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on 30 October 2013
Plenty of divided opinions on this albums tracklisting in other reviews, I see. Perhaps this perspective will help. Hawkwind were due to tour in America for the first time in yonks, so decide to put out a sort of "primer" to let their American fans know what they are capable of live nowadays. Hence, most of the tracks on this album are in the current (2013) stage show. The new recordings of old songs are what they sound like played by the current band, and very nice too: complaining that they don't sound as good as the originals is slightly missing the point.
"Where are they now?" is an old song that hasn't been recorded before and to Hawkwind fans is worth the price of the album alone. Other new music on this album is fine, modern Hawk music, and in keeping with the sound of recent albums. Including songs from Dave Brocks solo album (we took the wrong step..) and Hawkwind Light Orchestra (it's all lies) does confuse matters a little but as they are both good songs this shouldn't be viewed too harshly.
Overall then, this album shows what the band sound like now: it's perhaps not an essential purchase but I think it is pretty interesting and serves its purpose well.
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This is a bit of a muddle, and somewhat confusing coming not long after their last studio albums. It's a mix of studio recordings of old songs (Assault and Battery, Masters of the University, Demented Man) , remixes of tracks from recent albums, and some new tracks plus a track from Dave Brock's recent solo album.

It's all ok, but just a little pointless. I enjoyed the studio recordings of the old songs - the lineup of Hawkwind changes so much, these things tend to sound different to the originals, and this case we have Brock's chunky guitar riffing away and a somewhat overloaded backing of synths and whooshing sounds. I don't actually mind this sort of thing with Hawkwind, as it always brings something new along. I particularly like the reworking of Assault and Battery. The tracks from Onward are somewhat forgettable, though.

The remake of Masters of the Universe is much more like 1980s Hawkwind, and features Huw Lloyd Langton on guitar. Again, it's a different beast to the original, but I enjoyed it. Lots of guitar, the whooshing synths and some frantic drumming make this one!

The new tracks are mainly short instrumental passages, apart from Sacrosanct, which is 8 minutes long, and this is an almost trance-like track with some chilled out beats and plenty of Orb-like synths. Very good indeed, as I like The Orb. The others are mainly noises and atmospherics, some which (Touch) have some nice gentle, melodic guitar work.

This is an enjoyable enough compilation of odds and ends, but it's most certainly not essential. Still, I'd rather have a compilation of mainly new material, even if it re-recordings by the current lineup.
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on 15 January 2014
Yes, I know that much of this album contains re-recorded tracks but as a complete album it does rock. I saw Hawkwind in 73 and have been a follower ever since. I've followed them through their more experimental times, Bridget Wishart, the 80's electronic stuff and the more recent, more dense stuff like Blood of the Earth. So, for me, this album is a Hawkwind 'feel good' album. An album that takes you back but still takes some different tacks at times. Quite a few long-term Hawkwind fans seem disappointed; I'm just really happy to get a new Hawkwind album that rocks a fair bit.
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on 2 June 2014
Well we have 16 tracks here, two of which 'We took the Wrong Step' and 'It's All Lies' are not actually Hawkwind per se [Dave Brock solo and 'Hawkwind Light Orchestra' respectively]. Of the remainder three tracks are remixes of recent album tracks, another is a shortened version of another recent album track, six are studio reworkings of "classic" numbers and four are genuine new numbers. Of these 'Sacrosanct' has a certain something, 'Lonely Moon' is beautiful but could do with being longer, 'Touch' is OK and 'The Chumps Are Jumping' isn't very good. Hmmmm. The three remixes of recent tracks are better than the originals [but they should have been mixed properly in the first place of course]. The six studio reworkings cannot by definition really match the originals (except Where Are They Now, which was never done in the studio first time around) and therein lies the problem, it seems a little pointless. I suppose this means that the next studio album should now contain all-new material as presumably all the recent 'reworkings' are all here aren't they? And if this means 40 minutes of killer new original material as opposed to stretching things out to say 50 or 60 minutes by adding reworkings then so be it. Otherwise take a leaf out of Blue Oyster Cult's book and don't do any new studio albums unless you have anything new to say!!
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on 10 January 2014
Ok take away the remakes and what do you have left?
Well not much but the remakes make up for this shortfall.
The oldies certainly seem timeless and listening to this album just made me put on Space Ritual after it finished.
Oh what would I give to be transported back in time.
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on 29 October 2013
I guess this is what can be described as a modern compilation. A mix of tracks from recent albums, remixes from recent albums, recordings of some old tracks and a sprinkling of new stuff.

The new stuff is mainly short fairly inconsequential instrumentals. Sacrosant is much longer with the sequencer and drum machine backing some guitar and other stuff and is a decent splash of electronica. The others might have been best distributed around as these short pieces usually are on Hawkwind albums.

