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Mikey "bugman_v2" (UK)

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Mind Chaos
Mind Chaos
Price: £2.00

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unfocused album with moments of magic, 5 Oct. 2009
This review is from: Mind Chaos (Audio CD)
Hockey burst onto the scene over the summer with fantastic debut single "Too Fake", before blowing people away with the soul-soaked joyous rapture of "Learn To Lose". It's no wonder then, that by the time the Strokes/Dylan tune of "Song Away" hit the airwaves, the anticipation for "Mind Chaos" was growing rapidly.

So does the album live up to the brilliant singles? Well, not quite, not this time. It's frustrating because when Hockey are on fire, they really are unstoppable. "Mind Chaos" however, contains so many influences, that often they sound unfocused and messy. "3am Spanish" starts off well, before changing direction and sounding rather cheesy. "Work" is pleasant enough, but lacks any real sparkle.

Best album track is "Curse This City", a great stomping track that hits its groove and chops and changes to a great climax. This is when Hockey shine.

Aside from that, "Four Holy Photos" is really an attempt at being Bob Dylan for 4 minutes, as pleasant as it is. "Preacher" would have been best left off the album in my opinion, despite starting off well. "Put The Game Down" is better, as is album closer "Everyone's The Same Age".

So all in all, a fair attempt. You will find magic on this album, but it is few and far between on an album with too much filler. The singles however, give hope of better things to come.


Memory Almost Full (including Limited Edition Folded Booklet)
Memory Almost Full (including Limited Edition Folded Booklet)
Offered by westworld-
Price: £6.98

25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic McCartney album, 6 Jun. 2007
Imagine this if you will: you're a Beatle - part of a band that have gone down in history as the finest group this country has produced, like, ever. You've written classic songs like Yesterday, Eleanor Rigby, Hey Jude, Let It Be, Maybe I'm Amazed, Live And Let Die...the list goes on. Now imagine that, because of your vast back catalogue, not only are people expecting you to come up with better, they're also expecting you to change the world and come up with a revolutionary new album. So, no pressure then.

It's almost as if making music isn't enough for Paul McCartney, people are always wanting more. If he comes up with brilliant material, people say it's good, but not as good as The Beatles. If he comes up with poor material, people say he's lost it.

Paul must ponder this every so often as he sits having his morning tea in the english rain. And what has he done here? Well, Paul for one knows two things for sure:

1. If something's worth doing, it's worth doing well.

and

2. Just do what you're best at.

And that's what Paul's done. He's made a fantastic album (and even that might not be enough for some), certainly his best for years. "Chaos And Creation In The Backyard" was a great album, but it did not have that "classic" feel to it - perhaps he was somewhat restrained by producer Nigel Godrich (with no disrespect to Nigel). On "Memory Almost Full", Paul forgets the criticisms, the complaints, the "he's lost it" that we read so often. Here he makes an album that is 110% Paul all over. It's got the ballads, the rock 'n' roll, the sentiment, the epics, the scarily clever arrangements and key changes, and, more importantly, it's got the humour.

Perhaps as a prime example of Paul going back to basics and back to what he does best is album opener "Dance Tonight". A deceptively simple song, primarily just Paul, a drum and a Mandolin, a great video and we've got one of his catchiest songs in years. It's simple. It works.

The album continues in this upbeat mood with "Ever Present Past" and a rather 80s sounding influence runs through this, something probably only Paul could get away with.

Some tracks on the album really could be on a Wings album - and if that's the case, the songs here are Wings at their very best. Certainly "See Your Sunshine" and "Only Mama Knows" have Wings written all over them and it's great to hear Paul's voice and his bass sounding so vibrant again.

"You Tell Me" is a classic McCartney acoustic ballad with a melody you swear you've heard somewhere before. "Mr Bellamy" is Paul finding both his creative genius and his humour again, an insanely clever track.

"Gratitude" improves with each listen, while "Vintage Clothes" is an ode to days and fashions gone by.

The five songs which bring "Memory Almost Full" to a close are just brilliant. It's the strongest finish to any McCartney album since, well, "Band On The Run". You can hear the skiffle influences on "That Was Me" and you could almost be at The Cavern Club again. "Feet In The Clouds" is very Wings/ELO, a great pop song with a great chorus to match.

We then come into the absolute highlight of the album - "House Of Wax". I'm gonna put my opinion on the line here and tell you, with not a shadow of a doubt in my mind, that "House Of Wax" is the single best solo track Paul has recorded since "Maybe I'm Amazed". It's that good. It builds and builds to the point where you sit and actually feel every hair on your body stand on end - just make sure you play it loud.

We then reach "The End Of The End" - a gorgeous heartfelt song in which Paul ponders his future, and indeed, his death. Yet only Paul could manage to talk about these things whilst maintaining a typically-McCartney upbeat melody. It has the ability to make you smile and cry at the same time. It's as though "The End" on Abbey Road was the end of The Beatles and here, on "The End Of The End", Paul thinks about everything he's accomplished in his life. Beautiful.

