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List #11


Elvish
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Mother Nature's Son (A Slight Return) :

Troubadour: The Definitive Collection 1964-1976 - Donovan

I respect Donovan as an uncommonly creative artist. You can tell that he likes to play with music. Nearly all of these songs have unconventional touches and pleasantly peculiar lyrics. Consistently bolstered by top-notch colleagues, Donovan travels between whispered enchantments and perverse wisecracks.

They somehow missed a couple of favorites (Sunny Goodge Street, Young Girl Blues). But if you like Donovan at all, or you want to find out if you like Donovan at all, the 44 tracks on this 2 CD collection will give you a heap, cheap.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here's my review for Queen II, by Queen. A very underrated album, I'd say. I wrote this in a reviews section on another site, so that's why it's so long.

Queen II is probably Queen?s darkest album. It was Queen?s 2nd album, and the 1st album of Queen?s prime, which lasted from Queen II in 1974 to The Game in 1980. Queen II features everything we love about Queen. Heavy guitars, classical guitar, and overdubbed guitar solos from Brian May, incredible vocals from Freddie Mercury, and a firm rhythm section from John Deacon and Roger Taylor. It is one of Queen?s most heavy metal focused albums. This album further defined Queen?s musical identity, which they kept all through the 70?s (in the eighties, Queen started to blend in with other pop acts). The musical identity referred to being Queen?s own unique brand of over the top glam-metal. This album is Queen at its finest. There is no filler, only classic Queen.

The album begins with the sounds of Roger Taylor?s bass drum beating silently, as the sounds of Brian May?s guitar comes in. This features Brian May doing what he does best on guitar, playing with his fantastic and unique tone, enhanced by massive guitar overdubbing. This is the song ?Procession.? It is only a little over a minute, yet it serves its point. It creates the mood of majesty entering somewhere; in this case, it is Queen entering the album. It is a majestic and perfect introduction the album.

?Procession? flows right into ?Father to Son,? a song that defines Queen. In the beginning, it sounds grandiose, but not overblown. About 2 minutes into the song, Brian May unleashes some of the heaviest, mightiest guitar roar ever heard in rock. Nobody can even mimic the heaviness of his guitar. Guitarists can turn up the distortion forever, and they will never reach the level of heaviness Brian May has in the song. It?s not a grinding heaviness, as many heavy metal songs have, it?s a heaviness that sounds like a growl, or a lions roar. At about the 4 minute mark, the guitar blends into the rest of the band. The guitar returns to do a fantastic solo during the repetition of the chorus. This is one of Queen?s greatest songs. After the end, the listener is in awe of how epic the song is.

The next song is ?White Queen (As It Began).? The beginning of the song has a medieval folk feeling to it. But then, the song turns from folk to a gloomy ballad. But Queen isn?t willing to keep this song quiet. In the chorus, while it retains its gloom, it gains heaviness. Once again, the song becomes a ballad, and after the verse, there is a fantastic acoustic guitar solo from Brian May. The acoustic guitar is buzzing like a medieval string instrument. The heaviness comes back in half-way through the solo, and Brian May does one of his famous massively overdubbed guitar solos. The song ends on a sad note, after the solo.

After the sad ending of ?White Queen,? it is a shock when the jolly folksy guitar melody of ?Some Day One Day? comes in. The intro is beautiful, a folk melody, with Brian May?s uniquely toned guitar playing over the melody. The mood remains peaceful and cheerful throughout the rest of the song. It has a beautiful guitar solo, with the notes sounding flowing and floating. This pop-flavored song is truly timeless. It sounds as if it could have been recorded in any decade. The song ends with another swaying guitar solo, as it fades out.

The next song, ?The Loser in the End? begins surprisingly with a loud drum blast. Yet another surprise is when the song acquires a southern rock feel to it. The biggest surprise, however, is when Freddie Mercury gets into the southern rock spirit, and sings a southern rock snarl in the chorus. This song is everything great about Queen, applied to a different genre. This is not a typical Queen song at all, but it is still a great song.

