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Soul Mining Original recording remastered

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4.8 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (5 Aug. 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Sony Music Cmg
  • ASIN: B0000636O5
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,399 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Product Description

1.i've been waitin' for tomorrow (all of my life)2.this is the dayascolta3.the sinking feeling4.uncertain smile5.the twilight hour6.soul miningascolta7.giant

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
is what has been happening to me since I bought this album as I hadn't listened to it since the mid 80s when I was a disgruntled teenager. Then, they lyrics seemed to match my complete confusion with those Thatcher years. Now, well into my 30s, this album sounds even more fabulous and the lyrics are still relevant in the Blair/Bush era. The lyrics, fusion of synthesizers and traditional fiddles and accordions produces a truly unique style, with some brilliant percussion. Johnson's voice has quite a harsh tone to it at times but it suits the lyrics totally. However, the highlight of the entire album is the fabulous, spine-tingling Uncertain Smile with Jools Holland on piano - turn the volume to full and it will give you goose bumps. It manages to sound so 80s and yet so now at the same time. This is music at its best and The The never enjoyed the mass popularity and acclaim they undoubtedly deserved. Superb.
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Format: Audio CD
The The is the - frankly awful - group name that the creative genius called Matt Johnson hides behind. `Soul Mining' is the greatest achievement by The The as it fully realises all of Matt Johnson's pent-up aggression and dissatisfaction with society and life itself, without descending too much into the cliché and hyperbole that hampered his later works.

Matt tackles some large subjects on this album and asks the kind of questions that we daren't ask; the struggle of coping with life itself, the frustrations of trying to love or be loved by someone and the battle to simply understand oneself. Matt Johnson looks into (mines) his own soul for the answers and the results are laid out in these songs.

`I've been waiting for tomorrow all my life' is the opening track. Against a heavy electro-beat Matt spews forth a stream of vitriol against almost everything - failed relationships, fairweather friends, radio stations, newspapers. He rails against the frustration of living in a society that expects adherence to the relentless work ethic - "keep working, keep talking". He doesn't feel part of this at all and wants something else but has been ground down so much that he doesn't know what he wants anymore - "My mind is now polluted and energy diluted".

The following track follows on in a similar theme but this time the angst is set against a beautiful Celtic-esque melody played on an accordian. `This is the day' talks about unfulfilled potential and the worry that time is slipping away to realise this potential. "You could have been anything, if you wanted". His youthful enthusiasm for life is fading fast and leaving little left but hope that the future will be different from the past.
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By A Customer on 3 Jun. 2003
Format: Audio CD
The fist time I think I ever felt I understood, or at least contenplated inner happiness was when I listened to this album on a bright, bright sunny day as a 15 year old. "you can't destroy your problems by destroying yourself". So I didn't. Soul Mining, whilst being and album of dangerous self doubt and questioning is wonderfully uplifting.
Soul Mining is a journey, a discovery of self. Matt Johnson through this album and the more globally aware Infected, shaped my world, who I am, where I am and how I got here. In the 15 years I've owned Soul Mining there have been some noteworthy contenders of direction and belief, particularly Portishead, but none have managed the mystical journey of self truth and more over self doubt that Johnson confronts us with in Soul mining
"How can anyone know me, when I don't even know myself" Johnson sings on the soul searching and challenging "Giant", a song that combines the mytstery of self discovery with the trerrace chanting and somewhat infectious "yeah, yeah, yeah". I'm nearly 30 and I still can't answer Giants most fundamental question. Johnson is a master of melancholy and it's something he has always aspired to, that someone could come up with such a lyrically competent album at such a young age is incredible, I belive Johnson was 17 when the thinking teenagers song of angst "Uncertain Smile" was written, a perfect ballad for formative teenage years of love and loss.
I enjoy the album differently now, reflection is a powerful tool and the lighter harmonies of Uncertain Smile and This is the Day
keep the reflection long enough to evoke memories of perhaps less comlicated times.
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Format: Audio Cassette
Why on Earth the extra tracks originally released on the limited edition of the 1983 cassette of Soul Mining have not been included either on recent CD reissues or on singles/rarities compilations of The The remains a bizarre mystery, since three of these lost extras are every bit as good as the majority of the 'official album' (bar perhaps the two most striking 'official album' tracks, The Sinking Feeling and Uncertain Smile. That's what makes this cassette such essential listening for any The The fan. The Nature of Virtue - I think once included as a re-recorded B-Side on a circa Infected 12" single - is a sinister but catchy little number with the simmering refrain 'Don't change yourself/ To suit everybody else'. Waitin' for the Upturn' is another catchy and inimitable track, scorched with Matt Johnson's signature winy guitar angst, and even though rawly recorded, actually shines all the more for it, with some shimmering harmonies. But the real gem of these forgotten extra tracks - I think all originally on the banned album Pornography of Despair incidentally, which is also unobtainable at present - is the fantastically distinctive and unique Mental Healing Process, a song almost on a par with Sinking Feeling and Uncertain Smile, and, to my mind (and along with Waitin' for the Upturn), far better and more affecting than the slightly more polished but duller 'official album' tracks Twilight Hour and Perfect. For more avante garde listeners, Ten Orange Kisses from Kazan might also interest, though it is a bit dischordant. Whenever I go to listen to Soul Mining, I'm often torn between the CD version which offers a remastering of the official album, or tinkering with the old tape for those often startlingly original extra tracks. Mental Healing Process should have been in the official line up, since it acts as a perfect bridge between the feel and subject of Sinking Feeling and Uncertain Smile. Including these extras, this is my favourite album of the 80s.
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