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Amazon Customer "citizenerased83"

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Stars of CCTV
Stars of CCTV
Offered by Todays Great Deal
Price: £1.89

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Modern Revitalisation, Highly Recommended, 14 July 2005
This review is from: Stars of CCTV (Audio CD)
From the opening "Cash Machine" Hard-Fi sing loud their discontents and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Granted their message is one we've heard many a time before, as mentioned, from bands like 'The Specials' but this a modern revitalisation bringing their own unique touch to the ever-changing ska sound. By the time you reach "Tied up Too Tight" their sound has barely even begun to reach full flow yet already you know this is another big hit. Settling into the middle of the album "Gotta Reason" and "Hard to Beat" provide an upbeat contrast and bring their ska roots shining through.
While the album infectiously gets better with every listen there remains huge optimism as there certainly is room for improvement which leaves space for a sensational follow up album. Just as the album seems to lose direction we're quickly pulled in by the ballad like "Move on Now" which, while not having the lyrical power or sweeping beauty of many accomplished writers, has a startling chill out effect to gently bring the mood back down. "Better Do Better" (My Personal favourite) takes advantage of this break and explodes with heartbreak and resentment alternating between angry choruses and embittered verses all the while preparing us for the up surging "Feltham is Singing Out".
There is a sudden return to the upbeat with "Living for the Weekend" with the same in the club feel as "Hard to Beat" and another likely single for the masses. There is then a placid movement out with the slightly humorous "Stars of CCTV". All in all the throbbing bass lines and varying vocals are well balanced and with a welcoming poise between realism and bright and breezy. The debut from Hard-Fi is a must for almost anybody and is set to be the start of a successful future.


O
O
Price: £3.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Uplifiting, Definitive Debut, 17 April 2005
This review is from: O (Audio CD)
A truly defining album, I have waited a long time to hear such a provoking and beautiful masterpiece as offered by Damien Rice. From start to finish it brings you in and forces upon the listener all the experiences and emotions intended. A collection of tales of love from the romantic "Amie" to the bitter and dying "I Remember" and as deep and touching as the dying daughter on "Cold Water". Remarkable is Rice's ability to place into words what it is to love. Bringing out the truth's such as "You know when you've found it, There's something I've learned, 'Cause you feel it when they take it away" that are not only striking in themselves but also in his delivery.
The guest vocals of Lisa Hannigan are used with such precision to only increase the effect of Damien's own. The flow of the album is also something to be in awe of, the movement into love, through the troubling times, to the bitter endings and then like a good friend the off-subject uplifting finale. Noticeable again is Damien's view of the world on "Older Chests" rife with a feeling of nostalgia and the delightful line "Children scream, or so it seems, Louder than before. Out of doors, and into stores with bigger names." The most absorbing quality of the album is its familiarity, captivating so many aspects true to life that most listeners will have experienced some form of. My favourite aspect of the album is after building up a truly beautiful and deep love the deeply familiar sudden tear away on "I Remember".
The themes in 'O' aren't exactly new but are so commonly told with teenage angst or with a contradictory upbeat tune that it is somewhat refreshing to hear the sincere and striking vocals accompanied by the powerful and rich sounds of classical instruments. This accompanying sound most notably enriching on "Cheers Darlin'" with a beautiful movement into the tragic and gentle "Cold Water" where the use of vocals perfectly sets off the subject and gives a real sense of slipping away into the beyond. As already mentioned "I Remember" is truly the stand out track for me, Hannigan given a full verse which is performed gracefully then Damien's violent and angry reply showing the lack of need for more colourful language and building up the final climax to these tales of love and love-loss. We are then guided into the uplifting, engaging and unusual "Eskimo" providing a sweet come-down from the previous events.
SPOILER...
Though it doesn't stop there with rewards for the patient listener are two bonus tracks that continue this powerful talent Damien has already showcased. "Prague" is the only electric track on the album and offsets this dark and epic piece, accompanying Damien's frayed vocals and bursts of tortured screams. The final track "Silent Night" showcases Hannigan's talents in this harrowing take on the festive carol, bringing the entire experience to a gentle and provoking end. There is so much I am unable to describe about this album and this is only part of the beauty and talent demonstrated in this debut album.


