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229 Reviews
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr Oldfield's rock songs
By a stroke of good luck Mr Oldfield was asked to perform at the 2012 Olympics and this release reflects a burst of energy and it certainly comes across that all had a good time making this. It is beautifully reflective in parts; Dreaming in the Wind is particularly good and the upbeat Moonshine is one of Mike's catchiest songs to date. It certainly isn't Tubular Bells...
Published 4 months ago by Ben P

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very Disappointing
What a huge disappointment. Would i buy and listen to this kind of music if it was not Mike Oldfield? NO i would NOT.
Like other people have said, its dull, boring and quite simplistic. Chris De Burgh can write better songs than this!!! The Instrumental CD is even worse. The only reason i can think this was added was to pull in true Oldfield fans who love his...
Published 3 months ago by Andy


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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rockingly great new music from the maestro..., 3 Mar 2014
This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
Eagerly awaited by all Oldfield fans , this album does not disappoint...although for the more traditional Mike Oldfield fans...ie those purists who feel it isnt truly an Oldfield album if it has vocals ..think again, and listen to this, you will be impressed and perhaps convinced, great melodic songs, superbly voiced by a great young man Luke Spiller (the Strutts), who really does bring the music alive. Strong tracks from the opening (current single) Sailing, to Moonshine, and the final track..I give myself away...(which I already feel is my favourite)...buy this album, sit back, pour a glass of wine and prepare to be entertained.
My partner who previously never rated MIke Oldfield has possibly listened to this more than me...and thoroughly enjoyed it!!!!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Song Heaven, 3 Mar 2014
This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
Now Mike Oldfield's. songs have never been my favourite part of his output, and whilst he has written the occasional good song, consistency and originality have never matched the quality of his instrumental output.

Not until now, that is. The excellent vocals of Luke Spiller, the catchy arrangements, and beautiful guitar playing also combine with lyrics that come from the heart. There is the catchy Sailing, which gets inside your head, but Moonshine, Man on the Rocks, Following the Angels, and I Give Myself Away are all beautiful. There isn't a weak song on the album and proof that Mike is a master musician who can still turn it on.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Man On the Rocks, Mike Oldfield, 3 Mar 2014
This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
I dont usually listen to Mike Oldfield..all I knew of him was (like Many others) Tubular Bells!! My partner is a massive fan and she couldnt wait for this to arrive....made me listen to it, and I was hooked...great songs, great sounds and young Luke Spiller (the Strutts) has an amazing voice, all in all a very good album to buy, if your thinking instrumental Mike OLdfield, forget it, this is full of strong rocking songs..buy it yourself and see
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mike Who?, 6 Mar 2014
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A. Cook - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (MP3 Download)
So long since I listened to his music and this is so different and really refreshing. Downloaded it having heard Sailing on the radio a couple of times for my fella to listen to - he said that if I hadn't told him it was Mike Oldfield he would've wondered who it was new that was so good. There are hints at the past on some tracks but with a difference. Makes for good listening in the car, except I can't help but wonder what other drivers were thinking when I was singing to the Sailing ....
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy The DELUXE EDITION for the INSTRUMENTAL VERSIONS!, 4 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM: 5 STARS!

VOCAL ALBUM: 3 STARS

If like me you are a die-hard fan of Mike Oldfield you will probably favour his instrumental compositions more than his vocal tracks, which to date (thankfully) have typically been limited to few and far between.

Without a doubt Oldfield’s primary talent lies within his unrivalled ability to compose absolutely amazing complex, multi-layered, progressive instrumental compositions; wherein, he is akin to a modern day Mozart.

Mike’s sporadic attempts at vocal songs over the years have misfired more often than not. The reason being that in most cases (with the odd rare exception) the vocal quite simply does not work very well and in fact is distracting to the extent that it significantly lessens the wonderful immersiveness of Oldfield’s music.

So I was very dubious indeed when it was announced that this album would comprise purely vocal songs… Could it be that in this instance the vocals might work and not prove to be such a distraction? Unfortunately, in my opinion, the answer is NO. As previously, I find that the vocals significantly lessen the wonderful immersiveness of Oldfield’s music. So, as far as the VOCAL ALBUM goes it is a disappointed 3 OUT OF 5 STARS from me.

That said, THANK YOU CAROLINE MONK (and of course Mike) for ingeniously deciding to release a DELUXE VERSION with a SECOND CD comprising ALL OF THE SONGS AS PURELY INSTRUMENTAL TRACKS!

The INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM is absolutely AMAZING!!!

I repeat… The INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM is absolutely AMAZING!!!

Personally I am of the view that without exception all of the tracks on this album sound much, much better without the vocals. In fact, I rate the Man On The Rocks INSTRUMENTAL Album to be 5 OUT OF 5 STARS (with the VOCAL album scoring 3 STARS).

