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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...How Will You See Me Later When You Can't See Me Now..." - The Confessions Of Dr. Dream by KEVIN AYERS (2009 CD Remaster)
I remember buying this album in the summer of 1974 in Dublin. I liked the laminate embossed sleeve - I liked Island Records as a label and I liked the price - two quid. But when I got it home and played the album - I just didn't get it. I didn't know what to make of the disparate song styles - nor did I like the really heavy drug-addiction references that permeated so...
Published on 8 April 2009 by Mark Barry

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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Watch Out, There's Static About...
Although I really rate this album and I can't expand much on what's already been said about the excellent musical content, I must point out that there is a problem with this CD issue. Track 14 'Stop This Train' is riddled with sound issues, it appears to be either static or some sort of diginoise (crackle and hiss), it certainly does not appear to be an analogue issue...
Published on 31 Jan. 2012 by Baxi


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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...How Will You See Me Later When You Can't See Me Now..." - The Confessions Of Dr. Dream by KEVIN AYERS (2009 CD Remaster), 8 April 2009
By 
Mark Barry "Mark Barry" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
I remember buying this album in the summer of 1974 in Dublin. I liked the laminate embossed sleeve - I liked Island Records as a label and I liked the price - two quid. But when I got it home and played the album - I just didn't get it. I didn't know what to make of the disparate song styles - nor did I like the really heavy drug-addiction references that permeated so many of the tracks - especially the 4-part suite on Side 2. But of course across time and several plays - I grew to love it - and even though I traded other albums in second hand shops to feed my music addiction - I never parted with my two quid deal. Here are the needle-fuelled details...

UK released March 2009 on EMI/Harvest 268 2952 (Barcode 5099926829524) the expanded CD breaks down as follows (65:50 minutes):

1. Day By Day [Side 1]
2. See You Later
3. Didn't Feel Lonely Till I Thought Of You
4. Everybody's Sometimes And Some People's All The Times Blues
5. It Begins With A Blessing / Once I Awakened / But It Ends With A Curse
6. Ballbearing Blues
7. The Confessions Of Dr. Dream Part One: Irreversible Neural Damage [Side 2]
8. The Confessions Of Dr. Dream Part Two: Invitation
9. The Confessions Of Dr. Dream Part Three: The One Chance Dance
10. The Confessions Of Dr. Dream Part Four: Doctor Dream Theme
11. Two Goes Into Four
Tracks 1 to 11 make up the album "The Confessions Of Dr. Dream And Other Stories" by KEVIN AYERS released in the UK on Island ILPS 9263 in May 1974

BONUS TRACKS:
12. Another Whimsical Song
13. Lady Rachel
14. Stop This Train
15. Didn't Feel Lonely Till I Thought Of You
Tracks 12 to 15 are live - recorded 9 July 1974 at the BBC's Maida Vale Studios for "The John Peel Show" - 12 and 13 are solo acoustic renditions, 14 and 15 are with his band

16. The Up Song - non-album UK 7" single A-side released May 1974 on Island WIP 6194
17. After The Show
18. Thank You Very Much - 17 and 18 are the non-album A&B-sides of a UK 7" single released June 1974 on Island WIP 6201

THE BAND:
KEVIN AYERS - Vocals, Acoustic & Electric Guitars
SAM MITCHELL - Electric Guitar
MARK WARNER - Acoustic & Electric Guitars
RUPERT HINE - Clavinet, Organ, ARP Synthesizer, Electric Piano & Percussion on 3
JOHN PERRY - Bass
MIKE GILES - Drums
THE G'DEEVY ENSEMBLE - Percussion
DORIS TROY, ROSETTA HIGHTOWER and JOANNE WILLIAMS - Backing Vocals
SIMON JEFFES - Brass Arrangement

