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Till The Sun Turns Black Import

4.7 out of 5 stars 74 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (29 Aug. 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: US Import
  • ASIN: B000GPIPVU
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 129,176 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Product Description

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
How refreshing it is when a master producer and a great artist collaborate for a second time , only to reward listeners with a collection of songs that sound nothing like the prior recording. Ethan Johns and Ray LaMontagne hook up to produce one of the real stunning and rewarding discs I've heard this year. Stunning, because how different the disc is from it's predecessor. Overall the recording is a hushed, lush affair with orchestration and simple use of acoustic sounds which at times sound so fluid, yet fragile, that you think the song is about to fall apart. Organ , guitar, flute, you name it, seems that Ethan pulls them all out of the closet for use at the right time. Ray's vocals are far more subdued on this release and he only let's it fly on the radio single, "Three More Days" which relies heavily on a simple funky organ groove that slowly rises into an all out rocking affair with the added bonus of Memphis horns. Because of the song's slow build up, it fits nicely into the mix and doesn't stand out of place. There's flourishes of everyone from George Martin with The Beatles, John Lennon with Billy Preston, Van Morrison's "Astral Weeks" era and Joe Boyd with Nick Drake. The gorgeous Spanish guitar on "Lesson Learned" is of heart breaking stuff which then leads the listener into the only instrumental track, "Truly, Madly, Deeply. The album closes with "Within You" which has to be one of the most beautiful, simple pleads for love and peace in our world since John Lennon and Yoko Ono were doing it in the 70's. Yeah, the lyrics are short and repetitive, but that's the point, to focus our ears on the simple message backed by the New Orleans style horns, ukulele, strings and Ray's amazing voice, which sounds amazingly like a slide guitar on this track. Good stuff!

Stand out tracks for me:
-"Within You"
-"Lesson Learned"
-"Be Here Now"
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Format: Audio CD
Ray Lamontagne's first album has been relaunched four or five times (but the record company never seems to follow through). As a result Trouble has been out for sometime now and the multiple launches has delayed the release of his second album here in the UK, which is a shame as the sequel- Till The Sun Turns Black, seriously eclipses his debut Trouble, not that Trouble was a poor effort, far from it.

Till The Sun Turns Black sees Ray's vocal delivery coming across a little sweeter and a little less dry than on Trouble, and the instrumentation is far richer, running from a Stax/Memphis Horns backing on a couple of tracks to a muted trumpet that wouldn't sound out of place in a Northern England brass band, then there is the purest simplicity of a guitar and voice (Lesson Learned); then we have a simple string backing on the title track. The overall effect is that the music carries you along without detracting from the Ray's vocal performances.
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Format: Audio CD
Then you should love this! This for me is a real progression from his first album. It is quite simply a beautiful piece of work. The songs follow each other with a real sense of continuation-it isn't a concept album, but it all works. Of course, some of the songs are meant to segue into each other. The join between the penultimate and the last song is so sweet. And the instrumental "Truly, Madly, Deeply" which follows to bitter "Lesson Learned is incredible. The last line of the latter song is sung with such an understated edge of resignation and venomous bitterness. God, this man can sing.

But what I love about his singing is the way he seems to be able convey massive amounts of emotion, yet sound as if he is holding so much back! I don't know how to explain what I mean, but if you listen you'll get it.

There is so much on this album to love. He crosses again (as he did with "Trouble") so many genres, but never sounds as if he's just trying to impress!
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Format: Audio CD
After the slow-burn, word-of-mouth hit album Trouble (still winning the plaudits after a massive poster campaign in the UK) Lamontagne takes the fuller-band route on his second album, funking up the mix a little with the organ and horn section on bluesy, rootsy, down and dirty Bring It On Home and plugging in his guitar and pumping it up with more horns on the subtle but cutting You Can Bring Me Flowers.

There's plenty of quiet for those who like their Ray torment-drenched and reflective, but this is a much fuller-sounding album. Clearly he has found a soulmate in alt-country wunderkind Ethan Johns, who brings his production and multi-instrumentalist skills to the mix once more. There's only one bum track on the whole thing - Barfly is the kind of ditty most singer songwriters knock out for their pub residencies, not put out on such a high-calibre collection of future classics. But the lush, soaring, string-soaked, whispered beauty of Be Here Now is worth the price of the album on its own.
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Format: Audio CD
I had never heard of the guy until I heard a clip of a song on Itunes. I haven't felt this excited or emotional about an album since I first heard In Utero by Nirvana. It is simply beautiful and so relaxing to listen to. I feel like I have been transported to another time and place when listening to it. The passion and care with which this album has been created shines through and there isn't one bad track on it. I am totally hooked and cannot imagine a life without such beautiful music. This is a must have album, it is one you will return to again and again. Quite simply, just amazing...
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