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Reviews Written by
Mr. M. L. Hawes "Mitchmusic"
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Bon Iver
Bon Iver
Price: £7.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Step Forward...., 26 Aug. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bon Iver (MP3 Download)
The first Bon Iver album was an extremely personal, heartfelt collection of songs from a man who following a traumatic break up, locked himself away in a cabin in the backwoods and recorded some wonderful songs.

For the second Bon Iver release, (full album), you still find delicate touches, songwriting of the highest order and a tenderness found in very few places, but what you also get, in my opinion, is a standard of songwriting hinted to on 'Blood Bank' the EP that followed 'For Emma'.

I guess one of the loveliest things about this record is it is a real album, a work that has a beginning and a well thought out closer, with absolutely stunning songs from beginning to end. The lightness of touch, the warmth, the soulfulness of the delivery of the stunning lyrics, makes this a record you will treasure for a long time to come.

Simply lovely.


Tocsin
Tocsin
Price: £7.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pure German Gothic greatness, 8 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Tocsin (MP3 Download)
Xmal Deutschland were one of the amazing roster of bands that formed the 4AD / Situation 2 roster. Undoubtedly sitting on the goth side of the 80's, Xmal added a fine cross over between the polished sound of ZTT's Propaganda and the ethereal musings of Cocteau Twins.

The songs on this album are all pretty strong and as with all product pre digital era it works as an album and therefore should be purchased as such.

This truly is a lovely dark record and along with a host of other bands to me prove that rather than being a musical void of pappy pop nonsense, there were a host of brilliant and adventurous bands who combined electronica with rock from a dark side that sought out a more emotional view of the era.

A great album from a very good and probably little heard band. The words, 'suck it and see' come to mind.


Walk On
Walk On
Price: £5.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Late period AOR wonderment!, 8 Aug. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Walk On (MP3 Download)
If you're familiar with the works of say Journey, REO Speedwagon and even Hysteria period Def Leppard then this will be right up your street.

Boston recorded one of the most famous of the AOR/MOR tracks in 'More Than a Feeling', but it is highly likely that you may not have gone much further than this into their repertoire.

Walk on has been known to me since I bought the cassette.... yes, a tape, probably 10 years or so ago. It was one of those albums I just had to have in the car as it delivered proper driving rock, beautiful harmonies laced around some meaty back drops.

Songs of love and wonder are melded together to form an almost concept album kind of flow that has a definite beginning and an end. What you get is a brilliant example of why they do deserve More Than a Fleeting Feeling and how, in spite of their key vocalist being absent (thank you fellow reviewers) that Boston are a band that still bear repeated listens today.


The Curse Of Zounds + Singles
The Curse Of Zounds + Singles
Price: £7.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic post punk quality, 21 July 2011
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If ever there was an album bought on the strength of reviews that actually lives up to the general consensus, then this is it.

Unless you follow any of the reviews I've put in thus far then it's highly unlikely that you'll ever hear of this and that would be a terrible shame. What we have here is a band who combine the spirit of post punk, the Crass / Wire / Minutemen ethic of minimalism combined with strong lyrics and it works tremendously well.

The songs are generally short, sharp and very catchy with astute lyrics that tell of social pressure, inequality and yet embody a spirit of honest positivity that will keep this on your ipod for a long time.

The reviews are absolutely spot on so go for it, especially at that price.


My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky [Explicit]
My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky [Explicit]

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yet more wondrous noise from Swans, 18 July 2011
Michael Gira's decision to re-form Swans clearly has caused a fair amount of controversy judging by the reviews of this record.

I must confess, my first thought was why? But on hearing this, I am damn glad to hear that they're back in full force, pulling in all the worldly elements to make a wall of noise that could compete with the pulling power of a black hole.

For me, they are one of the most important bands to ever appear from the No Wave / New Wave scene in New York and whilst they are rarely lauded in the same way as say Sonic Youth, they are no less important.

This their most recent album, may not scale the dizzy heights of WHite Light or Great Annhialator, but it is good, very, very good and in a world where the mundane, drivel of mainstream pop endangers the existence of modern music, we should embrace Swans and thank them for reminding us of how moving art and rock can be when played at unspeakable volume.


Wasting Light
Wasting Light

4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great, 18 July 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wasting Light (MP3 Download)
The Foo Fighters are a curious phenomenon. Fronted by the nicest man in rock, with a fine line in pop rock songs, the Foos have now established themselves as one of the most popular bands on the live circuit.

Since the first album, Foos albums have generally contained great songs, but have not necessarily always made for great albums, so in essence a singles band, although the previous record, Echos, Silence.. was undoubtedly their most complete work.

