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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£38.51+ £1.26 shipping

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on 7 December 2008
The reviews for Fleet Foxes seem to be in two distinct camps, those who rave about their brilliant new sound, a sound apparently derived from and influenced by everything from the Beach Boys to CSN and those who are lukewarm to their charms. I'm afraid that after a rather herculean effort to like this album and find the depths so effusively described by other reviewers I have to say that I fall into the second camp. I find the harmonising pleasant but the overall feel suggests early prog rock to me rather than the regular comparison made to My Morning Jacket who I also like but sometimes feel that I'm listening to a reincarnated Skynyrd. The Beach Boys California sound does come through on some of the tracks but it's like a weak watered down Pet Sounds - those who've made this comparison should go back and listen to the original and feel the angst and Sunshine that still shines through on almost every track. I'm still trying folks, listening again now to the album as I type and I can peg all the references made but it's now a chore listening to this. I can hear the artifice in the sound, it's a workmanlike album that deserves credit and I think they will have some success but I'm not sure if they will have longevity, I sense a shallowness to the sound that others seem to also have noted. Many people like the album so I'd actually recommend that people buy it and make their own mind up, I seem to be in the minority - knock yourselves out, jeepers now they sound like Genesis !.
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on 8 February 2009
It's very rare that a debut album is as breathtaking as `Fleet Foxes'. Arriving seemingly fully formed from the depths of the paranormal, it is a truly remarkable piece of work, an intricate, meticulously crafted record reminiscent of Smile-era Beach Boys.
It is immediately evident that Fleet Foxes possess astounding vocal ability, with harmonies intertwining to create a work of inconceivable splendour. The album begins with unaccompanied voices, creating a wistful ambience that sets the tone for this spectacular record.
That said, it is far from being a ground-breaking piece of work - as many reviewers have mentioned. The influence of Beach Boys, The Band and Fairport Convention among others is palpable, but Fleet Foxes finely adapt the recognisable with an astonishing outcome. In the Pop Idol generation of music, it is the salve for the troubled soul, the Astral Weeks of its day.
Singer Robin Pecknold sounds like a troubled Neil Young over the Love-esque baroque pop, with songs such as `Tiger Mountain Peasant Song', `Meadowlarks' and `Oliver James' concocting a melancholic, claustrophobic atmosphere, juxtaposed with the uplifting, enriching magnificence that flows throughout the record. The music is sometimes at odds with the lyrical content; with the melody of `White Winter Hymnal' concealing the darkness of "Michael you would fall and turn the white snow red as strawberries in summertime", showing a bleakness that is not initially apparent.
The album's liner notes mention the connection the band has with Brian Wilson, and never since The Beach Boys has a group of voices been able to astound and delight in such a way. The vocal purity generates a sense of opulence whilst maintaining a desolate undertone that sets the record apart from others of recent times, and induces a mood that is not dissimilar to that of Joanna Newsom's `Ys'.
`Fleet Foxes' is a marvellous achievement, an outstanding debut of supreme beauty, and possibly the greatest recording of 2008 (although people who have heard Bon Iver's 'For Emma, Forever Ago' amongst a few others may disagree). It is an album that draws the listener into a supernatural world, a world of pureness and intensity that leaves you gasping for breath, and one that you will never want to leave.
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on 24 November 2014
Strange Group to review, this was certainly a decent hit when it first came out, the group harmonies were very good as was the general playing. BUT I'm not sure reviewing in 2014 whether it has stood the test of time, I can't remember playing all the way through for a number of years though odd tracks appear on the iPod.
I think it now fits into the classification of pleasant wallpaper music, nothing wrong just pleasant background.
I think in 2008 it would have got 4 Stars
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on 20 July 2015
Excellent songs
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on 26 May 2015
Excellent album
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on 6 June 2009
I bought this on the strength of one track heard on the radio. It is absolutely wonderful. If you like Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young or the Beach Boys you will like this. Their music consists of beautiful tunes, wonderful close vocal harmonies, a mixture of instrumental and a capella pieces - so relaxing you can't help but chill. Instant antidote to road rage, put it on while you're driving and you'll enjoy the trip.
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on 1 June 2009
I loved the single Mykonos on the radio and bought this CD on the strength of that. Imagine my annoyance now that I have heard it all the way through and the song isn't on it! I looked again on Amazon and now I see that they do a 2 CD special edition with exactly the same cover (apart from the size of the Fleet Foxes wording) and Mykonos is featured on that one. No wonder I got confused! I know this is covered elsewhere in the reviews but I didn't read them all. Amazon are even sharing the reviews on the plain CD that I bought and the Special Edition one. The songs on it are pleasant enough and I'm sure it will grow on me, but I still feel let down! Also as other reviewers have noted, the cover is cardboard and looks like a free giveaway...
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on 2 May 2009
This is a well-produced album, showcasing some fine musicianship, and some charming songs. The only trouble is, it's all been done before, and it's distinctly lacking in originality, or any stand-out tracks. Listeners who are already familiar with the Beach Boys et al. won't find anything new or interesting here, sadly.
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on 4 February 2009
this is a great debut from a fine band the more you listen the better it gets the only gripe i have has to be the poor cd package i would prefer to pay more for a case cannot get discs out to play i fear cds will soon become unplayable as package has already torn five stars for music only one for packaging
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on 9 March 2009
I was recommended this by a pal who raved about it. I saw some press reviews raving about it.

It reminded me a bit of a Crosby, Stills and Nash style when they were past their most creative.

I played it 3 times to see if I started to get it, hopefully like it a lot. I didn't.

It doesn't offend. It's well put together. That's it really.
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