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1. Hotel
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2. Simple Things
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3. Play
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4. The Richest Man in Babylon
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5. The Ground
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6. Chakra Suite
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7. Untilted
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8. The Mozart Effect - Music for
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9. Strangely Isolated Place
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10. 18
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11. Sleep Soundly
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12. Endtroducing...
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13. Changing Places
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14. Karma
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15. The Equatorial Stars
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16. Sky Moves Sideways (Dig)
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17. Ambient 1: Music for Airports
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18. Shamanic Dream
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19. Harold Budd & Brian Eno: The
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20. Warszawa

1. Hotel
list price: $18.98
our price: $13.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007CZPIS
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 92
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Once a roving maverick who skipped from euphoric rave to speed-metal to ambient soundscaping as if just to prove he could, recent years have seen Richard Melville Hall relax into a comfortable--and yes, lucrative--niche. On the surface, Hotel follows a similarly laid-back trajectory to his last two albums, Play and 18; melancholic torch-songs indebted to electro-pop, gospel, and David Bowie's "Heroes." That vibe is typified on Hotel by the rousing, keyboard-drenched likes of "Beautiful" and the twinkling, optimistic "Spiders," but that's not to say Moby is stagnating, exactly. For one, he's bravely jettisoned the vocal samples that powered the likes of "Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad?" and relies instead on his own understated, faintly awestruck vocals--and, indeed,those of guest vocalist Laura Dawn, whose sparse, synth-and-drum-machine cover of New Order's "Temptation" is a low-key highlight. But there's also a return to his raving roots on the pulsing, diva-led "Very," and a touch of politics on "Lift Me Up"--a song that hides its contempt for the Bush Administration amid a dark carnival of sweeping strings and disco-noir rhythms. --Louis Pattison ... Read more

Reviews (98)

3-0 out of 5 stars nothing ventured nothing gained
Moby came out with Play in 1999 and it was a dud. Then six months later it was like a tidal wave. People were digging it all over. When I went to London in 2000, I saw Moby posters up all over. It was one of the biggest records of the time. It was big enough that Eminem attacked him that year. Moby started hanging out with Bowie and became an international rock star. That was weird because all I remember was some samples of some Delta Blues records. His next record 18 was a real dud. Even the single "Stars" that was tacked on afterwards didn't help it at all. That was okay because Moby was an artist who put out a lot of different records. Now it's six years later and Moby is a very different cat. The first two songs "Raining Again" and "Beautiful" are great tracks. These are almost standard rock songs with Moby's vocals. There are a few guest vocals. Some of these songs sound like demos. Moby's voice starts to wear thin. What is he singing about again? Why should I care? It's like Moby did a very introspective album, but didn't find anything interesting to talk about, but was too unaware to know any better. Moby is just yanking our chain.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not his best
The sounds of "Hotel" are simply not as thumping and exciting as anything on "Play," nor are they as sinuous and insightful as anything from "18." "Hotel" sounds less like the progress of a maturing artist than a half-hearted collection of songs that Moby may not have released except for increasing pressure to come out with something new.

"Hotel" lacks the ragged edges of Moby's earlier works and almost comes off as a prepackaged group of sounds to be chopped up and placed in Volkswagen commercials. It's still pleasant to listen to, but it doesn't have the "gotta start the whole CD over again" grab that "Play," and, to a lesser degree, "18" have.

If you are new to Moby, stick with the classics. If you want to listen to some decent but not groundbreaking dance tracks and a couple of moody makeout songs, go ahead and get "Hotel."

4-0 out of 5 stars A mix of genres
This is the first album of Moby I bought, and I am surprised. I didn't expct 'real' songs. I mean, songs without this order: couplet-chorus-couplet-chorus-bridge-chorus. But most tracks are 'real' songs! I also expected dance and trance, but this album has many rock and many slow songs. The songs are more simple then I expected. I heard Moby was a music genius so I decided to buy this album and I hoped to hear something new. Well, I dind't. But in the end I was happy with this album because the songs are good. It fits in my CD collection and I will also buy Moby's other abums.

The album has 12 tracks and an intro and an outro. However, my CD has 2 outro's, while on the backside of the CD it says 14 tracks. A fault or was it meant to be a surprise? Anyway, let's continue. The first half of the album has many rock songs and the second half has many ballads. Moby hasen't got a great voice but somehow it seems to match the songs. Laura Dawn sings with him sometimes. She also has a whole song she she alone, Temptation. It's called Temptation and it sounds very quietly. It calms you down. Lift Me Up stays in your head with it's simple chorus, repeatig 'lift me up' all the time.

Raining Again, Beautiful and Spiders are all simple rock songs but they are all very different. Moby has got a good voice for rock. You want to sing the songs when you hear them. The melodies are good. The lyrics are simple, but not that bad they ruin the song. Track 9 is a gay track. Laura sings very high and if you are straight you will hate this song, just like me. It really sucks. Forever has a special effect. Moby's voice is low but the background melody is high. It gives a mysterious, good effect. I Like it is the best track of the album. With some sexy sounds and Moby's and Laura's voice it sounds very orginal. Dream About me really is a dreaming song. If you hear it you think about the paradise. It has a classic melody.

I could also review the other songs, but thrust me: Buy this album. If you don't like one half you could always like the other. The music is a mix of diffrent genres. You will love each song at least a bit. The intro's sound mysterious and are a perfect way to open and end the album. Moby did a good job.

4-0 out of 5 stars one for the day, the other for night
This review is for the 2 disc version 1) vocal2) ambient.

Disc one is great for the day time with the exception of a few clunkers [New Order tune].But it also has some real winners [Lift Me Up].

Disc two is just perfect for the night... excellent ambient music to help you wind down from a tough day at work or a wild night out.Perfect as the last disc of the day, as you doze off.My favorite of the two discs.

Pick your favorites from disc one and add them to your shuffle.Leave disc two by the bedside for deep relaxation.

5-0 out of 5 stars I live the how he split the music into 2 CDs
I got my "hotel" from amazon last week.

Been listening too both CDs equally. I would give this album 4 stars, it is not quite as good as his past two albums, but I added a star for splitting the CDs into two. He put his relaxing music on a disc labeled "Hotel:Ambient" and his faster paced vocal/music on a CD simply labeled "Hotel". So now when I studying or trying to relax, I put in the Hotel:Ambient CD. When I'm driving or working, I put in the Hotel CD. I appreciate him thinking about how his fans would listen to his music, and both of them help me get through my day.

Thanks Moby. ... Read more


2. Simple Things
list price: $17.98
our price: $13.49
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Asin: B00005R5M6
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 490
Average Customer Review: 4.53 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (131)

4-0 out of 5 stars A beautiful album, but too similar to AIR for 5 Stars
I first heard of Zero 7 when I saw their video, "Destiny." I have to admit that they first time I saw it I immediately thought that it was a new AIR song, so I was surprised to see a different name at the end. I just bought this album two days ago and don't regret it. I will say that they are HEAVILY influenced by AIR, which is a fabulous electronic band from France. Zero 7 almost sounds TOO much like them, which is why I couldn't give this album 5 stars. However, their sound is different because of the volcalists. There is a male vocalist as well as Sia for many of the songs. Sia has an angelic yet haunting voice that adds to the mellow and hypnotic sounds of "Destiny" and others. Electronic music is such a general term, since there are so many genres within it. I would recommend this album to anyone who has enjoyed AIR's Moon Safari. (although I still believe that Moon Safari is much more innovative and original than Simple Things).

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best of 2001...
Simple Things, the first LP by British programming duo Zero 7 is one of the most imminently listenable albums to come along in a very long while. The whole album is layered with downtempo, almost ethereal beats that will undoubtedly take the edge off any migraine until you're awash in a sea of contentment. Zero 7 (aka Henry Binns & Sam Hardaker) say that the true joy of their music comes from the talented core of guest vocalists found on their debut album. This statement proves true as these vocalists bring out the amazing beauty of this disc. Among the standout tracks on the album is the sultry 'Distractions,' a sensual collaboration with Sia Furler, which feels just as at home in a smoky jazz bar as it does at a candle-lit bedside. Other great tracks include 'I Have Seen,' featuring male vocalist Mozez and the beautiful bonus track 'Spinning,' featuring Sophie Barker. Simple Things is more than just electronic music... it is music that creates a most beautiful atmosphere.

1-0 out of 5 stars Unoriginal and Uninspiring
Am I the only one who sees that this Emperor has no clothes?! No new clothes, at least. This drippy cd rehashes every uninspired a.m. radio-soft-jazz tune you ever heard.

And people are saying the female vocalists recall Portishead?! What the fuzzy?!! The 2 singers are 0h-So-Pleasant, and Beth Gibbons' voice is nothing if not relating displeasing emotions!

Please, check out some real downtempo, sonic-texture artists like Airlock, Crustation or Thunderball. These artists throw in jazz, samples, djs and guest vocalists, too, while maintaining an experimental edge to create melodies you never thought you'd hear, much less heard before!

5-0 out of 5 stars Nothing Simple About This Album...
...Except for the fact it is Simply Amazing! Its difficult to even describe the style of music at hand here - chill-out, lounge, trance, with traces of jazz, classical, and pop music throughout. Zero 7 takes you from porno music to polished, sultry and sinful to sweet and smooth within tracks and within the album. No matter what kind of music you listen to, "Simple Things" will surely relax your mind and your soul as you just take in all of the delicate yet complex songs arranged.

There are a number of styles explored on the album, which can be categorized in two large subdivisons - with vocals and with out. The vocal songs mainly feature male singer Mozez who stars on the albums opening disco-lounge track "I Have Seen", the absolutely amazingingly mysterious title track, and the sultry ballad "This World".

The two female vocalists are quite similar sounding, as noted on the stunningly addictive "Destiny" where they share lead vocals. The sound of Sia Furler and Sophia Barker's voices is accented softly with both a British sound, and almost a southern twang, but no worries their voices are like liquid on all the songs they sing. Furler returns on one of my fave tracks on the album "Distractions" a sweet love-ish ballad, while Barker is given the slightly weaker "In The Waiting Line" which shows the difference in the two girls voices as they are back to back, although Barker recuperates on the closing track "Spinning".

Within the non-vocal tracks the guys that make up our beloved band in question experiment with 1970's synthesized porno beats and keyboard sounds, mixed with smooth bass, acoustic guitars, and elegant strings, and of course that "air" sound that has led them to be labelled as "british air". But if that doesn't sound appealing trust me it is - I'm not a fan of music with out vocals but this album wouldn't be complete without Zero 7's delves into the instrumental and vocal-track worlds. Of course there are a few exceptions to the general sounds they use, including the Semi-lyrical African masterpiece "likufanele" sung by the Philanai Mothers and mixed over a xylophone (i think) driven sound. Another exception is the track afterwards, "End Theme" which is rightfully titled as it sounds very much like a song you'd find in a movie score. A beautiful and energetic, almost regal arrangement of strings is what you'll find here, and is another one of my faves on the album for its uniqueness alone, I'm proud of the guys for taking a chance and putting this song on the album.

