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Superwolf

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (17 Jan. 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Domino
  • ASIN: B0006IGOWY
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30,950 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product description

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As expected from the Domino Records stable (Franz Ferdinand excepted), and from Bonnie "Prince" Billy (the very definition of an obscure musical genius), don't expect anything too commercial. Attractive though the melodies may be, and with the repeated meditations on the bleakness of sex and death, it's not easy listening. This collaboration between the Prince and Matt Sweeney (frontman of Chavez and former member of Billy Corgan's good-on-paper indie supergroup Zwan), challenging each other to write songs, this album is the result, and despite the lack of immediacy, it's still a gently enjoyable album. Musically, it's based almost entirely around simple two guitar/ two-voice arrangements, allowing maximum room for the listener to enjoy the odd meditations on sex such as the gentle but misleading "A Beast For Thee", and obscure lyrical asides on "Lift Us Up". The work becomes most effective on the slow build up of "Goat And Ram", one of the few songs to feature a rhythm section, and the seven-minute film-sampling "Blood Embrace". Certainly not for everyone, but business as usual for those used to Oldham (and Domino)'s resolutely uncommercial approach, and for the curious, there are worse albums to pick up on a whim than this. --Thom Allott

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 17 Jan. 2005
Format: Audio CD
Will Oldham is a very rare thing in this day and age - an artist of genuine calibre who seems unafraid to continue making music to satisfy nobody but himself. He is by nature a fickle beast - after ten years of what some refer to as 'alt-country', his definitive brand of under-produced acoustic based recordings, his last album was something of a curveball, employing a full session band to revisit fifteen of Palace Brothers 'greatest hits and give them a polished Nashville sheen. The gamble paid off - Oldham managed to prove himself an extraordinary songwriter, the songs power holding up even without the mood inducing melancholy which the lo-fi backings had managed to instill on the original versions of the songs.
And so Oldham's decision to team up with long-term friend Matt Sweeney - ex-Slint and Billy Corgan's ill-fated Zwan - may take some by surprise. Oldham's major contribution here is lyrical, as he takes a back seat and allows Sweeney to come up with the music. For the most part the results are fantastic.
Anybody who has heard any of Will Oldham's previous work will know that it does not always make for easy listening, and the eleven selections on Superwolf are no exception. Oldham uses his whole palette on this album. Opener 'My Home Is The Sea' is something of a false start, Oldham has deliberately placing the most accessible and best produced track at the start of the album to lull the listener into a false sense of security. 'Beast For Thee' follows, its lush sounding arpeggios recalling the sound of Mogwai. The harmony vocals provided on this track by Sweeney are exquisitiley arranged, as they are throughout the album.
'What Are You?' shows Oldham's more comical side, as he threatens to 'take you over my knee, and spank you mercilessly.
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Format: Audio CD
as an old -time fan of mister willy o, i was excited to check out his latest offering, written and performed with his old buddy matt sweeney. the result is this: a beautiful, at times melancholy, uplifting, soothing, and golden-hued piece..less DIY than his old stuff, but the clarity [as opposed to fuzz] of his 'new' sound makes for an altogether different, but equally enchanting, musical experience...
ten out of five, hands down
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Format: Audio CD
I bought this on the strength of Lauren Laverne's 'Headphone moment' when she played 'Blood Embrace' on her 6music show recently, and it completely blew me away.

Not something that happens very often these days - must be my 40 something years.

I'm rapidly coming to the conclusion that some of the best music out there in the great wide yonder is commercially unsucessful (Tindersticks, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Mazzy Star, Archie Bronson Outfit to name but a few).

This album is sublime and has been 'on repeat' since postie dropped it through my letter box.

Please refer to the other, more knowledgeable, reviews for a track by track breakdown, all I will add is that there isn't a weak song anywhere in sight.

I haven't been this excited by a 'new' CD since Portishead's 'Dummy'.

Real shame that I missed the boat when it was first released.

All good things come to he who waits !

Miss this at your peril.
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