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Lucioperca (Norwich, England)

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Standing on the Shoulder Of Giants
Standing on the Shoulder Of Giants
Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £3.94

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CONTROVERSIAL, 24 Dec. 2010
Ok I am gonna be a bit controversial here and excuse the pun in the word play but for me this album is head and shoulders above anything Oasis have done. I think they peaked with this album. Ok so there aren't a bunch of hit singles on here but the songwriting is really strong, they have stripped out a lot of that Mancunian angst in Liam's delivery that was starting to become tiresome and repetitive. The album kicks off with the truly superb F***in In The Bushes ... which is just about the rockiest hookline that the band have ever produced. That is followed by Go Let It Out ... I can't for the life of me understand why this didn't sell in bigger numbers when released as a single. The laconic swirling Who Feels Love follows next, a superb track and I wish Liam sang more tracks in this style. We then trip into good old Oasis style rock and roll with Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is .. which harks back to their earlier sound. Little James is a superb track and you don't need to be an Oasis fan to appreciate that this is just a great piece of work. We then move on to Gas Panic ... a personal favourite from the album that I used to listen to a lot in the car. Where Did It All Go Wrong is a song that wouldn't be out of place on Be Here Now .... its just a great song, well written and well sung by Noel. Noel then features again on Sunday Morning Call and if he ever needed evidence that he could make it on his own, those two tracks are all the proof he needs, it is a great song, with a superb blend of guitars. I Can See A Liar also has a feel of early Oasis but again with less of the angst in Liam's vocal delivery. The album closes with its longest track, Roll It Over and I would say its the only one on the album that retains any sort of hint of a homage to the Beatles.

Say what you like about the early ground breaking albums, for me, this is their best album by a country mile. I played it in my car on the way to and from work for about 8 months and there are more tracks of this album than any other in my iPod Oasis playlist.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 17, 2011 6:31 PM BST

The Rocker (Music From The Motion Picture)
The Rocker (Music From The Motion Picture)
Price: £17.46

4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good stuff, 24 Dec. 2010
I love the film and at the risk of repeating my DVD review, I think Raine Wilson gave a fantastic performance. That said, the film is inter-woven with such a catchy soundtrack with a number of really well written songs. Even the overtly camp Vesuvius performances are great. Its just a really good rocky album that is worth owning.

Drastic Fantastic
Drastic Fantastic
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.50

4.0 out of 5 stars Just a really good album, 24 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Drastic Fantastic (Audio CD)
It surprising how things can suddenly trigger you to like someone or something. I was watching "Buzzcocks" one evening when KT Tunstall was one of the contestants and was struck by just how intelligent, articulate and humorous she was. It made me think "Hmmmm lets have a listen to what this woman sounds like" and so I bought this album and have to say I was pleasantly surprised at how accomplished it is.

This is her second album and it gives me a sort of Robert Smith / The Cure kinda vibe about some of the tracks. It is just a very well written collection of 11 songs, with some really upbeat music. I play it quite often and 6 tracks in particular leap out and get regular play on my iPod - they are: Little Favours, If Only, Funnyman, Hopeless, I Don't Want You Now and Saving My Face. KT Tunstall is a rare talent in that she isn't driven by the glitz and glamour of pop stardom ....with her it is genuinely about the buzz of writing and playing her own music and it shows in the songs. I have become a fan.

Bronson [DVD]
Bronson [DVD]
Dvd ~ Matt King
Price: £3.15

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not For The Faint Hearted, 12 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Bronson [DVD] (DVD)
I found this film whilst channel hopping and just couldn't tear myself away from it. Tom Hardy is truly menacing as Michael Peterson, jailed for 7 years for a minor post office robbery but, owing to his penchant for violence and in particular, some shocking confrontations with prison authorities, he ends up spending over 30 years in jail in solitary confinement and indeed remains incarcerated today.

The film is narrated by Hardy as Bronson himself and somehow manages to add a light hearted note to an altogether far more sinister subject. In order for this to remain true to the facts and accurately portray the sinister, brutal and horrific lifestyle that Bronson has chosen for himself, this film is necessarily littered with some unbelievable violence, sufficient profanity to render it completely unsuitable for anyone who is sensitive to such things and yet, amid all this, Hardy is at his most menacing in the quiet moments. The deep staring looks, the groans and vocal creaks that he emits in moments of stress, the hunched seated stance with upper body muscles pumped to tension, the incredible flips from humour to complete horror and the silent tension that you sense is the precursor to almost nuclear explosions of violence against anyone within arms length. And yet amid all this it becomes apparent that he chooses this lifestyle, he revels in the confrontation and notoriety - he has found a place where he functions at his best. I would struggle to think of anyone who could out-perform Hardy in this role and there should also be a notable mention for Matt King (The Peep Show) who gives a great performance as Paul Daniels, a fellow inmate who gives Peterson a break during a brief period of release from prison and who comes up with the name of Charlie Bronson for him to assume as a bare-knuckle fighter.

