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141. Southern Rock Opera
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142. De Stijl
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143. Wonder What's Next
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144. MTV Unplugged
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145. Staring at the Sea: The Singles
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146. Strangely Isolated Place
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147. A User's Guide to They Might Be
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148. Fever To Tell
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149. Make Up the Breakdown
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150. Dandy Warhols Come Down
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151. Sung Tongs
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152. Swagger
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153. Superwolf
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154. Sea of Faces
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155. This Is a Long Drive for Someone
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156. The Photo Album
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157. Music From the O.C. Mix 3: Have
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158. For the Kids Too
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159. Lost and Safe
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160. Urban Hymns

141. Southern Rock Opera
list price: $19.98
our price: $16.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000068FUS
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2947
Average Customer Review: 4.12 out of 5 stars
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You don't need a bottle of Jack or even a trace of Southern lineage to appreciate the genius of Drive-By Truckers' Southern Rock Opera. Without a hint of irony, the Athens, Georgia, quintet creates a fast-driving, hard-living tribute to the indelible music and legacy of Lynyrd Skynyrd. Like any good concept album, there's a modicum of plot and a theme to these 20 songs (loosely based around the rise and fall of fictitious Southern rock band Betamax Guillotine), but the best tracks make you forget the story line altogether: "Birmingham," "Zip City," and "Let There Be Rock." The "opera" aspects bog things down a bit--you probably only need to hear the spoken-word track "The Three Great Alabama Icons" once--but the overall concept still comes off without a hitch. The lyrics are great, the trio of electric guitars is blessed with raw production, and the tunes--though lacking the pop sensibility of, say, "Gimme Three Steps"--will have you cranking up the album for your friends. And, after a few spins of Southern Rock Opera, you might even find yourself digging out those old Skynyrd LPs to hear the real thing again. --Jason Verlinde ... Read more

Reviews (34)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Drive By Truckers aren't trying to BE L.S.
Reviews so far are either glowing or very bad. The later seem to involve people who bought this recording based on reputation and the fact that it's supposed to be "Southern Rock." I can see how a purchase with those expectations might lead to disappointment, particularly for those who don't really like '90's and '00's roots rock and were expecting a faithful remake of Lynard Skynard. The band lists L.S. as an influence, but they obviously have a lot of other influences. I hear a good bit of Rolling Stones, Neil Young, Steve Earl, Seattle grunge and more in their music.

Pros: If you're a Southern person of the 30 something age range whose had any issues coming to terms with what being Southern means, both good and bad, then the theme of this album is likely to hit you between the eyes. These guys speak with a certain honesty not often heard. The album works on both first and repeated listenings and is one of the most REWARDING new releases to listen to in several years. These guys are fast becoming my favorite band.

Cons: A half star or so deducted due to rather primative guitar soloing (which also has its good side) and here and there a little bit of crudeness in the lyrics (I'm not talking about profanity . . . I mean the lyrics are a little unpolished in spots). Note, both of these criticisms are mere nit-picks when the work is considered as a whole.

Overall, an amazing album!

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Southern rock album of the last twenty years
I'll stand behind the title above. DBT are proud of their Southern heritage but at the same time very realistic about the shortcomings of Southern life. Hence their songs have in the past been about everything from incest to glue sniffing. Intelligent lyrics and keen insight are crucial aspects of DBTs songs.

In Southern Rock Opera they push the envelope in an odd way. They record a two cd song-cycle that is basically about life in the seventies and the end of Lynyrd Skynyrd. It could have been a disaster or a pigeon-holed curiousity. Instead it may be one of the best rock albums of the last twenty years.

There are great songs here such as "Ronnie and Neil" and "Dead Drunk and Naked". Truth be told there really aren't any throwaways in the bunch. But the real stand outs in my mind are the near spoken word "Days of Graduation" and "The Three Great Alabama Icons". I don't think anyone who went to high school in any small town or lived in the seventies and knew who Wallace was can listen to this and not feel the impact.

Highly recommended.

3-0 out of 5 stars It's a southern thang.
I must say that I never cared about "Lynyrd Skynyrd" much, but I saw this compared to other things I did like, and gave it a shot. Overall I'd say it's pretty good. They definitely walk that line between classic southern rock, and some of the recent alt-country bands, and I can see how "Southern Rock Opera" could please either crowd. There's a few slower/speaking parts that drag this down some, but tracks like "72 (this highway's mean)" and "Guitar Man Upstairs" rock along well. "Ronnie And Neil" is really good, and actually sounds like "Crazy Horse" to my ears, which may be the point. Not every song amazes, and I wonder if this wouldn't have been a better 15 track single disc, but oh well. So even though this is a decent album, I think when the mood strikes, I'll reach for "My Morning Jacket" instead.

4-0 out of 5 stars Southern Gothic
The theme of this album is obsession. Obsession with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Neil Young, George Wallace, Southern/Classic Rock and what the whole "southern thing" means in general to this band. No one in this group can play, write or sing on the level of the legendary groups that inspired them. The music is not melodic at all, the singer sort of shouts raspily along to the ragged but rockin' sound of the band. But I will say their music and the themes of their lyrics are very refreshing in the face of what else is out there in the world of music today and they definately pour their hearts into it and that counts for a lot. The vocals have such a thick southern accent at times,(particularly during the spoken word segments) that it sounds like the cornpone accent Mick Jagger used to use as a goof on songs like "Sweet Virginia" or "Far Away Eyes". Highlights for me were,"Let There Be Rock" and "Ronnie And Neil". These guys have some serious raw talent and ambition to spare and they are definately inspired by the right guys. I hope they grow and transcend their great influences, but for now, this is one of the most interesting rock CD's I've heard in awhile.

3-0 out of 5 stars Missed the point
I discovered these guys roaming around amazon and was intrigued by their comparisons to Lynyrd Skynyrd. As a big Skynyrd fan I bought the CD hoping that a band may have finally successfully found the tone and attitude Skynyrd celebrated. These guys haven't done it. The music is good, but they seemed to miss the point as far as who Skynyrd was musically. It is no surprise that they self admitedly just started listening to Skynyrd after years of growing up in Alabama ignoring the music.The album lacks the fun and honky-tonk rock Skynyrd virtually invented. While not a bad album, you don't shake your ass or tap your toes like a Skynyrd album would induce. It lacks the riffs, and electricity. These guys have taken something pure and turned it into melodramatic college rock. Talented musicians, but not worthy of the Skynyrd, Zeppelin, AC/DC comparisons they are recieving on this site. ... Read more

142. De Stijl
list price: $13.98
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Asin: B000068OSJ
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1872
Average Customer Review: 4.29 out of 5 stars
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Album Description

De Stijl, the Dutch word for the style, is the sophomore CD from the Southwest Detroit brother and sister duo THE WHITE STRIPES. This album is based more on piano, open-A tuningand primal drum beats. It is also augmented by electricviolin, acoustic bass and presents the listener with moremelodic pieces. 13 tracks. ... Read more

Reviews (92)

5-0 out of 5 stars Should be called "De S**t."
After the mediocre first album, I was REALLY suprised by this album. This is some of the White Stripes' finest songs, playing, and skill. Until I hear Elephant, I am certain that this is their best album. I don't know what they did, but this is a huge change from the last album.

Every song is great. You're Pretty Good Looking sounds like a mid-60's pop song with a little Stones influence. Hello Operator sounds like mid 70's Zeppelin with a raunchy singer. Little Bird..this song kicks buttocks. That's all you need to know. Apple Blossom sounds like it came directly from The Kinks. I'm Bound To Pack It Up is a excellent folk ditty with some beatiful violin. I think it's violin, could be keyboard. The rework of Son House's Death Letter is spectacular, with some remarkable jamming coming from just 2 people. Sister, Do You Know My Name is a little bit repeatitive, but it's still welcome. Truth Doesn't Make A Noise is by far, the best song The White Stripes have done. Really honest, beatiful melody, great hook. It's perfect. A Boy's Best Friend is really spectacular with great slide playing. Let's Build A Home is very cool, sort of punk-blues. Jumble, Jumble is another rocker, with the great bend-fill on the guitar. Why Can't You Be Nicer To Me is another repeatitive song, but it has a great hook. Then there's the great closer, Your Southern Can is Mine. This is fun to sing along to.

This is The White Stripes' best work. It's perfect in every way.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pretty damn good neo-garage rock.
Although White Blood Cells is Jack and Meg's commercial success, it is my opinion that De Stijl really captures what the White Stripes are about. It's much rawer than White Blood Cells, but more tuneful than the debut, and is a very solid attempt at bluesy garage rock.

Well, for one thing De Stijl sounds very, very garagey. The production is gritty and honest, with almost no studio gloss present. The minimalist approach works wonders here.

Jack White is an excellent guitarist, and very proficient at the open-A, slide guitar blues of this album. His overpowering, rich guitar totally eclipses the need for a base player. On De Stijl, his vocals sound like that of a young Robert Plant. Although Meg is not the most competent drummer out there, she merely functions to keep time while Jack rips away on his guitar. Lyrics are simple yet often profound, with no pretension or angst rife among nu-metal bands these days.

Highlights include You're Pretty Good Looking (For A Girl), Hello Operator (got to love that "solo" that Meg does), Apple Blossom, I'm Bound To Pack It Up, Death Letter (my favorite), Truth Doesn't Make A Noise, and the hard rockers Let's Build A Home and Jumble Jumble. If there's a throwaway track, it's probably the weak cover of Your Southern Can Is Mine--way too much country for my liking.

The White Stripes may eventually better this one (their new album Elephant looks promising) but this is their best so far. The Strokes have a stronger debut and the Hives' Veni Vidi Vicious is nothing to sneeze at, but De Stijl will definitely satisfy your neo-garage rock fix. Recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Before White Blood Cells there was this album...
...which I had never heard of. White Blood Cells was the first Stripes album I bought, and once I discovered the genius in that one I went back for the older stuff. The sound here is of a more unrefined garage rock album with an added blues feel to it. Definately more bluesy than White Blood Cells. I can't tell you this is a better than the other albums from them because I think they are all brilliant in their own way. The White Stripes are an amazingly talented band that has only gotten better with each album they put out and they exemplify what music is about. Meg White is not a great drummer but what she can do works well for every song in my opinion. Some notable songs from De Stijl include Hello Operator, You're Pretty Good Looking, Let's Build A Home and my fave from the album Death Letter. I believe they performed that one at the Grammy Awards and it sounded great then as well. So it pretty much sounds like a great garage blues rock cd that is superb, although for me it is # 3 next to their two latest albums. This is nothing short of great though and I know many people have only heard WBC and Elephant, but give this a listen. Im pretty sure you will like what you hear.