The best thing I can say to you at this point is to definitely buy this album, if just to give it a listen, because after hearing the opening strains of "I Have Seen", the vocals of Furler and Barker, or the smooth tones of any of the instrumental tracks you will be so hooked on this album! Its great to play as background music during a dinner with friends, or when you are stressed and enjoying a drink after work, or even just to play in the car - works well for rainy or sunny days. I suppose the most amazing part of it is how simple the songs appear at first glimpse - but when examining the layers and the beauty in each track, you'll begin to realize your feelings for this album are anything BUT simple.

5-0 out of 5 stars Musical sedative (in a good way)
I won't lie here: I origianlly came into contact with this music because i was looking through one of my friend's music collection on Itunes and thought the name Zero 7 sounded interesting. I know it's a bad way to choose, but the guy had good taste and too many artists to go through them all. So I listened to it and it took me less than 10 mins to get hooked on everything written by this group. I loaded it on my player and took on Spring Break to ski- and literally the entire time this is what was playing. I don't do that often. I listen to a lot of different music and rarely listen to the same thing non-stop for more than a day. I just don't know what to say. This music is addictive. The melodies/harmonies are so relaxing. They just make you want to sit there and contemplate life. ... Read more


3. Play
list price: $13.98
our price: $12.99
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Asin: B00000J6AG
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1487
Average Customer Review: 4.32 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com's Best of 1999

Those who have followed Moby's career are familiar by now with his deep convictions and spiritual connection. On his 1999 release, Play, he celebrates his faith in a masterful, unobtrusive way, channeling gospel and other inspirational samples through beats so earthy they could grow grass on a cement dance floor. It's impossible to separate the joy of the message from the joy of the grooves. --Beth Massa ... Read more

Reviews (641)

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing
Moby has changed the face of music with this album by mixing techno, church spirituals, and classical music. Moby can be really creative with this album and can perform great instrumentals along with mixing. My favorite tracks are Bodyrock, South Side, Natural Blues, Porcelain, Find My Baby, and My Weakness. It isn't really a dance album, it's more of an electronic soundtrack. On a 12-hour road trip I went on, I listened to this entire CD and enjoyed most of the songs as I was bored in the car. If you truly like music, do not miss the opportunity to get this album. This album is absolutely amazing from a man that produces REAL music. I recommend this album to good music listeners who have tastes in all kinds of music and for those who have nothing to listen to on a long car trip.

5 stars is my rating and there is no good reason why you cannot rate this album one star. (Unless you are a big fan of grunge rock music or boy band oriented pop)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Hands Down Must Buy
When you say the word "techno", people tend to imagine loud, obnoxious electronic dance songs with loads of annoying sound-effects. Rest assured that if that's your defintion of techno, this ain't techno.

Moby takes 18 tracks and tackles multiple genres: rock, hip hop, blues, gospel, accoustic, and many more. Many tracks contain samplings of other songs (ranging from Love Rap by Spoony G and The Trecherous 3 to Run On For A Long Time, a 1937 gospel piece), while others are true original compositions with Moby doing the vocals himself. It creates for a rather confusing effect: you won't know exactly who you're listening to--but believe me, you'll be enjoying yourself too much to care.

Moby is a devout Christian, and his spirituality shines in every one of these 18 tracks. It would be wrong, though, to call this religious music--it's not looking to convert anyone, if that's a worry of yours. I'm an Agnostic myself, and I loved the spiritual, empowering feelings of these songs.

I've noticed other reviews say that some songs are great while others fail, but I honestly believe each and every one of these songs has something to offer. Some, like "7", "Down Slow", and "Inside" don't have any lyrics and do resort to a more traditional techno sound, but are enthralling nevertheless.

So go on and add it to your shopping cart. If you don't absolutely love it, then--well--feel free to write me an angry e-mail.

5-0 out of 5 stars Takes Electronica to new heights!
This is one of my favorite CDs of all-time, along with mr.deviant's "Techno Obsession". With "Play", Moby takes techno and electronica into a whole new place, a more emotional place. For years critics have panned electronica because they claim it can't "have soul, or feeling", Moby shatters this myth with virtually every track on "Play".
Believe the hype surrounding this one. It's a classic, and belongs in everyone's CD collection. Just buy it, and thank me later.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well-known now!
Moby has come along way from his very first album entitled 'Moby' which was his early techno works to his most recent album 'Play'. We got a taste of what Moby can really do with ambient music, pop-techno, dance, and rock in albums such as: Everything Is Wrong, Ambient, Rare: The Collected B-Sides 1989-1993, etc... Now, Moby takes another step up and brings a lot of gospel and soul music into his keyboard and electronic music works. 'Play' gives you a wide variety of different styles of gospel and soul. The song "Honey" starts with a simple catchy and rhythem and builds in a nice and light techno beat. Others like "Find My Baby" and "Why Does My Heart Feel so Bad?" combine more of a soul feeling into melodic piano and light dance beats. His most successful song in the album was "South Side" which features Gwen Stefani (No Doubt) leading Moby in the chorus. The song also became a hit single along with it being a hit song all by itself. 'Play', towards the end of the album, steps into more slow and ambient textures in songs like "Down Slow", "Inside", and the poetic-like songs "If Things Were Perfect" (I think that's one of them that he just TALKS in) and "The Sky Is Broken" which is very visionary-like with its slow and soothing melodies and beginning beat throughout. The ending song "My Weakness" starts off with a beautiful choir background and later builds in a beautiful orchestral texture in. This makes the song, with it's orchestral sound, a most remembering moment in what Moby can do...My Weakness makes for a fascinating ending for the entire CD.

'Play' was a platinum-selling album worldwide. He later released "Play The DVD" which includes numerous videos of some of the hits off of the CD. It also includes a MEGAMIX that gives you a variety of industrial, rave, dance, and trance mixes of songs off of Play. These are both things that one should own if you are a fan of Moby.

That's my review, Thanks!

5-0 out of 5 stars If things were perfect, this album would be among them
Moby is more than a genius of techno, he is a genius of music. What he does in this album is so joyful and depressing simultaneously, I just want to listen to it over and over again. The best tracks are Porcelain, Why does my heart feel so bad?, Southside, Natural Blues, and Run On. And the rest are still amazing songs. ... Read more


4. The Richest Man in Babylon
list price: $16.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B00006CY6H
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1203
Average Customer Review: 4.15 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Thievery Corporation's Eric Hilton and Rob Garza have always treated the line between acoustic and electronic music as a drunken sailor might, unpredictably falling on one side or the other with equal frequency. By this measure, The Richest Man in Babylon is their soberest effort to date, striding confidently into jazz, soul, world beat, and other styles with a direct, reverential approach. The band's last record, Sounds from the Verve Hi-Fi, featured a set of classic jazz tunes unadorned with remixes or reinterpretation. But the songs on Babylon are originals, incorporating not just jazz but Afro-beat, Brazilian dance, Persian and Indian music, reggae, and psychedelia, all while making expert use of new and old collaborators like Sleepy Wonder, Lou Lou, and Shinehead. Icelandic singer Emiliana Torrini makes an instant impression on the first track, "Heaven's Gonna Burn Your Eyes," her voice freeing the song's melody and structure with just a few hypnotic bars. It's hard to call this an electronic record at all; even their dub-influenced tracks miss a certain studio sheen, as if Hilton and Garza simply waded into a sweltering Jamaican beach party and hit record. But while it misses the ambient, ethereal edge that made The Mirror Conspiracy a downtempo classic, Babylon satisfies with organic energy and tasteful eclecticism. --Matthew Cooke ... Read more

Reviews (78)

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best Records of 2002.
Eric Hilton and Rob Garza of Thievery Corporation are two undisputed masters of cool who have released one of the richest and most engaging albums of the year: "The Richest Man in Babylon." To call these guys mere chillout gurus is to do this duo a disservice. On this album, they've taken cafe lounge to exciting heights, incorporating reggae, Eastern influences, and African styles into their already tightly-woven grooves. "Heaven's Gonna Burn Your Eyes" gets things right with its frosty vocals from Emillana Torrini. "Facing East" grooves along thanks to its (surprise) Eastern flavor and its sitar, while the electro-laced "Omid (Hope)" delivers airy vocals, mid-tempo drum loops, and light touches of synth bleepery. Reggae gets tossed into the mix in the form of "Exilo (Exile)," and the stellar title track stands out wonderfully. Using both electronic beats and real instruments, Theivery Corporation weave together a multitextured album that cements the duo's reputation as one of the classiest recording acts around. "The Richest Man in Babylon" is more than just music to listen to. It's also music to live by.

5-0 out of 5 stars Thievery make it their own
The Richest Man In Babylon shows Thievery's style crystallised; the influences that have all been prominent on 'Sounds from the Thievery Hi-Fi' and 'The Mirror Conspiracy' are here made Thievery's own, being incorporated with Thievery's smooth measured breakbeats and synth atmospherics. The production is uniformly excellent and sounds even slicker than 'Mirror', and is more cohesive. Rob Garza and Eric Hiltons unflinching attention to detail is apparent everywhere.

The presentation has changed from 'Mirror's spying 'n' flying references - the outlook is more earthy, less technical. The CD came with a booklet of excellent black and white photojournalism images on good quality paper. The images feature people from areas which have inspired Thievery's music.

Their early dub style of 'Sounds' is most apparent in the 'Outernationist', and also appears in 'State of the Union' and the 'Richest Man in Babylon'. The title track is certainly the most commercial track here, featuring some Wailers style horns and a regular song structure.

The latin/bossa influence which came to the fore in 'Mirror' is represented by 'Meu Destino' and 'Exilo', both featuring male singing (as opposed to MCing) by Patrik De Santos and Verny Varela. The sound is lighter than previous Jazzanova-esque grooves such as 'Samba Tranquille'. 'Meu Destino' features nylon acoustic guitar by Ramon Gonzales.

Eastern music is represented by 'Facing East', and 'Interlude'. 'Facing East' features santur and tabla, and vocals, which are joined by a breakbeat a minute in.

However Thievery's strongest developing style is in the ambient-pop-breakbeat style which this album confirms as their trademark. The sublime, Cocteau Twins echoing 'Omid' is the direct descendant of the superb' Shadows Of Ourselves', LouLou singing on both. 'All That We Perceive' is sung by Thievery regular Pam Bricker, and bears resemblance to 'Lebanese Blonde', which she also appeared on.
'Heaven's Gonna Burn Your Eyes', the first track, was initially a surprise in that it bears resemblance to Air with it's string machine and heavily compressed bass. Thieveryness is restored by a trademark breakbeat 2 minutes in. With repeated listening this sits well as an intro to the album.