The story of Michael Peterson (aka Charlie Bronson) is eye-opening, quite shocking but ultimately very sad. For me the worst scene comes at the end where , inside a solitary confinement cell, the manacled, naked Peterson is contained inside a locked cage so small he can only stand. Seeing him soaked in his own blood from his latest confrontation with prison officers made me feel quite upset for his parents, who must be in complete turmoil knowing that this is what has become of their son.

It says a lot that in a modern society, there is little we can do to manage a complete loose cannon like Peterson without having to resort to his own violent methods. Its up to you ...either watch it because you like a bit of blood and swearing and a good ruck .... or see through the shocking elements and think about some of the hidden issues that our public institutions have to deal with on our behalf. Love it or loathe it - this film should at least make you think about some of the enormous issues our prison authorities are being asked to manage.

Into the Wild [DVD] [2007]
Into the Wild [DVD] [2007]
Dvd ~ Emile Hirsch
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £3.75

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Performance by Hersch, 12 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Into the Wild [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
This is the antithesis of a Hollywood blockbuster. It is a slightly slow, drifting and somewhat troubling true tale of Christopher McCandless who, tired of modern society and the continual bickering of his parents, chucks it all in and decides to become a complete nomad in search of ultimate inner peace. It is clear from the outset that McCandless has long been wrestling with his own issues and demons before he reaches the point of departure, but he is determined on his course of action and always covers his tracks to avoid being dragged back to the life he has escaped. He assumes the pseudonym of Alexander Supertramp and begins a wistful journey across the USA, forging some slightly precarious relationships along the way. As a basic storyline it seems a bit thin, but the fact that this is based upon the detailed diaries McCandless kept throughout his journey gives it a really haunting quality. The story sucks you in to the point you have to keep watching to see how he ultimately fares in his quest.

Emile Hersch gives a towering performance as the enigmatic lead character and the picturesque backdrop of the stunning American wilds plus the melancholic commentary of the ultimately bereaved sister combine to make this a powerful and haunting tale. It made me feel hugely envious that he had the self-will and determination to just drop everything, escape the stress and hassles of modern life and live a truly nomadic existence but at the same time, you can't help but absorb the self-destructive madness of it all which ultimately leads to his demise in total solitude and wilderness.

There are a few films around that I can watch over and over despite knowing every detail of the story and I include this among them. Its fresh, its clinical, its compelling viewing and its an ultimately sad story of a young man who loses his way in a modern world when on face value he has many of life's opportunities at his fingertips. This is a quiet moment film ... no point putting this on when there are kids around or other noisy distractions. Find a quiet moment, put the phone on silent, get a drink and some snacks and just sit back and allow yourself to become momentarily lost in this great film.

Gran Turismo 5: PRIMA Essential Track Guide
Gran Turismo 5: PRIMA Essential Track Guide
by Akitomo Sugawara
Edition: Spiral-bound

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Invaluable book - worth every penny, 7 Dec. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this for £5 off Amazon a day or so after GT5 was launched (as I write this review it has sold out already). The package arrived in just 3 days and is a fantastic little book. A fact-packed book that basically gives you essential hints and tips on how to drive each track and with plenty of full-colour screen shot illustrations. The print size is a bit small, but then again it has to pack a lot of text and screen shots into a small A5 page. You get a chapter on the relative merits of the different drive set ups: front engine-rear wheel drive, front engine front wheel drive, all wheel drive, mid-engine rear wheel drive and rear engine rear wheel drive. Hints on how the camber settings can work for you and against you and tips on how to brake, steer and accelerate into and out of different types of corners. However, there is no specific detail on the various models of cars - the first couple of chapters are general driving hints and guidance on how to choose a set-up option. The vast majority of the book is about the tracks within GT5.

When you get into the real meat of the book, it goes through each of the GT5 tracks in sequence. The book is laid out in "Landscape" format and on the first page of each track you get an aerial map of the track layout, which is labelled with a series of numbered track points. On the page below you get a series of numbered sections that correspond to those track points, giving an explanation of how to tackle that feature and a colour screen shot to show you will be seeing in front of you. The added bonus is that you even get the plan and hints for the Top Gear track as driven by 'The Stig' and advice on how to deal with the corkscrew s-bend at Laguna Seca.

If I had to be picky I would say the text and screen shots are a bit small, but I guess printing it in A5 format keeps the costs down. If you have access to a colour photocopier or your home printer doubles up as a scanner, you could always zoom it up to A4. At the risk of being ultra-picky, there are some minor spelling and grammar errors which I suspect are a result of minor translation blips by the japanese author Akitomo Sugawara, it is all very very minor stuff and you can fully understand what is being said, but I just wanted to be honest and mention it. The best feature of this is the fact that it has been printed in landscape and is spiral bound, so it lays perfectly flat when opened and can also be propped up vertically A-frame style like a desktop calendar beside the screen when you are practising.

All in all, a great little handbook that is easily worth a lot more than the £5 that I paid for it. The tips inside have already shaved seconds off the best lap times I achieved at Nordwand and High Speed Ring when driving them in the Prologue version. This book has already become scarce since GT5 was released in the UK in Nov 2010 ... if you can get hold of a copy, buy it.

