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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful!
I wanted to buy some new music for my husband which he had never heard, but might like, so I trawled through iTunes listening to samples. I came across Agnes Obel having listened to a ton of stuff and was captivated by the quality of her voice and by the quite entrancing structure and complexity of the music. It was like finding the proverbial needle in the...
Published on 13 Jan. 2011 by J. Staines

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars required taste
I was into to trying out new artists and I decided to give this a go!
It is in many ways a required taste and it did nothing for me, not one stand out track at all!
Published 13 months ago by Mr. B. P. Fitzpatrick


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5.0 out of 5 stars Be sure to get the Deluxe edition, 22 Dec. 2011
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This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
If you like Eleanor Rigby by the Beatles, then there's a very good chance you'll like this... especially if you really like the the background arrangement of cellos and what-not.
Also, if you like Scarborough Fair by Simon and Garfunkel, in particular the haromonies, there's a good chance you'll like this)

Also it's unusual to get an album where there is not one song you don't like.

Agnes Obel uses voice(s), Cello (I think), Piano and the odd instrument on other tracks (e.g. Accordion on the live version of Louretta) to creat a sound which is both lush and spare at the same time. There is some kind of subtle percussion on some tracks, but it's so understated, I could not even tell you what it is.

If you like plenty of screeching a la Alanis Morrisette... then look elsewhere. Personally, I like a little bit of discord now and then, e.g. Tori Amos - Space Dogs (in fact if you like her singing Horses, there's a good chance...).

Agnes and her backers have the confidence to sing in a really laid back and melllow way, on some of the songs it almost sounds lazy. For instance on Over the Hill she just sighs out some of the words - and it's just right. I think that I'd say that the vocals are understated, rather than restrained.

Be sure to get the Deluxe version which has an extra CD with live versions and some songs which are not on the Studio CD. It is worth it for Sons and Daughters alone, and the live Louretta is just brilliant. BTW, none of the tracks on the extra CD are duds either.

The live production is just as good as the very good studio production. You only know it's live from the applause at the end.

Enough chat: have a listen on Spottify, or search up tv 5 monde and have a look a the music to see her perform a few songs live. If you like 'em you'll like the lot.

My favourites are Studio CD: Riverside, Beast, Avenue (when the chorus kicks (Foolish...) in, it gives me the same warm feeling as when the main instrumentation kicks in U2's Ultraviolet), Close Watch, Over the Hill, On Powdered Ground; Extra CD: Katie Cruel, Sons & Daughters, Louretta, the instrumental Riverside is very good too - a new twist on the original. I really like the vocal one, but think it could easily be over-played. There is a trip-hop remix of Riverside on the EP, which I will probably buy at some time.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great singer songwritter, 10 Mar. 2011
By 
Liv W (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
Beautiful album, but not easy to find in the UK. She has the purest voice and some wonderful calm, mellow songs, full of feeling. I'm off to her concert in a couple of weeks. Can't wait.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful !, 15 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
Interesting, timeless and artful songs, the bonus tracks on the extended version are maybe not all 100% of the same class but one forgets this is her first major release. A hint of welcome 21st C. weirdness mixed with a sense of the past puts her nearer to Joanna Newsome than Kate Bush or Suzanne Vega, but somewhere in that area !
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars piano based ditties, 27 Aug. 2013
By 
dan (north ayrshire) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
Expect here some relaxed and quiet songs, sung with a pleasingly foreign lilt. Fresh and original, pianos and guitars are the main instruments, especially piano, forming the background to the various vocal melodies. All rather pleasant, and certainly not mind-blowing, stuff. Relax and enjoy, what else can you say?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Talent!, 19 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: Philharmonics (MP3 Download)
After hearing a snip of this music on a TV clip I had to find out who this artist was. After listening to samples on Amazon I purchased both current albums and I can honestly say that this has to be one of my best purchases ever! There is something unique and very special about Agnes Obel. Yes, some of the music can be dark and mysterious, but beautiful at the same time. I love every track and am currently playing over and over really taking in the pure genius of Agnes, she is a very talented musician and composer with the voice of an angel. The cello player is also very talented and her voice harmonises well with Agnes' to produce a warm, rich, full and unique vocal that fills the room. I can't recommend this music enough, see the other reviews also, this should be on everyone's bucket list!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Mesmerising, 10 Jan. 2012
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Europascot (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
This is seriously mellow, and seriously different. Danish singer Agnes Obel has a soft but hauntingly expressive vocal style, and the melodies are subtle but very hard to clear from the head after a few listens. All piano, acoustic guitar and vocal, with very little percussion, these songs have a stripped-down feel, as if all of the unnecessary bells and whistles (metaphorically) have been removed leaving the essence of the beautifully crafted song to speak for itself. Stand out tracks for me are Riverside, Just So and Brother Sparrow - pleasingly the record company appear to have invested something at least in promoting this album as there are official videos out there for Riverside and Just So. Definitely one for a rainy Sunday afternoon by the fire.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yes it's delightful, but there's a lot of that about., 6 May 2011
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This review is from: Philharmonics (MP3 Download)
Philharmonics is a delightful and charming album from someone with undeniable musical talent, but frankly one hasn't had to look far to find such albums in the last ten years. Even within the relatively small cross section of angelically voiced female singer songwriters, heavily influenced by decidedly aged music (English folk songs or pre-war jazz), with interesting names and from Nordic countries, the Icelandic Emilíana Torrini provides staunch competition. This album is full of piano work, but only at the end of many songs (such as the beautiful last few seconds of Just So) does the music truly flow and one become aware of Obel's skill. Some songs simply feel plodding with distinctly Chopin tinged flourishes added on as an after thought, which would be manageable if the lyrics were truly impressive, but they aren't. They're not bad, just not mind blowing, which is a bit of a shame for a heavily lyric driven genre. I know it's a lot to demand complex, poetic metaphors from someone who speaks English as a second language, but Emilíana Torrini manages it and English is her third. It's a fine album, and certinaly one I'll listen to again and again, particularly when writing, but few of the songs stand out, which makes the lack of variation from track to track all the more apparent.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent album from a very strong femail vocal, 18 April 2012
By 
Derek Winstone (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
Agnes Obel? Never heard of her. This turned up one afternoon when I had nothing better to do than try out Amazons recommendation. You have to love the recommendation system they use. This album is brilliant. The production, her voice, the material, all contribute to a very professional album. I would recommend you listen to the short excerpts like I did. It'll make you interested enough to send for the CD. You'll be glad you did. I'm still enjoying a new set of speakers and this album really does them justice. If you're an audiophile looking for music to show off your equipment this won't disappoint.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Oh, Obel, 12 Jun. 2012
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D. P. B. Joyce (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
I came upon this album purely by chance when looking up some other music on Youtube. I played one (Katie Cruel) track and was hooked. So, having played nearly all the tracks available on Youtube I knew I had to have the album. And I wasn't disappointed. If you want to drift away to a far away place, there is no better album to do it to than this one. Her dreamy vocals and exquisite piano playing are divine. Don't get me wrong, this is not an album for driving to. Instead sit back, relax and get whistful.
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5.0 out of 5 stars PHILHARMONICS BY AGNES OBEL, 24 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Philharmonics (Audio CD)
Beautiful debut album!
This is a real grower, very good production superb sound quality.
Voice and piano, a spare soundscape, very thoughtful lyrics, gets better with every listen!
Subtle use of other instruments and voices. Delicate guitar, maybe a Tenor guitar?
Makes for a daily listen, once on, hard not to listen all the way through!
Look forward to seeing her live!
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Philharmonics
Philharmonics by Agnes Obel (Audio CD - 2010)
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