THE GUESTS:
RAY COOPER [of Elton John's Band] - Percussion on 2 and 9
SEAN MILLIGAN - Backing Vocals on 2
OLLIE HALSALL [of Patto] - Guitar Solo on 3 and Guitar on 14 and 15
MIKE OLDFIELD - Guitar Solo on 4
CAL BATCHELOR - Guitar on 4
HENRY CRALLAN - Piano on 4
STEVE NYE - Organ on 5 and Electric Piano on 8 and 9
MIKE MORAN - Piano on 5
LOL COXHILL - Saxophone on 5
THE HULLOO CHOIR - Backing Vocals on 5
NICO - Vocals on 7
JOHN GUSTAFSON - Bass on 8 - TREVOR JONES - Bass on 9
MIKE RATLEDGE - Organ on 10

The 8-page booklet is packed with details and has an album overview by noted writer and compiler MARK POWELL. But the sound is the big news. The original vinyl LP had quiet parts and it was always difficult to get a vinyl copy that wasn't scratched by the coarse white inner card/lyrics sleeve. These quiet parts on preceding CDs were hissy and less than useful. But on this stunning 2009 REMASTER it finally sounds like the business - clean and clear and with just the muscle it's always needed.

The remaster has been done by PETER MEW at Abbey Road and in order to put this into a sound-quality context - check out his extraordinary work on the 2CD Collector's Editions of "Down By The Jetty" by DR. FEELGOOD and "This Was" by JETHRO TULL. He also added sonic uplifts to "Duncan Browne" by DUNCAN BROWNE (his 1973 album on RAK Records with "Journey" on it) and the fabulous 2CD Deluxe Edition of FREE's "Fire And Water" (reviewed them all). He's a sound engineer whose name I look out for - even Ayers himself has praised his tape skill - having allowed Mew to handle all of his back catalogue remasters exclusively.

Mike Oldfield's tasty guitar work makes the mellow and languid "Everybody's Sometimes..." - while Nico's vocals empower the druggy "Irreversible Neural Damage..." with a genuinely sinister feel. But by far the best addition is the blistering guitar pyrotechnics of Patto's OLLIE HALSALL ("Didn't Feel Lonely...") who also turns up on two of the four Peel Sessions bonus tracks. They were recorded 7 July 1974 at the BBC's Maida Vale studios. The 24-second "Another Whimsical Song" is a cute ditty, but "Lady Rachel" is beautiful - it's a solo acoustic take of a track off 1969's "Joy Of A Toy" and it sound so good - could have been recorded yesterday. After them follows two band efforts, another "Joy Of A Toy" track and a fab rockin' version of "Didn't Feel Lonely..." where Halsall reproduces that fantastic guitar work again. They are 2009 remasters even though they turned up on 2005's "BBC Sessions" 2CD set - done again for better sound probably. The last 3 are non-album single sides - rare on vinyl and make a welcome addition here on CD. The acoustic strum and deep-throated vocals of "Thank You Very Much" is rarely heard and deserves to be.

The four-part "Confessions Of Dr. Dream" is a bit of a masterpiece frankly - opening with an acoustic drubbing that sounds like trance before there was such a thing - slipping into the upbeat (almost pop) "Invitation". But then you get the coolest break ever - the mid-song change in "The One Chance Dance" - fantastic swirling sound - and so damn cool. It blows me away to this day.

So there you have it - a strange and wonderful album (almost Avant Garde in places) bolstered up with genuinely superb extras you'll play again rather than audition once as a curio.

