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Avalon Sunset Extra tracks, Original recording remastered
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Top Customer Reviews
Then theres the beautiful songs that have become Van classics,Have I Told You Lately That I Love You (still by far the best ever recording of this song)and These Are The Days (remember it in the Hugh Grant movie Nine Months,when he's walking around the room with his baby).This album still gets better everytime I put it on and should be in every collection.I'm still amazed by the structure and majasty of songs like When Will I Ever Learn To Live In God,just listen to the power of his lyrics here.Then theres the big hit he had with Cliff Richard, Wherever God Shines His Light.Oh I could go on and on but it really comes down to one thing this is an absolutely fabulous release and should not be missed by anyone this time around.
The first song "Whenever God Shines His Light" is a duet with Cliff Richard. An out-and-out pop song, OK but slightly out of place. From this to "Contacting My Angel". I'm not so keen on this. It seems to have strayed in from "Inarticulate Speech of the Heart", without doubt the direst album Van Morrison ever made. "I'd Like to Write Another Song" is a spirited blues number, sung against blustering saxes and Georgie Fame's Hammond organ. Van sings like Joe Turner. No higher praise. The words were clearly barrel scraped - but it shows how to write a song when there is nothing to write about.
"Have I Told You Lately" is a very effective soppy number - much loved by, and played for, newlyweds at their wedding dance. "Coney Island" is spoken. In simple language he describes his experience and feelings on a day out in Ireland. It works. "I'm Tired Joey Boy" is out of the same mould. Simple, Irish folk song feel.
It's the last four songs that, for me, bring this album to near classic status. They all have their faults. Van was clearly metaphysical at the time he wrote the lyrics. But he is back into soul mood, and with the grain of his talent.
"When Will I Ever Learn to Live in God" opens up on bass and primitive acoustic guitar over piano chords. It's simple straight declamation from Van Morrison, but, in the same way as you hear the gospel choir in Aretha Franklin, you can hear the Irish preacher in him. In "Orangefield" we are still in Ireland.Read more ›
Melodic and richly hued with Van's smoky vocals,'Avalon Sunset' simmers in its intensity.The spoken track 'Coney Island' has to be the highpoint.The final line,'Wouldn't it be great if it could be like this forever !' pitching into shimmering strings is a real spine tingling moment.
Almost perfect....but not quite .
Often regarded as one of Van's more "spiritual" offerings, the album's name comes from being in part recorded near the "Avalon" country of Glastonbury Tor and Avebury Circle. At least three of the songs have undisguised religious/spiritual themes, including the album's opener - a catchy duet with Britain's own vintage Christian rocker Cliff Richard. The songs are mostly mellow in style and supported by classy production, the competent backing vocals of Katie Kissoon and Carol Kenyan and fulsome string arrangements. Highlights include "Have I told you lately..." (forget the appalling massacre of this song by Rod Stewart); the poetic spoken-not-sung "Coney Island" (an experimental stylistic device perfected in the later "Hyndford Street" on "Hymns to the Silence"); "I'm Tired, Joey Boy" with its simplistic but memorable melody line and, most especially "Daring Night" with its lyrical theme of covert sexual passion woven into a cosmic star-crossed tapestry and radically different in tone to almost everything else on the album.
A lot of people really like this album but overall, "Avalon Sunset" has a populist, accessible feel and is not usually considered to be a career-milestone like "Astral Weeks", "Moondance" or the sublime "Hymns to the Silence.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very quick delivery in very good condition and a great CD. Would definitely recommend this one. It has become my favourite Van Morrison CD now.Published 15 months ago by Loo loo
A wonderful album which is very evocative and in tune with the great mysteries of life.Published 16 months ago by S A Cotter
still one of my favourite cds have one also in the car and my older copy on tapePublished 17 months ago by mr edward nicholson