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Bond is back. The all-girl string quartet which rocked the classical establishment back in 2000 has returned with a second album, Shine. Bond's first disc, Born, was famously banned from the classical charts--it was crossover alright, but crossed over a bit too much to still be considered a classical release. Shine, however, is unashamedly popular from start to finish. Don't be misled by the thick bookletit's crammed, not with details of the14 tracks (three of which were written by the Bond girls), but with glossy shots of the pouting four alongside a couple of tigers and a gleaming motorbike and not a fiddle in sight.
In the space of two years, Bond has achieved phenomenal international success with healthy record and ticket sales throughout Europe as well as in the Far East, Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Shine reflects this with musical influences ranging from India to South America. But this is far from world music; every track has been so heavily produced that the string quartet sound is all but lost amid heavy beats and electronic effects. At its best, Shine is a dance album with a bit of a limp; at its worst it's pure Hooked on Classics. --Rebecca Agnew
Top Customer Reviews
The music and artistic quality is of course above exceptional, but the tracks are not as appealing as Born proved they could do.
Whereas Born had the excellent Victory, Shine has nothing to even compare. A couple of the tracks are slightly "toe-tapping" and while all are wonderful to listen to, there are perhaps only two tunes which immediately stood out: Strange Paradise and Bond on Bond. The latter being a reworking of the classic James Bond theme.
I know that Bond were severely and unfairly penalised by the classic charts because they weren't recognised as classical and weren't exactly pop, but at least with Born the music was powerful and made an impact. With shine, the music is pure easy listening, "I'll put you on in the background but not really going to listen to". Which is a shame and a total waste.
Bond are 4 of the best classical musicians at the moment, but alas this album is mediocre. Perhaps we were spoilt by Born, but I was hoping for a lot more, and sadly it failed to deliver.
I was quite hesitant at giving the album a full 5 Stars as I normally reserve that for Albums that have stood the test of time, but this is definitely a good one.
All in all, "Shine" certainly doesn't work the girls as hard as in "Born", and far more techno stuff is used this time round, but as an album to enjoy listening to, it is joint top with their earlier effort!
I'd like to see Bond perform some more cover versions for future albums...maybe "Comfortably Numb" by Pink Floyd, or how about the fun and excitement the girls (and their fans) could have with the theme to "Deliverance"? Let's have more fun tracks such as "Korobushko" and "Duel" from the first album.
Some people have suggested that Bond are concentrating more on photo-shoots and their image than on their musical talents with this album...I MUST DISAGREE. The Bond girls are all very beautiful, and are not ashamed to let us see that fact. Everyone knows that 'sex sells', and as far as the girls are concerned, 'If you've got it, Flaunt it' comes to mind. I don't mind seeing them scantily-clad within the album cover, and I for one wouldn't complain if they decided to 'clad' themselves even more 'scantily' next time!
Here are my views on each track from "Shine" :-
1.Read more ›
Great music I have purchased all of their albums, it about time they released a new one.
Escala is releasing a new album this year 2014.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great music, I would highly recommended this CD to add to your collection.Published 4 months ago by MERLIN
I have used it already in my KFA Moves classes and received well by class membersPublished 14 months ago by Ellie