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46 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Timeless, effortless, brilliant ..and neglected
As a teenager growing up in Cardiff in the 1970's I was privileged enough to see YMG performing live on several occasions. They were extremely important to all of us then and they have remained so for me ever since. Apart from the music, which has never been bettered by a Welsh band (including Super Furry Animals), it was their politics and what they 'stood for' that...
Published on 28 Aug. 2002

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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The backwaters of post punk
It seems to be Simon Reynolds who calls this post punk but really the correct description would be twee pop which has not much of a mention in the book.
This is a branch of Indie and is not far off a CD I have by Confetti which are basically a trio with a girl singer called Virginia Aeroplane
This trio are from Wales and were the Young Marble Giants with Alison...
Published on 31 Aug. 2012 by Richard


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Less is more (didactic pop, anyone?), 19 Nov. 2012
By 
N. Jones "Nic The Pen" (Oxford, Great Britain) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
It's not just the stuff of fond, amphetamine-addled memory that makes `the Giants' so precious, then, as this set proves. The YMG's music resonates in the present day because it still sounds like a manifesto. Why so? Because `pop' in its many and diverse forms has hardly ever sounded as pared to the bone as it does here, and it's a joy to have the COLOSSAL YOUTH album, the TESTCARD EP, the three tracks from the FINAL DAY single, a track taken from the compilation IS THE WAR OVER? and the SALAD DAYS album (in that order) gathered on two CDs. Alison Statton, Philip and Stuart Moxham knew by frustrated instinct there was no point in signing up for the latest thing in darkly fecund post-punk days, but if that was a motive for the music they produced it was only one of many.

In so far as that music's still evocative of an era when Side 1, Track 1 of an LP could make or break a thing `Searching for Mr Right' which `opened' the Colossal Youth album still sounds as paradoxically downbeat yet upbeat as it did thirty-odd years ago, while music as dogmatically non-committal (paradoxes are go!) as `The Taxi' (Side 1, Track 3) with its pulse of bass, weedy keyboards, properly functioning drum machine and what appropriately sounds like car radio traffic still resonates in the cavities of the head (Apparently we all have them. I'd argue that in some cases those cavities are bigger than others, but I digress......) As it is the album still sounds as self-contained, as incapable of compromise, as Television's MARQUEE MOON does, albeit in an entirely different way, which is just as it should be.

In an ideal world `This Way' (being the first track on the TESTCARD EP) would have been the theme for a late night chat show celebrities were banned from and those on the considerable underside of our so-called society (who'd read Camus) would have known their Warholian minutes. To be sure TESTCARD's six tracks serve to remind us of how formatting has changed because the entirety seems so self-contained, as if the removal of one track would diminish the impact of the other five, somehow.

