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4.5 out of 5 stars
Ether Song: Limited Edition
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£8.02+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

Turin Brakes is one of those excellent British bands that hasn't gotten much attention in the American mainstream yet, along with the guys in South, Elbow and others. And after their shimmery space-folk album "Ether Song," their second, we can see that this is totally undeserved.

A spacey organ buildup, a trippy beat and a folky guitar open the first song, "Blue Hour." This song sets the tone for the rest of the album, with its mix of spacey shoegazer and folk-rock, set to angsty lyrics about "let the sun be done/let the air wash the city clean." It's one of those songs that gets deeper and more layered the more you listen to it.

But the album really catches your attention with the soft, rising "Long Distance," which is the softest song that Muse never wrote. And in some songs like "Self Help" and "Panic Attack," the boys eschew the spacepop angle in favor of some mild spacerock. Nothing too hard, just a ringing electric guitar that weaves into the music seamlessly.

With those new additions, it's obvious that Turin Brakes is trying out new things, rather than sticking slavishly to what got them famous in the first place. The only flaw is that they seem a bit undecided what direction to take, and so "Ether Song" feels a bit unguided. But it's somehow pleasant to hear Ollie Knights singing in his slightly wobbly voice, "Remind myself that I'm not just in it for the money." Refreshing.

This U.K. duo started off with acoustic guitar, bass and drums, augmented by some low-key keyboard that adds a delicate edge to otherwise ordinary rock instrumentation. And in "Ether Song," Knights and multitalented bandmate Gale Paridjanian are experimenting with a less folk, more rock sound. Fortunately, they know how to mesh electric guitar into the instrumentation.

With music like that, it's inevitable that the songs are a bit on the downbeat side; Knight and Paridjanian's songs tend to be focused on love and dissatisfaction, only breaking out for the poignant "Little Brother," which is all about someone ELSE's loneliness. It's the sound of unhappiness, which could be optimistic if given a little shove.

These twentysomething musicians -- who recently released their third album "Jackinabox" -- are in good form in their second space-rock-folk album, "Ether Song."
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on 8 June 2015
I love Turin Brakes and love their sound, but here I did find it all sounding a little bit samey. Now, you may argue, yeah but they should be samey, that's what makes them them. But, when you hear a great band like Turin Brakes on other albums you feel distinction and differentiation betwen each track giving each track a special cherished feel. There were some here but as it progressed started to make me yawn, Sorry!
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on 25 March 2003
Following on from the incredible Optimist Lp, Turin Brakes just get better! I went to watch them in Sheffeild and they played many tracks from this album- it was awesome. Its got a slightly more rocky feel than the optimist but doesnt abandon those of us future boy fans either! The extra bonus Cd adds a touch that really tops off the whole album. There's no way you can be a credible fan and miss this one. Buy it now, or forever hold your peace!
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on 8 March 2004
I loved this album before I saw Turin Brakes live. After that, it became a full-blown obsession. This band has more umph (if that's a word) than Coldplay, I am Kloot, Aqualung etc.. but if you like any of them, you'll love this. The song which first stood out for me is "Stone Thrown". It has delicious lyrics. Really though, everything on this album is good. The first song, "Blue Hour", really is how the whole album makes you feel -like it's not quite night and not quite day. I could go on forever, but just buy it, you definitely won't regret it. Oh, and while you're at it - buy Optomist too. It is equally wonderful.
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on 9 November 2003
If you like your acoustica, then this is the epitome of great acoustic guitar playing. Its stylish with a modern edge, and is a great CD to listen to. I can really see this appealing to a lot of people, whatever your taste in music as its the sort of thing you can lisen to intently, or just have on casually in the background. Turin brakes have a flair of songwriting, combining understated lyrics to soft original melodies which makes for a great album.
Although its not like 'The Door' so much, and more like the single 'Painkiller' its still retained the use beautiful lyrics that out find on their first album.
I found that a lot of the tracks were 'growers' but nevertheless this is a truly great album that well worth a listen.
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on 23 October 2003
Being a fan from their outset, Ether Songs is nearly as good as the debut album The Optimist... However... Having purchased the original Ether songs CD I don't see a reason to repackage the album with 6 extra tracks that don't do it justice. Play the original cd or buy the original version. Ollie and Co should have released 5 Mile as a single in months to come as a taster for their next album (and then included it on that album). Surely they could have released one of the hit tracks off the original as a single instead of 5 mile? Moan over they are still great, but hope they haven't sold their soul to the corporate dollar! Mad Cyril Leicestershire.
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on 3 April 2014
What more can I say, just an amazing album from an amazing band. Listened to it loads and its up there with Outbursts, which I think is one of their best!!
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on 8 May 2014
I had a copy of this before, but after it got lost, I missed it, so I bought it again. Love it!
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on 13 March 2015
This was bought to give as a gift. It arrived on time the recipient was happy and so am I.
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on 11 January 2016
pleased with customer service. the record is great too.
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