Satriani Live
Satriani Live
Price: £20.09

5.0 out of 5 stars A YouTube inspired purchase, 5 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Satriani Live (Audio CD)
Do yourself a favour ... go on YouTube and search for Joe Satriani Summer Song and you will find a video clip of about 8mins 30 secs called Summer Song (Live 2006) ... that is basically a video clip from this very gig. Sit back and watch that YouTube clip and then try to explain why you wouldn't want to buy the album. This is a stunning live performance and makes you wonder how he gets so much sound out of a guitar whilst making it look so effortless. I downloaded this album just to have that track on my iPod .... but don't get me wrong, its not all about Summer Song. This is a virtuoso performance by a simply stunning guitar player with some tunes that really rock and a talent that only comes along once in a while. He is in a league of his own.

Crystal Planet
Crystal Planet
Price: £3.94

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly Infectious Album, 5 Dec. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Crystal Planet (Audio CD)
As a late comer to Joe Satriani I decided to buy a bundle of his albums in one go and of the six I purchased, this made the least immediate impact on me. However, having played it on the car hi-fi to and from work for the past 4 weeks, it has really grown on me and I regard this as a great album and I really can't pick a single hole in it. It is one of those albums that grows on you. Some of the hooks in these tracks are subtle and some are right out there in front of you. Up In The Sky, Lights Of Heaven, Ceremony, Secret Prayer and Psycho Monkey are the tracks that really do have the catchiest hooks in them but all in all, this album is packed with 15 great pieces of Satriani at his finest. Even the peaceful, nay melancholic closing track ZZ's Song is a lovely relaxed 3 minutes of Satriani just strumming melodically. If you are thinking about getting into The Satch, I would save this album for your second or third purchase The Extremist and hear Joe at his rocking finest and then progress onto the rest of his catalogue. All in all this album is well worth every one of the 5 stars I have awarded.

Flying In A Blue Dream
Flying In A Blue Dream
Price: £5.25

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Love most of it .., 5 Dec. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Flying In A Blue Dream (Audio CD)
I have sometime listened to some Joe Satriani stuff and thought to myself ..."all he needs to do is lay some vocals over this music and he would be even more awesome" ? So I was quite surprised to discover this album had some vocals but when I played it, I seemed to become one of Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse's self-righteous brothers. "Oi !! Satriani !! Nooooo!!" I had immediately found myself thinking "That sounds so wrong!!" Only on hearing the tracks with vocals did I realised Satriani doesn't need anything to detract from his awesome shredding. Four tracks here have had vocals laid over them and in my own opinion they only really sound right on the track Ride ... I find myself skipping past the other three when they come on the car stereo. Perhaps I am over-reacting and others will balance out my own view on this subject. However, once I got past that particular trauma, I have to confess that this is a superb album. Not quite in the class of The Extremist, but its side by side with Surfing WIth The Alien. Its just such a listenable album. I have dumped 6 Satriani albums onto a CD and play it on shuffle in the car ... this man is a living legend and this album delivers in spades. Many Satch fans will love the vocals tracks ... each to their own. Buy this album and judge for yourself ... there are 18 tracks on here so even if you don't like the vocals there are still another 14 stunners. This is well worth owning and I am glad I have become a Satriani convert - even if it did take until I reached my 40's.

Taken (Extended Harder Cut) [DVD] [2008]
Taken (Extended Harder Cut) [DVD] [2008]
Dvd ~ Liam Neeson
Price: £1.26

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't Watch if you have teenage daughters, 21 Nov. 2010
I find myself in agreement with some comments in other reviews. This is definitely a movie that brings mixed emotions. It is a great action movie that basically tells the story of a mans search for his daughter after she goes missing in France during a vacation tour of Europe. Liam Neeson is so well suited to this role as a ruthless former special agent who uses all his skills and techniques to track her down. He isn't afraid to crap on anyone who gets in his way ...even some life long friends. The way he gets information out of a good friend working for the French Secret Service is a particularly shocking and unexpected twist. However, the scene where he illicits information out of one of the culprits by means of electrocution is slightly amusing and horrific at the same time. The phrase "I need to you to focus" followed by 240 volts going through his body via two 6 inch nails that Neeson has stabbed into his thighs makes quite a memorable scene.

However, behind all the kapow and action and car chasing is a very real and accurate portrayal of the brutalities of the sex trade. Scores of teenage girls kept compliant by drugs and brutality and imprisonment by gangs of eastern european henchmen. If you get past the action, this underlying accuracy is quite shocking when it dawns on you that it is going on around us. Every time I watch this film I always end up vowing that neither of my daughters are going on a back-packing holiday.

Watch it for the action because it is an entertaining film but be aware that you may emerge from it with a bit more sympathy for some of the women in our society that have become drug addicts as a result of being exposed to the sex trade. Its a bit of hollywood styled hard hitting action set against a stark back drop of harrowing, close-to-the-bone reality. This is 90 minutes you won't regret spending in front of your TV.

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