- Paperback: 144 pages
- Publisher: Continuum (22 Nov. 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0826417485
- ISBN-13: 978-0826417480
- Product Dimensions: 12.2 x 1 x 16.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 879,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Guided By Voices' Bee Thousand (33 1/3) Paperback – 22 Nov 2006
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"Bee Thousand" makes perfect sense for Continuum's famous 331/3 series. The breakthrough album for Guided by Voices undoubtedly has an appropriate stature, as it exemplified a certain style of lo-fi, DIY aesthetic that's still influential. Moreover, Robert Pollard's elliptical lyrics and layered, yet quasi-improvisational melodies would seem to profit from a handy introduction. Everyone I know who listens to Guided by Voices was introduced to their music by some knowledgeable friend, a role which Marc Woodworth ably takes up in his short book. What's more interesting about Bee Thousand, though, is the way it both embraces and complicates the nostalgia permeating the entire 331/3 series. Simultaneously a mythologizing and d demythologizing book, Bee Thousand" demonstrates yet again the power of Faulkner's claim that 'the past isn't even past.' ...Woodworth's book should help listeners of any age find joy in such oddities as "Hardcore UFOs," "a dairy creamer explicitly laid out as a fruitcake," and the "kicker of elves." More generally, anyone interested in DIY-type bands should find the bands narratives relevant."--Sanford Lakoff
About the Author
Marc Woodworth is the author of Solo: Women Singer-Songwriters in their Own Words (Dell, 1998) which contained transcribed and edited first-person narratives derived from his interviews with nineteen artists like Ani DiFranco, Sheryl Crow, and Cassandra Wilson. He is also the author of a volume of poetry, Arcade (Grove Press, 2002), and is the editor of a high-culture quarterly, Salmagundi.
Top Customer Reviews
Where this book really comes alive is in the recollections of Robert Pollard and crew as they relay their experiences in creating the album, and the aesthetic that drives them. Not a conventional band in any sense of the word, Guided By Voices came to be the standard bearers of the `lo-fi' movement, issuing album after album of material recorded on some incredibly primitive equipment. The interviews with them go a long way into explaining the motivations behind this, and really shed some new light on why they have arguably neutered their inherent pop sensibility by shrouding it in a cloak of dissonance and tape hiss.
However, Woodworth's own analysis is so complex and multi-layered, that it is frequently hard to follow. In one sense, he is frequently a victim of his own intelligence, attempting to convey multiple things at once, to a reader (like myself) who is frequently not up to the task of deciphering his meaning. But he does succeed in creating a book that compels the reader either to jump into the back catalogue of the band for the first time, or go back to them with fresh ears, which is really the purpose of these tomes.
You will revisit the album and look at it in a different way after you read this book.
I think you will be as amazed as I was when you discover the journey this album took to reach us in the form we know and love it. Whether it's the constantly changing list of songs, the last minute inclusions, the process of sequencing - this record took an amazing amount of thought and patience. What seems random and throwaway is painstaking and heartfelt.
This album is a work of art, nothing less. Woodworth says so.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The first (especially those from Bob Pollard) make the book worthwhile. The second are easily enough skimmed, but the third are infuriating- they don't offer any insight to "Bee Thousand" that actually listening to the album once or twice wouldn't provide. The space they take up would have been much better used by expanding on the commentary of Pollard, Tobin Sprout, Robert Griffin and others who could actually elaborate on the unique experience that is "Bee Thousand."
I'd have given this book 2 1/2 stars, but that wasn't an option.
For the big fans, the book is fully worth it for points a & (especially) b. My recommendation is to skip the entirety of c.
As an album, "Bee Thousand" is worth five stars in my opinion, and after a few beers I'd rate it six stars. The book is a nice companion piece, but given the choice between reading the book a second time and listening to the record, I'd just have a few beers and get lost in the "Bee Thousand" album itself.