But just when you think you've got Paul all summed up, we hit track 13 - "Nod Your Head". Now ladies and gentlement, here we have a 2-minute brilliant brilliant track in which Paul's haivng the time of his life just rocking out.

"If you really love me baby, nod your head" he sings.

Well, are you all ready?

1...2...3....4.....go!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 9, 2014 12:15 AM BST


McAfee Internet Security Suite 2007 (PC)
McAfee Internet Security Suite 2007 (PC)
Offered by TX3-Media
Price: £1.94

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 3rd year running, no problems at all..., 13 April 2007
I should point out that I have used McAfee Security Suite for 3 years running now with no problems, certainly no installation issues as some reviewers have mentioned.

Any internet Security program will slow down your PC to a degree, and it often comes down to how fast and up to date your PC is as to how quickly it can handle the checks that McAfee software makes to keep you safe online. If you already have a slow or old PC, programs like these will have a bigger impact on PC performance than on newer PCs.

With this version, McAfee have added some nice extras, such as the QuickClean software to get rid of files that are not needed, The user interface is a relative breeze- you can choose from a basic menu or an advanced menu, but to be honest, the installation sets it up for you and I found little need to change any settings.

I didn't install the Site Advisor plugin (optional) as Internet Explorer 7 already has a phishing filter built in and I felt this may slow my PC down.

I liked the way it quickly downloaded the updates upon installation and I only needed to restart the PC once- a vast improvement on previous versions which have been very long-winded to bring up to date.

I did have a slight issue in that I couldn't get onto the internet at first, but I restarted my PC and it was fine.

It's also worth pointing out that the free internet chat support provided by McAfee 24/7 has proved invaluable to me over the past 3 years.

I know people have had problems with this software, but don't forget that not everyone submits a review on here, and it's always more likely that more negative reviews will be posted than reviews from people who've had no problems- so if you're pondering whether to take the plunge and you've got a fairly up-to-date PC, go for it!


Hats Off To The Buskers
Hats Off To The Buskers
Offered by adrians_records
Price: £3.49

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The View are on fire..., 22 Jan. 2007
This review is from: Hats Off To The Buskers (Audio CD)
An example of why British music really is the best in the world - just a magnificent debut album -up there with "Definitely Maybe" and "The Stone Roses". The View manage to mix the raw energy of The Libertines with the catchy hooks of Oasis. If the Arctic Monkeys had the hype but not quite the songs, The View are proof that sometimes, the hype can be justified.

Opening with "Comin Down", it's an unrelenting amazing opener complete with vocals resembling Rob Harvey of The Music. It really does set things in motion brilliantly. By the time you come to the end of "Same Jeans", 3 songs in, you know you're in for something special.

"Don't Tell Me" is perhaps one of the more Oasis-soundinng numbers, think a Scottish "Digsy's Dinner" and "She's Electric" and you're about there.

"Skag Trendy" and "The Don" boast the catchiest basslines on the album, it's a band at the top of their game some 6 songs in to their debut album!

Standout track is "Face For The Radio", an absolutely beautiful and heartbreaking acoustic song. Proof that The View can do both acoustic comedown and all out rock 'n' roll. Again, with Oasis-tinged lead guitar in the middle, by the end of "Face For The Radio", you realise this album is starting to stand out, and I mean, REALLY stand out.

The second half of "Hats Off To The Buskers" picks up with debut single "Wasted Little DJ's", another Libertines-esque track with a brilliant chorus. "Dance Into The Night" and "Claudia" wouldn't be too out of place on a Beatles album, whilst "Street Lights" reminds me of The Kinks.

Closing track "Wasteland" is a ska-esque all out 1000 beats a minute 2 and a half minutes, ensuring The View go out with a bang, by the time is draws to a close, your speakers will probably have spontaneously combusted.

There are times when we really need to embrace bands like The View who have shown more promise on their debut than has been seen in over 10 years. Bloc Party were overhyped. The Arctic Monkeys were overhyped.

Finally this time, a band who really do show that proof really is in the pudding.


Take That - The Ultimate Tour (Limited Edition) [DVD]
Take That - The Ultimate Tour (Limited Edition) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Take That
Offered by J&A_Goods
Price: £12.99

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely stunning, 23 Oct. 2006
I went to this gig, taking my rather excited girlfriend along. Though not myself a fan of Take That, I was absolutely blown away by the sheer brilliance of the whole show, the lights, the costumes, the technical wizardry, the songs, the originality of it all. If you were there yourself, this will make every hair on the back of your neck stand on end. Even if you hate Take That, I defy you to watch this and not admit that it was a damn good show. Outstanding.


Empire
Empire
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.43

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A distinctly average second album, 8 Sept. 2006
This review is from: Empire (Audio CD)
You'll remember it of course- when you were young and you used to think that on Christmas morning the best present was the BIG one, the one wrapped with massive ribbons and bows. But the fact is, no matter how much anticipation or "wrapping", you still can't change the disappointment when you actually get down to the present itself.

