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Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
Slow Dazzle
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on 20 March 2011
For my money this is one of the top five albums of the seventies, and certainly my favourite Cale album. What really distinguishes it is not the songwriting as such (although that is frequently excellent) but the sheer blood'n'guts emotion in Cale's voice. Darling I Need You is almost unbearably painful to hear, while the intensity of the vocal performance on the astonishing cover of Heartbreak Hotel has to be heard to be believed. The other side of the coin is the chillingly dispassionate spoken word vocal on closing track The Jeweller, which describes a day in the life of an average ordinary-Joe whose eye is mysteriously transforming into a vulva. This is rock music, Jim - but not as we know it.

My two favourite tracks are the opening pair - Cale's tribute to his musical hero Brian Wilson, 'Mr Wilson', unfolds in beautiful, elegaic fair-ground textures tinged with unmistakeable melancholy, while Taking It All Away is simply a mesmirisingly beautiful and heart-broken pop song which for some reason I always imagine being used as the soundtrack to a documentary about bailiffs.

An essential cornerstone of the seventies rock cannon - buy it
One person found this helpful
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on 20 August 2017
great musicianship - john cale at peak of powers with his Island trilogy
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on 6 February 2016
One of my favourite John Cale Albums, may feel a little commercial but well produced and good listening.
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on 3 April 2005
For a mere 34 mins album, it's no mean feat to anticipate punk by a couple of years(check out Guts), Goth by 5 years(check out Heartbreak Hotel and the Jeweller, even if the latter is only a story spoken over music.
It also contains an excellent example of later Country Rock(Not the Loving Kind),Indie Britpop(Mr Wilson & Ski Patrol)and harder jazz funk(Darling I Need You).
Just to complete the set,Dirty ass Rock N Roll sounds Southern Fried or Chicago black blues, not our pale Celtic Piscean bard(yes, I'm Pisces,too, so had to get THAT one in!). Rollaroll fits across Goth,Punk and Hard Rock,and Taking it All away dips in and out of Hard Rock,slower Grunge and later ghetto-style early 70's Motown & Funk.
I think Amazon should be exterminated for selling the greatest album of all time for £3.33-but NOT until enough of you have read this review,realised what you've missed and buy it.
You should be safe-I'm NOT a Dalek and I don't work for Amazon, either-just don't let anything stop you copping a classic!
15 people found this helpful
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on 8 November 2013
Arrived on time and in great condition. Cale's voice is amazing and the lyrics imaginative. All sang with such emotion. Love it and have had many hours of listening pleasure from this
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on 8 December 2013
Slow Dazzle has been a bit of slow burner for me. When I first bought the album a few years ago, I didn't instantly fall in love with it, in the way that I had with some of John Cale's other great records (most notably Fear and Paris 1919). Which meant that I moved on from the album far too quickly.

But having returned to the album more recently, I realise what a mistake I made. Because this is yet another damn good album from a musical master in the middle of an incredible run of creative form.

Cale's musical versatility and ear for a good tune are on displace throughout. Taking it All Away and I'm Not the Loving Kind both have achingly beautiful Cale melodies. Darling I Need You and Rollaroll have infectious rhythyms. Mr Wilson is a great tribute to a fellow musician. And, of course, Cale's version of Heartbreak Hotel is an iconic reintepretation of a rock and roll classic, which brings out the angst hidden deep in the soul of the song.

I've said it before, but John Cale remains ridiculously under-rated as a solo artist.
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on 10 December 2006
I have been listening recently to the superb albums of John Cale. This one is my favourite of his albums that I have heard. Alot of people rate Paris 1919 highly, which is an album I love, but this one is the best for me. I have it as part of the Island Years compilation, but have copied the album onto a seperate disc so that I can enjoy this album individually without having to switch to disc 2 halfway through the 'Slow Dazzle' album [ rather irritating!]. Many superb classics are contained here: 'Mr Wilson' a lovely little send up of the Beach Boys harmonies and a great song to boot. 'Taking It All Away', which has a very catchy chorus, 'Dirty Ass Rock n Roll' still a favourite in the set today. My favourite John Cale song of them all 'Guts' with its hilariously crazy lyrics and brilliant punchy guitar, I think played by Chris Spedding?, or Phil Manzenera who are both amazing. The album closes with the disturbing and powerful 'The Jeweller', which is one of John Cale's spoken word visions. Rock music has rarely been more freaky. I would love to see all of John Cale's albums given a really good remastering job, especially the 80's albums which are very hard to find at a reasonable price. Although the Velvet Underground are very well known sadly John Cale's solo career isn't. I have seen him twice in the last 3 years touring his 2 recent excellent albums and he struggles to sell out venues the size of Shepherds Bush Empire. This is great because you can get down near the front and get to see one of rock's best kept secrets...
20 people found this helpful
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on 25 October 2000
Pretty much the quintessential John Cale collection,generally more in the spirit of his classic solo debut 'Vintage Violence' than the more experimental avant-garde rock soundscapes in evidence on it's predecessor,'Fear'.The first five tracks offer a breathtaking sustained battery of snaking chunky guitar riffs,bubbling basslines and Cale's sneering vocal style,via a tribute to Brian Wilson,a homage to rock'n'roll and the odd quirky love song.But still to follow are the spine chilling rendering of 'Heartbreak Hotel',an aching ballad,and one of the all-time Cale masterpieces:'Guts'.In total,an often overlooked classic album,startlingly original at every turn,full of unforgettable tunes and challenging ideas.If you have yet to discover John Cale,this is a fine place to start.But you'll have to try to fathom the spoken word finale 'The Jeweller' yourself!!
5 people found this helpful
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on 23 February 2003
John Cale made a career out of re-inventing himself in the early 1970s, from the faux-pop naivety of "Vintage Violence", through foppish poet-rock ("Paris 1919")into the sheer masterpiece of "Fear" and closing this most rewarding sequence of his recordings with "Slow Dazzle". On this far too short album (just over half an hour!), Cale demonstrates his ear for rock and roll and exhibits his obvious affection for it (the stomping "Dirty Ass Rock and Roll") alongside odd musings on Brian Wilson (the sublime "Mr Wilson"), alpine rescue ( the delightful "Ski Patrol"), religious awakening in the southern united states ( the rousing "Darling I Need You") and murder (showstopper "Guts"). The lyrical content is only half the story though, with Cale's gritty rock arrangements providing a fitting backdrop for his trademark mid atlantic growl. He even pre-empts Nick Cave by at least ten years with his deadly crooning on the album's warped take on "Heartbreak Hotel". JC is not without his humour also, and a dark sense runs through this album, culminating in "The Jeweller", the album's spoken word closer, showcasing his chocolate welsh timbre relating an alarming (if entirely tongue in cheek) tale. This album surprised me, after hearing "Fear", "Paris..." and "Fragments..." first - but no one curious about Cale's work should be without it.
17 people found this helpful
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on 17 December 2002
As a unit, this is Cale's best album. The sequence of Dirtyass Rock 'n Roll, Darling I Need You & Rollaroll is out of this world, a hypnotic tour de force with disturbing cinematic imagery. Guts is an amazing piece of psychotic rock. Ski Patrol is a haunting ballad that reminds me of a John Berryman poem, "Song Of The Tortured Girl." Other favourites include I'm Not The Loving Kind and Taking It All Away, both slow sad songs. I'm not crazy about Mr Wilson or his gut-wrenching take on Heartbreak Hotel but most of the critics and his fans are! Buy this album but also investigate the compilation "Seducing Down The Door."
3 people found this helpful
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