There is a new direction in the form of Liberation Front, a funk track with excellent horns credited to Rick Harris. This is a standout track.

The only filler is From Creation, and this is not bad, just dull.

Is this a better album than 'The Mirror Conspiracy'? It is certainly more polished, easier to listen to in one sitting. 'The Richest Man In Babylon' is more able to put Thievery Corporation in the mainstream, and this is music that everyone should hear.

5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT MUSIC
In my opinion probably the best CD they made so far.
I can surely recommend it to people who are also fan of Siddharta, Buscemi, Buddha Bar, etc.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Chillout Masterpiece
I can't believe how much I love this album. I had heard of Thievery Corporation from Yahoo's Launchcast, so I downloaded a couple of tracks that I thought sounded good. I liked them, but I didn't end up buying this CD for some time. When I got it, I was blown away. This album must be taken as a whole, even though there are standout tracks. As a whole, it is one of the best chillout CDs of all time. Emiliana Torrini's vocals add a unique flavor to the tracks she appears on, but my favorites would have to be the more middle eastern tracks. The beginning of "Facing East" still gives me goosebumps whenever I hear it. And the more reggae influenced tracks are great too, like the title track with a great beat and soulful vocals. Most of all, what I love about this album is the organic feel to it. When listening to this, you forget that it's a CD playing on a stereo, and you can almost see groups of musicians jamming together and taking turns on who sets the tempo and regional influence. It's really amazing to behold. And rarely do I find a good chillout CD that I can put in my car stereo and not feel geeky about rolling down the windows and cranking up the volume. I highly recommend this if you're a fan of eclectic world beats, and even if you're not, buy this anyways. Thievery Corporation will convert you.

5-0 out of 5 stars Truely Amazing
This cd even now is always in my playlist. Thievery Corporation never ceases to amaze me, no where else can you find the musical combinations they create. This cd has a more 3rd world country interpretation to it. Many people said it didn't sound like thievery corp but that is what is so great about this cd, they don't limit themselves to a linear sound, they take a worldly approach. If you haven't heard this cd buy it, turn down the lights and lay back in your house, maybe throw back a bottle or two and listen to this amazing cd. ... Read more


5. The Ground
list price: $17.98
our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00065VPTO
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 824
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The second album by Norwegian pianist and composer Tord Gustavsen is another set of crystalline beauty. Lyrical in both his writing and playing, the music is informed by his Scandinavian homeland's austere landscapes, as well as a wide swath of jazz traditions and gospel influences from his youth (as a teenager Gustavsen was a church organist). The trio's interplay is supple and subtle to the point of the rhythm section sounding like they're actually a part of the piano. The music's gentle propulsion seems to be carried forward equally by all three players. Emotionally resonant, the warmth and clarity of ECM's high production standards captures every nuance -- even lightly struck cymbals resonate with incredible presence. --David Greenberger ... Read more

Reviews (7)

3-0 out of 5 stars Middle Ground
It is what it is, and it ain't Bill Evans. Tord & co. are the very embodiment of mediocrity. You won't find much in the way of innovation, nor will you hear astounding feats of improvisation; but it's a pleasant enough soundtrack for relaxing after a long, stressful day. A mellow, dinner jazz type of thing. What did you expect when the tunes have maudlin, new age-y titles like "Tears Transforming", "Colours of Mercy", and "Reach Out and Touch It"? Actual art?

2-0 out of 5 stars MOOD MUSIC, nothing more....
This kind of album is what you would put on before your date arrived- setting the mood... I'm not that impressed with the compositions, but that's not the focus here. (MOOD)
It's funny though to see this kind of Euro Jazz be hailed as the greatest thing since Bill Evans, or Miles- ha ha ha ha- well just put on one of their records and rediscover what the real thing is. I may buy this album some day, but for now it remains a wash with the many other CD's this over rated record company puts out.

jb

4-0 out of 5 stars Does not transcend "Changing Places"
If you love Tord Gustavsen's first record, and you hoped his next would be even better, you are in for a slight let down.This record is more "melodic," and while that's not necessarily a bad thing, what makes this trio so mind-blowingly fantastic is the icy cold sparseness of their music, the deafening silences between the notes.When they get all "bouncy" with some of these Norway-sambas, I can't tell them from many other trios.These boys can flat out play, and they are better than nearly every other jazz combo out there, but this sophomore effort moves in the direction of mainstream trios.These guys, however, are--or could be--a whole other beast.

2-0 out of 5 stars No Bill Evans
Nice simplistic mood music...but dont metion this guy in the same breath as Bill Evans just yet.

5-0 out of 5 stars What makes Tord Gustavsen so popular?
That's an honest question, and I'll try to give an honest answer.Is it because in English his first name is one vowel removed from naughty scatological bodily excreta?Could be, but I don't think so.Is it because he plays the piano really slow?Again, that's certainly a possibility, but there's got to be more to it than that. After all, haven't there been other jazz pianists who played really slow?Help me out here.None readily comes to mind, so maybe one of you readers can give me a hand.In any case, there's got to be another jazz guy that played really draggily like the Tord-meister.

Is it because he's a Scandinavian, a denizen of that wonderland of social beneficence, where more than 50 cents on the dollar--way more, if my sources are accurate--goes to marvelous tax programs that give everybody and his uncle free college, and--who knows?--probably free Volvos and Saabs (though who'd want 'em, if you ask me) and allow the average citizen to retire at the age of 27?Perhaps.But somehow I think there's more to it than that.

Tord, you see, has figured out a new way to play jazz.He's fused, I'm thinking, classical rigor with a way cool cocktail lounge vibe in a manner that no one else in the long and, one must admit, sad, history of the world has done.Yeah, that wacko Ryuichi Sakamoto did something similar years before, but he's from the wrong side of the tracks, so to speak.

Anyhoo, this Tord guy is the bomb.Two measly discs under his belt and he's the next frickin' Bill Evans.Ten or 50 or a thousand years from now, he'll probably have faded from our collective consciousness.But right now, he's riding high. And jazz, being ephemeral by nature, readily accords him that fame.

Who am I to complain? ... Read more


6. Chakra Suite
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Asin: B00005OMHN
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1777
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars Puts me to sleep (but that's a good thing)
I have trouble staying asleep some nights, and I've recently found that certain types of music or sounds can put me in a relaxed state. Steven Halpern's "Chakra Suite" is one of the best for this purpose.

The chakra suite is supposed to be used to meditate on each of the seven chakras or power centers of the body. I am not one who meditates, on chakras or other things, but if you do meditate, this is supposed to be a good aid to focus one's energy and concentration. The bonus on this CD is the "Spectrum Suite" and another bonus, Sonic Satori thath is supposed to use the power of sonic entrainment. a psycho-acoustic technology with an effect on brainwaves.The music involves notes with 8 cycles per second, which is said to synch the brain to relaxed brain waves, for example:
Alpha - 8-12 CPS (associated with relaxed, calm, and creative waking state)
Theta - 5-7 CPS (associated with dreams, suggestive states, hypnagogic states)
Delta - 1-4 CPS (associated with deep, dreamless sleep)

Whatever the effect, I find playing one of the suites as I lie in bed, relaxes me to the point where I drop off easily. I also like it for a quick relaxation break during a stressful, long day.

5-0 out of 5 stars Peace
There is a scientific principle called entrainment. If two items are vibrating side by side at different speeds then the item that vibrates at the lower speed will adjust to vibrate at the same frequency as the other object.

Examples of this are swings in a playground that are swinging out of sync and adjust. Also, in a clock store you may notice the pendulum clocks of the same size swinging back and forth in unison.

Applied to sound your different chakras or energy points vibrate at different frequencies and notes vibrating at a specific rate for a prolonged period will cause your energy points to reattune themselves, and bring your chakras back into balance, and promote a sense of well being and peace.

This cd applies these principles using swirling harmonics and overtones and beautiful instrumental sounds such as chimes and bowls including the rhodes piano to create an atmospheric sound.

I can feel the musical vibrations resonate thoroughout my body, and I certainly do feel more relaxed even after a short listen.

This record has been rated as groundbreaking by New Age Voice.

I highly recommend it.

5-0 out of 5 stars VERY EFFECTIVE
I have listened to many different "chakra balancing" CDs, but this is the only recording where I have actually distinctly felt the sounds or appropriate chakras resonating the exact chakra spots - I could feel, without wondering if anything is happening, the sound vibrating in my body right where it's supposed to have an effect - so for that purpose, this is my favorite CD.

5-0 out of 5 stars Totally relaxing and Works!
I love this CD, I listen to it daily to balance my chakras! Even if you don't believe it actually balances your chakras, it is beautiful and relaxing to listen to.

5-0 out of 5 stars Incredible
While healing from a fractured ankle, I played this several times a day. I don't know if it accelerated my healing--I suspect it did. It certainly helped me to relax and deal with the inactivity. I continue to listen to it for sheer pleasure and relaxation and play it in the background much of the time. I would recommend Chakra Suite to almost anyone, regardless of musical preferences. ... Read more


7. Untilted
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Asin: B0007VXZJU
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 13621
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The eighth album by these OG glitch kingpins is a curious thing. While none of the album's sounds are particularly different (Autechre is working with pretty much the same palette started with), it's not like they've gone laptop folk or added favela beats. The band's relentless experimentation continues unabated. Each of these songs here has more parts than an entire Rush album; every succeeding Autechre album has gotten more complex, as if there were Oulipo-style rules system guides the entire practice. But, while some patterns change rapidly--the complex and jagged try dancing to this rhythms rarely repeat for very long–-sine tones and drones underneath it all change very slowly. So, while the music may be composed in a postmodern way, then, it's staunchly modernist in its sharp, subtle honing of minimalist compositional techniques. The contrast between the jagged sounds and the surface and the moaning bass tones will either thrill or bore. There is no middle ground.--Mike McGonigal ... Read more

Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't Judge Too Quickly
At first listen, you may say Untilted is the worst CD
you've ever heard in your life and be strongly tempted
to hurl it in the gargabe.However, don't judge too
quickly.Give it another chance or two and you'll see...oh
my goodness...I love it!Warning: the first three minutes
of track one are VERY ANNOYING and may turn you off...
but allow yourself to get past that....eventually you too may realize...this CD is 5 stars!