5-0 out of 5 stars for true believers only
After years of the commercial-marketing overload of talentless musicians, finally a spark of hope has arisen within mankind. My faith in humanity had been restored when I first heard this album. There is a reason to live afterall. The White Stripes are REAL.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best CD....ever
This is probably my favorite white stripes cd, and they're my favorite band ever!!!! This album is way more on the bluesy side which is great. Basically everything about this album kicks serious ass and rocks hard, buy it its gr8. ... Read more

143. Wonder What's Next
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Asin: B00006GO98
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1953
Average Customer Review: 4.29 out of 5 stars
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Chevelle’s haunting, booming, and vitriolic sophomore release opens with a song about three brothers called "Family System" Given that the three Loeffler brothers comprise Chevelle, it's easy to imagine the source of the song. Singer/guitarist Pete, drummer Sam, and bassist Joe have an intuitive gift for melding melody and intense, brutal passion in a manner that recalls at various times Live, Taproot, and Tool. From the brutal plea of the dynamic "Forfeit" to the bombast of"An Evening with El Diablo," Chevelle’s earnest, less then groundbreaking modern rock captures an intensity that almost makes up for a sometimes cookie-cutter musical vibe. --Katherine Turman ... Read more

Reviews (240)

5-0 out of 5 stars Genius
I had only heard the name Chevelle hear and there and had never heard them until awhile ago. I heard Closure on the radio and decided to buy the CD. I was totally satisfied. It was worth every penny. I love songs 1,2,3,4,5,7,10, and 11.
1. Family System: Hard rock song. 10/10
2. Comfortable Liar: Great all around song to listen to. 10/10
3. Send the Pain Below: Good song, but I dont think it deserves all the credit it got. 9/10
4. Closure: Awesome. The perfect balance of screaming and distortion. 10/10
5. The Red: I absolutely love this song. It is the best song ever. 10/10
6. Wonder What's Next: Eh...okay, I guess. 6/10
7. Don't Fake This: I love the chorus and verse. 10/10
8. Forfeit: Pretty good song, but I don't like how it stops before the chorus. 7/10
9. Grab Thy Hand: Okay song. 8/10
10. An Evening With El Diablo: Awesome song. 10/10
11. One Lonely Visitor: I don't listen to it much, but it just demonstrates Chevelle's musical abilities. 9/10

In conclusion, GO BUY THIS CD! I think Chevelle has more screaming potential they don't use, but what the heck, its awesome anyway. If you aren't sure if you should get it, get it! the red, closure, and send the pain below arent the only good songs. I give this album 10/10!!

5-0 out of 5 stars greatest cd ever made? Quite Possibly
This could possibly be one of the best cds ever made. Every song has emotion and certain anguish to the lyrics. Pete, the singer, is a man who knows to write lyrics. From the Melodic intro of "Family System", to the angry tone of "The Red", to the ultimatly eerie "An Evening With El Diablo", This cd has what it takes.

1. Family System - Great intro, very heavy. 8/10
2. Comfortable Liar - This is the 2nd best song on the album. Very good. 9/10
3. Send the Pain Below - The 3rd best song on the album. 9/10
4. Closure - This song is ok not the best though. 5/10
5. The Red - I am sure everyone has heard this song. 4th best off the album 10/10
6. Wonder Whats Next - Possibly the Hardest song on the album. Very Heavy. 8/10
7. Dont Fake This - Very Nice song, Great melodie. 9/10
8. Forfeit - great song, i like the lyrics. 9/10
9. Grab Thy Hand - another great song 7/10
10. An Evening With El Diablo - This is the Best Song off the entire album. It is very eerie. 10/10
11. One Lonely Visitor - I dont like this song. 1/10

Overall You need to get this cd. It is great for when your angry.

5-0 out of 5 stars HANDS DOWN
I've been a tool fan for a long time, loved all of their stuff, but as soon as i decieded to check out this new band called Chevelle i was blown away and Tool was history. Never had i heard such great songs before. To start off, i noticed they use incredible lyrics with such depth and feeling. Even if you dont understand it, it just leaves you in wonder and excitement. You feel drawn ever closer to it everytime you listen. Secondly it has pumping metal through out it like crazy. Like tool it has low-voiced sharp lyrics and then goes to screaming tension within all a controlled pace, something i havent seen in a long time. Instead of taking 3 minutes to get to the point like Tool it starts off right away with a blast of good riffs which lead to an awesome very catchy chorus. Rather then telling you track by track what is good and what great,(like many of the other reviews) i think you can only be the judge of what tracks are best on this cd. Everybody has a different opinion on what they like so, i'll just say i liked everything on this cd from beginning to end. One more thing, if your wondering whats next dont be, because you wont be disappointed. Chevelle's next album,(this type of thinking could do us in)is coming and the first single,(vitamin R)is killer, their best work yet.

3-0 out of 5 stars Good band/could be the start of something great.
This album will most likely appeal to teenage boys, rather than seasoned "rockers" in their twenties or thirties. Chevelle is a good band, don't get me wrong, and this album is a clear improvement on their first; but each and every song is highly derivative of the band Tool, particularly their album "Undertow". It seems as if these three brothers spent many an hour banging out the major guitar and drum riffs from the aforementioned album. The lead singer even goes so far as to replicate Maynard James Keenan's vocal phrasing. Also, like "Undertow", this album samples an echoing coffin being pried open: is this paying homage or ripping off? There is also a noticeable lack of emotion throughout most of the album. I would suggest purchasing Tool and A Perfect Circle albums before this one. Yet, this is definately a step up from repetitiously boring bands like Nickelback.

5-0 out of 5 stars great cd
Family System: 10/10
Comfortable Liar: 10/10
Send the Pain Below: 10/10
Closure: 10/10
The Red: 10/10
Wonder Whats Next: 9/10
Dont Fake This: 9.5/10
Forfeit: 9.5/10
An Evening with El Diablo: 8.5/10
One Lonely Visitor: 8/10 ... Read more

144. MTV Unplugged
list price: $11.98
our price: $10.99
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Asin: B000002HEM
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 5425
Average Customer Review: 4.59 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (39)

4-0 out of 5 stars Mellow Maniacs.
Since we never got that "Best of" from them, I guess this will have to due. Of course, this is basically an unplugged greatest hits album. And as good as the studio albums are, this actually seems, and sounds, more natural for them. It includes the classics "Like the Weather", "Trouble Me", and "These are Days". Other wonderful songs are "What's the Matter Here?" and "Noah's Dove". The only songs that I really miss, are "Dust Bowl", and "Circle Dream". But you can't have it all. Though "In My Tribe", "Blind Man's Zoo", and "Our Time In Eden" are excellent studio albums, I would still suggest this to the person looking for just one "10,000 Maniacs" disc. It's 14 unplugged tracks that sound as good as "Natalie Merchant" looks.

5-0 out of 5 stars A hauntingly exquisite live album
This album stands as one of the most impressive MTV Unplugged albums ever recorded. The unique style and sound of the 10,000 Maniacs was captured beautifully in this concert, preserving an unforgettable legacy by the group which was essentially breaking up at the time this was released. Anyone who listened to the radio back then has to know and remember Because the Night. While it is still hard for me to believe this song so wonderfully suited to Natalie Merchant's voice was written by Bruce Springsteen, it served as a most impressive means of introducing Natalie Merchant sans Maniacs to the larger listening audience. Like many fans, I am not that familiar with the 10,000 Maniacs albums predating In My Tribe, but all of the 14 songs on this album (including four from In My Tribe) are just hauntingly exquisite. Each song tells a story, often a serious one touching on important social issues, infusing this modernized folk music with a very human folk music consciousness that speaks to both the head and heart in a number of very effective ways. If the unique sound of 10,000 Maniacs doesn't move you at first, give it a second listen, and I'm sure the power of the music will begin to reveal itself to you. It is unfortunate that Natalie Merchant left the group, but the magic that was 10,000 Maniacs has been wonderfully preserved in this truly incredible live recording.

3-0 out of 5 stars Love Merchant, Dislike the Maniacs
Natalie Merchant was truly the force behind this group. Luckily Merchant's voice raises this collection up from the formulaic collections of unplugged that have come before. (Think Eric Clapton etc) Trouble Me, and Because the Night are the two main reasons to buy this cd. If you don't have a love of the 10,000 Maniacs, you would be better to pay to download those two tracks. If you want to enjoy Natalie Merchants voice, please look at her solo debut Tigerlily.

4-0 out of 5 stars A bit flat, but still a great collection
I remember watching the original shortened broadcast of MTV Unplugged on TV before the album was released, and my first thought was that Natalie Merchant sounded tired during this performance. It's understandable, as the Maniacs were playing many dates in late '92 and early '93, but her last album with the Maniacs is also probably the worst. However, worse doesn't always mean "bad." This is a nice reworking of some of their back catalog, as well as the surprise hit, a cover of "Because the Night," that was worn out by excessive radio play.

5-0 out of 5 stars pleasant, incredibly good album
In my opinion - which of course may not agree with yours although it might- this is the best, and I mean the best light rock album with a female vocalist. If I were to pick the 5 best american female rock composers, Natalie would be among the three best with Tori and who else?... hmmmm that's a difficult one. But anyway, you know what I mean, her music is great, very melodic, inspires lots of different moods and adaptable for a wide variety of tastes. I wonder what is of Ten Thousand Maniacs nowadays now that they are without the marvelous Natalie. ... Read more

145. Staring at the Sea: The Singles
list price: $17.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B000002H3O
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1961
Average Customer Review: 4.38 out of 5 stars
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Big and moody, Staring at the Sea compiles some hits and near misses of these excavators of the dark soul.Beginning with their earliest hits--the sparse "Killing an Arab," the aptly tedious "10:15 Saturday Night," and the charming "Boys Don't Cry"--this collection stops before the comparative giddiness of Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me.

