Trains of Winnipeg Paperback – 1 Sep 2002
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It isn't that I have a collection of spoken word, it isn't because I am particular partial to poetry set to music, it isn't even because I am particularly fond of things Canadian; it is because in this CD, something special emerges. The feeling of it stays with you, the words resonate and the music has a momentum that is memorable.
Because that's what it's all about; momentum, trains, wide spaces, all coupled to Clive's thoughts, as he sorts out his head or remembers his past. His voice resonates, and it is rich enough that you do not miss sung vocals. I am not familiar with The Weakerthans, but some of their members were largely responsible for the supporting music and sound samples, which are minimalist but extraordinary, and are perfect for the subject matter.
But don't take my word for it, The Trains of Winnipeg CD began a much wider art project, which is lovingly documented on The Trains of Winnipeg web site (look it up). On the web site you will be able to listen to a number of MP3 files, as well as explore the associated film and book.
This CD keeps emerging as a favourite for me, because in a world full of stuff, it is a pearl.
If you look up my amazon profile, you will be able to read a track by track review on my blog.
honestly do not despair. the first few tracks are little hard to stomach at first listening. but the fourth track, de`ath at neepawa you hear some guitar riffs. something somewhat like you'd hear out of the weakerthans, but something softer to replace the piano. keep on treking through the tracks. when you come to nanaimo station the spoken imagery and instrumental pieces finally come together and create a beautiful image of winnipeg-- it quickly becomes a place that i would like to take a road trip to.
all in all it is a half decent compilation. if you have the pocket change to spare, give it a listen and offer your few cents on it. im not a big fan of spoken verse but it is something soothing to listen to when i am all alone and in the mood for imagining other places.