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Compendium - The Fontana Trinity Box set, Extra tracks

4.9 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (2 July 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Box set, Extra tracks
  • Label: Commercial Marketing
  • ASIN: B00005LAFR
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 214,208 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Amazon.co.uk

Compendium: the Fontana Trinity spans the years 1987-1990 and features 44 tracks over 2 CDs plucked from the Lilac Time's first three long-deleted albums, plus most of the B-sides. Fundamentally a study in mellow tunefulness, the Lilac Time's pastoral minstrelising owes much to the timeless tranquillity of Nick Drake. Drake's influence is clearly audible on gracefully strummed songs such as "Return to Yesterday", "Black Velvet" and "You've Got To Love", from their eponymous debut album. Of course, such acoustic serenity was markedly out of the step with the 1980's mainstream, and predictably, the band became exiled to pop's periphery. Their second album Paradise Circus is arguably their finest hour and rightly considered a lost classic. Highlights here include "The Girl Who Waves at Trains"--which deftly dodges the tweeness of its title and includes the brilliant couplet, "I won't pester or presume, I love you through the diesel fumes"--and the pants-a-swinging "The Lost Girl in the Midnight Sun". The Lilac's third and final Fontana long-player & Love For All found head Lilac Stephen Duffy evoking The Incredible String Band, Pet Sounds and "Penny Lane" to concoct a wistfully English brand of psychedelia. Post-Fontana, the Lilac Time released a 1991 album, Astronauts for Creation and then disbanded, Duffy duly reverting to solo status before once again reconvening the band in 1999. --Chris King

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
A lot of the reviews have used the word 'under-rated' to describe the Lilac Time. Well, I'm going to go one better. To me, main man Stephen Duffy is the best songwriter of the last 20 years or more. This collection comprises songs from their three Fontana albums 'The Lilac Time', 'Paradise Circus' and 'And Love for All' (which themselves are all sadly now unavailable) plus B-sides and bonus tracks. It's quite a collection! I only discovered them relatively recently when my Dad played me some of the songs from their best studio album Paradise Circus (sadly deleted) and I fell in love with them. The melodies and musical arrangements are so wonderful that it's hard not to appreciate the songs purely on that level. But then when you start to listen to the lyrics properly... Well, they're just mind-blowing! The songs grab you and won't let you go. The first CD concentrates on single A-sides and original album tracks. On songs like 'Love Becomes a Savage' and 'If the Stars Shine Tonight', Duffy describes love and sex in such a very intimate and personal way that it's hard not to be drawn in. You feel like you're an observer looking in on someone else's relationship. And his vocals are wonderful too with an aching quality that superbly conveys a sense of weariness and resignation like no other singer I've ever heard. Not all of the songs have that depth, though. Songs like 'Fields' and 'All for Love and Love For All' from 'And Love for All' are more commercial and do sadly suffer slightly for being produced by XTC's Andy Partridge (he made them sound like XTC!). There are some notable omissions ('And on We Go', 'Together', 'Too Sooner Later Better' and 'The Last to Know') but you're never going to please everybody.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
I'm in the U.S., and I have about $10 in my pocket until next payday, but I had no qualms whatsoever special ordering this two-CD set this week all the way from England where Stephen and The Lilac Time have recorded and continue to record beautiful songs.
I have some of the songs on this CD, but on well-worn cassettes collected over the years, so I'm very pleased that they're all now compiled in one place.
Julie Written on the Fence, Cover, and Bed of Roses were among the B-sides of the singles from the All for Love & Love for All album from 1990 - the album that made me a fan and started my journey of buying their back catalog and new releases. These somber, pensive songs, with scarcely more than Stephen's voice and his acosutic guitar, are to me alone worth the price of this two-disc set.
A new The Lilac Time album should be out this fall. Thank goodness that in 2001 Stephen and The Lilac Time are still making music!
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Format: Audio CD
A true musical genius, stephen duffy must be one of the most under rated artists this country has ever produced. The melodic quality of this collection is incomparable and the thought provoking lyrics a mix of romantic wistful and heart tugging.I have loved all of Stephens solo material (exept for the odd track on Music in colors) and all his collaborstive work with the rest of the Lilac Time. This has to be one of the best albums of 2001, and terrific value too considering it contains over 2 1/2 hours of music. Buy this today, you wont be dissapointed.
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Format: Audio CD
On becoming disillusioned with the machinations of major label pop stardom Stephen Duffy formed The Lilac Time in 1988 . After a holiday in Italy, Duffy came back to write a folk album totally at odds with the prevailing style of the nineteen eighties and containing some of his best songs ever. The album was recorded by Duffy, his brother and a few mates and was called The Lilac Time, and was released on independent label Swordfish. Gentle folk songs and rolling country pop sat comfortably next to each other and formed a perfect whole, the lack of technology and inclusion of banjos only adding to its charm. The album got rave reviews from many sources and before long the Lilac Time were signed up by Fontana. They toured extensively playing impromptu gigs and folk festivals across the country and warming the hearts of a nation of bearded boys and lank haired girls. Duffy had by this time moved to the Malvern hills, the idyllic rural setting perfectly complementing the music The Lilac Time were creating. Two more albums were recorded by the band in the following two years. Their second 'Paradise Circus' incongruously named after a concrete roundabout in Central Birmingham was even more perfect than the first, full to the brim with beautiful ballads, uplifting pop and jaunty folk instrumentals. 'And Love For All' added the best bits of Sergeant Pepper era Beatles and Pet Sounds era Beach Boys to the mix creating something so heady I would defy anyone not to fall for it. From the swaying psychedelic folk of 'Fields' to the windswept melancholy of 'Trinity' it was a masterpiece. The Lilac Time continued to wow the faithful but were never the enormous success they should have been.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
The Lilac Time's albums from 1997-1991 were quite simply amongst the best melodic, pastoral records ever made. This great-value compilation brings together tracks from the 1st 3 of those 4 albums, plus a horde of equally-strong b-sides and rarities. Their chief songwriter, Stephen Duffy, must be one of the most under-valued in English music. Buy this unhesitatingly and see why..... (Influences?...Nick Drake, Paul McCartney, Tim Hardin, XTC...Influences on...Belle & Sebastian, Turin Brakes and many others in the New Acoustic movement.)
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