Wasting Light, kind of returns to the form found in Nothing Left To Lose and One By One, some absolutely killer songs wrapped around some less so. Don't get me wrong, it's still a great record, it just lacks a little cohesion and form that Echo's Silence had.

I hate individual downloaded tracks from albums as opposed to downloading the entire work, so rest assured that whilst this is not the Foo's best album, it's still darn good and worth spending the money on and persisting with.


London Calling
London Calling

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the all time great albums, 13 July 2011
This review is from: London Calling (MP3 Download)
For some The Clash failed to excite when they left the punk movement behind after their self titled debut of fierce but very well played noise. But with punk only lasting 100 days, where could a band go from there where they clearly were not all show, but had two musical power houses in their ranks with plenty to say?

So, following the not quite so exciting 'Give 'Em ENough Rope', back came the clash with this album of contrast, quality, excitement and variety. Strummer and Jones saw punk as opening doors to the possibilities of music where some artists became trapped in the very limiting nature of the genre. On London Calling, they captured the sound of the city, a moment, a feeling and a combination of influences that had shaped their musical upbringing and that they felt represented London and how the UK was.

There's rock, reggae, ska all rolled into an album that literally has no flaws. It is one of those albums that as a dabbler or purist, you simply have to own. I'd argue that you probably need the CD or vinyl rather than the download, simply because you will want this on show. The cover itself is one of the most enigmatic ever put into print and I long for those days where the cover art was almost as important as the music held within, it formed the whole.

Anyway, I digress. There are lots of albums reviewed by fans out there, that get that 5 star rank. Yes I am a fan, but at the time I did not quite get the essence of a scene that had moved away from the scary nature of the Pistols and had morphed by then into a wondrous tapestry of sounds that spoke not only for the leather and safety pin brigade, but all of London's and British youth who wanted something that represented how they felt.

That it sounds so completely fresh even now, speaks volumes for the quality of the original work.

Untouchable.


Real Tears For Sale
Real Tears For Sale

4.0 out of 5 stars A solid trad Marillion effort, 8 Jun. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Real Tears For Sale (MP3 Download)
I have to say first out that I too have been a fan of Marillion, but this goes back to the days of Fish.... so in the eyes of the modern Marillion fan, I am a heathen, a relic.

Anyway, this track is actually very listenable, has a decent depth and tune and certainly has me tempted to buy the album. Surely the aim of any giveaway single.


Love [w/bonus tracks]
Love [w/bonus tracks]
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spread the Love., 8 Jun. 2011
Love are one of those bands that you'll encounter in the 'classic albums' list of just about everyone who claims to be serious about music. The 'classic album' in question being their immense and dark work, 'Forever Changes'. An album I've owned for a fair stretch of time and one that rarely slips from my ipod.

So, this Christmas, I treated myself to this album, the self titled Love. First thing to say is it's actually a more straight forward work than Forever Changes with quite sharp, punky songs that are not tinged with that sorrowful dark side that works it's way through their more famous work.

I guess one of the key things to say is that there are number of songs that have been covered by other bands on here, from the Ramones to Hawkwind highlighting their influence.

Arthur Lee is one of those songwriters that rarely seems to get the credit he deserves, but it has to be said that this and Forever Changes puts them, for me at least, up their with the Beach Boys, Hendrix and even the Beatles in terms of their importance as shaping the sounds of the decades that followed.

Best way of showing your appreciation then is to do what I did: buy the album and play it to death....simples.


The Octopus
The Octopus

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More Amplifier brilliance., 8 May 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Octopus (Audio CD)
Amplifier are one of those bands who sadly carry the title of deserve so much more, or enormously underrated or, should sell millions.

This, their third proper album is as brilliant as their predecessors, but goes that bit further, with more depth, more emotion, more detail if you like to create a soundscape that will really reward the listener with each and every listen. It's one of those records that cannot truly be pigeonholed, although some reviewers seem to be lovingly calling it prog.

Well, if it's prog, then so are Muse because for me it's as close to them as it is distant from the nightmarish works of ELP or Yes who for me, merely indulged the listener with nods to how great they were at their particular instrument and filled each song with ridiculous solos that took you closer to sleep than some mythical land.

Amplifiers music is for now, not some 70's pastiche. It's as powerful as any rock band with a touch and dexterity that will allow just about anyone to love what they hear.

A double album of incredible work that absolutely deserves your attention.

For goodness sakes if you love rock, you need and must have this.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 10, 2011 4:46 PM BST


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