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Customer reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
Another World [VINYL]
Format: Vinyl|Change
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VINE VOICETOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 October 2008
This precious gem of an EP quite took me by surprise.

Apparently a stepping stone along the way to new album
'The Crying Light' due for release sometime next year.

2005's Mercury Prize winning collection 'I Am A Bird Now'
tore our nerves to shreds with its' raw revelatory exposure.

'Another World' plunges us once again into strange and
turbulent emotional territory.

Opening track 'Another World' is every bit as beautiful
as his masterpiece 'Hope There's Someone'.
Spare and bare and disturbing in its' stark simplicity.

'Crackagen' has a fragile, jewel-like melody, carried
sublimely by the gorgeous piano and string accompaniment.

'Shake The Devil' (like the artwork) is the stuff of nightmares.
The childlike rhyme concealing a dark and terrifying heart.
From its' quiet ambiguous opening to the raucous bluesy
ending this is a very fine song indeed.

The halting progress of 'Sing For Me' belies another fine
composition which manages both to bewilder and beguile.

Final track 'Hope Mountain', with its' elusive folk-like
melody, minimalist piano and brass arrangement and half-heard
whisperings concludes this extraordinary recording.

Far to the left of the middle of the road and all the more
wonderful because of it, Mr Hegarty and his otherworldly voice takes
a few more tentative steps towards some form of rare tranforming light.

The Wolf is willing to follow.

Highly recommended.
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on 17 October 2008
Returning from the nu-disco of Hercules and Love Affair, 'Another World' finds Antony & The Johnsons revisiting the themes and cabaret moods of Mercury-winning breakthrough, 'I Am A Bird Now'. Having such a singular singing style is both a gift and a burden: while Hegarty made the transition to the dancefloor with apparent ease, the return to the niche territory of his first two albums may wear the casual listener's patience thin. We are back in Hegarty's emotional universe, an oppressively personal place dominated by interlocking themes of transgenderism and emancipation (emotional and physical). While overcoming repressive gender categorisations could make for quite a universal musical subject matter, 'Another World' is suffused with such a acute sense of melancholy and isolation to sometimes render Hegarty's music rather impenetrable. There is no denying the beauty of the music, but sometimes he seems locked in a certain emotional register that can be repetitive. While technically impressive, the quivering vulnerability of Antony's vocal is so invariable the listener is in danger of becoming immune to its powers.

With a Japanese transvestite performance artist adorning the stark black and white cover artwork, 'Another World''s title is misleading, as it is hard to see this EP as a departure. In the main, the Johnsons brand is ostensibly unchanged: the subtle shadings and embellishments very much backgrounded by Anthony's fragile vocals and piano. Things do, however, get weirder on the skeletal gospel of 'Shake that Devil', which pits Anthony's tremulous singing over stark, ominous drones, a big rockabilly breakbeat and saxophone squeals. Shades of Morphine and Angelo Badalamente suggest new, swampier tangents to come on their next full length. Otherwise it's honestly much of a sameness, and none of the songs here improve upon what Anthony & The Johnsons have done before.
First published at The Line of Best Fit
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on 22 October 2008
I was so very much looking forward to the release of this EP, with the hope of Antony getting back to what he does so well after collaborations with Hercules, Bjork, Rufus Wainwright and so on. After listening to it through the first time I was rather unimpressed and listened to it again, and again. And still my perception didn't change.

It is quite sparse and that doesn't always work. Introspective can be interesting as long as you take the listener with you. This EP sounds like nothing more than Antony in his studio with a few mates, plonking out a few tunes. It is definitely not a progression from his last album. There is a sense that he wants to go down a far more avant garde route, but is concerned as to whether he will be able to take his fans with him. As a result this EP feels as if it falls between two stools.

I'd even go as far as saying this is dull and certainly didn't connect with me emotionally - unlike Hope There's Someone and You Are My Sister which had me in tears. I don't hold out much hope for the album if the material falls into this camp.
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on 31 October 2008
there comes an ep, this ep. i love it. i can't think of a more beautiful cd cover than this one, with a picture of legendary theatrical butoh dancer Kazuo Ohno. the tracks themselves are strange, as another reviewer put it, but i think they're more confident and complex than the ones on 'i am a bird now'. there's less tremor in the voice, maybe, but this underplaying is gorgeous, coy and intriguing. it is also a more experimental set of songs, not requiring the lush gorgeous emotional heavyweight tunes of 'hope there's someone' and 'fistful of love', instead, and from way off the park so that i for one couyldn't see it in my rearview OR my side mirrors, comes a song like 'shake that devil' which sounds like a folk song, a voodoo chant, free jazz and blues all tightly packed, rolled up and smoked in a ny club. love this ep.
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on 20 January 2009
There is only one problem with this EP - it's not long enough! I randomly bought this and loved it straight away. It's well worth a listen. Enchanting. Haunting. Unique.
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