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Customer Review

56 of 63 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Very Accomplished Debut, 24 Jun. 2013
This review is from: Long Way Down (Audio CD)
I've been keen to listen to Tom Odell' debut album since he won the Critics' Choice award at the BRIT Awards. The wait was worth it, as this is a good album, with some great tracks. Such is the strength of this album that you could imagine any of these songs being played on the radio.
The opening track 'Grow Old With Me' is very typical of the feel that is being portrayed on the album, which is a soulful ballad with a lovely piano obbligato. The way Odell combines all the different elements of the tracks together shows a lot of musical ability. I'm especially impressed by the way he changes volume, and uses that, and the softening of his voice to sing more tenders parts, such as on 'Hold Me'.
My favourite track is 'I Know'. I think this track has the best piano accompaniment, although maybe that's only because 'Another Love' has received a bit of radio play so I'm perhaps overlooking it. I don't think that there is a track on this album that is especially weak, although they are all very similar for me. I would have liked to have heard a couple of different ideas maybe, or perhaps a bit more instrumentation, but nevertheless it's a very accomplished debut album.
It's a bit hard to think that he's 22 and has released an album of this quality. It makes me wonder what I've been doing with my life. I'm hoping that as he ages his music keeps getting better, as this is a great place to start.
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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Jun 2013 21:36:39 BDT
Tom Odell is a radio friendly artist.

This means that he is composing - with the help of the corporate Man - songs designed for maximum airplay. Radio friendly songs. By definition, his songs must therefore be unoriginal, safe and devoid of genuine emotion or meaning. In a word, corporate. To my ears his songs sound like a mush of Mumford and Sons, Coldplay and Ed Sheeran. And I object to having more of this blandness as some kind of statement of youth.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jun 2013 08:17:32 BDT
Last edited by the author on 26 Jun 2013 08:18:47 BDT
Mark Stewart says:
Who is this corporate Man of whom you write? He must be richer than Croesus.

There is certainly a kernel of truth in your barbed missive.

However - and I am stepping into dangerous territory here, as I don't know you, have never met you and never will - where can I find your download/CD/thesis?

There is a lot of stuff out there that I hate but I can't really criticise because I remain on the sidelines, an observer and not an active participant.

This is young Mr. Odell's first album. Whilst there are many artists who create timeless and wonderful debuts, there are also many whose debuts are not fully formed and whose work improves with age. As an example (and a potentially dangerous one), I was a huge fan of Radiohead's debut album in my youth. Listening to it with a more..ahem..mature perspective, I am very aware of it's shortcomings.

Now, I am not saying that young Tom is going to be the next Thom Yorke but you never know, in 10 years time, he could have created something to rival Hejira or Reign In Blood. Worth a thought.

Yours truly,
Not Tom Odell's dad.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jun 2013 11:07:18 BDT
'However - and I am stepping into dangerous territory here, as I don't know you, have never met you and never will - where can I find your download/CD/thesis?'

Ah, the old 'you have never released a song so you are not permitted to make judgements against people in that profession'. Yeah, i never get tired of hearing that. Chances are that if you leave a negative opinion on a song on YouTube, a variation of that phrase will pop up eventually. I'm not a chef so i probably shouldn't have criticised that expired mackerel that i got served last night.

'There is a lot of stuff out there that I hate but I can't really criticise because I remain on the sidelines, an observer and not an active participant.'

It's perfectly acceptable to hate anything that you want. Just because you weren't involved with its development, it doesn't mean you can't criticise. The world would be a dull, dull place without a bit of analytical balance.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jun 2013 12:46:20 BDT
Last edited by the author on 15 Jul 2013 13:18:25 BDT
Mark Stewart says:
All very true, O Keeper of the Crypt.

No matter how self-effacing the protaganist may appear, if someone thinks that what they do is worthy of being thrust in front of others, it takes a certain amount of ego,

As you say, a bit of analytical balance is necessary.

But to say that this guy's songs must be '...unoriginal, safe and devoid of genuine emotion or meaning' is a bit sweeping, surely? Where is the analysis in that?

I know that you weren't responsible for that particular comment, by the way. Your review was indeed a bit more balanced and your closing comments brought a wry smile to my bloodless lips.

However, I can't help but wonder whether the opinions expressed in that review stemmed in part from your encounter with the expired mackerel you mentioned just now. It must have played a role? Never mind photogenic balladeers, lets direct our ire towards the real villains of the piece - careless restauranteurs!

Honestly, someone fries an egg and calls themselves an artiste. They'll be making music next...

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Oct 2013 19:54:50 BDT
Why dont you two just get a room lol..?

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Oct 2013 17:44:53 BDT
Mark Stewart says:
I love a nice crypt....

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2013 21:11:36 BDT
Lol..Taken in good humour, I salute you sir!

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Oct 2013 12:55:50 GMT
Love you too Mark ;)
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