Musicians first, brooding art types second, The Cure's unique instrumentation doesn't get the credit it rightfully deserves. The thrashy, trash-can break in "Jumping Someone Else's Train," the sprightly synthesized recorder of "Close to Me," and the techno-pop disco lines in "Let's Go to Bed" and "The Walk" are downright brilliant in their effectiveness and simplicity. A string of money shots if ever there was one. --Steve Gdula ... Read more

Reviews (53)

5-0 out of 5 stars Sometimes I Dream
"Staring at the Sea" is a collection of singles from the band's albums from "Three Imaginary Boys" (released in America as "Boys Don't Cry," with a few variations) in 1979 up through "Head on the Door" in 1985. This album provides a fine panorama of the Cure's progression from a power (punk) trio (Killing an Arab, Boys Don't Cry), through the heavily synthesized sounds of Faith (Other Voices), the gothic, drum machine of Pornography (The Hanging Garden), to the Cure's most complex (and commercially successful) arrangements in Head on the Door (Inbetween Days, Close to Me). New fans will instantly fall in love with Boys Don't Cry, Love Cats, Caterpillar, Inbetween Days and Close to Me. "Killing an Arab" was the band's first single, and despite its name, is merely an adaptation of Albert Camus' "The Stranger," not a reflection of any racial animosity. "Charlotte Sometimes" is a gem on this album. It was never released on a full-length album, yet it is a favorite of many Cure fans; the studio version is a bit sluggish, though, and fans will find that songs like "Let's Go to Bed," "The Walk," and "Charlotte" (though cleverly appealing as mid-80s antiquities) are literally transformed by the performances of these songs in the live CDs "Show" and "Paris." This compilation is outstanding, though. New fans are encouraged to check out "Galore," which is a collection of more recent singles that most people are more familiar with, but when you are ready to fall in love with the Cure, and you will, this album should immediately become part of your CD collection.

4-0 out of 5 stars Give Me The Cure
As with most "greatest hits" albums, "Standing on the Beach" is merely a collection of previously released material. Nowadays the only reason to really buy the compact disc version of this album is for "Charlotte Sometimes", a single released in 1982, and only released on vinyl. "Charlotte" is a classic Cure track based on a children's book written by Penelope Farmer and it conveys the mood and style for much of The Cure's work in the early Eighties.

However, the cassette version of this album is a definate recomendation! It contains most of the songs avaliable on the cd and a "B-side" collection of unreleased songs from "Boys Don't Cry" all the way up to "The Head on the Door." There are some very interesting songs on the b-side that express how multi-dimensional the band can be. And some of the Cure's rejected songs sound better than a lot of bands released material!

Either way, being a long time fan of Robert Smith and The Cure, you could hardly go wrong with either medium, though the cassette will definately put you through so many moods you will need a psychiatrist when you are done listening!

5-0 out of 5 stars Oh Meursault...
What else can be said about this that hasn't already? We shall see. If there is just one album by the Cure that you could get (excluding Disintegration) by all means make this the one! This album includes a very nice array of earlier Cure material ranging from their brilliant ode to Camus (that alone makes this cd worth it) in Killing an Arab, the ironically cheerful Boys Don't Cry (oh, but they do) and the brooding atmosphere created in the Hanging Garden to the wonderful meandering of A Forest and playfully upbeat tempo created by Close to Me, brass and all, the Lovecats and of course the beutifully simplistic The Caterpillar.
There are just so many great songs on this album it is hard to describe mention them all; every track is truly a jewel, and, perhaps, most impressive is the range of emotion and subject matter that the Cure covers here, all with brilliance, wit and a graceful passion unmatched in most music that is being made today. In this collection, as with all of the Cure's material, Robert Smith's lyrics ring true and the accompanying music never fails to intensify the the mood that they evoke. The Cure are without a doubt one of the best bands to come out of the 70's and 80's and this album illustrates why. Go on go on your choice is made...

4-0 out of 5 stars The Cure: a singles band? Here's proof...
Thanks to the recent TV commercial for HP Digital cameras, I found myself really wanting to have some Cure in my life again and went looking for "Pictures Of You." Yes, at one time I had almost all the Cure CD's in my collection, but time and economics had weeded them away. "Staring At The Sea" offered me an opportunity to get a batch of other songs I remembered with fondness.

As dark and morose as The Cure's image had always been, their albums up to "The Head On The Door" frequently found them making dazzlingly brilliant singles. Hard to believe it, but Robert Smith was just as pop song smart as any New Romantic period hit maker, and in songs like "The Walk" or "Love Cats" he showed the kind of playfulness that many of his fans didn't always "get." Nonetheless, early efforts like "Killing An Arab" or "Hanging Garden" reinforced that dark depressive atmosphere that early Cure fans embraced so completely. Smith himself never had any problem with playing against preconceived notions of what a Cure song should be; I doubt a jazzy Robert ("Let's Go To Bed") was in any goth fan's must hear list.

I also found it ironic that the "Staring at the Sea" image of an old man was mirrored by the baby with the ice cream on "Galore." If you wanted to read more into it, you'd almost suspect Robert Smith was gently trying to remind listeners that he didn't mind playing to his more childlike nature when making music. While there has yet to be a comprehensive single disc collection of the Cure's best, a purchase of "Galore" and "Standing" will at least put all the singles at your fingertips.

5-0 out of 5 stars Charlotte Sometimes
The one reason to buy this is to have "Charlotte Sometimes" on cd. I myself own everything the cure has released but I had to buy this for that song. Charlotte Sometimes is the most dreamy and mysterious Cure song ever and I swear it puts me in a trance. It steals me away from my dreary life as a teenager with a dead end job and a so-far meaningless exisitence...sounds Cliche' huh?. Well, trust me this album is full of Cure classics but it holds the one Cure song that has a place im my heart forever. Keep an eye out for the new cure album coming...its going to be a great summer. ... Read more

146. Strangely Isolated Place
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Asin: B0002CHK18
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2454
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Ulrich Schnauss's A Strangely Isolated Place was released in Europe during May of 2003, but fans had to wait over a year for it to arrive on these shores. The Berliner's follow-up to Far Away Trains Passing By is another gentle and fascinating record, similarly drunk with melody. But Schnauss has augmented his electro-synth sound with tsunamis of huge, arching major chords that rival M83's over-the-top lushness. Shoegazer influences show up in the Slowdive-esque "Gone Forever," as well as the My Bloody Valentine buzz in "Clear Day". Despite Place's ethereal sheen, the bones of solid dance-ability are also here, as several clever DJs have already noted (see Sasha's use of "On My Own" for Involver). The record could use a few well-placed batches of noise to act as counterpoint, but long-suffering fans of early Cocteau Twins looking for a fix of dreamy songcraft should find much to love. --Matthew Cooke ... Read more

147. A User's Guide to They Might Be Giants
list price: $11.98
our price: $9.99
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Asin: B0007XT8DA
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 3077
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Album Description

Led by John Flansburgh and John Linnell, They Might Be Giants rose to fame out of NYC's avant-garde performance scene in the 80's. Best known to the masses for "Boss of Me," their high-voltage theme song for the hit sitcom Malcolm in the Middle, TMBG has built a loyal and widespread following with their literate, humor-laced, and irresistibly catchy alt-skewed pop rock. Rhino's new single disc retrospective compilation pulls hits and favorites from throughout their long and prolific career! ... Read more

Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars Sure it has their GREATEST hits...
... But their not-as-great hits aren't on here. Pretty much just strange songs that don't really do them justice. It's cheap, so I guess it's worth it, but if you really want to know their better stuff first, get the Dial-a-Song set.

2-0 out of 5 stars This friggin' sucks
What the frell. It's another frellin' compilation. They Might Be Giants can't be bothered to get off their arse and do anything new except for a baby's album, so they are rehashing old material again (If you want a half-decent compilation, get the Dial-A-Song 2 CD Compilation - more great material).
Seriously, there's nothing new here. Go buy "Dial-A-Song"

4-0 out of 5 stars Dont, Let's Start!
How to you compile "A User's Guide To TMBG"? Here's a band with a few songs with moderate airplay, no top 10 singles, yet have a devout following with lots of EPs and albums that AVERAGE about 20 songs each since 1982? A daunting task indeed. "User's Guide" does pretty much a good of a job as one could expect. Like any collection, there may be gripes like "James Polk" may be clever but not really worthy. Or where's the single for "Man It's So Loud In Here". But I don't think that's the point. The CD tries to highlight the best songs from the broad spectrum of albums. We get everything from the electric cheesy drum and keyboards from the early days (Don't Let's Start, Purple Toupee) through putting together an actual band with horn section (the rockin Dr. Worm), to selections from the children's album "No!". On that level, and being well remastered, the CD does its job. For anyone who has ever been curious about TMBG, this is an excellent place to start (after you laugh at them for not being so hip to them after all these years).

4-0 out of 5 stars If you have money, get Dial-A-Song.
The only thing here that's not on D-A-S is John Lee Supertaster, which isn't all that great. But the tracks are still solid, and you get a list of every show the band's ever performed that they know of.

4-0 out of 5 stars No new tracks
This has no new tracks, it is not designed for existing fans of the band, it is for you to make new fans with!!

As that, I think it will do pretty well, considering it has some of everything.

