Album Reviews: Dec 2001


Suede – Lost In TV (Nude Recordings)  DVD
This is one of the most comprehensive music DVDs I have ever seen. I hadn’t realised they were still together. Just a brief scan through the contents herein will remind anyone who had forgotten just what quality songwriters the band truly were….and still are, judging by the track played when you choose “Suede Worldwide 2001” on the options menu.
This possesses everything, from informative documentation, through interesting insights into the band’s recording technique, to what many fans may be doing while the queen’s speech is on this year – singing karaoke….with or without the accompaniment of Brett.
I cannot find a bad word to say about this DVD, being so well packaged and being so ladled with extras that it comes across to such an extent that you feel that this is one band who DO actually appreciate and care about their fans.  9/10  Nick James and Tone E

Various Artists – Urban Drum ‘n’ Bass (State Of The Art Recordings)
N:         For those lazy hazy days in someone’s smoke filled front room, a collection of eleven easy going drum ‘n’ bass cuts.
T:         Oh my God it’s Central Jobfinder again!!  Maybe there’s something more to this though, as it has actually kept my attention pretty well so far, without my having to resort to reading about a newly created position for a Stockroom Janitor. I think it’s ALL drum ‘n’ bass that makes me think of Jobfinder though. Perhaps that programme was actually a religious cult, and the sect that initiated it has trapped me under their evil spell, leaving me forevermore with an indelible imprint of ITV text pages on my brain.  Just a minute…..I just thought….what’s the first thing I do when I get up and have breakfast in the morning? Yep, you got it – I read the teletext pages. Aaagh. Help. Or at least take me to your leader.
N:         In fairness, I don’t feel this is able to sustain its momentum throughout the entire album. Maybe not the best compiled album on the market.
T:         It is quite gritty and dark in places though, which is a plus. In fact, some of the tracks are seriously munted!
N:         Perhaps a case of premature ejaculation, as it does shoot its load a tad early.   6/10


Missed Reviews:
Sting – All This Time (A&M)
Although Mr.Sumner is no longer a spring chicken, his experience and vigour have enabled him to reinterpret tunes picked from across his entire back catalogue with an easy laid back groove. Simply brilliant.
Whether or not you were ever a fan of Sting or the Police, you can pretty much guarantee that he’s at least recorded ONE song or starred in ONE film that you thought was an absolute gem. 9/10


Simple Minds – The Best Of (Virgin)
Simply the best “best of” in a long time, and one that encapsulates those simple boys in the most comprehensive manner. Memories of those magical times spent with your first girlfriend, chants in the playground, and mistakes made at the barbers. Not to mention the jealousy you felt when you found out Jim Kerr had been getting off with Patsy Kensit.  8/10


Human League – Secrets (Papillon Records)
I thought they had tied up business a long time ago, but it’s nice to suddenly realise your first “serious band” are once again making music. In my opinion, the best album since “Dare”, and had this been the follow up, it’s certain that the group would still be around today. Hold on….they are!!!
An album that travels from the early days of “Reproduction” touching on times with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and certainly those of a “Romantic” nature. Fantastic.   8/10


Starsailor – Love Is Here (Chrysalis)
You will find a lot of conflicting views in the press about Starsailor, although you generally find people either love them or hate them. Not ones to sit on the fence, we at Atomic Duster take the side of the lovers rather than the loathers. Superb songwriting. Shades of Robert Plant here and there, and certainly McCulloch-esque for much of the album. But, wonderful structuring, and certainly loads better than their nearest rivals Travis. If this album doesn’t send at least one shiver down your spine, I will assume you have been shrinkwrapped.  9/10


Ian Brown – Music Of The Spheres (Polydor)
Gobsmacked is the operative word here. Ian Brown had always been respected for his solo stuff before, and in particular of course for the classic Madchester band, musical icons The Stone Roses. Well would you believe it? He goes even further herein, as hinted at by the magical taster single “F.E.A.R”. The rest of the album doesn’t disappoint. Any reviewers who said this is his best work since those late 80’s/ early 90’s legends have hit the nail right on the head.
The further Ian travels down his solo path, the more evident it becomes that his words mean just as much as his musical composition. We are now allowed the luxury of looking back at the Stone Roses in a whole new light – not just a trend, but seriously genius.  9/10


Super Furry Animals – Rings Around The World
Another great release from the band who hold the record for “biggest selling Welsh language album”! Not that they will have had much to compete with I’m sure. The band even managed to rope Paul McCartney in on this one to play….to play……..well…to…um….chew celery and carrot. Oddly enough it works like a treat, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the track (“Receptacle For The Respectable”) released in the future. Of course you all know about the superb singles “Juxtaposed With You” and “Rings Around The World”, and you’ll find a whole host of beauties on here. Standout track for me is “Run Christian Run”, with its hauntingly lifting harmonies. I must apologise for giving so many high scores out this month, but there have been so many quality releases of late that it’s difficult not to. And Christmas IS just around the corner!!  9/10

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