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Old 04-08-2012, 05:50 PM   #1121 (permalink)
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Well, what else would we have on Easter Monday than, er, Hot Chocolate?
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Old 04-10-2012, 04:56 AM   #1122 (permalink)
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:09 AM   #1123 (permalink)
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Nice one, this, from Evanescence: this is “My immortal”.
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:42 PM   #1124 (permalink)
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Page 18-21

Joe Walsh- Really need to check out a lot more of his solo stuff as I'm mostly familiar with the James Gang and of course his stuff with the Eagles.

Don Johnsen- I know he always fancied himself as a major league actor rather than a TV type actor, but didn't know he had recorded music, its probably no surprise considering Miami Vice had some of the coolest music in the 1980s.

Laura Brannigan- I only recently found out that she passed away after wondering what had happened to her, when I first saw her I thought she was as sexy as hell and what a voice, especially loved her Self Control album.

Uriah Heep- True to form, you've picked out a weaker album in a band's discography, I can't criticize as its been years since I heard these later Uriah Heep albums. I still tend to play their golden era stuff when David Byron was vocalist and Gary Thain was in the band. I really should re-listen to their later 1970s and early 1980s stuff.

Asia-Still yet to listen to Phoenix, I know John Wetton returned to the band. There is actually a thread now about Asia on MB as somebody just started the thread. I think their debut is a great album then the next two weaker efforts based around the debut, for a while they were one of the biggest bands in the world for a short time in the 1980s.
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:23 PM   #1125 (permalink)
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:27 PM   #1126 (permalink)
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REALLY hard to find --- Trollheart, get that USB turntable sorted, willya? We need a review of this album! --- this is an Irish band called Cactus World News, great song from their album “The bridge”. This is “Years later”.
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:34 PM   #1127 (permalink)
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Page 18-21

Joe Walsh- Really need to check out a lot more of his solo stuff as I'm mostly familiar with the James Gang and of course his stuff with the Eagles.
Yeah, I don't really know much of his stuff, but had always been attracted to this album just for the title. Turns out it's not as great as it makes out though.
Quote:
Don Johnsen- I know he always fancied himself as a major league actor rather than a TV type actor, but didn't know he had recorded music, its probably no surprise considering Miami Vice had some of the coolest music in the 1980s.
I was amazed and somewhat initially annoyed the album was so good, but hell it is!
Quote:
Laura Brannigan- I only recently found out that she passed away after wondering what had happened to her, when I first saw her I thought she was as sexy as hell and what a voice, especially loved her Self Control album.
Me too. I was shocked. What a loss...
Quote:

Uriah Heep- True to form, you've picked out a weaker album in a band's discography, I can't criticize as its been years since I heard these later Uriah Heep albums. I still tend to play their golden era stuff when David Byron was vocalist and Gary Thain was in the band. I really should re-listen to their later 1970s and early 1980s stuff.
Another album I bought just for the cool cover (and a very favourable review in "Kerrang!") --- I knew nothing of UH at the time, bought their greatest hits, liked most of it but never went any deeper into their catalogue then. Have their discog to paw through one of these days...
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Asia-Still yet to listen to Phoenix, I know John Wetton returned to the band. There is actually a thread now about Asia on MB as somebody just started the thread. I think their debut is a great album then the next two weaker efforts based around the debut, for a while they were one of the biggest bands in the world for a short time in the 1980s.

I actually didn't rate the first album, thought the second two were much better and really they never looked back after that. Still making great albums what, forty years later?
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:12 AM   #1128 (permalink)
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Let love in --- Nick Cave --- 1994 (Mute)


Something of a favourite on the Playlist of Life, Nick Cave's albums never fail to impress, often confound, almost always amaze and generally satisfy. “Let love in” is one of his very best, in my opinion, when he was still just a little bit ragged and mad, before settling down, generally, with albums like “The boatman's call”, “No more shall we part” and “Nocturama” which, while being great albums (I'm not mad about the last one) nevertheless portray something of a steadier Cave, a less energetic and electric Cave; almost, it could be said, Nick Cave approaching his middle-age spread, musically. My own path to Cave was from “The good son” via “Henry's dream” and all subsequent albums up to the aforementioned “Nocturama”, with those prior to “The good son” bought because they were Cave, but never properly listened to, and those after “Nocturama” kind of falling into the same column.

