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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Understated brilliance
I was intrigued by the idea of this covers album: Patti Smith's voice is so distinctive that I couldn't imagine how it might work with some of the songs selected. As others have said, the songs are (musically) quite faithful to the originals -- apart from Smells Like Teen Spirit. It's also more or less unadorned in terms of production. Patti's voice, however, makes the...
Published on 20 April 2007 by Kilgore

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9 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Twelve, Patti Smith
I have always rated Patti smith as an artist, her albums and performances are often patchy, but always engaging and passionate. So I have always bought her albums without bothering to read reviews.

Twelve is a huge dissapointment, it is passionless and tame. Most surprising is the weak choice of songs, mostly ones that we have heard so many times that they are...
Published on 8 May 2007 by The goalkeeper


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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Understated brilliance, 20 April 2007
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This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
I was intrigued by the idea of this covers album: Patti Smith's voice is so distinctive that I couldn't imagine how it might work with some of the songs selected. As others have said, the songs are (musically) quite faithful to the originals -- apart from Smells Like Teen Spirit. It's also more or less unadorned in terms of production. Patti's voice, however, makes the overall sound unique. My current favourite track is Everybody Wants To Rule The World -- a song I didn't like before now and could never imagine her covering. This album certainly isn't a new landmark in rock music, or full of musical fireworks...but it does have subtlety and an understated brilliance. Hopefully, it might also serve as an accessible introduction to her work for the curious.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I know it's only covers, 17 April 2007
This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
I was disappointed to find that Patti's new album would be just cover versions of favourite songs until I heard it. However I really like this record, she has done very little to change the original songs, it is an homage after all but somehow she is able to remind us of how good this material really is. I don't think that I ever managed to listen to the lyrics of "Are you experienced" before now. Just look at the range of these songs, from Stevie Wonder to Nirvana via the Stones, and try to imagine another artist who could manage to do them all justice.

These are faithful renditions but unmistakably Patti at the same time and should encourage listeners to revisit the originals.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Epic Album, 13 Oct 2012
By 
commodityfetish (Southampton, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
I listened to this for the first time at home and thought "maybe I'll give it another listen later". I then listened to it in my car and couldn't take it off... for more than 10 hours. This is a brilliant album stamped with all that's best about Patti Smith.

For me, she makes these tracks her own. They aren't all great, but Changing of the Guards, Boy in the Bubble, Gimme Shelter, Pastime Paradise, Smells Like Teen Spirit and Everybody Wants to Rule the World are the stuff of legacy. I cannot tell you how many times I've listened to this, but they just do not get any worse with repetition.

At this price it's a must-buy! Please give it another listen if you get it and you're unsure - it takes time to hear famous songs recorded in a different style by somebody else, but this is a classic album - a true gem (for the tracks mentioned, that is).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lot better than you think its going to be !, 7 Jun 2007
This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
I was initially disappointed on hearing that Patti's new album would be all cover versions,surely the last artistic resort for someone whose muse has fled ?

However,on actually listening to the album it was a very pleasant surprise.The opening track , Jimi Hendrix's "Are You Experienced" is a revelation , dragging this song away from its 60s associations and bringing it bang up to date. That sets the tone for the rest of the record really with "Gimme Shelter","Teen Spirit",and "Soul Kitchen" being highlights.

There are some surprises , Tears For Fears , Paul Simon , Stevie Wonder and The Allman Bros Band not being artists you would normally align with Patti Smith.However these versions work because the songs and the interpretations are strong.I don't agree with previous reviewers who have said that the album lacks passion.

Patti Smith has always mixed cover versions with original material since Van Morrison's "Gloria" opened her first album.So my advice is to give it a listen and you won't regret it
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sixty years old and still amazing!, 11 Jun 2007
This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
It's encouraging to see our veteran music makers continuing to look for new challenges and on the face of it, Patti Smith recording some songs she rather likes sounds a million miles away from her past and a bit of a cop out.

Don't be decieved, this is a cracking album ~ not quite five stars, but well worth a full four. I admit that covering Tears For Fears might not sound very avant garde, but it just about works in this context (but only just). What catches the ear though are the superb Gimme Shelter and the simply exquisite and angst ridden Smells Like Teen Spirit (if you missed the 'Later With Jools Holland' online extra video of this you missed a real treat). Whatever your thoughts on Nirvana and that track, this version is capable of reaching the parts Curt Cobain couldn't and, arguably, is worth the cost of then album alone.

What is most gratifying is to see and hear a veteran performer step outside of the fan's expectation and release an album because she enjoys the songs. Not everyone's cup of tea, but if you open yourself up to this album, you will be richer for it.

At any age, nevermind sixty, this is a triumph. Respect.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Power to Patti, 17 April 2007
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This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
Like other reviewers I came to this album uncertain that it would amount to much. But then I was in HMV and I heard the unmistakable tones of Patti playing on the shop sound system. I stood still for the whole of the song and was transfixed by it. Turned out to be the first track 'Am I experienced' originally by Jimmy Hendrix and I thought the Patti version was every bit as good as the original. The real star track is 'Smells like teen sprirt' with a section of classic Patti stream-of-words-poetry delivered in her fabulous New Jersey accent. I admit to being a Patti fan so I am pre-disposed to liking it but for anyone who is unsure whether to buy I would certainly recommend it simply for the fact that it offers a new take on so many good songs.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 4 Jun 2014
This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
Brings life back to all those old songs. Technically excellent recording. Most of the covers are better than the originals.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb covers, 20 Jan 2010
By 
Michael John Salmon "Mike Salmon" (London England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
Patti has done really well here. Not only putting her own feel to some classic tracks but also managing to stay true to the original concepts. Well worth a listen.
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5.0 out of 5 stars patti performs great rock classics, 4 Jan 2009
By 
Massimo Pulleghini (curtatone (mantova, italy)) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
when i bought this cd, a couple of years ago, i thought that it wasn't one of her best. well, now, listening to it again, i changed my idea: it's not so different from others patti's records, but the versions are quite different from the originals. so i enjoyed them very much. all the tracks are very good and full of feeling. patti sings almost all the track with great strongness, with the possible ecception of the last one, Stevie Wonder's Pastime Paradise (i don't like this song even in the original version).
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Strangely familiar, 1 May 2007
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This review is from: Twelve (Audio CD)
I'm invariably underwhelmed by Patti's albums and I'm not the biggest fan of her recordings, no matter how great she is live. I always want to be delighted but find the stuff patchy and so rarely am. Great tracks mixed up with lesser offerings and fillers. Even the long heralded "Land" best-of album seriously disappointed me.

So it was with some trepidation I borrowed this off a friend. However it is great. Immediately accessible, not difficult, that beautiful strange but familiar vibe you can only get off covers albums. All the tracks have a neat Patti twist, some more than others - Teen Spirit, Within you Without you (?) and White Rabbit for example. Also expect the unexpected - Boy in the Bubble, Are you Experienced, Gimme Shelter and that Tears for Fears track?!? I wish more of Patti's stuff was this playable. If this is self indulgent then more please.
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Twelve
Twelve by Patti Smith (Audio CD - 2007)
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