A good introduction to the band, 4/5. ... Read more

148. Fever To Tell
list price: $13.98
our price: $12.99
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Asin: B00008VOQM
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1697
Average Customer Review: 3.71 out of 5 stars
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Well before the release of this solid but slender debut, the Brooklyn-based Yeah Yeah Yeahs were the subject of so much international press hype that the WhiteStripes were probably taking quick, nervous peeks over their shoulders. But while Fever to Tell captures a lot of what’s good about the trio--mostly the caterwauling energy of their club shows--it also exposes the band’s limitations. Singer Karen O is the undeniable star here, contorting her voice from a primal P.J. Harvey growl to the pre-orgasmic purr of Chrissie Hynde. Nick Zinner chops, slashes, and torpedoes his guitar around, across, and straight at O’s voice, while drummer Brian Chase delivers a suitably raw trash-can thump.There are a lot of cool sounds on this 11-song, 37-minuute disc, and enough metallic-KO attitude to make a bare-chested grandpa like Iggy Pop proud. What’s missing is a more varied set of fully fleshed-out songs, the kind it took the White Stripes four albums to write. Hype too early in a career can be terrible burden--ask Liz Phair or, soon enough, the Vines. Better to enjoy Fever to Tell for what it is--an uninhibited blast of garage-rock fury--without swallowingextravagant claims for a potentially great band still under construction. --Keith Moerer ... Read more

Reviews (174)

4-0 out of 5 stars Yeah Yeah Yeahs "Fever To Tell"
"Rich" (4/5): A rockin opener.
"Date With The Night" (4/5): Karen O's screeches are crazy, turn this one up.
"Man" (4/5): The guitar is a driving force is this song.
"Tick" (5/5): One of my favorite songs on the cd, this is a great track.
"Black Tongue" (4/5): How could you dislike a song with lyrics like this one lol.
"Pin" (4/5): There aren't many real words in this song, but who needs them with a riff like the one in this tune.
"Cold Light" (3/5): This isn't a horrible song, just not great.
"No No No" (4/5): Another personal favorite on the cd.
"Maps" (5/5): Karen's voice is beautiful here. Great song and my favorite on the cd.
"Y Control" (5/5): Two great songs in a row. This one is awesome.
"Modern Romance" (4/5): A good closing track.

The long-anticipated major label debut from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs will be very satisfying for the YYY fan. Ever present rock star Karen O leads her other two bandmates in a crazy party sure to mess up a few heads. Contrary to most albums, this one actually starts to get great at the end. Not a bad release at all. Highlights include "Maps" "Tick" and "Y Control."

Rating: Four stars.

4-0 out of 5 stars Get the fever!
I have to admit, when I first purchased this album I didn't care for it much. I put it away for a while and then one day decided to take it back out for another listen. The more I listened to Fever To Tell, the more I liked it. It's a very unique album and can't really be compared to anything else-- "Rich" is an excellent opening track, and probably my favorite on this CD. The way Nick Zinner plays the guitar is really interesting--lots of delay and 5th chords, different tunings, etc. Their sound is rich and full without a bass player because Nick really fills things out with deep and heavy tones. The drums are awesome--most of the time a thumping rock'n'roll beat, sometimes even jazzy--Brian's drumming really helps fill out the guitar. And now, for the vocals: WILD! If you think Jimmy Page and Jack White are wild vocalists, Karen O is their female counterpart. She has the most rockin' voice- she goes into raspy, high-pitched rants in some songs... then, in "Maps", "Modern Romance" and the bonus track at the end, you hear her softer side, but her voice is still no less rock-- it's beautiful in it's uniqueness.
Check out this album-- it's really cool, and girls like Karen O make me really proud to be a female rock musician!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best CD...
Well, this CD is well worth your money! It is very different and fresh. The guitar is very edgey and the drums are excellent! I highly recommend it and please do pick it up.

5-0 out of 5 stars Just amazing
Finally a band has listened to the first two PJ Harvey albums and learned something! (Oddly, I bought this the same day I bought the new PJ album, which is so dull I wanted to throw it out a window.)

If there is one word to describe the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, it is "aggresive." The vocals, the drums, and especially the guitars (which are a mix of, again, the first two PJ albums and, believe it or not, Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine), made me leave hand imprints on my steering wheel. It makes you want to jettison far into the sea all those stupid bands getting so much radio play these days, or/and so much hype.

The Strokes, and all the Blink 182s and Sum 41s and all of these stupid sound-alike bands should hear the death bell ringing for them with this album.

If I were in any band but this one right now, I would be embarrassed for how lame I was. Seriously. It's that good. (If you like Maps, though, watch out. It's a great song, too, but it's like feeling good brushing your teeth with an electric toothbrush when the rest of the album is cutting down forests with the world's angriest chainsaw.)

3-0 out of 5 stars what I call "sloppy rock"
I bought this cd because i heard maps ( like every1) I didn't really like maps much but the cd was very cheap. This cd is like a puzzle missing pieces, karen O likes to make wierd noises, she screams a lot. The cd is not that bad, I like the end of the album because my favorite songs, y control and modern romance are there and also because i know the album is ending pretty soon. If you like to experimenting then get thgis cd but is you have a favorite band and you are missing from that collection, you should but that. ... Read more

149. Make Up the Breakdown
list price: $15.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B00006L3PY
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 3449
Average Customer Review: 3.92 out of 5 stars
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Album Description

'Make Up The Breakdown' is the second album release for the Canadian angular post-punk pop act, who have been comparedto XTC & The Cure. It follows 2002's 'Scenes One ThroughThirteen' which brought together tracks from their earlyEPs. 10 tracks. Limited edition UK reissue is scheduled toinclude UK versions of the two songs 'No Not Now' & thesingle 'Bandages'. B-Unique. 2003. ... Read more

Reviews (78)

5-0 out of 5 stars A shining star in my cd collection
I listen to a lot of music in many genres, and I must say that "Makeup the Breakdown" is a unique find in the world of music. This cd especially shines in the area of rock these days, being as though many bands have a similar sound. It is very melodic with nice touches of keyboard and cowbell (yes I said cowbell). The upbeat drumming provides for very danceable songs that just beg you to bop your head. At first I found Steve Bays' vocals a tad weird and very different, and I must admit it took about 2 listens for me to fall in love with it. But after those two listens I was a devoted fan to HHH. The lyrics are amusing and silly, and I like it how Steve mixes up the stressing of syllables on words to make them sound different. (example - bandages)

Tracks: (out of five stars, five being best)

1. Naked in the City Again *****
2. No, Not Now *****
3. Get In or Get Out *****
4. Bandages *****
5. Oh, Goddamnit ****
6. Aveda **
7. This Town ****
8. Talk to Me, Dance with Me ****
9. Save us SOS ***
10. In Cairo *

All in all, this cd is a lot of fun and great to pop in your cd player and dance, dance dance!

3-0 out of 5 stars An album of two halves
I agree with previous reviewers that this album starts strongly, but drops off a bit towards the end. In fact it almost perfectly divides into the excellent first half (first 5 tracks) and the less good second half. Everyone knows about 'Bandages', an indie disco classic infused with a really brilliant groove, but 'No, Not Now' arguably matches it for spiky, tuneful, zest, while 'Naked In The City Again' is an excellent understated opening with fantastic production and good guitar work, while 'Oh Goddamnit' is one of the best unashamed light pop songs for the last few years. However, the second half languishes slightly with slightly pointless rehashes of the sound like 'Talk To Me Dance With Me' and duller tracks like 'This Town'. Closer 'In Cairo' ends things on a slightly better note, with its slower and slightly uneasy melody.

Admittedly Bay's voice can be irritating at times, but it complements the style of the music nicely. Its been compared to Robert Smith which is a fair comparison but surely Hot Hot Heat, while perhaps influenced by the Cure's more upbeat, poppy tracks, draw on rather different influences too. I hear their first album was very different and altogether rather more serious and concerned with musicianship (and of course they had a different singer) so that would be interesting to hear. This, however, is a good album with a good sound, even if quality control is not at its strongest in the second half.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Complete Anti-Depressive.
This is one of the most energetic, joyful CDs that I've ever purchased. I was walking through a Tower Records in downtown Chicago and overheard "Bandages" and asked the guy at the counter about the band. He raved about them. I ended up buying it and loving it in its entirety after about 3 listens. Their sound is lively and their lyrics are interesting. I highly recommend it.

5-0 out of 5 stars breath of fresh air
i love hot hot heat.this is one of the best cds i've heard in a long could anyone not like bandages.there music is really catchy and i think they are a really good band.

4-0 out of 5 stars Decent Effort
This is a record you need to spend time with, but it's worth it. It has its quirks and shining moments, but overall I'd consider it a worthy purchase. Angular is a good word to describe it. Some may be put off by the vocals, but that's their loss. ... Read more

150. Dandy Warhols Come Down
list price: $16.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B000002U2S
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 9642
Average Customer Review: 4.35 out of 5 stars
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The major-label debut from Portland's psychedelic-pop protagonists swirls earfuls of 1960s guitar riffs around 1990s Brit-pop nuances. If Come Down occasionally sounds like Neil Young fronting Oasis ("Boys Better," "Minnesoter") or Lou Reed doing The Verve ("Good Morning"), it just as often turns self-referential and obscure. The quartet constructs a slavishly fashionable sound rife with drug references (the relentlessly jangly post-Cobain anthem, "Not If You Were the Last Junkie on Earth," includes the memorable chorus: "Heroin is so passe") and sleepy, detached elegance. There's sweeping beauty here, too, in the lush, intricate guitar work (courtesy Courtney Taylor and Peter Holmstrom) and the cooing female backing vocals (Zia McCabe). --Mark Woodlief ... Read more

Reviews (43)

5-0 out of 5 stars Britpop hits America and as usual they do it better
OREGON band dandy warhols sound very like mid ninties britpop bands Supergrass, Blur and Space etc, etc... But as it was with Rock, punk, tecno genres which originated in Britain these Americans jump on the bandwagon and outdo their British forefathers(Boston tea party 1997?). This album is a masterpiece and has all the usual indie hooks and harmonies catchy, bouncy tunes like 'Boys better', 'cool as kim Deal', 'Every Day should be a holiday' and also as with most indie albums there are chill out songs like the addictively bluesy 'Orange' and the brilliant instrumental 'The Creep out'. This is without doubt one of the finest albums of the ninties and easily dandy's best so far. Who needs Britpop when you've good Yankpop(!!!!???).

5-0 out of 5 stars One Of America's Best Bands
The Dandy Warhols are not deep lyricists, but that is far from the point. The band is nothing short of amazing. Containing a strong bass beat and layered guitars, the Warhols provide true dance party music. Mostly known for the party hit, "Every Day Should Be A Holiday", the rest of the album is just as much on par. "Boys Better" has a sexy thumping bass drive and the electronic keyboards add a singeing emphasis. Many will not enjoy the 'sound effects' that introduce some songs, but they are actually great lead-ins. Not all the songs are hard rockers, as the great acoustical compositions, "Whipping Tree" and "Green" show. "The Creep Out" closes the album with a slow crescendo rising beat and some weird, but effective sound effects that here, do add to the song. A great album!