5-0 out of 5 stars A new one for the books.
It's always an event when these guys put a new album out, and as usual, Autechre has given us a work of art that is both unpredictable and serene in it's charm. Charm? Do you have a better word in mind? As you know it's difficult to describe the sonic structures of Autechre's pieces, but this album will grow on new and old listeners alike.O, and go see them live. jb

5-0 out of 5 stars Still godly
Decades ago, a famous sportswriter, apparently tired of criticisms of his favorite sport, wrote "baseball is dull only to those with dull minds".While that point is certainly debatable when it comes to the national pastime (this guy wrote before the days of three-hour games), it applies equally well to the work of Autechre.This English duo (Sean Booth and Rob Brown, if you want to get all specific) has spent the past decade or so composing some of the most original and experimental electronic music ever made (oh, screw it, this is some of the most original and experimental MUSIC ever made, period), winning a small army of enthusiastic converts while alienating others who apparently can't figure out how an hour of glitches and bleeps constitutes music.That said, there aren't a lot of artists out there who can consistently come out with something at least interesting, and whatever one thinks of them, Autechre do manage to challenge perceptions and screw up minds with each successive release.In spite of some accusations, whatever else Autechre may be, they're not dull.

Anyway, this all leads us to Untilted, the eighth album in the Autechre canon and one that should please all those looking for their customary blend of bizarrely arranged bleeps, sweeps, and creeps.Despite occasionally bringing in sounds somewhat similar to the dronings on an MRI machine, Untilted is a surpisingly musical release, occasionally managing to sound catchy even amidst a flurry of determinedly abstract time signatures and song structures.At the same time, Untitled is still an Autechre release, and as such the focus remains on feeding your brain first and foremost.As you'd expect from the group that brought us Tri Repetae ++ and Confield, intellectually severe, high-speed musical calculus is the order of the day.

I personally found this album to be somewhat more instantly gratifying than its predecessor Draft 7.30, but that doesn't mean there aren't voluminous reams of complexity for you to decipher.Tracks open with a frenzy of spastic beats and pummelling percussion before gradually evolving into slower, more atmospheric pieces without sacrificing Autechre's trademark mathematical precision.Dense, rapid-fire sensory overload steadily gives way to hypnotic drones that are only somewhat interrupted by the jagged sounds that skid over them.Booming backbeats, out-of-time glitches, and even some subtle melodic underpinnings are interspersed into bizarre, ever-shifting sonic landscapes.New and fascinating uses for the drum machine are repeatedly discovered, with slice-and-dice programming (especially on the brilliant Augmatic Disport) that almost redeems the machine's use on countless boy-band atrocities.And the epic, 15-minute closer Sublimit cycles through every trick in Autechre's book, easily ranking among the most convincing displays of their demented genius as it staggers and stutters through a dizzying array of beats and textures.

In the end, Untilted is a quintessential Autechre album: strange, abstract, unique, and sure to be divisive.However, as a fan of Sean and Rob's work, I for one wouldn't have it any other way.While the forthcoming Meshuggah full-length will probably ending up grabbing my coveted album of the year designation, for now Untilted holds the top spot.

4-0 out of 5 stars Misunderstood composition
Autechre have been given a bad rap in recent months for this album. It hasn't been panned so much as simply disregarded as 'another autechre album'. Its a disappointing evaluation, given the quality of the song craftsmanship on this album - seriously. Gone are the sped up beats that mangle the song out of control (found on Confield (think of cFern, Sim Gishel and the way too intense end to Lentic Catachresis) and the unfortunate end to the otherwise sublime Cap.IV off Gantz Graf). Instead the songs are, generally speaking, patient even as they are intense.

A good way to tell if someone's been listening carefully to the album is if they review and suggest there was 10 seconds of silence before the first beat - there wasn't! It was quiet - if you never heard it, then I think your headphones are too low (this of course is an old trick to get people to set their volume accordingly - like adjusting the contrast on your monitor). Then the beat comes in - its fast, in control and never boring. the song changes momentum a few times and works its way through the idea. Ipacial Section operates in a similar tone - hard beat - work through the idea, get somewhere interesting. The same I suppose can be said for a number of tracks on the album, such as the haunting Pro Radii or the enchanting Augmatic Distort - the latter starting off incredibly heavy and fast but ending on a worderful even keeled note. The melody of that song in the interim is well worth the wait - like pen expers of confield, its a song structure trying desperately to break through (or at least put order to) the noise around it - clever.

The second half of the album is a bit weaker, but the sound production in The Trees is phenomenal - truly making the brain dance. Sublimit is a hot, and fun closer.

To those who say that autechre are just doing more of the same - I don't get it, is the music about the novelty or the unfolding of the ideas? If you're just hunting for sounds - I suppose yeah, as they do use several familiar instruments. But noone ever disses a rock band for keeping their kit. This time it seems like AE had fun with their instrumnets and came out with a consistent, measured and engaging album. Finally - play it loud on headphones - its rewarding.

5-0 out of 5 stars My brain exploded on April 19th 2005
What can I say? I must have gone through this album 15 times since I bought it (on the day of it's release), and I still can't put my finger on the reason why I haven't yet thrown it out the window.

First off, this album is no more listenable than a thousand marbles falling down a set of steel stairs, yet, I keep can't stopputting it on, because for some reason, it is highly rewarding. Melody is nearly absent, for the exeception of fermium, and maybe a few short parts of other songs, but here, melody is not what one must look for.

I think that the major point made by this album, even if this may sound like a very bad point, is the incredible talent that brown and booth are gifted with. The main recurring thought that I had while listening to this album is just how amazingly sharp and precise every single blip and bam is.

Booth, I think it was, said in an interview that Untilted was the album that took them the least time to create, yet it sounds like they spent 15 years working on it.

I will attend their concert in Montreal tonight and I hope that it will help decipher Untilted for me. I know I like it, but I want to know why. ... Read more


8. The Mozart Effect - Music for Babies - Playtime to Sleepytime
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Asin: B00000DA1O
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 3017
Average Customer Review: 4.55 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars very playful.Cute and lively.
This music is so fun! Lets children learn to love and appreciate classical.My children beg for this cd! Its nicely put together.

5-0 out of 5 stars Not just for babies
This CD contains lightly arranged pieces which suit children very well. I am a 19 year old college student, and I use it personally for study music-it is really good background music without any of the distractions that usually arise from trying to listen to music and do homework at the same time. Highly recommended for children as well as adults.

5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful CD
I received several classical music CD's as gifts before my daughter was born, and out of all of them (also including classical CD's I had already owned) this is definitely my favorite. It stands out because it is not full of simply "traditional" arrangements but rather is very light and playful - there are all sorts of cute little chirping and whirring noises that add to it as well. It is just a lot of fun, and provides the perfect background for cuddling with your new little one.

There is one comment below from someone who thought the music was too simple and was of poor quality. I would agree that the music is very simple (not a bad thing), but disagree with the notion that it is poor quality. Anyway, this should be just one CD in a library of different types of music, classical and other, to help your child's music appreciation develop. If it happens to expand other developmental skills as well, even better!

4-0 out of 5 stars Works as advertised-
The Mozart Effect - Music for Babies is a pretty good disc. Admittedly not the best Mozart recordings around, but then my child is not exactly picky. I prefer Genie's Angels All Around as a lullaby CD but either The Mozart Effect or Angels All Around would make excellent baby shower gifts.

5-0 out of 5 stars Works Like A Charm
This is a must have for all infants and a terrific baby shower gift. My son is 14 months old and he has been listening to this CD for about 10 months. It has a TERRIFIC soothing effect on him. I think Mozart has become a musical comfort object for him, much like his soft blankie has become a comfort object. If he is cranky in the car and trying to unwind for a nap, I pop this CD in and he is automatically soothed. It's like magic.

I like that this CD is organized into more up tempo songs for playtime, and slower paced songs for sleepytime. I admit I wouldn't buy this CD if I were looking for some real Mozart listening pleasure, but this is for my infant, not for me. (Although I do admit, I am also soothed too by a little Mozart Effect.) And, I wish there weren't two versions of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, but it is still worth the $$. ... Read more


9. 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


10. 18
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Asin: B000063S6Z
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2023
Average Customer Review: 3.77 out of 5 stars
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Following one of the most licensed CDs in history, 18 delivers more of the gospel samples and spiritual exploration that made Play Moby's breakthroughalbum. But keep your expectations in check. On 18 there is barely a body-rocker in the bunch. This is often a somber, melancholy disc, blanketed in thewashed-over cinematic orchestral melodies Moby's been fond of since his classic self-titled debut. It requires several listenings before the gems shine through theambient fog--and most depart from Play entirely. On the deceptively minimalist opening track, Moby delivers a powerful message through his thin littlevoice. "We are all made of stars," he sings, and indeed he's believable. MC Lyte punches out an infectious rap over old-school beat-box rhythms on "Jamfor the Ladies," offering one of the disc's few roof-raisers. "At Least We Tried" is a tear-jerking swan song of the highest order, and, finally, "The Rafters"resurrects early-‘90s house piano, which will make any of Moby's career-long fans pine for his earliest club hits. The diminutive DJ needn't have produced PlayPt. Two to keep his new fans engaged. Fortunately, his greatest talent for cooking up interesting sounds is still audible; you just need the patience to findit. --Beth Massa ... Read more

Reviews (248)

4-0 out of 5 stars Play Pt. 2? Not really...
For his follow-up to the tremendously successful "Play," Moby gives us "18" new tunes -- some familiar-sounding, others not so much. ...Songs like "In this World," "One of These Mornings," or "I'm Not Worried At All" follow what might be called the Play formula: take an old archived soul/blues/gospel sample and put it over beats, violins, and whatever else sounds good. Other tunes on 18 follow a similar formula, but are more extensive in their sampling: "Sunday," for instance, is ultimately more of a traditional song as opposed to one where Moby has the same lyrics loop indefinitely. (Although the refrain does repeat itself dozens of times, of course.)

Then there's the anomolies. "We Are All Made of Stars" would not have fit on Play at all. "The Great Escape" sounds like This Mortal Coil (it would've fit perfectly on "Blood," TMC's third and final album). "Extreme Ways" also differs from Play's tone. "Harbour," with Sinead O'Connor, would have seemed out of place on Play. "Jam For the Ladies" has an old-school hip-hop feel to it. Granted, there are styles in Play that aren't in 18--no dance hall-style techno, for instance, but there's more new styles than abandoned styles in evidence on 18.

The songs I mentioned are enough to make 18 more than just Play Pt. 2. It's true, however, that anyone familiar with Play will feel at home listening to 18. But that has as much to do with Moby's orchestral aesthetic as his choice of songs. He tends to use his synth violins, for example, in ostensibly the same way (= the same voicings) in lots of songs--both on Play and on 18. I call this simply "the Moby sound." There's nothing intrinsically wrong with having an identifiable style, so I don't fault him on that count.

Is 18 groundbreaking? Hardly. But if you liked Play, will you like 18? Definitely.

