

What is it about The Blue Nile that earns plaudits all round? Lyrics to match the songs? Voice of Paul Buchanan that can express the ineffable. Wonderful backing to create the mood the songs require? All three, I guess. It's music that appeals to the heart, music that meets our need for tenderness and thoughtful reflection about the human condition. It's a rare treat. Is there anyone else out there who can match what Paul Buchanan, Robert Bell and Paul Joseph Moore offer us with every recording they produce? I've been looking and got nowhere so far.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bittersweet melancholic perfection, 12 Dec 2004
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
It is just me or is the time between successive Blue Nile albums getting progressively larger? Anyway over the course of almost twenty years they've managed three masterpieces out of four (the last album "Peace At Last" was merely good) which is a good return in anybody's book. Lest I haven't made myself plain, "High" is tremendous, another slice of emotion set to peerless music. Thankfully, there's not overmuch instrumental gimmickry (distorted undercurrents etc.) to date stamp or detract from this. It's your typical Blue Nile sound, for which we should all give thanks, although it's sometimes hard to recall just how vastly different the debut album sounded to contemporaneous recordings when it was released. But back to "High". As soon as you hear Paul Buchanan singing over the opening piano chords of the first track "The Days Of Our Lives" you're transported back into the bittersweet, soulful Blue Nile universe. Maybe I'm biased, having cherished the Blue Nile for the last twenty years but I can't think of many artists who can deliver such affecting songs.
The title track is a beautiful, restrained, ballad with the usual Blue Nile lyrical touchstones of love, and city geography (traffic lights, motorcycles etc). Paul Buchanan's vocals are perfect. 'Broken Loves' is built on a endlessly repeating minimal piano riff.
'She Saw The World' is this album's almost pop song, the descendant of "Tinseltown In The Rain" and "Downtown Lights". It's bittersweet perfection.
This album is much stronger than its predecessor 'Peace At Last'. Even the worst, most routine track "Everybody Else" gradually gains your respect over repeated plays. 'Stay Close', with Buchanan singing over minimal rhythm and tasteful strings, is yearning bottled. Is it about letting go of love, is it about children's rites of passage (both spent love affairs and parenthood seem to feature throughout this album), or is it about some other aspect of love? It doesn't really matter because, however you interpret the lyrics, it's the perfect album closer to a perfect album.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's an album by The Blue Nile..., 11 Sep 2004
By 
Jason Parkes "We're all Frankies'" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: High [Digipak] (Audio CD)
It's always a tricky proposition- a band progressing musically, while retaining the sound that people loved in the first place; The Blue Nile manage to do that, though I'm not sure they've moved on that much from prior releases A Walk Across the Rooftops (1983), Hats (1989), & Peace at Last (1996). Opener The Days of Our Lives has a lovely repetative synth-line, which could be seen similar to things on Aphex Twin's second Ambient Works release, or some of the electronic-diversions on the last few Wilco albums. Listening to the 1981 debut single I Love This Life/The Second Act - found on the b-side of the I Would Never single- they haven't moved on that much: Chic-isms as present on 81's I Love This Life as on 04's Soul Boy.
But who cares?- did anyone really want them to turn into Plone, go alt-country, or shift toward a math-rock approach? Did anyone seriously expect The Blue Nile to return sounding like Melt Banana? I know it's bad to buy something and it's exactly as you expect, but hey, sometimes that's alright by me. I wasn't going to buy this at full-price, but hearing it in a record shop, I couldn't resist. & like previous BN-albums it's perfect for night-time, for those hangovers - the sweeping synth-orchestra & Paul Buchanan's sublime soulful voice...
And it's great, and the album's all great- The Days of Our Lives standing out, but also such joys as Because of Toledo, the title track, single I Would Never (Uncut's David Stubbs is correct in comparing it to U2's I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For!), Soul Boy (Buchanan's been big on Marvin Gaye), today's favourite Broken Loves- which has a great electronic motif with a collision of spoken-words & sung voices, before Buchanan takes us away, "children swing,to and fro/Do you ever wonder where did the summers go?"- before we sail away to those utopias just around the corner. The kind of record Marcel Proust might have dug? - who cares, High is a a highlight of 2004, a more than welcome return needed in this pop-pap climes-times. The short review?- It's an album by The Blue Nile; really, did you need any more than that?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 23 Oct 2008
By 
bish (Northampton) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
O.k-I admit I've been a bit slow here.Just purchased this 4 years after release.Reason?-I guess that although 'Peace' had its great moments,which for me were 'Family Life' and 'God Bless You Kid', the religious aspect of that album slapped me around the chops a bit too much and after several plays I still could not find many songs that leapt out at me.
This is different.This is wonderful.From the opening piano riff of 'Days of our lives' I am back in BN's dreamy,heartbreaking world.
Then there is the dramatic wrench that is 'Broken Loves'-sheer genius.
Add the beautiful 'Because Of Toledo' and 'She saw The World' and these songs alone seal the deal-oh, and the rest aren't bad either.
Thanks Paul,Rob & PJ-I received this CD today and I want you to know that you have reduced a 6ft 6in shaven-headed bloke to an emotional wreck.I've been with you from the start and I know that when the lights go out tonight the missus will be loving this too.
I consider myself both lucky and priviledged to have been there from the beginning-I would willingly pay good money to listen to Paul Buchanan sing the contents of the phone book-he's THAT good.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sigh of relief!, 30 Dec 2004
By 
P. Dickson (Scottish Borders) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: High (Audio CD)
I have followed the Band since since living in Glasgow in the early 1980s. I had tried hard to convince myself that 'Peace at last' was as good as its predecessors but that was hard work. 'High' arrived over Christmas and one listen confirmed that the magic is back. Heart rending music,thought inspiring lyrics and a special ambience created in a way only The Blue Nile can.
I am glad they have not 'moved forward' again.... the winning formula is still there and I would have no hesitation in recommending High!
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High by Blue Nile (Audio CD - 2004)
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