2-0 out of 5 stars Should Have Just Bought the Single
Like with Thirteen Tales from Bohemia I just don't understand why The Dandy Warhols have sensational released songs and the rest of their album's unreleased songs are nothing like the released ones either in quality, style or sound. A lot of songs on here seem to have had no effort put into them whatsoever when either writing or performing them.

The Dandy Warhols have had great success with Not if You Were the Last Junkie on Earth from this album, Bohemian Like You from the Thirteen Tales from Urban Bohemia album and We Used to be Friends from Welcome to the Monkey House. Why? Because they open their mouths in those songs and actually seem like they are interested in singing them. The rest of the songs on here are either mumbled, sung so softly you have to struggle to understand what is being said or are just plain terrible. Many seem to be stuck in first gear, you are listening expecting the song to take of from the intro at any stage but they seem to not be able to find second gear.

3-0 out of 5 stars Be In
The Dandy Warhols are a band that don`t take themselves too seriously and always know how to make a swell and intricate record. "Come Down", their second effort, is not their best but still has some qualities and a couple of interesting ideas. Here, they throw in references to the Velvet Underground, the Doors, add a bit of brit pop, folk, lo-fi and psychedelic elements. The singles "Boys Better", "Not If You Were The Last Junkie On Earth" and "Every Day Should Be An Holiday" are the most recognizable and acessible songs, though there are other good tracks to find. The mellow moments of "Good Morning", "Whipping Tree" or "Green" create emotional, ethereal songs, showing the band`s softer side. Their slacker, cooler-than-ever, laid-back attitude is present throughout the album, turning it into an addictive listening experience. It`s a pity that some tedious songs ("Pete International Airport", "The Creep Out") make the record a bit flawed and not as good as its follow-up "Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia", but for the most part it still is a fun ride. Enjoy.

5-0 out of 5 stars This COULD BE the best CD from an American band in the '90's
Before 2000's "Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia" came out and had Dandy Warhols songs in TV ads for everything from Michelob beer to Nissan automobiles to pretty much everything else, "Not If You Were The Last Junkie On Earth" was winning accolades as being one of the most entertaining videos to run on MTV since the glory days of Russell Mulcahy's work with Duran Duran, "Boys Better" was spicing up the soundtrack to "Good Will Hunting" and "Every Day Should Be A Holiday" was adding a touch of class to "There's Something About Mary" (admittedly not so difficult to do).

"The Dandy Warhols Come Down" marks Portland, Oregon's most enigmatic (yet sonically accessible) band's major-label debut with Capitol/EMI, and considering the massive wave of neo-psychedelic indie-pop that flooded the music industry in 1997 (not in the least among the stand-outs being Cornershop's "When I Was Born For The th Time" and Primal Scream's masterpiece "Vanishing Point"), it is probably understandable that "...Come Down" managed to slip beneath the radar of most music fans. However, those who have made the effort to experience this CD are seldom regretfull for doing so. From the dreamy and extended introduction of "Be-In" (the song used to open most Dandys live shows to this day) to the experimental soundscapes of "Pete International Airport" and "The Creep-Out" there are a vaiety of trippy grooves and joyful summertime pop tunes, including the afforementioned pop hookfests "...Last Junkie...", "Boys Better", "...Holiday", as well as the aural equivalent of a flower opening its bloom and facing the sun, "Good Morning" and the name-dropping hipster chic of "Cool As Kim Deal".

Just to prove it's not all about catchy pop songs, the Dandys can navel/shoe-gaze with the best of 'em with songs like the two-chord simplicity of "I Love You" (surely one of the most honest love songs ever written), the Sergio Leone/Ennio Morricone-inspired "Whipping Tree", which segues not quite seamlessly into "Green" well as "Orange", arguably the first great song to be written (and performed?) under the influence of a bottle of Ny-Quil.

I had bought "Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia" before this CD, but it was buying this CD that convinced me that the Dandy Warhols were one of the few bands in the music business whose name meant quality with no questions asked; after listening to this album once I knew that anything with the Dandy Warhols name on it was worth buying sight unseen (or sound unheard, as it were); they are just that good, and this CD represents them at their best. If you're at all curious about what this band is about, start with this'll be a most willing convert afterward, I promise. ... Read more

151. Sung Tongs
list price: $15.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B0001J3VII
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 8122
Average Customer Review: 4.38 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (8)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not for Repeated Exposure
Rock music at its most experimental has the potential to be thrilling. Think Eno's Here Come the Warm Jets; the first time you heard the romantic mumble of R.E.M.'s Murmur; Laurie Anderson's minimalist explorations of post-modern life on Big Science. These were artists that found structures to communicate their needs: Eno's dense glam-metal; Michael Stipe's open-souled mumble; Anderson's reductive dissonance and humor. Animal Collective, which is comprised of Panda Bear and Avey Tare, are looking for their structure on their second release Sung Tongs. It begins thrillingly with "Leaf House" and "Who Could Win a Rabbit" - songs that might have been written by Philip Glass on acid. After that it's folksy weirdness and sound collages and tape manipulations that sound like a baby singing through a mouth-tube. Depending on your taste for strangeness you might just love it. I have my reservations, and love it after a lot of exposure to the mainstream. But not all the time.

5-0 out of 5 stars be careful
this album is dangerous. ive had no less than 3 psychic meltdowns in the past 6 days after listening to tracks 5 and 7 over and over and over..............................<

5-0 out of 5 stars try to have fun
This album is dangerous. ive had no less than 3 psychic meltdowns in the last 5 days after listening to tracks 5 and 7 over and over and over .............................

2-0 out of 5 stars Fair
If everyone listened to the first few tracks and then ran to the computer to write a review, you'd get a long list of 5 star reviews. The beginning is obnoxious, strong, genius, and completely unique. The majority of the album that follows, however, is comprised of instrumental tracks capable of destroying the beauty of the beginning.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazingly Creative ..........
One of the most important releases of the year that most folks will never have the oppertunity to hear. I suggest you simply purchase this essential piece of work and let it work its magic on you.............. ... Read more

152. Swagger
list price: $15.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B00004RI6F
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1600
Average Customer Review: 4.81 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (85)

5-0 out of 5 stars Folk music for the Hooligans!!
I saw Flogging Molly when they played at the Doll Hut in Anaheim...It was love at first hear. I can tell you that this band falls in the tap of fast irish folk, sprinkled with some old street punk for good measure. Flogging Molly sings songs of angst, selfish behaviour, drinking (Of course), Pub Hooligans and the like. Well, still not convinced this album is for you? Picture Shane MacGowen *Singer of the Popes* singing for the Original Dropkick Murphys *Do or Die*(Amazing thought is'nt it? But to be fair, Dave King has his own vocal style and is Incredible!! I just wanted to paint a picture using another talented artist that you may have heard of). This is their second recording. The first is called Salty Dog *Another excellent Buy*. If you like the Big Bad Bollocks *Nite on the Tiles*, Dropkick Murphys *Do or Die*, the Pogues, the Popes or Tempest then you must add this to your archive of Irish music. I spoke with all the band members briefly and they are all down to earth and very fun to be around. By the way, If you ever get to see them live, check out the Fiddle Player *Bridget*....the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great album from my favorite live band!
All you need to do is listen to the first ten seconds of "Salty Dog" (the first song on the CD) to get why Flogging Molly's so great. My younger brother put it quite nicely in two words, which unfortunately I can't include here. FM's rollicking mix of traditional Irish music with punk will definitely make you sit up and take notice. And that's just their studio work. Where FM really shines is live onstage. I've been lucky enough to see Flogging Molly play live twice and highly recommend the live experience (you can pick up their first album at the show too). But if they're not playing in your town anytime soon, this might just be the next best thing. At least until the new album comes out St. Patty's, 2002!

5-0 out of 5 stars And the Pogues pass the Torch
I am one of the biggest Pogues and Shane MacGowan fans in the world. I have all of their albums and have had the good fortune of seeing them in concert. When the Pgues split (or Shane left) there was a real void. Shane would release a couple of solo albums that were great, but they were few and far between. it just appeared that that kind of Irish Punk was dead. Well, low and behold, here comes Flogging Molly. They are not the Pogues, but they are in the same cloth. They rock hard and come up with very catchy diddies. They also have the big band sound of the Pogues. Great great album and worthy of being placed with my Pogues collection. Rock On Boys!

4-0 out of 5 stars I was pleasantly suprised.
This is an album I kind of bought on a whim, and now very glad I did. Though they get called punk alot, I wouldn't just call them that. "Dropkick Murphy's" are more punk really, but I'd call this great pub music, though punk influenced no doubt. It's very catchy, very likeable, and most of it you can dance to, or of course have a drink to. I really like "The Worst Day Since Yesterday", "Devil's Dance Floor", and the slow closer "Far Away Boys". But my fave would be "The Likes Of You Again", a great song. Anyone who likes their Irish tunes rowdy should dig this, and anyone who still buys records should dig the green vinyl.