2-0 out of 5 stars Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?
To me, Moby's 18 is the sound of a man trying to get more licensing contracts. He made a superb album with Play, and he managed to license every song on the album for use in movies, commercials, etc. And more power to him. It was a great album. Moby's always been changing in his sound, but it was no surprise to hear that once he was able to sell out big time, he stuck with the same sound he was using. Not that that's such a horrible thing. But some of these songs could pass for carbon copies of Play songs. We get similar-sounding field recordings of southerners singing "Lordy, don't leave me all by myself." More than reminiscent of "Oh Lordy, my trouble so hard" from "Natural Blues." "Bodyrock" gets done over as "Jam For the Ladies." "Extreme Ways" sounds like "South Side." It goes on. But it's not entirely the same. Moby seems to be going new age on us all, writing songs for Sinead O'Conner to sing over Enya-like sounds. Oy. The album seems like excercise. Boring. "The Rafters" is the only song that I really like, and even that one suffers from a seemingly patented Moby swelling synth-string treatment that was originally used so well in "Porcelain," but now seems to pop up in every single one of his songs.

Oh, and let's not forget that as of right now, I know of at least three of the songs from the album are licensed, with more to come for sure. To teach a dog a new trick, you give him a treat. Well, Moby is sure desrving of his treat this time. He did his trick just as you hoped.

5-0 out of 5 stars Moby Does It Again
The follow-up CD to the 1999 smash-hit Play well lived up to its expectations. While not quite as good as its predecessor, I don't think anybody will be disappointed.

Moby continues to re-define techo in this new album, reminding us all of how far he's come since his raw, electronic beat days. Like Play before it, 18 is full of spiritual, emotional songs--although often he uses this emotional power to create somewhat depressing (but still very beautiful) music, as can be seen is such tracks as "Sleep Alone", "18" and "At Least We Tried".

In contrast to Play, there are more slow and melodic songs and less hip-hip and R&B songs. Strangely, although I ordinarily don't care for hip-hop or R&B, I was sad to see both go.

Overall, though, this album is a must-buy, and I stand fully behind my 5-star rating. As with Play, all of the songs are unique and special on their own, but come together to create a spiritual journey into a wide spectrum of emotions when the album is played in its entirety.

4-0 out of 5 stars Superior yet still uneven followup to 'Play'
I usually don't write reviews for C.D.s, but I felt compelled to add my opinion on "18" because I feel this album has been misrepresented by many other reviewers.

The main thing that helps in listening to this album is to forget everything else about Moby (mainly "Play," which this album resembles in only the slightest way). It also helps to forget We Are All Made of Stars once the track is done playing, since the other songs don't follow its lead (even though that single was, ironically, the reason I bought this album in the first place).

If you just judge the songs for what they are, not expecting a lot of radio-friendly singles (like We Are All Made of Stars, not that I consider it mindless pop but it is something which is commercially equipped) or "Play, Volume 2" you realize that they are quite good. The barrier to the enjoyment (or popularity) of this album is the expectations that exist because of the success of "Play" and the sometimes quite unconventional nature of the songs. It's a good album, just not good in the way you're likely to expect it to be.

"18" hits higher and more frequent highs than "Play," in my opinion. Unfortunately it also has a lower low (Harbour). But it averages out as a better album. We Are All Made of Stars is the best vocal techno song I've heard in English (Japanese electronic artist tend to be very good at this format, which seems to elude Western musicians). Extreme Ways is an excellent "angry rocker," only with the "rock" part replaced with electronica. I say that because, with a different instrumental arrangement, these lyrics would be worthy of Dylan or Petty. But the instrumentals that do back the song are some of Moby's finest work, a layered electronic masterpiece. In This World is far superior to Natural Blues, which it is naturally compared to. Great Escape is both a great song and testament to Moby's versatility as a songwriter (it's composed for Classical strings, and is a moving love song like nothing he's written before). Jam for the Ladies is an enjoyable departure from Moby's usual style (if there *is* anything that can be called his usual style, this isn't it) Then the instrumantal tracks Fireworks and 18 prove that his focus on vocal songs hasn't caused his talent for composing instrumentals to wane. On the down side, I don't know what these other reviewers have on track 15 of their copies of "18." I find Harbour to be not only the obvious weak point of this album, but the most unlistenable song Moby has ever issued under his name. The lyrics are uninspired, the vocals are poorly delivered, and there's nothing about the instrumental backing to make the track interesting at all. But it is only a momentary lapse of dignity for Moby.

The biggest weakness of "18" is the weakness of all Moby's albums: it fails to hold together as a unified work. The songs are good (although some are a bit weak, and the album would have benefited from the removal of Harbour and 1 or 2 of the gospel songs, to shorten it to the approximate length of "Play"), but together they seem like just a collection of songs, a singles collection or "best of" compilation, rather than parts of a whole. Then don't flow and there is nothing which unifies them (although a couple songs are linked to each other). It seems like Moby just browsed a database he had his 150 unreleased songs on, picked 18 he thought were objectively the best, with no regard to their style or tone, then kept them in the order they had been filed on the database, rather than arranging them in a way that allowed the moods of the songs to compliment each other. The result is "18," a good collection of songs, but with almost no feeling of unity.

Basically "18" shows that, despite all his other successes evident on the record, Moby has failed to make the full transition from a single artist to an album artist. It is a good album to own, but it has a number of idiosyncracies that prevent its widespread enjoyment, and some that prevent me from being able to give it 5 stars. I hope Moby's next (non-Voodoo Child) album maintains these strengths (as well as new innovations) *and* is also able to exist as a unified whole, like all the truly great albums do.

4-0 out of 5 stars When he's good, he's very good. When he is ho-hum, he's
Moby has stated that he has written over 3,000 songs but that they won't be released because most of them aren't that good. I believe it. His good stuff is great - original, sincere, ear-popping music that makes you realize that there are musicians doing creative music. His other stuff is boring - anyone with a synthesizer and a beat machine can grind out this stuff. It is amazing that Moby can't tell the difference because he will include simplistic synth chords shifting slowly and then give these pieces grandiose names as if he thinks they are profound when they are nothing but noodling on the keyboard that anyone can do. This is a good album but be ready to junk a few songs before you upload it to your ipod. ... Read more


11. Sleep Soundly
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Asin: B000003IU8
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 4553
Average Customer Review: 4.86 out of 5 stars
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One of the fundamental criticisms of New Age music is that it puts people to sleep. Here, Steven Halpern, one of the founding fathers of New Age, makes that his mission and, as you might expect, does an effective job of it. Drawing on catalog material from the early 1980s, Halpern builds an attractive collection of delicate, lighter-than-air sonic textures that nicely serves the intended purpose--to fill the silence with something prettier than white noise. Halpern does so by blending electric and acoustic piano, plus additional keyboards, to create soothing, improvisational, cloudlike musical abstractions that often convey the tranquil randomness of wind chimes in a soft breeze. The liner notes also promise your subconscious will be exposed to a series of subliminal, sleep-encouraging affirmations along the quiet, unstructured way. This may sound like so much frou-frou to the unconverted, but for anyone sincerely interested in a sleep aid, Halpern's disc is a certified snoozer, a New Age music box. Other New Age discs may accomplish the same purpose as Sleep Soundly, but few will do it as persuasively. --Terry Wood ... Read more

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars This is good to help you sleep and....
I have so many Halpern CDs, its unbelievable. I recommend this one and several by Jeffrey Thompson, Delta Sleep System and the two CDs sets Music for Sleep Collections 1 and 2. Great!! I have no problems sleeping now that all of these are available for me to use. Never get bored with one, because there are now so many good selections to choose from. GO GET 'EM!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful for PTSD/trauma survivors
Suffering from PTSD, this CD has helped me to cope with flashbacks. Before getting this CD, it used to take hours for me to fall asleep and even then, I had a very troubled sleep. Now, I play this CD every night as I go to sleep and within minutes, I am asleep. No more flashbacks at night, and the CD helps create a safe feeling inside.

5-0 out of 5 stars It works!
I never hear the end of the CD because I fall asleep so quick. The music is so beautiful and peaceful. I recommend it for all people who have trouble falling asleep!

5-0 out of 5 stars Out Like a Light! Wow
Actually, NOT out like a light because I fell asleep even before I could turn my light out. This cd is great. I purchased it because since the tragic events of September 11 I seem to have trouble falling and staying asleep. I put it on continuous play mode and woke up feeling (gasp!) eager and excited to face Monday morning. Give it a try.

5-0 out of 5 stars VERY nice cd to have at your bedside.
This is my first Steve Halpern CD and I would have no reservations about getting more. The music is beautiful...it kind of weaves through your mind relaxing you. I, like another reviewer don't think I've ever heard the end of the tape. I'm always asleep. I love being able to play this at night and am VERY glad that I took the chance and ordered music by someone new to me. ... Read more


12. Endtroducing...
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Asin: B000005DQR
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 3912
Average Customer Review: 4.86 out of 5 stars
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DJ Shadow, a.k.a. Josh Davis, could be credited with bringing newfound introspection to the gloating sounds of hip-hop. Condensed with urban oscillations and scatological beats, Endtroducing shutters with eclectic samples and aural montages that reach beyond the constraints of hip-hop style. Enhancing the mix with fundamentals of rock, soul, funk, ambient, and jazz, the modern fusions fail to go unnoticed, even by the casual listener. While most of the tracks are compiled by layering samples from vinyl treasures found in used-record bins, the production quality of the mosaic is unmatched. Darkened melodies carry throughout the album with its eye on the end of the tunnel. The narration samples come from numerous sources and keep the listener involved and waiting for resolution. With a message as fragmentary as an overheard conversation, Endtroducing conveys no apparent conclusion, but begs the mind, body, and soul for some rewind. --Lucas Hilbert ... Read more

Reviews (159)

5-0 out of 5 stars DJ Shadow is the Postmodern artist
I first go this album in 96; I was still in high school and didn't know much about sampling, beat production, etc. I thought it was one of the most amazing things I'd ever heard. Now, as a senior in college with more musical experience under my belt, I can still say this is one of the best albums I own. DJ Shadow revolutionized the way I and many people thought about sampling. As he takes a record from his insanely deep crates, he doesn't simply loop a catchy cut a la Puffy, he manipulates and recontextualizes these sounds into something completely his own. Like his track "Organ Donor," where he uses a sample of a church organ and turns it into a beat. Shadow in my opinion is the epitome of the postmodern musical artist: taking what's already out there in the world we live in and breathing new life into it. I highly recommend this to any electronic or hip hop fans. Oh, and by the way I heard he has a new album coming out soon; he's on MCA now, so his access to production equipment is gonna be insane this time. I'm expecting a truely remarkable album.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wow! DJ Shadow's a genius!
I bought this album a few days ago on my 13th birthday because I liked "Building Steam With A Grain Of Salt" and "Organ Donor". At first I didn't like it because a lot of it I found boring. It also made me angry that the Organ Donor song is only 2 minutes in lenght on mine! (The one I listened to on the internet was over 4 minutes long)I put it in the next day and I got it. It may not be the Orbital, Fatboy Slim type stuff that I usually listen to but it isn't supposed to be. I got it in the Dance/Electronica section of the local record store...so it is a bit misleading. Dance? No way. It's very different and extremely hard to classify. I would say...Trip-Hop/Jazz/Electronica/Hip Hop/Soul.