"It begins with a blessing...but ends with a curse..." - our Kev warns. Well - sounding fantastic at last - this is one aural shot I want mainlined to my well-addled neural regions any day of the week...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Strange, troubling, wonderful ..., 18 April 2009
This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
Phase two of EMI's grand sweep through the career of the gentleman rocker's catalogue finds him at a commercial and creative peak in 1974's Doctor Dream, the last of his works to successfully fuse lengthy leftfield extemporism with droll ditties, funk and sprawling rock. The sleep state is foremost on the menu: former band Soft Machine's `Why Are We Sleeping' rewards in a powerful revisit and then there's the side-long title track, a strange and troubling affair with the somnolent Nico guesting. Lighter moments come courtesy of former Patto guitar virtuoso Ollie Halsall (in feisty form on 'Didn't Feel Lonely 'Till I Thought Of You') in what was to prove a near 20 year long partnership and with the likes of Lol Coxhill, Mikes Giles, Moran and Oldfield playing, and Rupert Horn producing, this could not really go wrong. Top quality re-mastering brings a rich and varied work to startling re-entry and bonuses in non-LP singles and B-sides and some very tight (musically) Peel sessions forge a reissue worthy of the discerning catalogue fan's collection. Ayers was always a pop song writer (check out the Soft's stab at chart stadrom 'Love Makes Sweet Music') and subsequent 70's releases - including 'Sweet Deceiver' and 'Yes, We Have No Mananas' (also being reissued) - though materially strong, are more conventionally-structured affairs. This is Ayers unharnessed...a very good thing.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Irreversible Neural Damage, 6 April 2009
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Fletch-a-sketch "Fletch" (Wiltshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
One of the last great Kevin Ayers albums (his first for Island records now re-released on Harvest/EMI), `The Confessions of Doctor Dream', features his irascible wit and quirky writing which is highlighted best by the `Confessions of Doctor Dream' suite which made up side two of the original album.
Other songs on the album are: a remake of `Why are we sleeping' from the first `Soft machine' album, re-titled for this album `It Begins with a Blessing / Once I Awakened / But It Ends with a Curse', the rather splendid `Ball bearing Blues', and the jaunty `Didn't Feel Lonely Till I Thought of You'. Demos for a lot of this material can be found on an album called `What more can I say..' also available from Amazon.

Bonus material has all appeared on CD before three non album songs which made up 75% of the singles from this period the other song appearing on the album. And 4 tracks from a John Peel session contemporary to this release. The sound quality to my mind suffers from the curse of modern mastering in that its loud, and as such some of the dynamics are not as good as they could be. Fans of Kevin Ayers will love this album and the casual buyer will not be disappointed either.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr Dream- 5 star, 9 May 2012
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This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
I know that many( if not most) Kevin Ayers fans will disagree with me, but I have always felt this to be the best Kevin Ayers album. Although I love individual songs such as Star, Lady Rachel or Blue, I love the overall perfection and profundity of this work. The instrumental work is of the highest quality( e.g Mike Oldfield's solo on "Everbody's sometimes.." and I feel the whole album is more structured than usual.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A blast from the past, 26 Mar. 2014
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I used to own this album and I got this because of "Ballbearing Blues" and Mike Oldfield's guitar solo and Nico's voice, and just generally because it is a good album. Sorry to hear that Kevin Ayers passed away in 2013.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should rediscover Kevin !!!, 6 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
He was one the few major composers throughout english music. He is so inventive in his music and his words that everyone should remember him.
Could I say his music was far above the foolish songs we hear to-day ?
.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Saw him live in the early 70's, 26 Mar. 2013
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In my opinion this is one of his best albums, combining the quirky with the experimental. Well worth listening to. If you like this try Bananamour as well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 29 Aug. 2014
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H. Golder - See all my reviews
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Prompt delivery, reasonable price. Thanks.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Watch Out, There's Static About..., 31 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories (Audio CD)
Although I really rate this album and I can't expand much on what's already been said about the excellent musical content, I must point out that there is a problem with this CD issue. Track 14 'Stop This Train' is riddled with sound issues, it appears to be either static or some sort of diginoise (crackle and hiss), it certainly does not appear to be an analogue issue. I've already returned one CD and the replacement is identically faulted. I've made the assumption it is the whole CD run or an issue with the transfer to digital - can anyone comment further? 5 star music with two stars knocked off for quality control...
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The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories
The Confessions Of Dr Dream And Other Stories by Kevin Ayers (Audio CD - 2009)
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