5-0 out of 5 stars Irish aggression and passion...a beautiful combination
I have to admit that I was absolutely blown away by this CD. (This one and Drunken Lullibies are equal in my opinion.) I didn't realize that there were bands like this around and happened upon them by accident. I am a Dropkick Murphy's fan, but Flogging Molly gave me what I was looking for in the way of the Irish/Punk mix. Every song is sung with passion and guts. Slow or fast, every song on this CD is great. Flogging Molly blend a nice Irish folk feel with an aggressive punk feel to make some pretty catchy unique music. I tested this one out on my brother, who is not into the punk scene whatsoever, but loves Irish folk (as I do,but I love punk as well), and he agreed that it was great Irish music. Whether you are into the Clancy Brothers, Irish Rovers, etc...or Rancid, Exploited, etc... this CD is sure to satisfy your tastes. I recommend this one highly! ... Read more

153. Superwolf
list price: $15.98
our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00070Q8FE
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 4708
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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When word spread through indie gossip sites that Bonnie Prince Billy AKA Will Oldham AKA Palace was set to team with Matt Sweeney of Chavez, Zwan and Man ‘Zine fame, unless you were a dedicated fan of elaborate facial hair, it seemed hard to be very intrigued. But the Superwolf collaboration between the two is frayed, fuzzy and undeniably excellent. It’s hard not to get hooked from the first song, which declares "I am under your spell/ And you will have me I reckon," a near six-minute epic that goes from moody sparse organ bit to absolutely choogling guitar part, the words shouted like some Southern anthem or ancient sea shanty until it ends with an elongated coda that sounds a lot like a Jerry Garcia solo album. It sounds a bit like Neil Young ca. Tonight’s the Night covering British folk singer Nic Jones’ Penguin Eggs album. Sweeney and Oldham play most of the instruments and though the vocals are mostly by Oldham, they do harmonize well. It’s remarkable how Oldham continues to reinvent and reinvigorate his mystic mountain man persona The truly surprising thing is that the rest of the album is just as ridiculously good. --Mike McGonigal ... Read more

Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars like everyone else...beds are for sleeping.
as a fan of most of Will Oldham's musical library, superwolf is no let down--in fact, itseems more sophisticated (without loosing oldham's knack for poetics and sombreness) then some Palace Music and older works.Superwolf seems like the next logical step after 'Master and Everyone,' as it is a richer range of music and voice compared to the older, more sparse album.

As always, Oldham makes me want to move to Kentucky, to find out where he gets all of his magic.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Why aren't you kind to me?You could so easily..."
I don't want to write a lengthy review or reiterate what you have already read in the preceding reviews, but let it be said that this album is amazing, and you should at the very least take the time to listen to the previews above in either the Windows Media or Real format before navigating away from this page."Bed is for Sleeping" or "Beast for Thee" are the popular tracks and contain Oldham's most accessible singing in his entire career.He has come a long way from his shaky, cracking vocals on albums like "There Is No-One What Will Take Care of You" and "Days in the Wake".Sweeney's guitar work here is gorgeous and also not to be missed.

Notes on the limited edition- a bit of a ripoff- no extra tracks or artwork.In fact the only thing better is that it's a cardboard DigiPak.It's even missing out the funny drawing of "Will and Matt" contained in the standard edition.

For a better review, go to:

5-0 out of 5 stars Super
Mr. Oldham pulls it off once again, this time with the help of Mr. Sweeney.Another CD which will find high rotation in my player.Glad to see that the Greatest Palace Music was something that "had to be done" rather than a shift in musical focus (or rather a discovery of predicatbility).What's next...Oldham/Pajo/Sweeney doing Zwan covers? :)

5-0 out of 5 stars Yours for the Knowing
Up to this point, my knowledge of Bonnie Prince consisted of Master and Everyone, Ease Down the Road, and I See a Darkness (which, in my humble opinion, contains the greatest love song ever written in All Around).

I had absolutely no knowledge of Matt Sweeney.

Given that, when I popped in Superwolf, the sound initially caught me off guard.I persisted, of course, and was rewarded with a fantastically woven tapestry of lyricism and melody.It's chock full of the sweet, easy melodies, harmonizing vocal overlays, and well-placed crescendos characteristic of Oldham's earlier stuff.

Favorite tracks:
Bed is for Sleeping - "Bed is for sleeping, love is for making, you know, love, I am yours for the taking."

Lift Us Up - "People, don't you wonder how the Lord has brought you under?"

Only Someone Running - "If you melted, then I would melt myself all into you"

5-0 out of 5 stars A Beast for Thee
I am a huge fan of Will Olham and all his monikers.But after Greatest Palace Music I was kind of wondering where he might go next musically.I like country (real country, not Toby Keith)but Greatest Palace Music was a little too country for my taste.Needless to say, Superwolf is amazing.Matt Sweeney really adds some hard rock flavor to the mix.This is a great collaboration between two of indie rock's best musicians. ... Read more

154. Sea of Faces
list price: $17.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B0001DMQ6W
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1276
Average Customer Review: 4.31 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (32)

4-0 out of 5 stars Going From Great To Magnificent
I thought I could not be happier with Kutless when I first heard their debut cd. They came strong with heavy rockin beats and a loud solid voice. Put this together with such diverse Christian content throughout the cd and i was hooked. I really thought I couldnt be happier. Well I was wrong!This album is better by far, even though i loved, (and still love) their prior one. This "Sea of Faces" album kept everything from their debut but added more of a diversity of musical sound from the band and voice from lead singer Jon Micah Sumrall. Songs "Not What You See","Treason", and "Let You In" are reminicent of the hard sound of the first cd and "All Alone" is representitive of the quieter more reflective side. This song is similar to "Run" which is also from God's/Christ's perspective, Him talking to us. "All Alone" (track 2), is also where I first jumped back and said whoa! Change is good! This song starts out melodic and stays melodic with some rockin guitars finally kickin in. Like Rob Beckeley from Pillar Jon Micah Sumrall has worked on his vocals and cut down on the raprock. He could scream/sing great and his regular voice was fine for rock but this song as well as others show how he has grown. Favorite Songs? "All Alone", "Sea of Faces", "Passion" (if Mel Gibson ever made a musical for The Passion of the Christ, then this is would be the main song no doubt). Those songs along with "Treason" and the worshipful "All the Words" round out my favorites. This cd is not just diverse in musical sound but in lyrics as well. The songs range from blatantly Christian with "Passion" and "Sea of Faces" to "Perspectives" and "Better For You" which are positive songs but has no real discriminating Christian content per say, but Im sure you could argue they are inspired from scripture if you listen to them. In other words those songs could easily be played on secular radio and no one would know these guys were Christian Rock. That being said the ambiguity of those two songs is the only step down from their debut cd and why I wont give this cd 5 stars. (I rarely give 5 stars)Bottom Line: As a whole this cd is better than the first and thats sayin alot since the first was so awesome. However where the debut was strong "Sea of Faces" is magnificent! I awaited two cds this year this one and "Where Do We Go From Here" from Pillar. When I listened to the Pillar cd although the music and sound was great I was let down and saddened by the immense lack of christian content. The few Christian songs it did have were weak in content which was a complete 180 from Fireproof. Where Pillar lacked in lyrics, Kutless came through. For the people who dont like this album because its too different from the first one, i understand their points of view but I plan on growing with Kutless with each release.

4-0 out of 5 stars Some of the Best Christian Rock Out There
Kutless has put out a great album with Sea of Faces. These guys can match and beat most secular groups out there. And they do it without compromising their messsage or lyrics. Many of the tracks are hard-hitting rock songs, while a few are slower, more sedate songs. I prefer the former, but it just shows you they have that compability. Passion is by far my favorite track. If you've seen the movie by the same name, it will bring many images from it to mind as you listen to the chorus. The opening three tracks round off favorites from the disk, but the rest is also very good. In my opinion, this one is better than their first album and a must for christian rock fans or anyone looking for rock with a positive outlook and meaningful lyrics.

BTW, the only reason I didn't give this album 5 stars is because I dont give out 5 stars to pretty much anything. I'd probably give this one 4.5 stars if I could rate on that scale.

3-0 out of 5 stars A good album
This is not a bad album at all. The problem becomes that it is a christain one. 100 years ago before humanity had advanced into an era where we do not still do not believe in such heathen beliefs, this album would be acceptable.

None the less, it is good music, and if you can get past the horrible lyrics, (even if you do believe in this stuff..., they are still absolutely attroucious - I suggest you listen to atomship) he is a good vocalist, and the band plays together well.

I have a CD case full of 300+ CD's, and I'm searching for some new music. So I'm going to overlook the fact this is a christain CD and give it a try...

5-0 out of 5 stars It's So Good, It's Shocking!
Wow! I was completely blown away by this CD. Especially when comparing it to Kutless' previous self-titled debut, "Kutless". This album was definatly twice as good. From the moment I heard Kutless the first time, I knew they could be great, but their debut didn't just cut it for me (kinda like Switchfoot's first album). I figured if they could last long enough, they might be able to make an amazing album, but I figured it would be several years before that. But then, here it is, Kutless' sophmore effort, Sea of Faces, and I must say that I was caught off-guard, but in the good way. This is definatly going into my "Favorite CD's" collection. It belongs in yours too.

5-0 out of 5 stars this cd got me into rock
this cd got me into rock,it is has better lryics than most rock cds ive heard,plus jon micah is one of the best rock singers in the is a rundown of the songs

1.good opener,not the best on the cd but still good/8/10
2.jon micahs vocals are so smooth in this song,its a new sound for him/10/10
3.this one has a nice sound to it/9/10
4.this song almost makes me cry to think that i mean so much to god that he would lay down his life just for me./10/10 personal fav./12/10

6.another awsome song/11./10
7.great lryics,smooth vocals/10/10
8.great rocker,sweet.../12/10
9.this one just does not fit./6/10
10.nice new sound for the band/10/10
11.awsome lryics talking about telling someone about the gospel.10/10 ... Read more

155. This Is a Long Drive for Someone With Nothing to Think About
list price: $11.99
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Asin: B000003L1P
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1115
Average Customer Review: 4.59 out of 5 stars
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Frontman Isaac Brock's claim that he's being stalked by his own alter ego was not the first bit of evidence that Modest Mouse isn't your usual pop band. Witness the entirety of this 1996 indie debut from the Washington trio that inspired a major-label bidding war. This Is a Long Drive for Someone with Nothing to Think About finds Brock cruising with cohorts Eric Judy and Jeremiah Green (plus an occasional cellist) through a landscape of intoxicatingly original lo-fi tunes. Sure, Brock's early vocals make Nikki Sudden sound like one smooth crooner, but their strained quality offset the primitive elegance of his guitar work, giving a passionate vulnerability to "Breakthrough," "Custom Concern," and other treatises on life in the lost lane. --Bill Forman ... Read more

Reviews (49)

5-0 out of 5 stars Where it all started...
For Modest Mouse fans, it all started here, with 16 delicious slices of rustic guitarplay, trailer-spat philosophy, and an ear for both sweetly touching melodies and cacophonous abrasion. The controlled chaos of their sound is perfectly captured by the opening salvo of "Dramamine", a waltzy, floating dream of a song that led to inevitable comparisons with Built To Spill, while the following "Breakthrough" is a stomper, all buzzsaw guitars and shouty choruses that led to inevitable comparisons with the Pixies. Don't let such comparisons dissuade you from one of the most hearteningly fresh rock records of recent times, however. It's the schizophrenic welding of the two tendencies that makes for such frenetically enjoyable listening, particularly the rusty guitar sound, Jeremy Green's terrific drumming (check "Exit Does Not Exist" for proof), and a hazy, out-of-time feel that puts this startling debut up there with the very best off-the-beaten-track rock music of all time. Not to mention Issac Brock's throaty, lispy rasp of a voice which, throughout each song, invests more emotional, energetic intensity and fragility than a thousand Frank Blacks. This is a wonderful record, not least for being the jumping-point for one of America's finest bands.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Roaming, Isolated, and Neurotic Sound
Modest Mouse changed my life. Well, that may be a bit of a hyperbole, but I am truly grateful to have been introduced to this band. I have never been a fan of avant-garde/indie rock; my music taste has typically been one of hip-hop, electronic, trip-hop, classic rock, jazz, and classical. This band was introduced to me by a friend, and initially I couldn't stand them (Isaac Brock's whiny voice). However, a few songs would play on random mode in iTunes, and I slowly grew accustomed to them. Modest Mouse rocks.