So overall:

PROS:
Very moving
Nicely mellow
Great variation of songs
Often funny

CONS:
Seems kind of short
Some filler "tracks" like 6 and "Why Hip-Hop Sucks in '96" which are somewhat annoying.
Organ Donor is WAY too short!

Best tracks:
Building Steam
Stem/Long Stem
Changeling
Midnight in a Perfect World
Organ Donor

-Also I have the "Mo Wax" label, and it says "Mu Wax" on the back in really small print when it should say "Mo Wax"!

5-0 out of 5 stars Producing one of the best albums ever
From the opening sample of "Building Steam With a Grain of Salt" where a voice is heard saying "Producing..." you know you are listening to an outstanding piece of work. In order to better understand this, you have to position yourself at the time this album came out.

You have to realize Trip Hop was already in full fledge: Massive Attack and Portishead had already come out with their own thing, but DJ Shadow came with a different proposal in 1996 when he produced 'Endtroducing...'. Through the magic of samples, he blended in a way many have tried to copy, yet no one yet matched, genres such as rock, soul, funk, ambient, and jazz, into a final product that transcends time. If you need further proof of that, think how long it's been since this album came out (1996) as you are reading this, sit back, listen to it and be amazed, as so many have been amazed to this day.

After listening to 'Endtroducing...' almost daily for three weeks now, turning back and thinking of acts such as Fatboy Slim almost feels awkward, considering his sample-based 'Better Living Through Chemistry' came out almost a full year after Shadow's debut. Granted that everyone has a place in music, DJ Shadow's genius with sampling work simply is above and beyond, making this not only his breakthrough, but also one of the best albums ever.

Other favorite tracks: "Changeling", "Untitled" and the grandieuse "Mutual Slump". If you want to take a dip into an evolved form of his work, check out his side project, U.N.K.L.E., in particular 'Psyence Fiction'.

5-0 out of 5 stars A shadow of himself
A couple years back i became interested in underground hip hop and turntablism. My first, and best purchase, was DJ Shadows Endtroducing. Nary a day goes by that I do not find myself listening to this album. The way he mixes and blends the songs together puts Shadow at the top of his game on this record. Where this album excels is in its ability to not only drag you into the world that Shadow has produced but takes you through the mind of one the most talented individuals in all of music. If you enjoy music, do yourself a favor and buy this album. You will never find another like it, as it creates a constant state of euphoria, as the beats and samples are blended together in such a way that it is almost impossible to describe.in my top 10 albums of all time.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent work
Dj shadow has proved that he is one of the greatest artists ever. With such diverse tracks and complex beats, Endtroducing will be something to look back on from years to come. ... Read more


13. Changing Places
list price: $17.98
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Asin: B00008G997
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 7872
Average Customer Review: 4.65 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (17)

5-0 out of 5 stars WILDCHILD
Norway has produced Jan Garbarek & Tord Gustavsen, I think I will have to move there.This cd "Changing Places" (what a great title) has music that touches the center of your being. I have just heard Tord for the first time, & I had to repeat playing the cd. This musician has a musical depth, his harmony & melodic structures give this cd an enchanting freshness that seems to come from the Nordic folklore & music that I beieve inspires his & Jan Garbarek's music. I was at a Jan Garbarek concert in Sydney 2 months ago, the question could have been asked "is it jazz?". But Tord like Jan are improvisors of the highest order, it certainly is not jazz of the 30's,& 40's. For art to live there must be change. At some time in their career, Bird,Miles,Coltrane & Bill Evans were accused of not playing jazz, but they were, it was dressed in new clothes. I am very impressed with this cd & will be looking forward to Tord's next release. I wish him every success.

5-0 out of 5 stars Nordic cool. . .
Lyric, melodic, hypnotic, definitely cool jazz. The cuts on this 66-minute CD are like chilled vodka over ice, way, way after midnight.

The opening tracks, "Deep as Love" and "Graceful Touch," are aptly titled, both leisurely and tense, seeming to willfully resist movement forward, keeping the lid on, as fingers lightly touch keys and strings and then break out in brief releases of strength, which are quickly contained again. You listen, rapt.

Nervous energy surfaces more urgently in the following "IGN," and then we are back in the lingeringly cool groove with "Melted Matter," breaking out at moments in the following "At a Glance," which ends again quietly.

And so it goes. This is a wonderful CD for lights-low, after hours listening. The booklet that comes with it has portrait shots of the trio: Tord Gustavsen (piano), Harald Johnsen (double-bass), and Jarle Vespestad (drums). Recorded in Oslo.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent recording, subtle and technically splendid!
When I first heard "Changing places" I thought it was very precise and technically flawless, yet it felt "cold", devoid of warmth. How wrong I was when I heard it again and again. Not only is it warm and appealing to many listeners across many genres, it is a masterpiece, impossible to overlook.

This recording will grow with you. I envisage that I will be enjoying this recording by this Norwegian Trio as much now as I will for many years to come.

Listen to the Tango-like tunes - very subtle and interesting. Obviously Tord Gustavsen is supported well with the equally talented Harald Johnsen on double-bass and Jarle Vespestad on drums.

Not just background music, although it is excellent for party dinners or simply in front of the fire with a nice red!

I recommend it!

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't pass it up!!!
If you want an album with superb acoustics( for the true audiophile ) and wonderful relaxing sound---this is it. Mellow, easy,smooth,rich,clear---outstanding jazz in every cut.Bass, piano and drums put together in the perfect soundstage with flawless clarity.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Space Between the Notes...
This beautifully sparse recording is a study in economy and taste. Mr. Gustaven's trio isn't about flash and dash, eschewing overwrought style for restrained substance and a commitment to unspooling some serious melodic yarn. There isn't a wasted note in this collection of blues-inflected ballads and silky boleros. This is some late night music, so take your time and give this record a chance to change your perspective. ... Read more


14. Karma
list price: $16.98
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Asin: B000005DCB
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 2704
Average Customer Review: 4.65 out of 5 stars
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The novelty was stripmined from ethnobeat pop long ago, and this skin-deep confection is surprising only in its lack of edge and invention. On the plus side, the melodies are textured and lush, the beats entrancing, and a parade of gifted singers--Kristy Thirsk, Jacqui Hunt, and Sarah McLachlan included--bill and coo impressively. Lead single "Euphoria (Firefly)" has spark and spirit, while "Enchanted" and "Duende" are strong vehicles for Thirsk and Camille Henderson respectively. --Jeff Bateman ... Read more

Reviews (158)

5-0 out of 5 stars Karma is a Delerium Classic
Karma is a wide leap from the earlier albums from Delerium, such as Stone Tower, but it is excellent. I love the fact that Rhys and Bill decided to bring in phenomenal female singers such as Kristy Thirsk, Jacqui Hunt, Sarah McLachlan, and Camille Henderson. The enchanting rhythms and sounds create a beautiful sound scape for your mind to dive into. My favorite track on this album is Duende. I love the mid-eastern feel of it. Enchanted is another great one, Thirsk's voices is amazing, and the lyrics have a lot of meaning. The album comes together as a whole when you listen to it all the way through, as with most of the Delerium albums. Karma will enchant and move you to higher places.

I cannot wait for the next Delerium album to follow up this one. But for now, this along with other Delerium albums such as Semantic Spaces and Spiritual Archives are staying in my CD player.

5-0 out of 5 stars Spellbinding vocals over surrealistic soundscapes
Wow! Wow! I can't hear this CD enough!

I started listening to Delerium through the side-door: I'm no fan of Front Line Assembly or much of Leeb and Fulber's other work produced under various names, including Delerium.

Then a friend leant me the awe-inspiring Semantic Spaces. Shortly, I got ahold of Karma. And it's been stuck in my Rio player for six months now, and I've no plans to remove it any time soon.

It's hard to write about something that sounds so beautiful: words don't do it justice. But imagine ethnic beats, electronic sophistication, angelic lamentations, and ethereal landscapes, and you might get an idea of what this album sounds like. If you're at all a fan of Semantic Spaces, or Enigma's early work, you'll definitely enjoy Karma.

5-0 out of 5 stars Can't Get Enough Of This Disc
I just bought this CD yesterday and wow, there is nothing like this group in existance. Their music is so lush and haunting. I had used to think Enigma was the height of otherworldly music but Delirium outdoes them everytime. My favorites have to be Enchanted and Silence (featuring the lovely Sarah Mclachlan) A must for anyone who love ambient music.

4-0 out of 5 stars Leeb, Fulber, you guys have changed man
If you are truely familiar with Delerium you know that it is the oldest and now (thanks to albums like this) the most profitable side project of "Front Line Assembly". That's not because this is their best album, it's because this is the type of music mainstream America wants. If your familiar with earlier Delerium then it's evident that this is not their true style. It sounds like an experiment done by Leeb and Fulber to milk the common American cd buyer of every penny so they can make improvements and upgades on their 2 million dollar homes. Having said that I'd like to reassure you that this review is not going to be all negative. There's nothing wrong with making money and capitolism is how our favorite groups become successful. Hey, I gave this album 4 stars. It's a good album for what it is. It's for a very specific mood. To me it's for getting girls in that 'specific' mood. Women seem to like this album more than us guys. Although us guys have a taste in softer music too even though we may try to hide it behind our heavy metal, beer drinking and love of boxing.

So Leeb and Fulber have a good idea here. As always they have a vision for creating a style of music unique for any type of mood. Using female vocalists such as Kristy Thirsk creates a sort of sensual feel to this cd. The entire album is solid, with no song sticking out as a best or worst. Like I said it's a cd designed for that 70+ minute mood that we all sometimes feel. It's not at all like early Delerium and certainly different from most Front Line Assembly. If you're a big fan of heavier FLA this album might dissappoint you. If you expect Delerium to sound like they did on "Faces Forms and Illusions" then this album is bound to raise a few eyebrows. But I gave this album a try and liked it. I guess I believe that all music has it's place and purpose.

5-0 out of 5 stars My first delerium, my favorite delerium
This was my first delerium cd, and it served as an excellent introduction to new-era delerium. I like all the other cds of the duo, but this is still my favourite. it is probably the most tribal album of theirs, and it is vocal without being a cheap poppish attempt to make money. It has quite a variatey of styles, ranging from ethereal trance/new age (twilight) to ambient/dance pop (but not forced) songs like euphoria (firefly) and silence. the details are below.

1:enchanted- I LOVE kristy thirsks voice! it is so sexy, when she comes in with her oohs and aahs. this song is tribal, ambient, poppish, and a little ethereal. So angelic.

