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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The clue is in the title
The Beautiful South return with their 10th studio album, Superbi. And as a long-time fan of the band it was pleasing to hear just how fresh the band sound after all these years. Saying that the album represents a 'change in direction' would be going a little too far, but there is a lot on this album that is different from what they have done before. There are new sounds,...
Published on 15 May 2006 by Nader

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Listen carefully!
Being a die hard fan of The Beautiful South, I was excited to hear that they were releasing a new album. I pre ordered Superbi and it arrived just a few days ago. I haven't stopped listening to it since. First impression was that there was nothing new here but after just a few plays it grabbed my attention. The lyrics are quirky and cleverly written.

Not sure I...
Published on 18 May 2006 by Kay Langford


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The clue is in the title, 15 May 2006
By 
This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
The Beautiful South return with their 10th studio album, Superbi. And as a long-time fan of the band it was pleasing to hear just how fresh the band sound after all these years. Saying that the album represents a 'change in direction' would be going a little too far, but there is a lot on this album that is different from what they have done before. There are new sounds, instruments, styles, yet the album avoids sounding experimental. Superbi is the closest to country the band have sounded, yet converseley at the same time its the closest to rock they've ever been.

There are some tracks that are very typical in style of Paul Heaton - current single 'Manchester' is remeniscant of the 1994 hit Good as Gold, the finale 'Tears' is strikingly remeniscant of The Real Blues which appears on Heaton's solo album Fat Chance. At the same time there are songs on here that sound nothing like anything they've done before. The best examples are 'The rose of my cologne' and 'Never lost a chicken to a fox', and the final minute of 'From now on' sounds almost like something out of Chicago.

For me, the stand out track on this album (and my tip for the second single) would be 'When romance is dead'. The lyrics are very astute, and this for me is one of the best ballads the band have done, it is heavier and more guitar and drum orientated, especially towards the end. I think this song would be very radio friendly, and given the necessary air-play (which sadly the band never seem to get any more) could be a big single.

This is a very good album. Certain tracks may not grab you at first, but they will grow on you with repeated listenings.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Listen carefully!, 18 May 2006
By 
Kay Langford - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
Being a die hard fan of The Beautiful South, I was excited to hear that they were releasing a new album. I pre ordered Superbi and it arrived just a few days ago. I haven't stopped listening to it since. First impression was that there was nothing new here but after just a few plays it grabbed my attention. The lyrics are quirky and cleverly written.

Not sure I like the country & western sound that this album has adopted, but nevertheless, the tunes are catchy. I especially love 'Manchester'. (Very brave of the band considering they will be playing there this forthcoming tour!!).

Listen carefully to the lyrics, give the album a chance and you won't be dissapointed.

Still love the 'old stuff' best though!

Kay
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb?, 4 May 2006
By 
James Garratt "James Garratt" (Southend on Sea) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi (Audio CD)
Superbi is the 9th studio album, not counting Carry on up the Charts and the Covers album.

It's been 17 years since the Beautiful South appeared and has the idea gone stale, or can they still capture the listener's imagination.

In fairness their last album of original material, Gaze was a mixed bag. The covers album did little to endear people although it received some critical acclaim.

Superbi needs to be a good album, it needs freshness, it needs something else, and it needs conviction and belief.

Does it have it? Well having heard a pre release version I am pleased say it does, it certainly bristles with confidence, the sort that has been lacking for the last few years.

It also bristles with new instruments, not heard before on a South album and new styles, most notably a country feel, especially tracks like Rose of my Cologne and Never Lost a Chicken to a Fox. These tracks are going to split people, personally I love them, and they sound fresh and different.

Lyrically the album is as strong as ever - from the lyrics to the excellent Meanwhile to the sadness and beauty of Bed of Nails, Paul Heaton does not let us down.

The album is preceded by the track Manchester - a jaunty upbeat number that does seem the immediate choice from the album.

This album is a real move away from previous Beautiful South Albums, it is still recognisable them as Beautiful South, but there seems to be a revolution happening here. Here though lies perhaps the problem, there are no poor songs as such, but in terms of style the album is not always consistent. Hearing a country influenced song one moment then suddenly a bitter sweet relationship song the next in traditional South Style can be a little disconcerting. Although listening to the album in order it is apparent the band have thought about this as the slower numbers never follow on from each other.

This is the best album they have put out in a long time, it maybe lacks the more complex song arrangements from albums like Miaow but this album shows there is still life in the band yet.

Alison Wheeler, still seen as the new girl on the block, despite this been her third album is stunning and she is rightly given lots to do, her voice is strong and sultry and the band have used this to great effect.

This is a really good album, and no one should be disappointed on hearing it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It'll do for now, 15 Jun 2006
By 
Mr. R. B. Ager "Ronald Ager" (Nottingham, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi (Audio CD)
Well, we all allowed the South the indulgence of the covers album, even bought it for the hoot of having Olivia Neutron-Bomb and Blue Oyster Cult's finest moments cut down to size, but the five year wait for some decent original material has tried the patience more than somewhat.