In my opinion, the Man On The Rocks INSTRUMENTAL Album is as good as The Songs Of Distant Earth, which many (including me) have considered to be Mike’s best work of the past 20 years. No kidding! The Man On The Rocks INSTRUMENTAL Album really is THAT GOOD! There is not a single bad track on the album (how many other music artists can you say that about?); and as with The Songs Of Distant Earth the best way to listen to it is to sit down, relax and simply play the whole album from start to finish.

Without a doubt, Oldfield is back on top form. The Man On The Rocks INSTRUMENTAL Album is Oldfield at his best.

So, if like me your preference is ‘Classic Oldfield’ you should most definitely buy the DELUXE EDITION and listen to the INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM on CD NUMBER 2.

Hell, even if your preference isn’t ‘Classic Oldfield’ you should STILL definitely buy the DELUXE EDITION and listen to the INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM on CD NUMBER 2.

That is where the real treasure lies!

In my opinion, without a doubt the INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM is far, far superior to the VOCAL ALBUM. The absence of vocals allows Mike’s music to fully shine in all its majesty. It is absolutely AMAZING.

I am very much hoping that with what will indubitably be an extremely positive response to Man On The Rocks that Mike will decide to compose more new albums; wherein, I would ask (pretty pretty please with a cherry on top) that purely INSTRUMENTAL VERSIONS of all the new tracks be included again (if they are not instrumental already) even if included as a SECOND CD as part of a DELUXE EDITION as it was here.

Well done Mike! Absolutely fantastic work!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mike Oldfield returns, 3 Mar 2014
This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
It's 40 years since Tubular Bells appeared from a 20 year old Mike Oldfield. Over the years he has has explored many genres of music along the way. After a gap of six years since the release of Music of the Spheres Mike returns with a long awaited album.

Man on the Rocks is Mike's 25th album and although not his first all vocal album is his most personal to date, writing about such subjects as addictions (Man on the Rocks) the break up of a relationship (Minutes) and childhood memories of fighting in the home (Castaway) as well as the more lighter song showing his love of being on the ocean (Sailing).

Luke Spiller singer with The Struts takes the helm singing on all 11 tracks, adapting to all the styles needed of him to put Mike's lyrics across, a good choice as he does a great job.

If you are after the trademark guitar sound of Mike you will also not be disappointed with a mixture of both electric and acoustic sounds filling each song. The deluxe version even includes instrumental versions of all 11 tracks which as expected at the hands of Mike stand up as highly enjoyable pieces of music in their own right.

I was unsure what to expect before I heard Man On The Rocks but just a few tracks in on my first listen I was hooked. For this Mike Oldfield fan it is good to have him back producing music again (just don't leave it so long between albums next time).
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3.0 out of 5 stars Average, 16 July 2014
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
Two CDs. One vocal (take it or leave it). One instrument (good). Not Mikes best work but worthy of buying.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ugh, 22 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
If it weren't Mike, it would be something I would have switched off within a few seconds and certainly wouldn't be thinking I must really give it another few chances. After three run-throughs it just sounds like very uninspired tripe with banal and twee lyrics. Mike has only rarely reached tolerability with his lyrics (while I would put instrumental works like Songs from Distant Earth in my 10 favourite albums of all time, and will even give repeated airtime to lesser works like Light + Shade, so I can clearly give him the benefit of any doubt and find positives in unlikely places) and much of his vocal-based work verges on naff / cringeworthy (like ABBA, but without the charm)...and I fear, from my perspective, this is right down there with the very worst of anything he did in the 80s. I am intrigued by the number of 5 star reviews - is it just because you love Mike and are even more forgiving than me, or do those who adore his instrumental works somehow also like this, which would perhaps require a very broad mixture of tastes. That said, perhaps I am just envious of those who are able to enjoy all of his catalogue.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Back with the Bells, 6 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
I enjoyed this album, it is very different from the more classical genre of the recent 'music of the spheres' album and goes back to Mike's earlier work 'Five Miles High' and 'Moon shadow'. Many of the tracks are immediately recognisable as 'Oldfield', The vocal version track that stand out are 'Sailing' the first track on the album, 'Chariots' and my favourite track ' Castaway', I think that this track balances the music perfectly with the vocal.

The second disc in this set which are all instrumental goes back into the area of 'Sentinel' which is my favourite Oldfield album, and in my opinion was better than the iconic 'Tubular Bells'.

Its good to see Mike back and on form, well worth listening to this box set.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quality, 1 April 2014
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This review is from: Man On The Rocks (Audio CD)
If you like Mike Oldfield, you'll love it. If you don't like Mike Oldfield Try it, then you'll love it
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Man On The Rocks
Man On The Rocks by Mike Oldfield
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