So for me, “Let love in” was a continuation of what I personally would term classic Cave, with deep, sweet, fragile ballads rubbing shoulders in trepidation with big, angry, howling hunks of rock songs, a marriage, if you will, of Heaven and Hell, with the latter the dominant partner. I like my Cave that way. “The boatman's call” was a shock, being almost entirely madeup of ballads and slow songs, and though yes I love it, it was not the Cave I had grown used to on the last three or four albums prior, of which this is one, and the last full Cave album I listened to was 2001's “No more shall we part”. I loved it, but again it echoed “The boatman's call”, with I feel too many ballads.

But back to this album. This is Cave at his best: shouting, screaming, snarling, growling and clawing pitifully at the dark edge of the cliff he has constructed for himself and now hangs onto by his dirty fingernails, fearing and at the same time yearning to drop into the cold abyss below, if for no other reason than, hey, it's better than living. Dark themes are explored on this album, as with the previous, “Murder ballads”, and not surprisingly, love is seen as one of those dark themes and dissected both with the cold clinical eye of the scientist and the ravening, slavering, insane hunger of the serial killer.

It opens with dark, moody, thick bass from Martyn Casey, joined by Cave's unsettling organ melody, the man singing with barely concealed anger and sarcasm as he launches into “Do you love me?”, cataloguing another of his broken love affairs, his vocal getting more angry and full of rage as the song progresses, Blixa Bargeld's wailing guitar stabbing the song here and there like a maniac taking his latest victim. It's a powerful opener, as Cave growls ”All things move towards their end/ I knew before I met her that I would lose her.” It's this kind of stony fatalism that colours most of this album, and certainly comes through on the next track, “Nobody's baby now”.

Sung as a ballad, it's really nothing of the sort, Mick Harvey taking a star turn on both guitar and organ, while Conway Savage's piano keeps a lonely melody almost like someone trying to ignore what's going on around them and concentrating on doing what they are doing, irrespective of what's happening. The frightened kid with the headphones jammed on his head while his parents argue, rage and fight downstairs, another world away. Thomas Wylder's drums keep a measured beat that pulls the track along and you get the distinct feeling that Cave has made sure his ex-lover can be nobody's baby ever again. Things really explode though as we get to “Loverman”, one of the standouts. The thing that makes the biggest and most immediate impression on you is, of all things, the bells that punctuate the verses like drumbeats, the song slow and moody as Cave warns ”There's a devil waiting outside your door/ He's weak with evil/ And he's broken by the world.” Then it explodes into just manic screaming and growling as Cave loses it on the chorus, the song swinging between the two and ending in a powerful caophony of sound and noise as it staggers to its end. Definitely gets the blood pumping.

You'd think after that he'd take a break and slow it down, but no, he launches directly into another sonic assault, perhaps not as manic as “Loverman” but still pretty crazy. The shortest track on the album, “Jangling Jack” tells the story of a visitor to the US who goes into a bar and gets shot. Cave's attitude towards violence and murder is as ever casual and offhand: people in his songs seldom need a reason to carry out their crimes, and like the central character in “O'Malley's Bar” from the previous album, “Murder ballads”, who goes into a bar and just starts killing for no reason, it seems poor old Jangling Jack has wandered into another such scene.

As life begins to ebb from his body, Jack ”Sees the dead stacked in piles” and perhaps all too late realises that he has stumbled into the aftermath of a bar massacre, and is about to become its latest victim. There's no reason ever given why the “grinning man” Jack meets in the bar shoots him, though in fairness, if he's going to go around saying ”I'm Jangling Jack/ I go doo-dan-doo!” all the time, it's not surprising he does get shot. Hell, I'd pop a cap in his ass myself! The music is energetic to the point of almost insanity as Blageld's guitar assault mixes with Harvey's over-the-top organ and Savage's wild piano to create a scene of utter confusion and panic, Cave's voice sounding almost like it's coming through some sort of synthesiser/vocoder.

