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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their finest, darkest hour
It makes my blood boil when people talk about this album as a warm up to Urban Hymns. This was the album the Verve were born to make. It's the sound of a band locked on a collision course to the bottom of their souls (yeah I kind of nicked that from 'This is Music', my favourite track here). Every one of the band shines darkly on this album - Salisbury's rock solid...
Published on 9 Jan. 2004 by samlookingformusicians

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4 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Songs of experience
Basically a warm-up album that fans of "Urban Hymns" said they owned before the "Bittersweet Symphony" bandwagon-ites, "A Northern Soul" has little of the greatness that perhaps its nearest equivalent, "Definitely Maybe" by Oasis, oozes from every track. Instead, this is an album of wonderful singles and a whole load of...
Published on 6 Nov. 2000


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5.0 out of 5 stars The Verve At Their Best, 7 Oct. 2007
By 
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
The Amazon review above is right in many ways. A Nothern Soul is rambling and full of bombast. It does have filler in it and isn't nearly as slick as its successor. This is a fans record if ever I've heard one. What current band would say 'I'm going to die alone in bed' or 'Too busy staying alive'? Few if any, for that matter, few bands in history would have the bottle to say that. This isn't a record that the radio would have on continuous rotation like Urban Hymns but by heck theres few records that have the lead singer laying his life out for all to see. What makes it all the more important is that Ashcroft could have grown up anywhere in the country not just Wigan and he'd have still said the same things, there was some painful universal truths in there, that are as relevant today as they ever were.

Its not just what is said, its the sound. McCabe in my opinion completes a trio of British guitarists who just aren't held in high-enough esteem, the others being Kevin Shields and Jonny Greenwood. Riffs and feedback surrounding you at every turn, ridiculous jams that irritate the critic with 10 albums to listen to in a day but thrill the fan for hours on end. Then there is that rhythm section which give the whole album gravitas and quality, a bottom end so heavy the top end could have been half as good as I've mentioned and it will still be a 3star album. As it is the vital other two stars are earned with change to spare.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best AA-side in history, 13 Jan. 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
My house was burgled several days after I'd bought this album and I am so glad that it was in my CD player when everything else was taken.
I only like two of the songs but this is still one of my all-time favourite albums. 'On Your Own' was the song which got me listening but 'History' is simply the greatest song ever made. There is rarely a day when I don't listen and its immense quality never ceases to amaze me.
Unless you can find the single, I highly recommend that you buy this album just for that song.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The sound of brutal heartbreak and passionate disillusion., 2 Mar. 2001
By 
Sick Mouthy (Exeter, Devon) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
This album is The Verve's masterpiece. A Storm In heaven is a sumptious psychedelic feast for the ears, floating in an opiated reverb haze... But this album, A Northern Soul... It's the sound of four lives on the line. Imminent self-destruction. This Is Music starts with some fuzzed bass, and then- WHOOMPH- the guitar and drums drop in and it sounds like bombs being dropped. History and On Your Own may be the tunes everyone talks about, but listen to the other songs instead... Drive You Home is seven minutes of glorious tear-drenched pain and anguish, the sound of utter desolation and heartbreak, Brainstorm Interlude is sonic chaos, A New Decade a swaggering, growling statement of intent, Life's An Ocean a heavy, trance-inducing mantra... This album is an utterly amazing, staggering, heartbreaking masterpiece. They never came close to equalling it. How could they?
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Raw Talent became bigger!, 17 Jan. 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
The Verve's critically acclaimed but hugely underrated second album showed them to be one of the best indie acts on the planet even befor the huge commercial success of Urban Hymns. Richard Ashcroft and Nick McCabe befor their problems really knew how to get it together and write some stunning music. This album set a precedence in producing beautiful and painful music from a bad and at times difficult upbringing. From the first track "A New Decade" through the brilliant On Your Own, Life's an ocean and of course the orchestrial and quite superb History the feeling is that these four lads from Wigan have worked so hard to make a superb album. Richie was quoted as saying it would take them three albums to produce a brilliant one, and urban Hymns lives up to that, but for Raw Talent and pure emotion, A Northern Soul in years to come will be seen just as eloquent as its successor. Superb.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely awesome, 1 Aug. 2008
By 
G. Merryweather (Edinburgh, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
Believe the vast majority of reviews here: A Northern soul is not as commercial or immediately accessible as Urban Hymns, but infinitely more powerful and balanced and contains some of The Verve's best work.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Essential listening, 3 Jan. 2013
By 
Stuart Burton (Lancashire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
If all you know of The Verve is Urban Hyms then you need to listen to this to see how the band developed.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Such An Important Album, 2 Aug. 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
This has to be the most important album in my CD collection, bringing together all the qualities of The Verve, from 'The Verve E.P' to 'Urban Hymns'. 'A Northern Soul' has a great collection of songs which compliment each member of the band, most of all Richard Ashcroft, proving himself as a front man and a superb songwriter. A rocky album with mellow intervals, 'On Your Own' and 'History' being the slower tracks, both favourites of mine. Nick McCabe is alot more outstanding with the original guitar playing, especially on 'So It Goes'. Simon Jones takes a step forward with the bass and moves on from 'A Storm In Heaven' to take on a bigger role. 'Drive You Home' has a more bluesy feel to it, with effective progressive guitar playing. All in all a fantastic album, a must have! 'The Verve - A Northern Soul' shows other british rock bands what they're lacking!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Music that speaks, 30 Mar. 2005
By 
A. Taylor "Alex" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
I have just listened to this album again after a long break from it. It reminded me of what great music sounds like (not like the pretentious dross that's knocking around at the moment). This album really speaks to you. It doesn't just speak, it shouts with all its might. Like the synopsis of the album says, it is flawed (Brainstorm Interlude and Lifes an Ocean). But the magnificence of the rest of the album more than makes up for it. I remember it took me a while to tune into the sound, once you do the ride is both powerfull and long lasting. I thought that maybe this album was not enjoyed like it should be, but having read the other reviews of this album I realise there are lots of other people who Love this album just like I do. This is a must if you Love music and what it can do for the soul.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 2 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: A Northern Soul (Audio CD)
Great album, the stepping stone to urban hymns which is a masterpiece.
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5.0 out of 5 stars amazing, pefect record aswell, 30 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Northern Soul [VINYL] (Vinyl)
this is how vinyl should be housed , amazing , pefect record aswell.
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A Northern Soul
A Northern Soul by The Verve
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