This is probably one of the most appropriately titled albums I have encountered in a while. It really manages to give you the feeling that you're out on an open road without anything substantial to think about. And that's not a bad thing. It's a distant and wandering sound. Long Drive can sound incredibly neurotic, with their twangy and chaotic guitar rhythms along with Brock's unstable voice. But the genius of MM is that the neurotic sound all falls together and manages to make sense, beautiful sense. Long Drive isn't nearly as polished or accessible as The Moon and Antarctica or Good News for People Who Love Bad News, but in no way does that discount the greatness of Long Drive. I recommend this album without any real reservations. But as one should do with any music, listen to this album without projecting any preconceived notions about what good music should sound like.

5-0 out of 5 stars Breakthrough
To put it simply this cd surprised me. Upon knowing of the band for almost 6 years I decided to purchase The Lonesome Crowded West earlier this year on somewhat of a whim. The cd blew me away, it monopolized my cd player for a good part of two weeks before I could intergrade anything else into rotation. Growing quite fond of that cd I figured I would wade a bit deeper into Modest Mouse knowing they were a multifaceted and very unique band as opposed to the impression i first got, which was that they were good but just good playing loud songs such as my first exposure to them (s*** luck being that first song). So in my search for another Modest Mouse cd I picked this one for people say this is more close akin to the lonesome crowded west then later attempts. I still didn't believe that it could reach the standard TLCR had previously set but I bought it anyway. I was blown away by how diverse the emotion on this album truly is, listening to this album is like taking a trip through the human emotion with indie guitars, multi textured songs, eclectic song topics and quite possibly the most infectious quirky and less than mainstream vocalist since the days of the pixies, violent femmes and Dinosaur Jr. just to name a few. Every track on this album is no doubt easy to listen to and flows with the whole mood of the album, but stand out tracks are as follows 2,3,5,6,7,11,13,14,15,16, which is more than 75% of the album I'm aware but those are the tracks I find myself flipping to when not listening to it in its entirety. Over all this album is a great place to start if your getting into Modest Mouse, steer clear of good news for people who love bad news. This album will prove to you how great this band truly is and just how diverse music can be when its not being manufactured in the mainstream molds that most bands come out of these days. Sure they are mainstream now and have changed their sound some to fit in with their mainstream contemporaries/rivals, but they were once an amazing, somewhat bizarre, but none the less catchy indie rock band. Enjoy.

5-0 out of 5 stars fate brought me to it
After searching countless record stores for this cd I finally found This is a Long Drive... a few nights ago at Borders...BORDERS! I thought that nothing could top Lonesome Crowded West, and I was proved wrong. This is truly a masterpiece, each track is its own little world you can listen to countless times and still be lost in the amazing riffs and beautiful lyrics. Even if you're not a Modest Mouse fan (and if you aren't, something is wrong with you man) this cd is a necessity.

5-0 out of 5 stars How Do They Do It?
Will someone answer that? How do you come up with picks and riffs like this? And don't even get me started on the lyrics. It really kind of dissapoints me this softer, poppier direction they've done with Moon/Antartica. Hopefully Good News will be a return to the genius stuff like this.

Best Songs:Lounge, Beach Side Property, Exit Does Not Exist. ... Read more

156. The Photo Album
list price: $15.98
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Asin: B00005ORA5
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1550
Average Customer Review: 4.21 out of 5 stars
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Death Cab for Cutie turn difficult personal issues into literary rock songs while straddling the narrow line between blissful pop and driving indie rock. The Northwest act's songs soar high like Built to Spill's or Beulah's, and almost every track on The Photo Album is as musically bouncy and upbeat as the best of those bands. As catchy as the songs on The Photo Album may be, though, it's really front man Benjamin Gibbard's comfort with laying his emotional issues bare that makes this an excellent album. "Styrofoam Plates" is the most stunning track, with words that leave chills long after they've disappeared. As Gibbard sings about anger for a dead father ("It's not quite a stretch to say you were not quite a father / But a donor of seeds to a poor single mother / That would raise us alone / We never saw the money / It went down your throat down the hole in your belly"), his stark honesty makes this dysfunctional family story the most compelling piece of this album. The other issues of clumsy relationships pale a little in comparison, but The Photo Album still leaves little doubt that Death Cab deserve all the indie rock accolades they have received. --Jennifer Maerz ... Read more

Reviews (48)

3-0 out of 5 stars Photogenic
On this, their third album, American emo/indie-poppers Death Cab For Cutie have stepped out of the confines of their home studios, and entered an outside studio for the first time. This change of environment has obviously had a positive effect on the band, as The Photo Album is a gorgeous album, full of darker pop hooks, which I am a sucker for. Not all indie-pop needs to be happy, and some melancholic overtones, when in the right hands, is perfect for a night alone. The independent press all over the USA, and now Australia is picking up on this band, and with good reason. As with DCFC's last local release, The Photo Album has been repackaged in Australia with three bonus tracks, including a sublime cover of Bjork's 'All Is Full Of Love'. I love all of these tunes, but particularly 'A Movie Script Ending', which reminds me of Knievel; 'Coney Island', which contains some programmed drums (which I'm a sucker for) underneath a sedately charming piano guitar and refrain; and 'Stability', the thirteen minute epic which shows an incredible amount of diversity, as well as pointing out that DCFC aren't just your typical three minute song emo band. This is going to be one album heavily featuring in the Top Ten lists of many critics at the end of the year, so get the album now and gloat later on about being in the picture early.

4-0 out of 5 stars support a great band
DCFC have definately won me over as a fan. The melodic pop mixed with deeply honest lyrics are just what the world need more of. This album is probably the cleanest of their albums which shows progression and any band that does that desevers some accolaids. Intamate from the opeaner "Steadier Footing" to "Debate Exposes Doubt" The Photo Album will make you feel all the feelings you have tried to hide deep inside your soul. The song writeing is still great. Ben Gibbard's writing genius is espically evident in the fictional yet seemingly autobiographical "Styrofoam Plates" How some one who hasn't exprienced what that song intails and still so perfectly conveys they way one feels who has is just amazing. He writes just as well as Neil Young and mabey even Tom Waits who are two of the best in the business. Feeling sceptical start playing from track one and by the time "Steadier Footing" is over you will see what im saying. Great songs on this album: "A Movie Script Ending", "We Laugh Indoors", "Information Travels Faster", "Coney Island" as well as the two i previously mentioned. The rest of the album is full of song that with out these great ones would still make this album worth buying. Buy it and support this great band. Buying indy cd's makes you look cool in front of your friends and isnt that what its all about.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best band ever.....
I know that Death Cab's not the typical pop or rock band out there....and that's one of the many reasons I love them! Their songs have a great feeling and mature sound, and yet they're still rock. DCFC isn't one of those bands that lets other people write their songs and play their music....they took care of that themselves. And, amazingly it turned out 10 times better than those pop bands. Definiteley a cd to listen to no matter what mood you're in.

3-0 out of 5 stars Go to THE POSTAL SERVICE FULL TIME
Death Cab is some decent stuff.......but it's not as refreshing as The Postal Service. I wish Ben Gibbard would make Death Cab his side project and do The Postal Service thing full time. The District Sleeps Alone Tonight is unmatched by any Death Cab song.


5-0 out of 5 stars Simply Beautiful
This is the only Death Cab Album I own, and it is very good. The music is so amazing. These guys have real talent. But this CD is definatly not for everybody. The music is Indie Rock, and some people think this sort of thing sucks. I don't, but if you are one of those people that listens to mainstream emo and the stuff that is only on the radio, you probably won't like this. It is underground Indie, which means that Death Cab will not be played on the radio anytime soon, or sell out. So if you are a fan of this genre already, get the CD. ... Read more

157. Music From the O.C. Mix 3: Have a Very Merry Chrismukkah
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Asin: B00063MCT8
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 280
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Album Description

Chrismukkah (Christmas and Chanukah) is what the half-Jewish, half-Christian Cohen Family of "The O.C." celebrates at holiday time-and Music From The O.C.: Mix 3 (Have a Very Merry Chrismukkah) is its soundtrack. Featuring holiday-themed songs by Modern Rock favorites heard either in last year's or this season's Chrismukkah episode, Have A Very Merry Chrismukkah is a musical holiday gift for the modern family. ... Read more

158. For the Kids Too
list price: $14.98
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Asin: B0003JANQE
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 459
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Of the many remarkable things about the follow-up to 2002's For the Kids CD, maybe most remarkable is its daring. Here's a disc with a spirit of adventurousness. Instead of relying on a parade of star power for its swagger (and its sales figures--Sarah McLaughlin, Tom Waits, and Barenaked Ladies went a long way toward explaining the success of the first installment), Too! plucks from an indie playing field that appeals with a below-the-radar, bubbling-under kind of cool. To that end, San Francisco-based acoustic idol Matt Nathanson gamely covers Prince's whimsical "Starfish & Coffee," Canada's Paper Moon memorably asks that you check your "Attitude Toward Cuttlefish" at the door, and Shivaree gets your house party (or car-seat party, or playroom party) shaking, in its somnolent way, with "Everybody Came." A sprinkling of big names--They Might Be Giants, Matthew Sweet--stud the proceedings, but mostly this disc is about discovery. It's also about good deeds: Where the first disc benefitted VH1's Save the Music Foundation, proceeds from Too! go toward the Lili Claire Foundation, which helps those born with neurological disorders. -Tammy La Gorce ... Read more