Lyrically this album is spot on, by turns fragrant, sharp, whimsical, droll and acerbic. Age must have caught up with them because, apart from the clapped out old bus on the cover, there's a good helping of ruminating on mature love and relationships (Cat Loves The Mouse, where one naughty word earns the album its black and white sticker, and When Romance Is Dead), as well as the tribute to home town Manchester. But there is still time for social comment, as they touch upon such things as the public attacment to the cult of celebrities and soaps rather than the troubles in the world (Meanwhile).

Musically, things are on the whole a little more jaunty and uptempo than we're used to. There is a distinct country flavour, with banjos, mandolins and honky-tonk pub pianos much in evidence. Tunes and melodies are subtle - there is nothing that grabs you immediately or will sell a million - and grow on you. Paul, Dave and Alison's vocals are as strong as ever, and they combine and contrast perfectly.

Overall, it's a good album, not earth-shattering, but it'll do for now. At least it sounds as if they enjoyed recording it. And, by the way, the only difference between this and the limited edition is the packaging - this is the jewel case version.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars South go Western...., 29 Aug 2006
This review is from: Superbi (Audio CD)
A more confident album than 2003's "Gaze."

Lead-off track - "Manchester" - suggests nothing ground-breaking but a charming consolidation.

Elsewhere country-flavoured tunes are in abundance that are pleasant if somewhat forgettable.

Where this album really takes shape is on "Meanwhile" which is a stylish and intelligent bit of pop and "Bed Of Nails" which is a heart-rending tune sung beautifully by Heaton and Alison Wheeler.

Other than that nothing here of note other than the usual quality lyrics but slightly pedestrian music. Much of it - like "Tears" - feels like it's been done before.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superbi - - Superb, 26 May 2006
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This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
Eagerly awaited this cd and was not disappointed in anyway. Paul and the rest of the band deliver their ususal musical genuis and in their experimentation they have encompassed a new and very 'catchy' cd sound. The single Manchester is sure to have even the most sceptical people foot tapping along. The rest of the album consists of beautiful ballad style songs and the usual darker numbers. All in all an excellent offering from one of britains finest bands !!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A grower of an album, 22 May 2006
By 
Mr. A. Tao "Abes" (Sheffield, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
On the first couple of listens to this album, I was left feeling rather underwhelmed. The songs (with the exception of 'Manchester') sounded relatively bland and dull. On further listens though, I think this is one of their best albums for many years. The change in direction is slight- there is a country twang to a couple of their songs ('Cologne' and 'Never Lost a Chicken...) but apart from that, there is the usual blend of slow tunes and witty ditties packed with meaningful lyrics. Give this album more than a couple of listens and you'll probably love it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yet Again..., 14 Jun 2006
By 
Z. Lightfoot "adam_and_zoe" (Rotherham, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
As mentioned in a couple of these reviews, on first listening this album doesn't "grab" you, with the exception of a couple of the more upbeat tracks.

That said, i've listened to nothing but this album since buying it and far from getting that feeling of overplay, it's getting better and better.

The quirky lyrics you come to expect from TBS are plentiful as always, combined with that usual thought provoking originality.

The country feel to the music really works, giving a different slant on the band, while hearing the unmistakably familiar vocal style we've come to know and love.

TBS never fail to impress me with their unique ability to consistantly provide great music for the listener's pleasure and this album is no exception. My tickets are booked to see them live (again!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superbi: Beautiful South - The last in a long line of consistently good albums from the BS., 13 May 2011
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi (Audio CD)
Sadly, this tenth release from Hull's greatest musical export, Beautiful South, looks like being their last. Following the release of this came the news that they are to disband. It's a shame, as Beautiful South have consistently put out albums of great music, with constantly fresh ideas.

Here they just keep on doing what they do best. They give us a series of songs where it is the lyrics that matter. From the pen of Paul Heaton we have tales of everydayness, told with a caustic wit and cynicism. Just as important, there is an inventive, jaunty, jazzy musical backing which accompanies and compliments the lyrics but never overpowers. And the music is so full of great hooks and rhythms you will be caught up in it in no time.

It's not an album which quite reaches earlier heights, but even so there is much to appreciate and enjoy here. Here's hoping for a reunion sometime soon?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The South Are Back, 17 May 2006
By 
R. Reel "The Raven" (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Superbi Limited Edition (Audio CD)
At first i thought oh dear has something gone wrong. But the more you listen to this album, the better it gets, there is possible 7 good tracks on the album and are very cathcy.

However much better than there 2 privious albums, tracks like The Rose to my Collogne and Meanwhile are just pure south, they are back on track and is simply a must for all south fans
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Superbi by Beautiful South (Audio CD - 2006)
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