Everything & Nothing Double CD
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MADE IN EU-2CD-EAN 724385001727
Following 1999's Dead Bees On A Cake, Everything and Nothing is a collection of singles, live sessions and oddities from the David Sylvian back catalogue. Since severing connections with cult 1970s/80s band, Japan, Sylvian has continued to probe the underbelly of rock/pop with often arresting results. Many of the songs here have been reworked for this collection but these updated interpretations don't detract from any of the tender, deeply melancholic poetry of the originals. A serial collaborator, Everything and Nothing draws upon material from all his albums, including 1991's Rain Tree Crow (with Japan members Richard Barbieri and Steve Jansen), the 1986 Ryuichi Sakamoto album Heartbeat and 1989's Secrets Of The Beehive. In a wonderful coup for cult followers, Everything and Nothing also features the complete version of the lost Japan tune "Some Kind Of Fool", intended for Gentlemen Take Poloraids. However, as so much of what Sylvian achieved with Japan was built on artifice, it is refreshing to hear him in a stripped down arena. The opening "The Scent of Magnolia"--part electronica, part rock--glides with a subtlety and nous that puts many practitioners in both fields to shame, while "Albuquerque" sustains a gorgeous balance between conceptual boldness and engaging melody. Everything and Nothing is a good way to sample and celebrate Sylvian in shape-shifting form. He ducks in and out of focus, between rugged ballads (the infamous "Ghosts"), avant-garde jazz ("God's Monkey") and--on a couple of tracks where the multi-instrumental backing is dropped for synthesisers--a successful glossy pop. --Maxine Kabuubi
Top customer reviews
For Ride to be left off Secrets of the beehive speaks volumes of the albums quality .Great compilation to out on a chill ,if you're dabbling in Sylvian buy the above mentioned album and Gone to earth and go from there
Everything and Nothing draws more or less evenly from Sylvian's solo albums (not counting 1985's instrumental album, Alchemy), collaborations, and non-album singles, then adds a handful of previously unreleased songs on top.
As usual the packaging is very well done (though it is a bit fragile), with distinctive artwork; and the sound quality is mostly excellent - all three CDs in the limited edition are gold discs.
Highlights among the previously unreleased material are: "The Scent of Magnolia", which is better than most of the songs on Dead Bees on a Cake; "Ride", the lost centerpiece from Secrets of the Beehive; "Cover Me With Flowers", another Dead Bees outtake; and the almost legendary lost Japan track "Some Kind Of Fool". Also refreshing are the remixes of "The Golden Way" and "Come Morning"; both are far superior to the original Marco Polo versions.
The collection stumbles badly in two places, however. "Ghosts" suffers from the loss of its intro, which sets the mood of the piece, and the new vocal lacks the mood-enhancing tension of the original. Rather than just re-doing the vocal, perhaps Sylvian should have re-recorded it from top to bottom. The other mis-step is "Bamboo Houses", which contains a few embellishments that come off sounding totally gratuitous.
Overall, a wonderful piece of work. I suspect that Everything and Nothing isn't likely to attract many new listeners, but it will definitely keep the rest of us listening...
This album represents the pinnacle of 20 years work for Sylvian. The collection is actually rather soothing and cathartic. It has been so thoughtfully compiled and includes some real gems, including 'Ghosts', the delightful 'Scent of Magnolias', the sweet 'I Surrender' and the beautiful 'Buoy'.
Whether you're a fan of David Sylvian or Japan, or are looking for a way into his music - this is a great place to start.
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