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Intriguer (Deluxe Edition) CD+DVD
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This sixth album from the colossally popular Antipodeans is the follow-up to 2006's Time On Earth and is the first to feature the band's full lineup throughout since 1993's Together Alone. Produced by chief songwriter Neil Finn with Jim Scott, who produced the 7 Worlds Collide sessions, it sees the band introducing new ideas into their classic pop-rock sound. It features the web single "Saturday Sun" and includes contributions from Jon Brion, Lisa Germano and Finn's son Liam.
1. Either Side of the World (Upstairs at Home)
2. Amsterdam (Upstairs at Home)
3. Saturday Sun (Upstairs at Home)
4. Twice If You're Lucky (Upstairs at Home)
5. Elephants (Upstairs at Home)
6. Falling Dove (Upstairs at Home)
7. Isolation (Upstairs at Home)
8. Archer's Arrows (Upstairs at Home)
9. Either Side of the World (Live at the Auckland Town Hall)
10. Isolation (Live at the Auckland Town Hall)
11. Saturday Sun
Top Customer Reviews
What you do get however is another record full of Neil Finn's creamy rich melodies, oblique lyrics and addictive songs that, once lodged in the brain, stay there. Business as usual then. Well not exactly. There is a good deal of experimentation on Intriguer that, for a band now on it's 6th release is quite surprising - effects, drum machines, loops, samples - all admirable envelope pushing but not always successful. 'Inside Out' in particular suffers from muddy production and over reliance on technology.
On the plus side Finn's voice has matured beautifully - witness the spooky McCartney like 'Isolation' and the White Album aping 'Falling Dove'. Both float prettily by but leave little impact on first hearing. Give it 3 or 4 listens however and your hooked. Lead single 'Saturday Son' makes it's case for best Crowded House 45 since the band's reformation and the catchy piano lead 'Twice If Your Lucky' is every bit as good as the live previews suggested.
Intriguer ends on a high note with the hauntingly beautiful 'Even If' and the lovely 'Elephants' - the latters 'Sweet Dreams/Make Waves/Find Bliss' refrain perfectly summing up what has gone before.
Intriguer isn't a perfect record by any means, it lacks pacing and, at times is a mite over produced and self conscious. But when those gorgeous harmonies kick in and that nagging hook or poetic lyric clicks into place you remember why you fell in love with Crowded House in the first place.
Repeated listening rewards in spades.
However, i really hoped this album would be better than Time On Earth; and whilst I think it is, sadly for me- I was disappointed - again.The positives are I like the addition of some female vocals, and there were a few good tracks on the album that caught my attention; which were quite enjoyable, e.g 6 and 7... but overall it felt bland and uninspired. I hate to say this but at time Neil's vocal's even sounded dreary- sorry, and i do not think I will play this often- it did not lift my mood; and whilst I think CH remain a great band... something is lacking here. Sorry. I miss Paul Hester- he was always my favourite, and it is tragic- & I just do not feel the album is anywhere near the masterpiece of Together Alone.
Whilst many may rightfully disagree, if you're expecting vintage Crowded House, you may sadly be disappointed.
Intriguer is not a bad album. There are some really nicely crafted tunes, reminiscent of Crowded House's heyday. (e.g Amsterdam). The major problem is that I feel it lacks `punch' (for want of a better word.) So many tracks feel laboured and just don't have the spark we have come to expect.
If I could make an analogy, `Crowded house- Intriguer' makes me think of a football team that have come out for the second half, being 4-0 up and have chosen to show boat the rest of the match. Yes- it's all very nice, but they could be so much better.
A nice album, but that's all.
A few of the tracks on this album have gone through a lengthy gestation period - they've been honed into shape through the numerous gigs the band have played since `Time on Earth'. They've therefore been allowed to develop almost organically through the past three or so years, before finally arriving at the finished articles presented here.
Psychedelic first single `Saturday Sun' kick-starts the album. It sounds more spaced-out and less immediate than the stripped-down live version the band have been touring. Commencing with a throbbing Nick Seymour bass line, Neil's voice - processed through a Korg synthesizer to produce a vocoder-type effect - then appears before the track thunders into life and his superb `proper' vocal take over. It's an utterly fantastic opening track with a throat-shredding middle eight, but it occasionally sounds cluttered with too many sounds, serving as a signpost for the fussy over-production that surfaces on the album at fleeting moments. One can only wonder what Youth would have done with the song.
`Archer's Arrows' is next and it's a real grower. Seemingly slight for the first two listens or so, it's only later that its subtle hooks emerge. But then that's one of Neil's strengths: writing melodies that creep up on you and occupy a place in your brain until you can't shake them off.
Of the following three tunes, `Amsterdam' is a track that has benefitted from numerous live performances; it's now matured into a minor classic.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I didn't see this coming, such a great revelation of songs with many surprises and nuances.
I hold this is their finest album so far. Read more
Just a few good tracks, Amsterdam etc the rest is just mediocre filler.
The days of Together Alone are long gone
As a 40 year fan of Split Enz/Crowed House. I was a little disappointed with this offering. The tunes are pretty good, but it only contains 8 songs, and as a consequence it is very... Read morePublished on 1 Dec. 2013 by Ranx1247
Another great album from the boys of Crowded house. New music but still recognisable brilliance once again, well worth buyingPublished on 29 Mar. 2013 by David W
The artwork on their albums never fails to intrigue...
Crowded House have grown up since their earlier recordings. Read more