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Wonderful, Glorious

4.4 out of 5 stars 69 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Feb. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: E-Works
  • ASIN: B00A18KBFA
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 50,608 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

Tenth studio album by the American indie rock band. Featuring the singles 'Peach Blossom' and 'New Alphabet/I'm Your Brave Little Soldier', the record showcases the talent of songwriter and frontman Mark 'E' Everett.

BBC Review

The prolific Mark Everett, more usually known as E, has been writing and recording as Eels since 1996, when debut album Beautiful Freak garnered him acclaim and hits, including Novocaine for the Soul.

Between then and now, Eels albums have usually arrived at impressively regular one- or two-year intervals – although four years separated 2005’s Blinking Lights… and 2009’s Hombre Lobo. Everett often replays themes from his troubled past beside current issues, joined by a rotating cast of band members, himself the only constant.

Wonderful, Glorious is album number 10, and, in tone and voice, immediately recognisable as an Eels release. Sad-sounding songs with angry words (On the Ropes’ “I’m hurting bad and I’m fighting mad”) meet others like New Alphabet, where E’s upbeat outlook (“You know what? I’m in a good mood today”) contradicts the fierce tone of the delivery.

Bombs Away just sounds plain cross, both in tone and its defiant, “I’ve had enough of being a mouse,” no-more-Mr-Nice-Guy message. Up-tempo moments like this, Stick Together and Open My Present are often more satisfying than slower efforts, like the ponderous Accident Prone.

On the Ropes, though, bucks this trend. A soft and tender song, E’s voice takes on the grizzled, careworn voice of an old-time country singer as he tells, with a resigned melancholy, of his “tired heart”, on what is a clear high point of the set.

Peach Blossom, with its headache-buzz of bass and repeated inducement to “Open the window man, and smell the peach blossom,” is also good, its debt to The Stranglers’ Peaches evident but not overwhelming. I Am Building a Shrine brings an interesting psychedelic wash in its sound, as E considers “All the love you bring me / All the tender words you sing me.”

Whilst not a recommended starting point for newcomers to Everett’s work (for that, try Beautiful Freak or its follow-up, Electro-Shock Blues), this is an album in which Eels followers will find much to enjoy. It continues the band’s long-running, idiosyncratic and distinctively creative career path.

--Jude Clarke

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a slow burner of an Eels album. Initially, you wonder if Mr E will ever get back to the heights of Blinking Lights, following the slightly underwhelming trilogy of Hombre Lobo (especially disappointing), End Times and Tomorrow Morning. But rest assured, with this one he does, once you allow it to settle in and make itself at home.

It’s a more ‘rock’ album than we’re used to, confirmed by the current live set, which features just about all of it, and just about all of its personnel, and which is played loud. But E’s gift for tunes is undimmed beneath the volume, along with his gift for the arresting lyric. You can see all that encapsulated here in The turnaround, one of the best things he’s ever done: the closing, ascending, repeated ‘Six bucks in my pocket…’ motif will have you out of your seat. And it’s not the only highlight: the title track, the album’s closer, repeats his custom of ending albums on an uplifting note – as it ends the main part of the live set. There are others, but you don’t want a list of tracks you haven’t heard. Hear them!

I bought the ‘deluxe’ edition with the bonus disc, and just for once, you get a bonus disc that’s really worth having: four studio tracks, including I’m your brave little soldier, which features in the live set, and some very worthwhile live cuts, especially the storming version of Prizefighter, which is also currently featuring. I’ve played it almost as much as the ‘real’ album. But not quite. E on the ropes? Not a bit of it. This is a great American artist at somewhere near the top of his game.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
After 9 studio albums, a handful of live albums, a couple of compilations and a whole heap of soundtrack work, Mr E could easily call it a day. He's had such a prolific musical output, not to mention writing an autobiography, making a documentary for the BBC and touring extensively - and he's not even 50 yet. And with all this prominence, and all the great reviews his work gets, Eels are a massively unappreciated group. They seem to have always been that band who 'did that one song that I heard in a movie'. But they're so much more than that. It's so inspiring that E never gave up, but not only has he not given up, he's just put out his best album in years.

Wonderful, Glorious is a beast of an album. It steams ahead at great speed, throwing around a seemingly endless amount of ideas and sounds. The music sounds like an energetic young band's debut album. After E's trilogy, this sounds invigorated with soul, life and freedom. It's not refined by fears and worries. E is more powerful than ever with his full band behind him; the Chet's guitar work is fabulous with beautifully distorted and crunchy chords, Knuckles' pounding, bass-drum-heavy drumming bringing the album real guts. We all know E is a wonderful solo artist, but these guys truly bring out the best in him. I saw Eels in London in 2011, and I was totally blown away by the chemistry these guys had, and they've totally replicated that on this disk. It doesn't sound shiny and polished; it sounds gritty and live, in the best way possible. It's a sort of traditional rock 'n' roll album, but c'mon: its Eels. How traditional are they gonna be?
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By Andy Sweeney TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Dec. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have loved Eels ever since "Beautiful Freak" burst onto the music scene in the mid-90s and completely changed my musical world. I've been buying every release by them since then and there have been very few disappointments, thanks to Mark 'E' Everett's fantastic songwriting and his high artistic standards. Eels albums tend to be a cut above most other albums released and "Wonderful, Glorious", their 10th studio album, is no exception. This is quite a heavy blues-rock dominated album and has more of a band feel to it, rather than simply being a vehicle for what can sometimes seems like an Everett solo project and, as such, there are plenty of band co-writes for the tracks. I find this quite an exciting record, most of the tracks get the adrenaline pumping and it's perfect for listening to get you all set for a night out or just to get the household chores done to. Of course, it wouldn't be an Eels album without a few dark tales of pathos and there just enough stories of hurt and woe to satisfy those who crave E's trademark bittersweet balladry.

More than half of the tracks on offer here are absolutely top-quality. Thumping tom-toms announce this album's rocking intent and the fuzzy, scratchy "Bombs Away" kicks off the music in a slightly low-key, menacing way. "Kinda Fuzzy" has a few great riffs and a superb groove, "Peach Blossom" is surely one of the best Eels tracks ever, despite it's relative simplicity, boasting a formidable, powerful riff, thundering drums and a catchy vocal hook and the emotive "The Turnaround" has a brilliant refrain that builds to a smouldering climax.
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