The next song, ?Ogre Battle? is one of Queen?s greatest songs. It begins with a low rumble, and it is shocking to the listener when Freddie Mercury?s high pitched scream enters the song, and some fierce sort of thumping alters the background. The scream really is quite terrifying, but is the perfect way to begin this incredibly fierce song. The beginning has an awesome riff from Brian May, and incredibly ferocious drumming from Roger Taylor. After a few short screams from Freddie, the song keeps it?s heaviness as it becomes a little less intense, musically, and begins a pop-infused singing melody. The chorus sounds a little darker. After 2 verses and 2 choruses, the brutal intro riff enters again, with the same intense drumming. This song is the perfect way to start the second half of the album, much darker than the first. It ends with the beginning riff. This really is a breathtaking song.

The next song, ?Fairy Feller's Master-Stroke? begins with harpsichord. It is infused with classical guitar and a little mariachi. This song features amazing vocals from Freddie Mercury. ?Fairy Feller?s Master-Stroke? achieves intensity without the use of heaviness, which is a difficult thing that Queen does marvelously on many songs, including this one.

?Nevermore? begins, blending into the song before it. It is a short song, featuring mostly Freddie Mercury, backing vocals, and the piano. A vocal highlight of the album, the song is moving, and beautiful. It?s a shame to hear it end so soon.

The mood quickly changes with the next song, the evil sounding ?The March of the Black Queen.? The mood changes from that of background music to an evil leader?s reign to a song that is sad and mystical. These two moods interchange throughout the song. At about the 1:10 mark in the song, Freddie has some terrific overdubbed vocal parts. It is aptly titled, as much of it sounds like the march of a wicked leader. At around 2:10 minutes, Brian May begins a great wah-wah solo, which is a rare pedal for Brian to use, yet he does it fantastically. The 2 moods mentioned earlier repeat in the song, until about 5:30 minutes, when it becomes content sounding, and has a peaceful section which sounds similar to the ending of ?Bohemian Rhapsody.? Right when you think the song is going to end, lively pianos, and in a few seconds, the rest of the instruments and backing vocals enter the song, to make it sound joyful and grandiose.

The next song, ?Funny How Love Is? seems to be the perfect song to have after the last song. It is a song that has a mood which reminds the listener of a movie set in medieval times, maybe a part of the movie where the hero is returning to his home. The maracas in the background add a nice effect to the song.

The last song on the album, ?The Seven Seas of Rhye? starts out with an upbeat piano part, and some majestic guitar work from Brian May. It is a song which defines the lighter side of Queen; upbeat and lively, yet still hard rocking. At about the 1 minute mark, the backing vocals come in, with some of the best backing vocals featured in the album. This song reminds the listener of the ending to the movie mentioned in the last paragraph. This would be played in the part of the movie where the hero has returned home, and there is a big celebration going on for the hero. The mood created in this song is fantastic, and it is without a doubt the perfect way to end a perfect album.

This album shows what is so great about Queen, even though it shows what the critics don?t like about Queen. Many snobby rock critics will always hate Queen, and denounce them as too extravagant, too pompous, too over the top, too self-important. In response to the critics, of course Queen is all of these things. Yes, they are extravagant, pompous, over the top, and self-important. That is what?s great about Queen. Queen represents the over-indulgency of glam-rock that no other band did quite as well as Queen. And with its level of extravagance and excessiveness, there is always enough musical enjoyment left to enjoy every time you listen to this album. And as for the self-importance that the critics denounce, all that shows is 2 things. One, Queen knows they make great music. Two, critics are biased against any band who thinks they are better than the critics. The critics are merely intimated by the greatness of Queen. Don?t be intimidated by Queen?s awesomeness. Don?t listen to the critics. Listen to the music. Listen to Queen II.

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Foo Fighters- The Colour and the Shape

The Colour and the Shape is one of my fave albums and the Foos are one of my fave groups, so I'm just gonna do a track by track dealy on this one.

Doll- this is the opener, it's kind of short and slow and laid back, but you can sing along to it, and it's just an excellent way to start the album, and at the very end it picks up a little bit which is the perfect intro to...