The point of all this is quite simple. Kasabian have got a great marketing team who by now have much of the UK music scene believing they are the biggest band in the world. But their downfall is where as on the debut album (Kasabian), the album was better than you imagined, with "Empire", I'm afraid you imagine it to be better than it is.

The boy's debut album was full of neat invention, clever studio trickery and outright anthems- any album with "Clubfoot", "LSF", "Processed Beats" and "Reason Is Treason" on would do any band proud. It was an organic album, one with a very cool relaxed ethos and one with although sketchy, worked as a whole brilliantly.

On "Empire" we find a very messy, noisy production with no real distinction between tracks, save for "British Legion" which, although serves as a welcome change of sound, is still only worthy of B-side material. Many of the tracks here are over-produced with distorted, reverbed vocals- and most of the time this is a distraction more than anything else.

Even album opener and first single "Empire" is still not in the same class as anything from the debut album- it's kind of a second cousin of LSF, and not the sort of cousin you want to see very often. What comes next is better. "Shoot The Runner" is one of the album highlights, an insanely catchy hookline and great chorus, if somewhat let down again by some poor production.

"Last Trip (In Flight)" is very very average and should again by confined a B-side, "Me Plus One" is a solid song but there's nothing magical about it.

"Sun Rise Light Flies" would be fantastic were it not a repeat of "Setting Sun" by the Chemical Brothers. "Apnoea" is an embarrassing mess, and "Seek And Destroy" is like Kasabian covers a Strokes B-side.

It's not all doom and gloom- album standouts are "Stuntman" which begs the question, if they can write this kind of superb song, why is the rest of the album so poor? Also, "By My Side" and "The Doberman" which is one of the best things they've ever recorded and offers some hope of better thing to come for the future.

For now though, it's back to the drawing board, and maybe less time focusing on egos?


X&Y
X&Y
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.98

6 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good things come to those who wait..., 21 Jun. 2005
This review is from: X&Y (Audio CD)
It took a while. When I first hear the opening synths of "Square One", I couldn't help finding the song interesting, yet hard to get into. Yet just as the song draws to a close, you hear Chris Martin pick up his acoustic and all of a sudden, you are suddenly uplifted with a soaring heartbreaking melody - a pattern which is apparent throughout "X & Y".
I can't help feeling that the people who have found this album a disappointment made up their minds too quickly. On the day of release, I would probably have given this album 4 stars, but in my head, it would have been closer to 3. This album defines the term "grower". Please please please give it a chance before drawing any conclusions, and I can promise that after a few listens, the subtle constructions of the songs, and their ability to give you both a rush and a tear will work their magic.
There are no songs as immediate as on previous album "A Rush Of Blood To The Head" - certainly no outright anthems, save for "Fix You" which is not only the best moment on the album, but the best thing Coldplay have recorded. By the time it draws to a close at nearly five minutes, you feel you've been taken on a epic beautiful journey.
There is an overwhelming sense of paranoia with this record. It's at times almost like Martin is struggling to come to terms with his unique talent. It's an album based largely on synths and keyboards and loops, rather than guitars.
Other highlights include "What If" - a classic Coldplay ballad with soaring Beatles-esque strings at the end, "X & Y", which is another moment of brilliance ,as is album closer, "Twisted Logic" which basks in Radiohead-like chords.
The album works brilliantly as a whole and really does feel like the first album to be a complete works of Coldplay. It takes time to get into, time to enjoy, and time to love. But when the hype has died down, one thing will still stand up as a work of genius. And it's this - "X & Y".


Speed of Sound
Speed of Sound
Offered by nagiry
Price: £10.88

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not mindblowing..., 27 April 2005
This review is from: Speed of Sound (Audio CD)
I remember the day it happened, the first time I heard "In My Place" on the radio, and I thought, this is the best song Coldplay have ever written. I was therefore slightly disappointed to hear "Speed Of Sound" which did not live up to my expectations. For a start, it's piano-lead riff is too similar to "Clocks", it's too long and its melody is too predictable. The thing with Coldplay is they are such a good band, any song is going to sound great. But they can do much much better than this. Here's to the album!


Silent Alarm
Silent Alarm
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £4.08

3 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing rather than dazzling, 14 Mar. 2005
This review is from: Silent Alarm (Audio CD)
The lesson never seems to be learned really. When a band receives so much hype and anticipation as Bloc Party did prior to release of their debut, can anyone ever really live up to that? The Stone Roses did, Oasis did, but so many have failed to do so. This is not a bad album by any means, and it does have its moments of magic, but they are few and far between and I actually found it quite a boring listen and found it very one dimensional in its ideas.


The Blower's Daughter
The Blower's Daughter

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 26 Dec. 2004
This review is from: The Blower's Daughter (Audio CD)
Like "Cannonball", Damien Rice really doesn't have to make a radio friendly version for people to love the song. It works best in its original state of raw beauty, Heart-stoppingly heartbreaking in parts, and a timeless classic, if a relatively unknown one!


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