In contrast, “Red right hand”, again riding on those hard-to-ignore bells, slows everything down for a Waits-style shuffle, as Cave sings about a murderer who previously appeared on “Murder ballads” and signs his calling card with a red right hand. Here, he's given more mythical, supernatural status, perhaps referring the the devil, in the sort of non-committal way Waits talks about the protagonist in his “Black wings” on the “Bone machine” album. Cave relates his influence on men and the world as he sings ”His shadow is cast/ Whereever he stands/ Stacks of green paper/ In his red right hand.” He takes the organ himself for this track, adding an unsettling, eerie undertone to the song as he sings in that gravelly, menacing mutter of his.

Cave slides out from behind the organ and allows Harvey to take over for the title track, backed by Savage on the piano, and with Blixa Bargeld's ever-present guitar it becomes a ballad played at mid-pace, but as with most Cave songs it has little to do with love, and is more a warning about letting your guard down. ”Despair and deception/ Love's ugly little twins/ Came knocking at my door/ I let love in.” All hell breaks loose then for “Thirsty dog”, Cave going back to the manic growl that informed “Jangling Jack”. It's a song of regret and remorse played at full tilt, a headlong drunken rant with a real eff-star-star-kay-you message, almost punk in its stylings, recalling the best of the Pogues as Cave slurs into his drink ”I'm sorry that I'm always pissed/ I'm sorry that I exist/ And when I look into your eyes/ I can see that you're sorry too!”

The pace slows right down then for the next two tracks, the first of which introduces for the first time on this album the elegant violin of Warren Ellis, which always adds something to a Cave song. “Ain't gonna rain anymore” is almost a continuation from “Nobody's baby now”, perhaps Cave regretting his rash action in killing his lover. Or perhaps not. There's an ominous power in Cave's insistent organ, the strings arranged by Harvey perfectly complementing the mood of the song, the little piano runs from Cave adding the final touches. “Lay me low” sees the man envisage his own funeral with the caustic pragmatism of someone who knows that he'll hardly be cold in the grave before the newspapers will be bidding for the dirt on him, and people he hasn't seen in years will crawl out of the woodwork to tell their stories.

The music is slow and stately, with almost funereal backing vocals as Cave smirks ”They'll try telephoning my mother/ But they'll end up getting my brother/ Who'll spill the story about some long-gone lover/ Whom I'll hardly know.” The organ keeps up a mournful, bitter dirge as he goes on ”They'll interview my teachers/ Who'll say I was one of God's sorrier creatures/ They'll print informative six-page features/ When I go.” It's a great, perfectly self-depractory song, in which Cave tells the world this is who I am, I ain't gonna change and if you don't like it, wait till I'm dead and then throw your parties: I won't care, I'll be dead.

The album ends with a reprise of the opener, “Do you love me part 2”, which becomes a slow, blues version of the original, with essentially the same melody and lyric, but it's quite amazing how the different arrangement makes the song sound so different. Bringing the album full circle, it's a sterling ending to what is one of Cave's best and most together albums in my opinion, a real classic, one of the last truly great Cave recordings. After 1996's tour-de-force, “Murder ballads”, Cave would begin something of a shift towards softer, more relaxed and restrained songs, culminating in 1997's “The boatman's call” and continuing on into 2001's “No more shall we part”.

If you want to hear Cave at his darkest and most unhinged, this is the one to listen to. Oh, and give “Murder ballads” your full attention too. True class always shows.

TRACKLISTING

1. Do you love me?
2. Nobody's baby now
3. Loverman
4. Jangling Jack
5. Red right hand
6. I let love in
7. Thirsty dog
8. Ain't gonna rain anymore
9. Lay me low
10. Do you love me? Part 2

Recommended further listening: “The good son”, “Henry's dream”, “Murder ballads”, “No more shall we part”, “The boatman's call”
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:49 AM   #1129 (permalink)
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:02 PM   #1130 (permalink)
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The worm forgot just what a great songwriter Suzanne Vega is. To remind us all, here's “Small blue thing”.
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