With Teeth
With Teeth
Price: £5.99

9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Step In A New Direction, 17 April 2005
This review is from: With Teeth (Audio CD)
I listened to this album and as it started it didn't feel right, it wasn't as dark or angry as I'd expect. When I reached "You Know What You Are?" it just felt put on, like his anger wasn't real. Though please do not stop reading or dismiss this yet; when I reached "The Hand That Feeds" it all changed, it had that provocative and intense sound I have grown to love and expect from Reznor.
As the album continues it descends deeper, a little more tormented and slightly morbid but not the degree of previous albums. This does not however diminish its significance, with 5 years and the enormity of 'Fragile' it would be impossible to reach expectations. The resulting album is hardly comparable to the said previous album as it has taken a new direction and rather than dwell on all that could have been (pun intended) I suggest we relish in the greatness of this album in this new direction. I hate to see a good album lose merit for its musical and lyrical value because it doesn't meet previous criteria.
On second listen I realised why it is I found the start of the album so off putting. It is indeed difficult to not have ANY expectations and I assure you it wasn't a lack of lyrical power. It was pure expectation, the reason I had trouble is because this is still NIN but in a different wrapping. The start of the album is almost optimistic, more persevering than previous releases. However there is still some darker material for fans unable to adjust to the new sound, though still less industrial and more rock sounding. I will say that if you can't adjust I feel sorry as there is a lot of good material there and Reznor does not lose any of his untold ability for lyrics.
Clear stand out tracks are the fierce guitar based "The Hand That Feeds" and "Getting Smaller" as well as the more subtle thought provoking "Right Where It Belongs". Other faves are "Love Is Not Enough" and "Only". If you haven't pre-ordered this album then there's this button on the top-right of your screen. For all NIN fans this is a MUST album, you'll be sorry without it. If you want to discover what this NIN is all about I don't really recommend you start here.


Girl, Interrupted [DVD]
Girl, Interrupted [DVD]
Dvd ~ Winona Ryder
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.53

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful And Compelling Drama, 11 Mar. 2005
This review is from: Girl, Interrupted [DVD] (DVD)
A powerful drama, certainly more so for the feminine persuasion, that is both moving and inspiring. It is also, definitely, the best performances I have seen from both Jolie and Ryder so far. The supporting cast is also very good, not just Goldberg but all of the women support actually pull together well. The full extent of the film is not altogether developed but what has been is more than adequate.
The story is wholly believable and the build up to events is fairly well executed by Mangold and the film moves continuously with flash backs, and side events placed smoothly within the story and used expertly to fill in glimpses of Susanna's (Ryder) past to aid in the movement of the film. Mostly, the cast holds the film together; the notion of these people being more real than the outside world isn't portrayed too strongly, but as mentioned in the Amazon Review we have the more well-known "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" for that.
Overall a very good film, well acted, that stirs emotion and challenges our perception of the world (to what success is up to the viewer) but mostly makes a significantly heart-warming film that shouldn't be overlooked because of the resemblance to the said well-known classic.


Big [DVD] [1988]
Big [DVD] [1988]
Dvd ~ Tom Hanks
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £3.41

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Film That Brings Out The Child In Everyone, 11 Mar. 2005
This review is from: Big [DVD] [1988] (DVD)
A wonderful mix of humour and sensitivity. Tom Hanks is undeniably great as the 12 year old in an adult body, with little peculiarities that you would expect a 12 year old to have in the adult world. The way he is oblivious to certain subtleties in how we interact like flirting. Although the progression of the story is not all that believable it is, of course, not supposed to be taken seriously under those terms. All of this film makes for good humour, and in some ways fulfils our childish desires, like running round the toy store playing with the laser guns, having a trampoline in our apartment.
It also of course tackles bigger issues and also questions certain concepts, like marketing. Does it really work with children, of course our man Josh has all these great ideas (he is a child) and he challenges all the ideas of the Right Hand Man McMillan, who represents the competitive, arrogant businessman who appears never to have had a childhood and understands nothing but what the figures and statistics say. In all of this Big Bad World Josh still manages to woo the woman with his childish charm and his reactions to sex, before and after, are the clichéd reactions of a child.
But the underlying story while he is having all this fun is his longing to return home, and despite a child's wishes he still cares about his mother who is desperately seeking the return of her son, believing him kidnapped by the adult Josh. The whole film is a build up to make us fall deep into Josh's world appealing to our child inside, and then suddenly he has to make the choice between his love and his family (his real life). Hanks' performance is touching, and an early indication of his strength in a lead role. A superb film and one I'll never forget from my childhood.


Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge
Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge
Price: £4.07

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bitter and Ferocious New Hardcore, 11 Mar. 2005
'Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge' is a much more refined and consistent release than their debut album 'I Brought You My Bullets...". Such a marked improvement is this second album that it has risen through the ranks of Hardcore and I don't feel too presumptuous to say set them as one of the top in the genre. The developed sound can be extremely catching; "To The End" and "I'm Not Okay (I Promise)" demonstrate this strongest. What is most striking about MCR is their strong harmonies that produce their signature sound with Robert Way's biting and bitter retorts, flawlessly executed on "Thank You For The Venom". The most captivating element of the album is its seemingly endless energy; apart from the Interlude the album runs from start to finish with the pace of a runaway train, only brief pauses offering respite.
Normally on such exceptional sounding works there can be a loss in strength or sharpness of lyrics but you will not find that here. The lyrics supplement the music as perfectly as their switching of riffs builds up each verse and chorus. There are still many elements that MCR haven't tapped into but have demonstrated such as the build up of the softer "Cemetery Drive". This album really stands out from most hardcore albums and leaves enough for future albums to improve on so don't miss out on the rise to the top for MCR.


