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Reviews Written by
Andre M. Ramos (Portugal)

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Price: £11.15

8 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointment... oh..., 1 Nov. 2006
This review is from: Ys (Audio CD)
First of all let me say that it makes me so sad to give Joanna only 3 stars... but I have to be fair.

After hearing The milk-eyed mender album and the Ep Walnut Whales for the first time my life changed. For an entire winter I listened almost exclusively to Joanna, taking in the marvellous lyrics, the clever word games, the amazingly crafted way that she plays the harp, her creative voice.

Let's talk about the album, though. To begin, let's talk about the songs that I already new by seeing her live in portugal and hearing recordings on foreign radios: Sawdust&Diamonds, Cosmia and Only Skin. These three songs, that were absolutely moving and amazing by their own, played on harp ( only skin had an harpsichord version also) just don't get better in the album, in fact they lack in the magic they had being so simple and beautiful live.

The main problem in the album, for me, is the experimentalism that can be heard on the orquestra arrangements ( the only one that sounds good is Monkey &bear with its disney-esque fantasy sound)... to me the arrangements sound like a bad genetic experience between Tori Amos' 'gold dust' string arrangements and Zeena Parkins avant-garde experimentalism. It's not that I don't enjoy it, but they don't flatter Joanna's voice (wich is very special to be that heavily accompained by violinis and metals) and, above all, kill the magnificent harp tunes. There's just too much going on and though the lyrics and vocal lines are just as endearing as they were, it's difficult to get that sense of amazement as i did in her other works.

I'm glad to see that she didn't do versions of her old walnut whales songs, because I wouldn't be able to take it.. this is just my opinion, I'm sure people will disagree with me. I already bought it, by the way, so change it Joanna eheheh

Hai! [Limited Edition]
Hai! [Limited Edition]
Offered by barneys_cds
Price: £47.03

3 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What's up with you?, 17 Dec. 2003
This review is from: Hai! [Limited Edition] (Audio CD)
BR> People tend to scream for something new, try and reach high on innovatove, different and better ways to express what they have to say, and sometimes some tied-up bastards just listen to some albums and go: 'oh, it's too experimental!'. WAKE UP!! that's what it is supposed to be! Or did you want it to sound like Juju or any other album by the Banshees or the creatures??? BR> The album is not, as some will say, a great effort to stand out. Siouxsie's voice is getting more and more emotive as she grows old, and some goths don't understand you don't need keyboards sounding like, bleark, evanescence, to make a beautiful goth album. Not that this is a goth album...it's just a very very very good one.
Minimalistic music always was my dish. I love how people make music so simple. With just one word we can express so much! And Japanese are masters at this, or they wouldn't have invented their 'haikus'. eheh.
THis album is absolute beauty, from the sometimes frantic rage of the drums, minimalistic use of other instruments like marimba and piano and siouxsie's amazing, raw and somewhat mellow voice.
Try listening to 'seven tears', 'imagoró' and 'further nearer' and you'll understand why they did what they did, and PLEASE, open your mind. Nothing is too experimental, that's the way to live. Otherwise we'd never listen to Godspeed you Black emperor, for example.
Blessed be.


9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who ever told you that the devil is a man??, 10 Oct. 2003
This review is from: DRINK ME (Audio CD)
If QA's first album, 'taxidermy', was one of the mortal sins praised by catholic church, it would be lust; if 'drink me' was also a mortal sin, it would be envy.
The difference between both albums is like the one between night and day; 'taxidermy' is absolutelky beautiful, soaked in dreamy melodies, sometimes struck by raging guitar chords and breath-taking backup vocals by k.j.garside; 'drink me' is rough were the previous was soft, hard riffs and violence driven gorgeousness.
When I first heard the album I was really disappointed, because I was expecting the contained beauty of songs like 'pretty polly', 'mandraykin' and the most beautiful and soul-.breaking song 'weeds'. But what I found were melodies burried under tons of rough sound, waving guitars and what seemed to be a lack of arrangements for keyboards. Happily I didn't give up and listened to the album over and over.
Once you start to discover the beauty and simplicity of some of the songs, hidden inside that big wall of sound, you find the most beautiful songs ever. K.J.Garside also suffered some changes in her voice: she really wants to show people that she can scream better than anyone; sometimes sweet, sometimes greedily bitter, she goes through the songs like a ghost.
While in 'taxidermy' the lyrics were a bit abstract, now the understanding of the whole album is made a little easier; some of the songs are absolute perls: 'siamese almeeida' with its stonr chorus, 'razorblade sky' ( I started crying when I listened to this song... her voice is so full of pain) and 'sleeping pill', that could easily win the award for best song of the year.
If you want to rock out and just explore your darker side, QA serves you songs like 'a bed of roses', 'under a floorboard world', 'pretty like drugs' and 'kitty colar tight'. If you're the quiet type, try listening to the aching 'for I am the way' or ' my silent undoing'.
The only thing in the album that really makes me sad is the photography and design of the package... they got a step backwards in that department, away from the amazing art in 'taxidermy', made by Martina Hoogland-Ivanow. It's a pitty, because the band's image is unique in today's alternative music.
All in all, this is one of the best albums in A.music; Queen Adreena and Diamanda galás are here in this world to show us that, sometimes, fear and rage are good things.
I hope this review was hopeful:)

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