Three tracks are representative of the recent replaying of Warrior on the Edge of Time live to coincide with the release of the studio album. Assault and Battery is in it's usual modern shortened form as sounds very good. The Golden Void is also short and not at it's best. These two are played as the recent live version with Where Are They Now which also comes from that time I think and while short is a classic simple Hawkwind idea and the best thing on the album. The Demented Man is good but I'm not sure the straight repeat of the song is a good idea.

Where Are They Now also comes from that time I think and while short is a classic simple Hawkwind idea and the best thing on the album. The re-recording of Master of the Universe is worth its place for the appearance of the greatly missed Huw Lloyd-Langton and it is a cracking version. Sonic Attack was probably only really good once. This is OK - the vocal are better than usual and it goes off into a bit of rock music at the end although I'm not the vocals here are a good idea. It's OK though. Whether it's necessary is a whole different question. We Two are One is described as a new recording of the ".." track from Onward without the stuff at the end. At least the track has a name and it is a decent track. Sounds fairly similar though.

The remixes - Seasons, Sentinel and Sunship (the latter I think only otherwise available on vinyl) are fine. They sound fairly similar and I think the idea was to open the sound a bit with less compression. Which leaves It's All Lies, which is growing on me a bit and the decent version of We Took the Wrong Steps Years Ago in their original form.

I'd say it's a worthwhile compilation of modern Hawkwind and as a whole works better as an album than Onward. These reworked tracks are best on albums such as this rather than studio albums but even there it's interesting to get one, but no more than one.
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on 5 April 2015
WOW! Wasn't sure on this album as the preview doesn't do it justice. Took the plunge and bought the download version to give it a try. So glad I did, I got into Hawkwind back in 1975 and this album has some excellent new recordings of old favourites. Will be getting the vinyl version to add to my collection. Hope the neighbours like it too - play it loud :)
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on 28 November 2013
I didn't know what to expect from this.Hawkwind have released a few ropey albums in recent years and I was resigned to another bland album.God was I wrong! This totally rocks,its worth buying just for "where are they now" the only decent recording of this this song available.Throbbing bass and drums.Good times.Definitely recommend this ,the current line up are doing fine.There are a lot of people comparing Nik turner and space ritual to these guys,honestly Brock and co are in another league.Turn it up loud,dance about or sit down.Lovely.
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on 5 November 2013
HAWKWIND ARE BY FAR MY FAVOURITE BAND EVER ...PERIOD... BUT ON OCCASIONS THEY DO BRING OUT SOME NOT SO GOOD BITS N BOBS....THIS IS ONE OF THE LATER IM AFRAID. I HAVE EVERYTHING THEYVE DONE AND THEY HAVE DIFFERENT STAGES IN DEVELOPMENT.......THE EARLY DAYS WERE HEAVY SPACE ROCK AND SLOWLY THEY MELLOWED BUT THAT SAID I LOVED WRAITH ON B OF THE EARTH AND I ADORE DAVES AMBIENT STYLES LIKE DEMENTED MAN ON WARRIOR, WASTELANDS OF SLEEP ON XENON AND ESPECIALLY GREEN MACHINE(AT LEAST I THINK THATS THE NAME?) ANYWAY THIS ONE IS A MIXTURE OF SONGS FROM ALL THE YEARS PAST AND IN THE STYLE OF HAWKWIND AS THEY ARE NOW,BLAKE IS ALWAYS GREAT AND WHEN HIM N BROCK GET TOGETHER ITS HEAVEN YET ON THIS OCCASION THE SONGS NEVER SEEM TO REALLY TAKE OFF...MASTERS OF IS WEAK AT BEST AND SENTINEL SEEMS THE SAME AS THE ORIGINAL?? SORRY FELLAS BUT I WONT BE PLAYIN THIS ONE MUCH AS NOTHING NEW ON OFFER AND IF THIS WAS THE FIRST ALBUM I HAD EVER HEARD BY THEM IT WOULD NOT GET ME BUYIN MORE. AGAIN JUST MY OPINION SEE WOT YOU THINK FOLKS.
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on 29 October 2013
39 years ago a good friend played a short section of the Space Ritual to me on an old portable cassette player, the end of 7 by 7 and the intro to Sonic Attack. Something clicked inside of me and that was it, a lifelong Hawkwind fan or so I thought.

Sadly I've now had enough with this latest purchase. Their last few albums have been woefully poor, a hotchpotch of half baked ideas thrown together in a seemingly random fashion and interspersed with utterly pointless reworkings of older tracks, some of which weren't any good in the first place. Add to this the dreadful production which I can only conclude is down to poor equipment, technical ability or decades of accumulated earwax, perhaps all three.

Enough is enough, I will always love Hawkwind and the memories but I'd far rather remember them in their prime than for what they're churning out now.

Over and out...
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