2:deunde- When I first got this album this was my favorite song. it has a great powerful beat, some sampled chants, and a great vocal job by camille. It almost makes you feel like you are in the aboriginal outback, but it is still pop influenced.

3:twilight- an ethereal tranceey instrumental track with some chants. very pretty and inspiring.

4:silence- outstanding song. it has monks in the bigenning but after about 1:30 sarah mclachlan comes in, and starts singing. piano is interlaced through parts of the chorus and there is a nice piano solo at the end.

5:forgotten worlds- very otherworldly, you can see why they put the title there. the song takes you to a long forgotten temple and awakens it and brings you inside. it only starts out dark, then it begins to glow. Chanting in this one too.

6:lamenation- definitley tribal, especially during the first three minutes or so. then it gets really pretty. too bad it has such a long introduction. a little weak, could have been on semantic spaces.

7:euphoria (firefly)- two slightly slow instrumental somgs make way for a dancey pop song. this was the first single from the album. it is catchy and danceable. if you heared and liked other poppish songs like silence or deunde you'd probably like this.

8:remembrance- one of my friends claims to have heared this on the radio, but I never knew it was a single. (or is it?) this starts out with some woodwinds, but about 1:00 in this song comes to life with chanting monks and then gets spacey and synthesized after about three minutes, and then the chanting comes laced in with the spacey sounds. very interesting.

9:wisdom- a short song, but still welcome. yay, more thirsk! This song is a little like enchanted, but less tribal sounding.

10:window to your soul- this is not at all even hinted with pop. it is a piece of mood music, very relaxing, and inspiring. and even though it's around 10 minutes, it dosent drag on. it keeps you listening. it starts out dark, but dont skip it, after about two minutes you will be on your way to a very peaceful place. this song has chimes, synthesizers (of course) and chanting. REALLY pretty.

11:til the end of time- this is probably the weakest song on the cd. it is a lot like wisdom, but slower. vocals, too.

-----------------------------------------------------------

You need this in your collection! there is a little something for everybody, but you will probably end up liking it all. :) ... Read more


15. The Equatorial Stars
list price: $15.98
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Asin: B0007UT5LS
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 1458
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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So much truly boring ambient music has been made since Brian Eno coined the phrase in the mid 1970s that it's sometimes hard to remember this can truly be a vibrant music that's, you know, musical. And while there are some clicky and smeared sounds courtesy of Mr. Eno that can only result from modern computer software, this album is a return to 1975's lush, pastoral and excellent Evening Star. The duo pick up where they left off on this aptly titled collection of blessed-out drone exercises. Fans of modern ambient music, like the stuff that Kranky label releases, might wish that there was a little more "envelope pushing." However, if you view ambient music on the same level as any other genre (say, bluegrass) then this album is akin to hearing that genre's originators (say, Bill Monroe and Ralph Stanley) jamming quietly on a back porch while the sun sets. And it's hard to find fault with that, or this here fine, deliberately unassuming work.--Mike McGonigal ... Read more

Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars A superb return to collaboration.
In many ways, this album is everything one would have expected-- somehow the natural successor to "No Pussyfooting" and "Evening Star".In other ways, its nothing like I would have expected-- the usual stamps of Fripp and Eno's recent work seems to be missing.

Its really quite hard to largely identify the identity of the musician generating the sound on much of this material, there's obvious stuff (we'll come to that in a minute), but as a rule, the backgrounds could be either of them.Sonically, it moves through a number of backdrops, with delicate, percussive, synthish loops dominating the early part of the record ("Meissa", "Lyra", "Tarazed"), wheras the middle of the record feels more like their old collaborations updated, the sort of modern Fripp soundscapes being more apparent ("Lupus", "Ankaa").The remainder of the album features on track that is totally unexpected, the downright funky "Altair", with its train shuffling rhythms, drum loops, and funky guitar (in ways similar to material from the Eno/Schwaum "Drawn from Life" record), and the closer, "Terebellum", is an aggressive, haunting, and almost angry sounding piece almost reminiscent of "Radiophonics" or the other more aggressive soundscapes.

Over this material, Fripp largely solos using a variant of his legendary fuzz tone-- its a bit mellower, and rounder though, similar to his leads on "Starless" and "The Power to Believe Part II" but in a more hushed feel.

So that tells not much, the real question is, what's it like?Largely an ambient affair, the collaboration is what you'd expect-- there's no real incindiery moments here-- don't look for a "Baby's On Fire", but it is comparable to their previous collaborations in quality, and it certainly sounds nothing like Crimson.Some of it is full of delicate beauty ("Lyra"), some of its just a blast ("Altair"), some of its actually quite hard to listen to at all ("Terebellum").

For fans of ambient music, especially the work of these two gentelemen, this one will be quite rewarding.It falls short somehow of being a masterpiece, but it is really a great record.Recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Aimless Grandeur
Though it starts with what sounds like cows lowing beneath a sheet of midnight stars, Robert Fripp and Brian Eno's The Equatorial Stars - their first collaboration in 30 years - doesn't stay on planet Earth for long.Fripp's snakelike guitar lines loop through Eno's ambient landscapes with aimless grandeur, beautifully limning the constellations considered by title:"Tarazed", "Ankaa", etc.All seven tracks are of equal sonic value.The most propulsive, though, is "Altair", where Fripp's guitar meets the drummers from Hassell/Eno's Fourth World, Vol. 1, for a scenic glide through the night sky.

5-0 out of 5 stars Older and Wiser
I found this album to be very worthwhile. It was consistently good, and very listenable-- yet it was also diverse, with different sounds and styles represented. Although this album has been compared with "The Shutov Assembly", I find it to be less austere than this album. There is more movement, and, perhaps, more raw emotion in "Eq. Stars". At the same time, "Stars" is less boisterous and youthful as Fripp and Eno's previous collaboration, "The Heavenly Music Corporation". It is, if anything, a wiser album, more subtle and intense. Generally, "Stars" runs the razor between too raw and too canned, too youthful and too jaded, and therefor it succeeds-- both as music to be listened to directly and indirectly.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fripp and Eno Together Again!!!
King Crimson founder Robert Fripp and Ambient music pioneer Brian Eno have joined forces for the first time in over 26 years with their third and latest collaboration "The Equatorial Stars".
Featuring seven lengthy soundscapes, "The Equatorial Stars" is chock-full of the same atmospheric air as the duo's pioneering efforts "No Pussyfooting" and "Evening Star". Each of the album's seven pieces are similar stylistically being completely void of any central rhythm. The sole acception being track 6 "Altair" which features a rhythm loop that leans on the edge of subtle funk. Because of the similarities between each of the pieces, "The Equatorial Stars" works well as both a lengthy suite and seven individual pieces of music. Fripp's sustained guitar lines are at the forefront recalling his classic style of old without the use of much Midi-processing (a tool of Fripp's recent Soundscaping technique). Eno's minimalist keyboard backgrounds hang motionless creating open spaciness within the music. The styles of both musicians complement each other effortlessly and the end result is another winning combination.
After so many years, it is an absolute blessing the have Fripp and Eno together again with an album of new material. This newest CD compliments their first two albums effortlessly and together, they form a classic trilogy.
Highly Recommended!!

4-0 out of 5 stars Tangerine Dream's Best Album Yet
After repeated listenings (which are necessary before I can fully appreciate content separate from expectation), I still find that I want to like this album much more than I actually do.As an inveterate follower of Fripp and Eno's individual and collaborative work, I should like this album-it has all the elements that are essential to their previous groundbreaking expeditions: guitar tone poems over crystallinetextures and sonic space.Perhaps the problem is that there is nothing particularly groundbreaking about this new long awaited release but I think I would also be very pleased with more of the same. As it stands, it is very good and a welcome addition to my ever-expanding collection of their work, but it lacks the electric inspiration brought to so many of their previous efforts.Effects of "maturity," success, suburbia? On the inner sleeve is a photo of two tea cups which symbolize, I suppose, something about their collaborative friendship.How I wished instead it was a bong and spent blotter acid wrappers with resulting music to go with it. ... Read more


16. Sky Moves Sideways (Dig)
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Asin: B0002CU4Y8
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 9338
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars ptree s.m.s. -- essential extacy enhanced
"the sky moves sideways" is absolutely essential (6 stars!) early ptree. this remaster contains the s.m.s. titles from the original uk release (the us release was different -- it dropped "prepare yourself" and added "stars die"), plus this has "stars die" and a slightly longer version of "moonloop" (both were on the uk ep)....so already it has enough to warrant buying it....but wait! there's more -- this also has a 34 minute alternate version of the title cut.

110 minutes of aural gratification.

why are you still reading this? you should be ordering this disc!! ... Read more


17. Ambient 1: Music for Airports
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Asin: B0002PZVH0
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 5448
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Amazon.com essential recording

Eno's theory of the "discreet music" he called ambient was far from the modern chill-out room: the idea was that it should function at very low volumes, unobtrusively coloring the atmosphere of a room. Evolving by tiny gradations, the long pieces of Music For Airports (the first in a series of albums that followed the statement of purpose Discreet Music) defy close attention, but then they're not meant to be listened to consciously; they're meant to serve as a counterpoint to the frantic arcs of travel, or rather to be imagined in that setting. --Douglas Wolk ... Read more


18. Shamanic Dream
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Asin: B00005TZOE
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 4217
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hypnotic
This is perhaps the most trance inducing work I own.

5-0 out of 5 stars Music to Clear Your Chakras and Heal Your Spirit
Angugama uses the didgeridoo and a drum beat, along with the sounds of nature, and synchronization with certain brain wave patterns, to clear the emotions and help focus the mind and heart on these beautiful sounds. It certainly works for me. The music is peaceful and meditative. It surely heals one from the stresses and tensions of daily life ... they seem to melt away ... or at least are viewed from a different, more clear perspective and feeling when the music is played and for a long time afterwards.

The liner notes provide some fascinating information how the "Spiritual Environments" recordings of which this is one ... create a healing effect with the sounds of nature and sacred mantras. Here is a summary: 1) the binaural beat helps produce a synchronization with the theta brain wave of the listener, which slows the brain down into a more relaxed state. 2) Anugama uses alpha, theta, and delta frequencies. 3) Sounds and overtones have been studied by a French ear surgeon, Dr. Alfred Tomatis, who discovered they charge the brain and energize the body itself. 3) Primordial sounds, such as the heartbeat, crickets, waterfalls, ocean surf and rivers rushing ... produce a calm comforting feeling, as they resonate with our consciousness and reinforce we, too, are part of the Life, the sacredness of nature. Lastly, 4) Anugama has coordinated his music to resonate with the frequency of certain planetary orbital speeds ... I understand how the first three techniques help the mind and body resonate with the music and essentially become harmonized with it. I am less convinced that the orbital speed of planets other than earth matter. However, the most important matter is this, the CD creates a wholistic experience of harmony, calmness, peace, and a oneness that feels mystical and sacred. This CD received my highest recommendations. Erika Borsos (erikab93)

5-0 out of 5 stars Meditation/Yoga
Fabulous for meditation and yoga. This music will simply take you away.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Relaxation Music Around
I bought this CD over three years ago before Anugama began selling his music on Amazon and before he added the third track. I was originally introduced to this CD while taking yoga in college, and I still use it every time. This is the best music I have found for yoga. Since I own the CD with only the first two tracks, I do all my standing poses to track #1 and all the floor poses, ending with deep relaxation, to track #2. This is the only music that I can do yoga with. It helps me concentrate on my practice and also to completely let go. I highly recommend this CD for any type of relaxation (yoga, massage, acupuncture).

