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A Stranger In My Own Back Yard Collector's Edition, Extra tracks, Original recording remastered

4.7 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Jun. 2012)
  • Collector's Edition edition
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Collector's Edition, Extra tracks, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Union Square Music Limited
  • ASIN: B007WQJ16Y
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,610 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Following sold-out shows at the London Palladium at the end of 1973 and a second Ivor Novello Award (for 'Get Down'), Gilbert spent much of early 1974 out of the UK, writing and holidaying in Portugal. With producer and manager Gordon Mills now spending most of his time in America, Gilbert s fourth album was recorded at Sunset Sounds Studio, Los Angeles, with engineer Jon Haeny, and A & R Studios, New York, with Phil Ramone, soon to be an A-list producer. I liked being in L.A., remembers Gilbert. I was living at my girlfriend (and future wife) Aasa s house in Manhattan Beach and I liked working with Jon Haeny and the L.A. musicians." The resultant album, Gilbert s fourth, was another UK Top Ten hit and is full of witty, carefully-crafted songs that successfully blended his very British dancehall sensibility with a smooth West Coast feel. This remastered edition features seven non-album singles and hard-to-find b-sides as bonus tracks.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This album, originally released in 1974, did not produce any hit songs as the previous 3 albums, but it is one of my favourite Gilbert O'Sullivan albums. Just like Beatles made the highly experimental album Revolver, which crystalised later into Sgt.Pepper's, one gets an impression that the stunning originality and imagination in this album had evolved from O'Sullivan's previous album I Am A Writer Not A Fighter. Every song in this album is not just original but a beautifully crafted masterpiece. The songs were recorded in Los Angeles with John Haeny, and in New York with a sound engineer Phil Ramone who later became a famous producer of many Grammy Award winners including 'Still Crazy After All These Years' and 'Just the Way You Are'. The arrangements are multi-faceted and highly sophisticated.

Another striking feature of this album is the childlike sense of humour and the warmly nostalgic melodies - the opening song 'Number 4' and 'Victor E' are reminiscent of Sesame Street and other songs like 'It's so easy to be sad', 'If you ever' or 'My father' share the same childhood theme. '15 Times' is a hilarious tongue in cheek song which sounds like a nursery rhyme. Maybe, the concept of the whole album IS a nursery rhyme, meant, not for children, but for adults! 'The marriage machine' is one of O'Sullivan's most beautiful songs. 'No more', 'I wonder would you mind', and 'Nothing to do about much' are little gems with impossibly funny lyrics and very touching melodies. Perhaps, all these songs are disguised in childhood innocence, but meant for 'a stranger in my own back yard' - in other words, our own inner being?
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Format: Audio CD
*** THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE 2012 REMASTERED REISSUE ***

"A Stranger In My Own Backyard" is the 4th release in a full-on reissue campaign by Salvo Records of the UK for Irish singer-songwriter Raymond Gilbert O'Sullivan. His UK debut album "Himself" from 1971 was relaunched in November 2011, his second "Back To Front" from 1972 in February 2012 and his third from 1973 "I'm A Writer, Not A Fighter" in April 2012 (all are reviewed separately). With fantastic new sound, copious bonus tracks, quality packaging and a none-too steep price-tag - legions of his fans worldwide will be thrilled to see that his MAM Records catalogue is finally receiving a thorough going-over (and like the others - this release is artist-approved too). But in this case - I just wish the material matched the packaging. Here are the Back Yard details...

UK released Monday 4 June 2012 (12 June 2012 in the USA) - "A Stranger In My Own Back Yard" by GILBERT O'SULLIVAN on Salvo SALVOXCD004 (Barcode 698458050427) is an 'Expanded' CD Remaster and plays out as follows (62: 02 minutes):

1. Number 4
2. A Woman's Place
3. No More
4. It's So Easy To Be Sad
5. My Father
6. The Marriage Machine
7. If You Ever
8. The Thing Is
9. Just Like Me [Side 2]
10. Victor E
11. I Wonder Would You Mind
12. 15 Times
13. Nothing To Do About Much
14. Can't Get You To Love Me
15. Always Somebody
Tracks 1 to 15 are his fourth studio album "A Stranger In My Own Back Yard" - released October 1974 in the UK on Mam Records MAM-SS 506 and on Mam Records MAM 10 in the USA. It peaked at 9 on the album charts in the UK - but didn't reach the top 200 in the USA.
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Format: Vinyl
This album, released in 1974, did not produce any hit songs as the previous 3 albums, but it is one of my favourite Gilbert O'Sullivan albums. Just like Beatles made the highly experimental album Revolver, which crystalised later into Sgt.Pepper's, one gets an impression that the stunning originality and imagination in this album had evolved from O'Sullivan's previous album I Am A Writer Not A Fighter. Every song in this album is not just original but a beautifully crafted masterpiece. The songs were recorded in Los Angeles with John Haeny, and in New York with a sound engineer Phil Ramone who later became a famous producer of many Grammy Award winners including 'Still Crazy After All These Years' and 'Just the Way You Are'. The arrangements of all 15 songs are highly sophisticated and multi-faceted.

Another striking feature of this album is the childlike sense of humour and the warmly nostalgic melodies - the opening song 'Number 4' and 'Victor E' are reminiscent of Sesame Street and other songs like 'It's so easy to be sad', 'If you ever' or 'My father' share the same childhood theme. '15 Times' is a hilarious tongue in cheek song which sounds like a nursery rhyme. Maybe, the concept of the whole album IS a nursery rhyme, meant, not for children, but for adults! 'The marriage machine' is one of O'Sullivan's most beautiful songs. 'No more', 'I wonder would you mind', and 'Nothing to do about much' are little gems with impossibly funny lyrics and very touching melodies. Perhaps, all these songs are disguised in childhood innocence, but meant for 'a stranger in my own back yard' - in other words, our own inner being?
Read more ›
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