The Hour Of Bewilderbeast [VINYL] Import
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Top Customer Reviews
I'd heard 'The Shining' on a free cd, and that was enough to persuade me to shell out for the whole album. And it was worth every penny - a collection of 18 fantastic songs costing less than most of the 9 song collections of pop pap and 'nu-metal'which are going around at the moment.
The Mercury prize, and all the critical hype might set Badly Drawn Boy up as some 'arty' type, but don't be put off: he's just some guy in a weird hat, who happens to write and sing really great songs. Almost every track is a classic, and every time you listen to the album you find another amazing moment; the child-like backing vocals from his fiancee on 'Epitaph' being my favourite at the moment. The lyrics are all either funny or moving, and more often than not both - 'I don't want you to die/I don't have to say why' on 'Epitaph' a prime example. And anyone who can afford to relegate a song as beautiful as 'Fall in the River' to a 1 and a half minute filler has to be worthy of attention - on any other album it would be the high point, here it is just another in a constant stream of awe-inspiring moments.
Really, do your ears a favour - go and buy this, listen to it a couple of dozen times, then catch him live. You won't regret it.
Listening to it now the amount of absolutely essential tracks is staggering. I could write essays on every single song here...but I won't. Instead I'll just mention that Stone on the Water was THE song that made me want to play guitar (I've since learnt that it's the easiest song on the album to play. Hooray!) and that the sheer scope of sounds, moods, emotions and ideas on offer here is devastating. I love the bit in Fall in a River in which the entire song really does appear to fall in a river, complete with bubbles and a distant muffled drowning sound befor the song is "saved" by a Mediterranean sounding guitar tremolo. I also love the point at which Cause a Landslide seems to lose its mind, descending into a nightmare of organs, electronic sounds, disconcerting samples and a theremin solo, before sanity is resumed by way of a quirky little folkish coda.
Then there's the searing art-rock of Everybody's Stalking. Only recently has it occurred to me just how downwright JAZZY those guitar sounds are. See? Subliminally, Badly Drawn Boy got me into jazz, and so so so much more...I'm so glad that this song can still be found in his setlists.Read more ›
I was more surprised than I could imagine. Not only is it "not too bad", it's singularly one of the greatest albums of the past decade. Gough paints masterfully uplifting and touching songs with gentle flicks of a carefully-honed musical brush, delivered throughout with a subtle grin and sense of humour.
The first time you listen through the entire thing, you'll be confused. It'll seem like an unintelligble mangle of sounds and ideas. Listen to it at least half a dozen times, then you'll love it. Anybody who pans this album has only listened through the entire tracklist one or two times. There are so many carefully-constructed layers to "The Hour of Bewilderbeast" that you simply have to listen to it repeatedly in order to pick them all out, then step back and appraise the entire work as the true piece of genius that it is. Mr. Gough, I take my hat off to you.
This album is a masterpiece - the best I have bought for 3 years (since the Verve's "Urban Hymns" in fact). A rare quality is that it is both instantly appealing yet also enduring. Never having even heard of Badly Drawn Boy previously, I wondered into a record shop one lunchtime about 3 months ago while this was playing and I bought it on the spot. Even now after at least 30 plays, I still haven't tired of it! My only slight criticism is that one or two of the tracks are frustratingly short, but at 63 minutes and 18 tracks there is little room for complaint.
After the brilliance of the opening track "Shining", for me the outstanding section of the album occurs in the middle..Once Around The Block, This Song, Bewilderbeast & Magic In the Air are all excellent tracks in their own right but together they capture the great diversity of musical styles which are such a feature of the album.
If, like me, you tend to treat award winning albums, films, you name it... with a degree of suspicion, on this occasion don't worry - this album really does deserve the accolade.
This will be tough to follow, but if the next album is anywhere near as strong as this, Badly Drawn Boy will become a very big name indeed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A bit of song writing genius. I need say no more as the other reviewers have covered all the bases. Just buy it.Published 4 months ago by mr chris
I think it's stolen its in a weird case and says Islington libraries inside It might of been bought but I doubt it and it's not what I would expect from a site as well known as... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Chemist ape