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on 17 October 2000
Catherine Wheel are the masters of the sublime guitar noise pop originated by the Chameleons in the early 80's and popularised by Oasis in the late 90's. This album, produced by the legendary Tim Friese Green of Talk Talk fame, is a masterpiece of chorus and feedback drenched guitars and mesmerising rythms in combination with laconic, haunting vocals. It has the ability to tap into that sort of sonic wavelength which all lovers of guitar-driven music relate to whilst also delivering on a more melodic level once the fabulous noise has entranced you - this album is a sonic meisterwerk which should form a key part of the collection of any one who appreciatetes the guitar as an art form. Buy, play, enjoy.
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on 16 September 2015
Rob Dickinson & the boys supply 90's indie guitar perfection, one I always return to... Black Metallic should have sent them global! Key influence from producer Tim Friese-Greene (talk talk ) adding the textures, not so evident on later releases.
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on 17 March 2008
I cannot remember how I came across this - I must have heard a single - but I know I was compelled to check out the album and from that moment, I was mesmerised and I listened to it over and over.

The guitars on this album shimmer, swirl and dazzle - there is not a duff track here.

The sound is reminiscent of many other bands of that era - Ride springs to mind in particular - but they were ploughing their own furrow.

This was a debut album to rival that of the Stone Roses or Oasis, but it wasn't what the world was waiting for and it was criminally overlooked.
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on 24 March 2010
It's great to hear it again, esp. after all these years. Overall, the sound does seem that little bit crisper, stereo separation a bit cleaner. The extra tracks are wonderful - I have them all already but only on precious vinyl. One criticism: There seems to be a mistake towards the end of the third minute of "That's when I reach for my revolver" - a one-second sound error, very much like a vinyl skip. My CD seems to be in perfect physical condition, so I fear it might be a flaw in the master. Has anyone else noticed this?
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on 30 September 2010
this album is definitely of its time (1992), but it is also wonderful to hear in this day.Brian Futter uses guitar effects to their shoe gazing utmost, Rob Dickinson sings elegantly over the indie-rock noise, Dave Hawes grooves melodically and Neil Sims keeps the musical ensemble dynamic and interesting with his drumming.I have to say that my favourite is still Black Metallic, although I also very much like Texture and, to be honest, the whole album's ambience.rather brilliantly, this also includes extra tracks, such as the singles 30th Century Man andsome Husker Du cover versions. All in all a very good buy!
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on 16 April 2010
Decent remastering job and killer to have the 30th Century Man tracks...but there is a HUGE glitch at the 2:54 mark on That's When I Reach For My Revolver. It blows my mind that this was allowed to go out like this. Certainly if you don't already own the disc it's worth picking up for the other bonus tracks.
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on 18 September 2016
This was one of the first CDs I ever bought (at Our Price in Southport btw), and I still listen to it regularly now, along with Catherine Wheel's other stuff. Brilliant music, just wish I'd seen them live...
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on 9 November 2010
This is the second time I Have bought this CD. The first time was prompted by seeing the band do one of the songs live on some TV music show, can't remember which one, but it caught the imagination. The CD was a pleasant surprise, wonderful swirling guitars and good songs that for some reason I couldn't stop humming. I lent the CD to some young friends (I am an old Deadhead by the way, steeped in West coast US stuff)who were surprised that they had not discovered such a good CD themselves, so much so that they kept it and moved house so I couldn't get it back.

The second time around, the expanded version has more songs, which all seem good, but I can almost understand them being left off the first pressing - absolutely no insult intended though. Why don't they reform and play this stuff again?? Please do Catherine Wheel!!
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on 14 December 2011
I never understood why Catherine Wheel were (and still are) derided so badly by the music press. They were part of a scene that (shamefully in my opinion) recieved a huge backlash by the music press who had spent the previous year building it up. They seem to be branded as fakes and just following the trend at the time.

While I'm no fan of their later, more rock based sound, this album is a real classic. It doesn't really sound like other bands in the 'scene', so who were they copying? Anyway, I shouldn't still be bitter about it. I'm a shoegazer and proud!

Shame about the small error in the bonus track on the re-issue, but that's not the fault of the band. They deserve 5 stars for this and for not being given the credit they deserve.
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on 6 September 2014
I first heard Catherine Wheel in Portobello Rd. I was literally pulled in off the street to find a stack of Painful Things on the counter. Later I saw them live at The Duchess in Leeds. Those were the days. The Wheel one week, Kevin Coyne and The Minutemen the next. The band had an embarrassment of riches to choose from for this, their first album, but the wrong tracks are in the wrong order. Intravenous should have been on right from the start along with Painful Thing and Let Me Down Again. I would've definitely left out I Wanna Touch You because it sucks and maybe even Black Metallic too. So many fab moments but SALT is the stand out. Should've been the album closer but for some reason the inferior Balloon was given that particular honour. Perhaps there were simply too many people squeezed in the Editing Room? The band then made another bad decision by changing their sound and becoming clunkers for the second album but even then, still managed to produce something wonderful in Strange Fruit. Recommended!
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