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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars effortlessly brilliant, 16 Feb 2006
By 
M. Hann (berlin) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
having been a fan of gorky's zygotic mynci (who are incidentally one of the best bands ever to have existed) my review of their lead singers first solo album is going to be slightly biased. if you can look beyond the rudimentary production, you might just discover some of the best songs written this year. occasionally, the lo-fi production is taken into the extreme, such as on 'billy the seagull' which sounds like its been recorded onto a dictaphone. some of the songs are mere fragments, and leave you wondering how good they might have been if the ideas had been fully developed. the songs that do last more than a minute are, however, excellent. 'circus time' is one of the best songs childs has ever written, featuring just him on piano, his sister megan on violin and a beautiful vocal line. the upbeat numbers are all endearing and melodic, 'donkey island' is a bit silly but there is no denying that there is a brilliant tune hidden behind the absurd lyrics and casio keyboard sounds. it sounds like euros knocked this album together in about 2 days - maybe next time he will invest a bit more time into it and produce an even better record. this album is full of ideas and melodies, they just need to be nurtured a little bit more.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable record, 15 Feb 2006
By 
J (Fulham, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
If you are reading this review, you are most likely to be a fan of Gorkys Zygotic Mynci - Euros' band. If so, I recommend you buy this record as you'll enjoy it. A few comments to add some meat to the bones....
Being Euros' first solo album it is only possible to compare his music to that of Gorkys, if you think it necessary. Chops is brimming with ideas and creativity. Euros seems to be having a lot of fun at times. This is nice to see as Gorkys latest recordings seemed to hint that they were being made whilst the musicians were thinking of other things. although they were great records, mind.
The music sometimes sounds familiar. 'My Country Girl' shows up Euros' occasional dabbling with country music - 'Heart of Kentucky' sprung to mind when I heard it. Also there's a wonderful droning build-up to 'First Time I Saw You', reminiscent of 'Pretty as a Bee' but with more going on. The song is based on four plodding notes on a battered organ Euros found in a skip. It's a real highlight on the album.
Euros' wonderfully personal understanding of melody is present here in abundance too. When he wants to write a really pleasant catchy tune there's very few people that can equal him. 'Costa Rica' has that sparse brilliance of 'Catrin', just vocals and piano with a simple beat. 'Dawnsio Dros y Mor' really impresses though. A confident, catchy, easy-going pop song. Which is a good way to describe the single released from the album, Donkey Island, a kitch sea-side escapade into the secret lives of donkeys (!).
There aren't enough full songs on the album though really, it's a touch short. 30 second oddities don't count I think, of which there are a few. I don't really get 'Slip Slip Away' and 'Billy the Seagull' - brief, nonsensical strangeness. Maybe others do. But this is nit-picking and anyway that's what's so endearing about Euros' Childs' music. You don't know what you're likely to be listening to in four minutes time, and more often than not you're thinking this is up there with some of the best music i've heard. This is a great buy in its own right, but also serves as a mouth-watering taster for the next album by the fantastic Gorkys Zygotic Mynci.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Euros Childs solo outing sounds...well, like gorkys!, 14 Feb 2006
By 
M. Young "Amuro Ray" (Liverpool UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
Although many will never have heard of them, fans of Gorkys Zygotic Mynci, and many music critics, agree that they are one of the best bands around. I am a huge fan, and in particular adore "spanish dance troop" and "the blue trees ep". If you share my love for these albums, go out and get chops now! The best and worst thing about Childs album is that, although a solo album, sounds as if it is the new Gorkys album. Violins, hushed vocals, gentle guitar and dreamy pianos dominate the album in true Gorkys fashion. Sure use of drum machines and...weird sounds..seperate this album from its Gorky bretheran, but its still essential the gorky formula.
Luckily for us though, this album at times reaches the dizzy hieghts of Spanish Dance Troop. Donkey Island is at least as fun and catchy and Poodle Rocking, Costa Rica (the albums highlight) is as sweet as Spanish Dance Troops title track and Hi Mewn Socasau equals the power of Desolation Blues. However the album also contains the understated, mournful nature of The Blue Trees ep, with Surf Rage and Circus Time harking back to the mood of that EP. Unfortunantly, much like Gruff Rhys (lead singer of SFA) recent solo album, some ideas seem half baked. The album is short, and though some tracks are all the better for there short length, stella is a pigmy, which is seperated into 3 songs, has a fantastic tune which is never dwelt on for more than a few seconds. Fleshed out this song could have been truely classic.
Still, if you want a simple, sweet listen, i can't recommend this album more. Its brevity is a nice contrast to the fantastic but over long Sleep Holiday and hopefully indicates what the sound of the next Gorky album might be!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome in places, 5 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
Not consistent enough to be his best work but it has Costa Rita on it and that's one of my favourite songs ever so you should buy it based on that alone. There is some filler, but there's more killer so you probably need this in your life. When Euros does filler it's weird and wonderful so don't think he just puts rubbish out there, I just mean some songs are not as strong in the melodic majestic way some of the others are. I've said too much, Euros is a legend, this confirms it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another Euros Masterpiece, 7 Jun 2010
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This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
great tracks, Donkey Island is a great track to listen to in the car at full blast!
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4.0 out of 5 stars The difference between this and GZM is...?, 9 Jan 2008
By 
This review is from: Chops (Audio CD)
And the fact that there isn't much difference is probably why it's such a great album. Full of the quirkiness and melodic perfection we have come to expect from Euros.

Favourite tracks are Dawnsio Dros Y Mor and Hi Mewn Socasau (I've played them so often I actually can sing along now even though I can't speak Welsh) - apparently Hi Mewn Socasau means "She's in leggings" in English?I'm not so sure about Billy The Seagull and Slipway, these are the only two tracks that I tend to skip past if there is anyone else in the room (or car). Overall brilliant anyway and definitely recommended if you were a fan of GZM or Welsh music in particular. As I live in Oxfordshire my friends think it's a bit peculiar.
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Chops
Chops by Euros Childs (Audio CD - 2006)
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