In an equally ideal world this set would be shifting units like there's no tomorrow and the world would accordingly be positively transformed. But as it is we have to deal in reality, and in this case the reality is that the cult will grow a bit, probably, which ain't so bad.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you like "minimalistic music" - this is a must, 17 Jan. 2010
By 
Thomas Rybak "Thomas Rybak" (Copenhagen, Denmark) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
You probaly heard about "minimal art"? Well this is the music's answer to that. With a few strokes on a guitar, a little vocal and maybe a rythme box this band creates a very unique univers that is totally minimalistic in its form. But is very rich in content. It's actualy very impressive what the band achieves with so few technological gadgets and tricks.
The band also shows that just because you are creating art, it does not have to mean that it should be without humor. Look at the name of the band and the album "Young Marble Giants" and "Colossal Youth". You would proberly expect music with a lot of instruments, a lot of over-dubs an a massive chorus. Nothing could be further form the actualy sound. Also titles like "Include me out" shows a great british, dry humor.
I don't thing anybody can be indifferent about this album. You either love it or hate it. But if you like minimalistic music there is no way around this album. Then it's a "must have".
Colossal Youth
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seminal post punk album gets the deluxe re-issue treatment , and quite right too., 16 July 2007
By 
russell clarke "stipesdoppleganger" (halifax, west yorks) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Young Marble Giants were a post punk band formed in Cardiff in 1978 who recorded only two EP,s -"Final Day " and "Testcard" and one album before splitting in 1980.That is actually far more punk than any amount of spitting , posturing and snarling . The album Colossal Youth was recorded over four days and is one of those invincible albums that is perfect in every sense. Even the sequencing of the tracks seems faultless.
The band were signed to "Rough Trade " records after recording on the compilation "Is The War Over" on Cardiff label "Z Block" records and were always a vaguely curious proposition . Brothers Stuart and Philip Moxham provided the music's deceptively simple guitars lines , terse rhythms and repetitive keyboard arrangements .Stuart wrote most of the bands material but the strange attributes of the bands music were aided by singer Alison Statton , who nowadays would sound conventional but then sounded like something from Greek mythology . Curiously she stills sound refreshingly blank and extraterrestrial . Early fourth member Peter Joyce, the Moxhams cousin , was an electronic wizard and in the same way as Eno did for early Roxy Music gave the music insidious textures and atonal sounds. He also provided the bands drum machine and this again gave the music a slightly surreal ambience , though with Moxhams writing always focussed on simplicity the songs weren't half as strange as they could have been.
This re-issue , and incidentally it's not the first time this album has been re-issued , contains those two EP.s , Peel sessions and The" Salad Days "album of outtakes originally released in 2000 . I always prefers to listen to Colossal Youth as a separate entity to the other stuff as somehow it tarnishes the albums perfection. Not that there is anything wrong with the other material, some if it is a but sketchy and mutable . but there is also much to treasure as well. "Final Day" is the most reflective and effective anti-nuclear song ever written .The most astonishing thing about this album is that here were a band that instinctively knew that the time had come to strips things back , to turn things down , the album even starts with silence and fades in with "Searching For Mister Right" , and they knew how to incubate insidious melody into that sound .Every scratchy guitar , every fat drop of that bass seems perfectly placed yet they realised that the space that lies between the notes, and Stattons monotone vocals is just as important.
Plus there are little hints of so many other musical genres in here , reggae , jazz and with "The Taxi" a precursor to the electronic revolution that would sweep over British music in the early eighties. A seriously brilliant and important album and one that gets overlooked too often , not least by myself as I tend to go for the more emotionally engaging and conventional albums in my collection when venting my critical spleen. ( Not that Colossal Youth isn't emotionally engaging -it is , just in a more abstract way)Young Marble Giants are a band probably more famous ( or should that be in-famous ) for being one of Kurt Cobains favourites but they are so much more than that and hopefully this essential re-issue will go some way to re-dressing the balance . If you haven't heard this album , rectify your mistake -the sooner the better.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Way ahead of their time, 18 April 2012
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
It's not all great but most of it is. Worth buying for the additional EP/singles, although there are some studio outtakes which are hardly worth it. I've played some tracks on here to people who thought they were the XX or some other lo-fi stripped-down current band. YMG were doing it 30 years ago!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Important album, 1 Feb. 2015
It's high praise to call an album important but let me explain why. When it was released in 1980 there was simply nothing like it, music so minimal it was skelatial, accompanied by achingly beautiful vocals that provoked support from the likes of John Peel, Kurt Cobain and Belle & Sebastian. The closest in today's music is probably The XX, but even they sound lush compared to this. Bass is to the fore, but sparingly, with a home made drum machine providing something to hang the structure on. It's fragile music, accompanied by lyrics redolent of reaction to the era it was made. One of the gems of the post-punk era, this was Young Marble Giants' only proper album. Atmospheric, pretty much live to tape, it's a real shame this group aren't more well known.
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5.0 out of 5 stars ... EP when they first came out years ago and loved them from the word go, 10 April 2015
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
I bought COLOSSAL YOUTH and the TEST CARD EP when they first came out years ago and loved them from the word go.
(I've still got the vinyl) Then I heard them again just recently on Youtube and couldn't believe how paired back they sounded. They are minimalist in the extreme. Even Alison Statton's disinterested vocals were a shock to the system after all these years. But it sounds really fresh. It's a complete contrast to today's music.

Try it, you might like it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Some post-punk nostalgia, 6 Sept. 2009
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Candy camera (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
This is no-fuss 80s post-punk pop. It's not complex music, just a series of twangy guitar chords and drum machine clicks. But every other track lifts you, surprises you, and makes you think back with nostalgia to the time when bands made music like this and lots of us thought it was pretty radical. Oh, those were the days...
If you're old enough to remember the early 80s, you may well like this.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Minimalist classic., 8 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (MP3 Download)
This takes me back. Young Marble Giants created a minimalist classic back in the day, and you can see ripples of their influence even today with The XX, English Grammar and others. This album is full of tons of demo material, alternative mixes and more. Frankly it doesn't add anything useful but you don't have to listen to all of the extras do you?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful Fragile Minimal, 11 Mar. 2009
I bought this vinyl album when it first came out. Before getting the CD it was constantly playing in my turntable. Even today I don't get bored with this fantastic simple music... It's one of my favourite 25 records of all times.

******************--(18 stars in 20)
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5.0 out of 5 stars TAKES ME BACK, 19 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: Colossal Youth (Audio CD)
I cant compare YMG to anyone else, their to no one.My thinks these Welsh funsters might be on to something here ....or thereabouts/ hereabouts they had good times.
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Colossal Youth
Colossal Youth by Young Marble Giants (Audio CD - 2007)
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