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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If there is any justice.., 18 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Play For Today (Audio CD)
In any properly run universe Ultrasound would have won shedloads of awards and would continually be on one ecstatic wold tour after another with the world music press at their feet.

Unfortunately we live in this one with 13 years ago everything picture underrated to a level that was nothing short of criminal. They split and all we were left with was one stunning album and what might have been.

But against all odds, they're back AND how! There is no doubt that Play For Today is their next album, it's very definitely Ultrasound, but this is grown up and refined. They know what they want, what they want to say and are going for it. There are no rather self indulgent 40 minute tracks, this is judged to perfection.

There are influences but they are very much themselves, the songs are personal, passionate, wrenching, funny, clever, moving, anthemic, epic. They pour everything into this album and it shows. It grows with each and every playing, you're continually hearing something new. Of course there are standouts, but there's not a duff moment to be had, and at the end, you're left wanting more, and reaching for 'play' all over again.

Play for Today is probably my album of 2012 and considering other releases this year thats one hell of a big deal. Buy it, just buy it. You'll find the same.

If there is any justice Ultrasound may yet have the future they deserve.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Waited years for this!, 22 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Play For Today (Audio CD)
When I say I waited years for this, that's not a criticism of Amazon's delivery times - just that I longed for the band to make more music together and often wondered, while playing their first album, what might have been. So it was brilliant news when they reformed. And the promise of a long-awaited second album was the icing on the cake.

This album is a phenomenal collection of songs - starting with the epic full-length version of Welfare State. This is even better than the single version - with a second half coda of rising passion, rage and fury. In some beautiful alternative universe, Welfare State was at no.1 for six months and won a skip load of Novello awards. Other highlights include the awesome Beautiful Sadness, Nonsense, and the epic Between Two Rivers. All full of Ultrasound brilliance. And mention must go to Glitter Box - when we hear Vanessa Best's amazing voice given centre stage.

Amazing and highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome just Awesome, 18 Oct 2012
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This review is from: Play For Today (Audio CD)
Pity I couldn't give it 6 stars. The long long long awaited follow up to Everything Picture sees Ultrasound on top form. Stand out track is Sovereign with Tiny's voice stretching from meloncholic to thunderous in the bat of an eyelid. Guitar rifts and solos aplenty this really is a truly brilliant album. Buy it now.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best album of 2012, 27 Dec 2012
By 
M. J. Martin "mjefm" (Kirkbymoorside, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Play For Today (Audio CD)
"Play For Today" is the great début album that "Everything Picture" ought to have been but wasn't. That late-90s record comprised about half a dozen very good tunes which needed to be excavated from what can only be described as faffing around. Their vices largely curbed, "Play For Today" is a collection of ten - well, eight - punk-edged prog rock anthems without the pretention of the previous album. Opener "Welfare State" is the only track that could have done with some decent pruning, being as it is a final piece of indie melodrama split into two by some bewilderingly pointless bleeping and whistling.

That ghost exorcised, let us move on to single "Beautiful Sadness", which has a slight feel of My Life Story about it at times, but in the end is more like what the Killers would sound like if they were still, you know... good. A penchant for hi-hat semiquavers is just about the only hint of dreadful 2010s synth-pop revival you'll get on this record. "Twins" and "Nonsense" are fine soulful space-rock, the latter with more than a hint of Byrds whimsy about it.

The fulcrum of the album, and the best song, is the extraordinary "Between Two Rivers", which seems to be a lament on the Iraq war. It begins with a mournful colliery band, which suggests that Mansun popped into the studio on the way home from the pub to see if they needed a hand. ("Between Two Rivers" is, more or less, a translation of Mesopotamia.)

The story of Ultrasound's break-up has been told before and is monumentally tedious so need not detain us here. But they are back and sound none the worse for thirteen years off. Indeed, they have improved. Grown up, even.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Epic, 10 Oct 2012
This review is from: Play For Today (MP3 Download)
A truly fantastic return from this epic band. Double single Welfare State and Sovereign have been around for some time now and the new stuff is just more peerless indie-power-prog-anthem-pop all the way.Comparisons are redundant but early-period Magazine kept popping into mind as Play for Today cheered the dog walk. Everyone plays their socks off on this awesome outing. And if enough people buy it Tiny and Vanessa could give up their day jobs and bask in oceans of adoration on the stadium tour.
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Play For Today
Play For Today by Ultrasound (Audio CD - 2012)
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