Hot Fuss
Hot Fuss
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £3.99

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Future Trend Setters?, 11 Mar. 2005
This review is from: Hot Fuss (Audio CD)
Considering all the commotion in the Indie genre with so many hot new bands blazing the scene it really should have been an uphill struggle for fame but the Killers just seemed to breeze through, immediately commanding airplay and media coverage. Such is the power and appeal of their debut album 'Hot Fuss'. It seems now you can't move far without running into The Killers, which brings about a new danger of overplay yet somehow the range provided in their first album I don't feel there is much danger there either.
The album itself isn't just your run of the mill and by the books set of indie, the type that has flooded the scene since the arrival of giants Coldplay. No, the Killers bring about some fresh new material, with striking lyrics that are easily identifiable with most of the outgoing population. The sound as a whole is on verge of being dramatic yet I don't mean that in a bad way, it's full of quick teases, highs and lows, revelations and much more. The use of gospel singers at the end of "All The Things That I've Done" has provided a highlight moment for many while the lyrics on "Mr Brightside" are purely tantalising and demonstrative of The Killers appeal. "Smile Like You Mean It" and "Somebody Told Me" provide a quicker tempo and more upbeat contribution while "Andy, You're A Star" and "Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll" are tending toward the epic. The remaining "On Top", "Midnight Show" and personal fave "Believe Me Natalie" are the fast-paced indie offering and ending on the more eccentric "Everything Will Be Alright".
There is plenty here to win you over and each and everyone has their favourites and I would be hard pushed to find a track that majority of fans would name as being weak. This is clearly the result of tremendous hard work and I would only expect a positive future ahead of them.


The Futureheads [CD + DVD]
The Futureheads [CD + DVD]
Offered by qualityfilmsfromuk
Price: £5.94

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Definite Mover And Shaker, 11 Mar. 2005
The futureheads have perfected an infectious sound combining the modern raw sounding indie/rock with often 3 part harmonies. The lyrics although a little weak are completely made up for in style, their quirky and short spasms create most of the unique sound you will come to associate with the Futureheads. Of course no band would be complete without the ability to perform and not only have the Futurheads proved themselves consistent they are more ferocious than their studio versions.
Based very much on the same formula the album becomes one of personal fave's rather than highlight tracks, although as a whole the album is definitely positive and I have found uplifting too. A notable quality in the album is the track order which provides a calm flow uncommon in most modern records. Such is the quality of this debut it is going to be testing to provide a superior follow up. For now, however, the Futureheads are simply undeniable and strikingly individual from most of its close contenders. I hope this album is merely a stepping stone to better things and until then this is a regular on my playlist.


Shameless
Shameless

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not their usual but still a worthy album release, 15 Feb. 2005
This review is from: Shameless (Audio CD)
After the refreshingly inaccessible sound on "Suicide Pact: Your First" it came somewhat as a surprise to hear the catchy and almost (Almost!) pop sound that pours out on "Shameless". Initially that's what I thought it was; a shameless effort to buy in on more royalties. You have to break away from Therapy's original direction and kind of take a step back. Then you'll see that this still has those Andy Cairns lyrics we love and as for the musical side, its kind of run off with the rock side of their ego's for a little bit. If your telling me that when you listened to this album you made comparisons to 'Kylie Minogue', 'Atomic Kitten' and 'S Club 7' or even the alternative toppers 'Wheatus' and 'Alien Ant Farm' well shame on you!
While I might agree that this is not the best album to come from Therapy? and granted I now know this album is destined to be overshadowed by the next release "High Anxiety" but it simply is not as bad as most fans will lead you to believe. It is far from disappointing, my personal faves are "Wicked Man", "Stalk & Slash" and "This One's For You" which I can only describe as senseless yet enjoyable rock offensives. If you can't laugh at the simple yet not quite so pointless "Dance" I'd ask you go get a sense of humour. Before I overkill the recovery of this album's reputation I'll simply sum up with this is not their best work but still a thoroughly enjoyable album which I don't believe to be a 100% serious outing and that you should simply treat it as a break and be thankful for the excellent follow-up album.


THE PENALYN
THE PENALYN
Offered by vsmusic_com_us
Price: £1.80

5.0 out of 5 stars Look for these to make an impact!, 21 Jan. 2005
This review is from: THE PENALYN (Audio CD)
Bought this immediately after-show without hesitation and, seriously, was not dissapointed. It doesn't cary as much of the fury of the live show but its more than enough. If you don't know them already i'm afraid its not easy to describe them to you except as a raw and ferocious rock outfit.
They easily please any lover of the likes of Hell is For Heroes. TEAM show a stronly unique sound and i can only suggest you obtain a sampler of the album ("Racing Line" the most obvious single of the album; "Myopia" the strongest of their sound; "Resonate South" the most radio-friendly track [If you can call it that]). Please show your support for this band and don't allow them to part before their chance has come.


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