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful music
As the owner of Aura Wellness Centre, I see many clients each week. After the first time I play Shamanic Dream for each of them, it is requested for each session thereafter. I've called our local bookstore to request that they keep it in stock as my clients are wanting to know where they can get their own copy.
Shamanic Dream 'gets me there'. The last track is perfect for doing OM and receiving a healing from the didgeridoo. I recommend this CD to everyone I know and I am looking forward to hearing volume 2.

In the Light,

Lyn Ayre ... Read more


19. Harold Budd & Brian Eno: The Pearl
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Asin: B000003S2V
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 8363
Average Customer Review: 4.84 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

This sublime, tranquil recording features 11 haunting ambient tone poems for treated piano. They are crafted from simple chords, arpeggios, or melodies that are frequently trailed by delicate electronic whispers to produce dreamy results. Even though Budd and Eno chose to compose and record in a minimalist style, their gorgeous, moody music evokes so much more, for the reverberating spaces between the notes are just as important as the notes themselves. In an interesting experiment, both "Against the Sky" and "An Echo of Night" explore the same melancholic musical theme in different settings--the former is a sparse piano piece with gentle electronic treatments, the latter is a murky synth work set against a nocturnal outdoor backdrop. (Budd later explored the theme again as the ethereal elegy "Olancha Farewell" on his 1986 solo album, Lovely Thunder.)Beautifully understated, the slow-motion ballet of The Pearl is a piece of striking ambient impressionism that was highly original in its day, well before the myriads of New Age imitators its composers spawned, and it remains fresh and vital two decades later. --Bryan Reesman ... Read more

Reviews (38)

4-0 out of 5 stars Harold Budd, Part 2
This album and the preceding one, "Ambient 2: The Plateaux of Mirror", really have to be taken together in the same listen. They both feature the same sparse piano melodies over a treated Eno-scape. These two albums are my favorites for relaxation, reading, painting - you name it, they're great for it. That's why it's called "Ambient" music - it is made to fit in with almost any atmosphere, blending with, as Erik Satie once said, "The sounds of the knives and forks at dinner".
My favorite time to listen to these records is in a rainstorm, especially with distant thunder in the background. The rain sounds seem to bring out subtleties in the music that can't be heard otherwise.
So if you like Eno's "Ambient 1" or "Discreet Music" or Steve Roach's "Structures from Silence", this is the album for you.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sonic wallpaper
As with Eno and Budd's best ambient work (together and apart), The Pearl is a wash of atmospheres and colors that blends with its surroundings. Music for talking, reading, sleeping, working, meditating or just about anything else, it's as simple and minimalist as it can get yet never sounds weak or disposable.

This time, the basis is simply piano with some "treated" effects. That's it. The Pearl doesn't have quite the variety of sounds & positive tone of Apollo, the relaxing haziness of Ambient 1, or the pure soundscapes of Ambient 4. The mood is occasionally sad, but mostly just.. peaceful. The song titles give the impression of the melodies themselves; ethereal, barely there, as fleeting and beautiful as a sunbeam or a bright fish in a stream. Lovely and subdued. If you enjoy music that fills the room and wraps you in a quiet ambience, well.. you should probably have this album already. If you're only curious to start, I'll just suggest that The Pearl and Eno's Music for Airports are two of the finest to begin with.

5-0 out of 5 stars Aptly named The Pearl-- Pure and luminous
I love Brian Eno and Harold Budd's music. The drifting effect of ambient music is soothing yet interesting to the ear and it really does create an atmosphere in the space in which you are playing it.

The Pearl is mostly "treated piano" (gosh, as a lifelong player, I sometimes shudder at what they do to my favorite instrument, but it sounds divine.) Even though there is less of the electronic spacey effect, these pieces create an incredible sense of mood and emotion. "Late October" really has the feel of the regret of late autumn, when cold winter is on the way and only a ghost of happy times in summer and a glorious fall remain in a russet-colored landscape. "An Echo of Night" is mysterious and dreamy.

Though the Ambient 1-4 were my favorite albums by Eno and Budd, Pearl is pushing its way right up there for "most listened-to." If you are a fan, I'd say this is one that you have to have. I just love it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Incredibly sublime experience that brings deep serenity
Never before have I owned a CD such as this one that each time I listen to it I become blissed out.
Harold and Brian are both geniuses.
I only have about 4 of Harold's CD's but his gifted piano compositions affect me like no other...
I thoroughly recommend this music to take you into those places within yourself that are characteristic of the most serene and tranquil states ever imaginable.
Harold, you're brilliant.

5-0 out of 5 stars perfect
this is a perfectly gorgeous record. all the others here say it better than I could. ... Read more


20. Warszawa
list price: $15.98
our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0006TMXUK
Catlog: Music
Sales Rank: 5137
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Further Proof that PT is the Best Band in the World
I saw these guys last year in Montreal on the Damnation in Absentia tour with Opeth, so I already knew they were an amazing live act, but I was still shocked by Warszawa. I don't usually go in for live albums, as I prefer the studio stuff, but if it's got PT's name on it, I will pick it up. The best thing about this CD is that it's mostly made up of songs off of the Lightbulb Sun and Stupid Dream albums, which are currently out of print, so it's a great chance for those who don't own those albums to hear some of the songs. The live version of Shesmovedon is astounding, and it was awesome to hear the crowd clapping along at the beginning of Voyage 34.

The production is beautiful, and I would expect no less from Steven Wilson. Every note is crystal clear, there's enough crowd noise to let you know that they're playing live without drowning out the music, and everyone in the band is in top form.

If you've never heard Porcupine Tree before, I think this is as good a place as any to start. You get a good range of their sound (from accessible songs like the 5 minute Shesmovedon to epic ambient explorations like the 12 minute Russia on Ice, and even the extended jam session that is Voyage 34). The fact that the songs showcased are not readily available (pending reissues on Lava/Atlantic) only adds to this album's value. Also, according to their website, this album is a limited edition, so I suggest getting it while you can.

1. Even Less (7:36) 5/5 *
2. Slave Called Shiver (5:08) 5/5
3. Shesmovedon (5:21) 5/5 *
4. Last Chance to Evacuate Planet Earth Before it is Recycled (5:01) 5/5
5. Lightbulb Sun (5:59) 5/5 *
6. Russia on Ice (12:26) 5/5
7. Where We Would Be (3:40) 5/5
8. Hatesong (8:36) 5/5 *
9. Stop Swimming (7:08) 5/5
10. Voyage 34 - Phase 1 (12:37) 5/5 *
11. Signify (5:40) 5/5

* My Favorites.

PS. All the 5/5s probably seem excessive only to those who have not heard this album.

5-0 out of 5 stars could it ever get better?
As someone who discovered PT in 1998 or so, based only on "Waiting" and the Signify album, which I loved, I have foundthe band to be nearly permanently stuck in my car's CD player. In Absentia became a permanent fixture. The quiet songs just blow me away. The harmonies....how could it get better? I got the Stars Die compilation and Coma Divine, but my latest purchase of Warzsaza sent me into raptures. The opening cut, "Even less", has the most gorgeous guitar riff, anthemic and soaring, and the rest of the album takes off from there. Harmonies, fabulous guitar and keyboard work as always, and SW's beautiful vocals. The guy is a genius!! I cannnot stop playing this CD. I am hoping that Deadwing will be as good.

5-0 out of 5 stars Even Better Live
I thought that PT would find it difficult to reproduce the progressive feel of their studio albums in a live context...boy was I wrong !! Even though the concert was designed to be recorded, the guys do a magnificent job of giving their sound an additional live energy that leads me to conclude it their finest work. If you only get one album this year this is it ! Quite a few tracks from their Lightbulb Sun album with a good mixture from everywhere else.If the hairs on your neck don't stand up at the spacey keyboard riffs of Last Chance to Evacuate Planet Earth, or the brilliant guitar on Voyage 34, then you don't have a soul for progressive rock.

4-0 out of 5 stars A great live recording.
I am one of the many fans who became a PT addict after buying In Absentia.Since then I have bought pretty much any Porcupine Tree album I could find-seems to be the trend with new fans.This was my most recent purchase except for Deadwing.

This is a great live recording of the band after the release of Lightbulb Sun.Lightbulb Sun is one of the most beautiful albums I own (then again most of what I own is extreme metal haha) and the songs on here sound just as good live as they do on cd.They don't sound exactly like the album either, in case you are worried that this isn't worth buying.Stupid Dream is one of the only PT albums I haven't been able to get my hands on, but after hearing the tracks on here I am anxiously waiting for the rerelease.The sound quality here is great and the songs, which are great to begin with, are played beautifully.

I have one complaint with this album, and that is with the setlist.Over half the tracks (6 in total) are from Lightbulb Sun, and they are all played consecutively.Unfortuneately the one song from this performance not included on the album was "Tinto Brass" from Stupid Dream.The inclusion of that would have balanced this a bit better but I guess it was the last song so it was the one to get cut.That's really a minor gripe though.Probably should be 4.5 stars.

4-0 out of 5 stars 2001 European Tour Live In Poland
It's been a long wait since In Absentia until the upcoming new CD, so to help pass the time I snagged this up when I spotted a single copy at the music store.I'm glad I did, but I'm a PT convert so that didn't surprise me.

Steven Wilson and company are fantastic live, away from all of Wilson's studio wizardry.There's bands that can't play live and bands who can, and Porcupine Tree definitely can.The band's inventive arrangements make this interesting even if you have the studio albums.

Wilson's guitar solos take the tastefulness and bluesy tone of David Gilmour and mix it with a dose of acid-rock wah-wah, some strummed acoustic and a dash of metal.Richard Barbieri's atmospheric keyboards range from prog to electronica but stay mostly on the prog side.Colin Edwin's bass is outstanding as always, if a bit undermixed here.The now departed Chris Maitland was a monster on drums.

Porcupine Tree is in my opinion quite simply the best band working in the progressive rock field these days, and this live collection bears this out.Can't wait for the new one! ... Read more


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