159. Lost and Safe
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Asin: B0007XMKXU
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 4740
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Album Description

After two albums that spread like wildfire solely on word of mouth and self-propagating critical acclaim, this duo from Massachussetts return with their third album.It is even more cohesive and song-based than "Lemon Of Pink." Their core of cello, mandolin, banjo & guitar has been augemented with new instruments and a now overflowing library of found sounds and serendipitously found spoken word passages.First U.S. tour coming soon! ... Read more

Reviews (8)

4-0 out of 5 stars Language, context and music
This is a somewhat interesting exploration of language, semantics and rhythm.It is more surreal in it's use of deconstructed conversations placed with new and different contexts.Some of it reminds one greatly of Korean Samul-nori music, which relies mostly upon percussion and rhythm that is based upon the Korean language (listen to No. 6, "An Animated Description of Mr. Maps" for a very clear example of such.While some tracks are very ingaging and suggest a different musical line of exploration from much conventional music, there is a problematic sameness in instrumentation that is sometimes very uninteresting due to a lack of musical development. The Books could end up doing very well if they were to invest more time in their musical development of their ideas and instrumentation.Layering samples can only go so far before it is boring.

4-0 out of 5 stars This album did not dissapoint
I enjoyed this more than I did Lemon of Pink, it felt lush and cinematic the way Thought for Food was, but more emphasis on found speech and juxtaposition.The percussion is just mindboggling here, I can't tell if they're banging on trash cans or paint cans or how much of it is sequenced and looped and sampled, it's all so calculated and choreographed yet otherworldly.My one reservation is that they may be turning the found speech into their schtick, they juxtapose random samples from speeches and field recordings and films and it's really hit or miss, sometimes the juxtapositions are blatantly ironic, sometimes they are just aimed at giggles, but when they work best they are surreal and beautiful.Really, no one else is doing this kind of work with sound composition right now.No one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Written on my Face
The sun shone upon the frosted mermen and they destroyed the fringe. Open up our generous portions of marmalade and feed the beast. Denver is hopelessly uninspired when it comes to fountains. New is the new old. Jungles and jungles of disco-inspired nameless cats approach unwanted. You must not arrange the maps to make the hours fade. Each smell is the same as the last but is quickly forgotten. Take up a collection of radios suitable for general listening. It's mighty.

This is the only way i could explain this album. You will know when you HEAR it. A masterwork.

4-0 out of 5 stars wonderful
such a wonderful album. yes slightly different than past albums, but isn't that a good thing? I think his vocals are lovely and while sometimes the sampling can border on overboard....all in all this is a great album.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Books and Text
Although instantly recognizable as The Books, as others have pointed out, their sound is evolving.This CD features the human voice and spoken word against the assemblage of found sounds and music performed by these artists.I found myself moved by the patchwork of little snippets of recorded phrases and voices, representing a whole range of human experiences.Great stuff.Fans won't be disappointed. ... Read more

160. Urban Hymns
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Asin: B000000WF0
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2887
Average Customer Review: 4.39 out of 5 stars
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Perhaps you weren't convinced of the Verve's staying power until recently. Before the release of Urban Hymns, skeptics wondered if they could ever match the explosive power of their earlier dedications. In 1995, most critics dismissed their offerings of the time as vapid, romantic excursions. To their credit, the Verve have sustained their shadow rock legitimacy while introducing string arrangements, piano fills, and slide guitar. Nowhere are these stirring traits more obvious than in the epic single "Bitter Sweet Symphony." Laying it on thick throughout the rest of the album with painfully engaging ballads, the Verve have crafted their most accomplished album to date, proving the longevity of their cultural resonance. --Lucas Hilbert ... Read more

Reviews (218)

5-0 out of 5 stars When The Drugs Don't Work Try This Album
This is undoubtedly one of the best albums of the 90's. It contains two megahits - Bitter Sweet Symphony and The Drugs Don't Work. The latter I consider to be one of the best love songs ever recorded. Few other songs also rate very high - Sonet, Lucky Man, Space and Time and Velvet Morning.

The album is very consistent with an excellent sound, brilliant lead vocal by Richard Ashcroft and gentle and often psychedelic guitar by Nick McCabe. Ashcroft, an author of most of the songs, is at its peak as a songwriter. His songs at Urban Hymns are better than on the two previous Verve albums. He can write the most passionate and tender lyrics and then deliver them in his original way.

The Verve only recorded three albums, each of them better than the previous one. Urban Hymns is the last one after which the band broke up. If you like Urban Hymns then I recommend to go back and listen to the previous one called A Northern Soul (the song History itself is worth the money). Ashcroft's solo album from 2000 - Alone With Everybody is a good work too.

5-0 out of 5 stars All Time Favourite
There are no words to describe "Urban Hymns"--all I can say is that it's the soundtrack to my life. When I first heard "Bittersweet Symphony" nearly five years ago, I almost fainted in rejoice, trying to imagine how any band was capable of such artistic beauty and lyrical perfection. Soon enough, the song became ubiquitous on both radio and TV, and its soaring melody of strings and double-whack beats will always remind me of that glorious time in music and in my life.

Beyond "Bittersweet Symphony," Richard Ashcroft and company craft a perfect, wondrous pop album that clearly outshines anything done by either Blur or Oasis. The songs here are so diverse, so perfect, so melodic, so touching, that they are inescapable after several listens--whether it's the soft acoustics of "Sonnet," the gritty rock of "The Rolling People," or the wah-wah funk of "Weeping Willow," The Verve paint a loose musical portrait with their psychedelic guitars, funky keyboards, and jazzy rhythm section.

To top it all, Richard Ashcroft adds his brilliant, emotionally extravagant lyrics. These are not the empty, meaningless meadenerings of Oasis or the pretenious, distopian musings of latter-day Radiohead, these are the bittersweet stories of Richard Ashcroft's life, his past drug use, and his rediscovery of spirituality and the fragility of life. He sings in a voice that is saturated with emotion and echoing of truth--never before have I heard lyrics that reflect any better the feelings of their writer.

"Urban Hymns" is phenomenal, and its fittingly bittersweet. It's an album that plays more like a giant oil painting, swimming in its color, perfect in its imagery, and undying in its message.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best in my collection.
I got this CD two weeks ago, and it hasn't come out of CD player since. After I first heard Bitter Sweet Symphony, I knew I had to get it... that song is great on so many levels.

1. Bitter Sweet Symphony (10/10)- The violin music in the beginning sets the tone for the entire piece, and I love it. This has no competition- it's my favorite song.

2. Sonnet (9/10) I think I might be a little prejudiced with this song, because you can see what comes before it... it's a sweet song, but it doesn't really compare...

3. The Rolling People (10/10) I love this song, as well. It shows a different side of The Verve, and it's great, too. This one isn't slow... good contrast.

4. The Drugs Don't Work (9/10)- Very soulful.

5. Catching the Butterfly (10/10) 'I'm gonna keep catching that butterfly in that dream of mine...' great melody, and I love the lyrics...

6. Neon Wilderness (7/10) This song sounds like it wasn't finished... my least favorite. I usually skip through this one.

7. Space and Time (10/10) I love the 'I just can't make it alone' part of this song... makes my want to sing... or perhaps jump up and dance. Either one.

8. Weeping Willow (10/10) You never hear the lyrics 'weeping willow' in this song until the very end, but when you do, they really mean something. Not quite sure WHAT, but something...

9. Lucky Man (10/10)- I love this one, as well.

10. One Day (10/10) The lyrics and the song are both so sweet in this song...

11. This Time (8/10)- I like this one, but not quite as much as the others.

12. Velvet Morning (10/10) I love when the music changes from soft and slow to loud and a bit wilder... It's like, 'dumdumdumdumdum- ANOTHER VELVET MORNING FOR ME.' Kinda takes you by surprise. :)

13. Come On (10/10)- Perfect ending... 'Come along with our sound'. Fabulous.

End rating (drum roll, please): 123 stars out of 130. That's a pretty good percentage. Get this CD... I loved it. And, once you hear Bitter Sweet Symphony, you're pretty much sold already...

1-0 out of 5 stars Urban CRAP.
Boring typical british new romantic crap. To say this album can stand the test of time is a joke! There are plenty of copies in the second hand record shops already! Anybody into this trash should get a life.

5-0 out of 5 stars This Will Stand the Test of Time
This is one of those timeless albums that you can listen to now (six years after its initial release) and still enjoy it. Each of the songs still sound as fresh as today as they did back in 1997. With this album, the Verve hit a homerun.

I remember I was browsing through a CD store when I first heard "Bittersweet Symphony." It immediately caught my attention, and I stood rooted on the spot just listening. Very few times has an album jolted me like that, but this was one of those times. I asked the clerk who this was and he said that it was from the new album by The Verve. After "Bittersweet" was over, he told me to hold on and listen to "Lucky Man." It was after that I was sold -- I had to buy the album.

On this album, you get 13 little masterpieces -- there's not a filler track in the bunch. Besides the excellent songwriting, the production is outstanding. I haven't heard such a good mix of strings since Tony Visconti's work with T. Rex -- just listen to "Lucky Man," "Bittersweet Symphony," or "Sonnet" for proof.

The only downside is that the group broke up after this -- their finest moment! Of all the dumb luck. While Richard Ashcroft has gone on to do a couple of solo albums, they don't seem to capitalize on what The Verve had done on this album. Yes, he's the voice, the did much of the writing, but as the old saying goes: the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Best album of the 1990's? This one, no question about it. After the Britney's, the Justin's, and all the other drivel from that era fades, this will be one of the albums people look back upon fondly. Rating: A+ ... Read more

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