Monkey Wrench- This song rocks hard, that's the only way to put it, Dave just wails out this constant rythmn part and the amazing Pat Smear :bow: delivers some awesome licks, and Grohl does almost all the drumming on this album, so there is some major agression in the percussion, Nirvana style. Then the ending of the song is great where Grohl just screams out the last lines, it's just a release of energy.

Hey, Johnny Park!- I freakin' LOVE this song, the riff in it is kinda simple (and Switchfoot ripped it off) but it's so expressive. Grohl sings with a heartfelt feeling of regret in this whole album, but it especially comes out on this song.

My Poor Brain- This song is cool 'cuz it goes from a really melancholy verse, to just this screamed out chorus, totally Pixies style, it's a fun song.

Wind Up- Just a straight out rocker, probably my least faveorite song on the album

Up In Arms- This one is neat 'cuz it starts out really slow, and then it repeats except it's about 30 times faster the second time thru, and Pat Smear delivers a fairly awesome solo

My Hero- Almost everyone has heard this song, and it is awesome, 'nuff said

See You- The jazzy feel to this one is reminiscent of Nirvana's 'Lithium' which is hardly a bad thing.

Enough Space- This is another song that doesn't seem to really fit in with the album, but it's kind of fun to just jam out to

February Stars- This song is so beautiful and haunting, and if you don't like it then you have no soul

Everlong- Here's a Letterman quote "This is my faveorite band playing my faveorite song" and that quote is talking about this song right here, and I bet that there are a lot of people out there that would agree with Letterman on that one. This song could be the finest thing that the Foo Fighters have ever done, and Grohl wrote this song entirely on his own.

Walking After You- This song is so soft and gentle, and it just follows Everlong perfectly

New Way Home- Even though the album has a lot of sadness in it, this song just kind of sais "Yeah, we're a little sad, but you know what that's okay, let's kick some ass"

that feeling is just represented over and over with the repeated line "I'm not scared"

This album is amazing, and it would be a shame if it didn't get some S-facts recognition.

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Mother Nature's Son (A Slight Return) :

Troubadour: The Definitive Collection 1964-1976 - Donovan

I respect Donovan as an uncommonly creative artist. You can tell that he likes to play with music. Nearly all of these songs have unconventional touches and pleasantly peculiar lyrics. Consistently bolstered by top-notch colleagues, Donovan travels between whispered enchantments and perverse wisecracks.

They somehow missed a couple of favorites (Sunny Goodge Street, Young Girl Blues). But if you like Donovan at all, or you want to find out if you like Donovan at all, the 44 tracks on this 2 CD collection will give you a heap, cheap.

Bazooka, I notice that you always seem to have some of the best reviews in this forum. You are able to fit a lot of information into a short paragraph, something, as you may be able to tell, I can't do. Kudos!

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Jack Johnson - In between dreams

7048032.jpg

This album is absolutely superb! Laid back, funky, tap your feet, rhythmic, bluesy classic tunes. From 'Sitting, waiting, wishing' to 'banana pancakes', Jack's voice is mellow and his lyrics are thoughtful and tell a story of something about his life and experiences.

His voice is somewhat like a jazzier, more optimistic David Gray, his sound like a smooth ride on the perfect wave with mellow surfer tunes.

:guitar:

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How about REM's 'In Time'? Their greatest Hits Collection?

Tracklist:

1. Man On The Moon

2. The Great Beyond

3. Bad Day

4. What's The Frequency, Kenneth?

5. All The Way To Reno

6. Losing My Religion

7. E-Bow The Letter

8. Orange Crush

9. Imitation Of Life

10. Daysleeper

11. Animal

12. The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite

13. Stand

14. Electrolite

15. All The Right Friends

16. Everybody Hurts

17. At My Most Beautiful

18. Nightswimming

A review off Amazon:

How do you condense 15 years of music down to 76 minutes? In the case of this survey of the second phase of R.E.M.'s career, the answer is: Exceptionally well. The dangling carrot for diehards is two new songs; the rapid fire "Bad Day" hurtles along like the kissing cousin of "It's the End of the World as We Know It," while "Animal" is anchored by a majestic drone reminiscent of the Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows." In a surprising, but gratifying move, the rest of the program shortchanges the band's breakthrough, Out of Time (no "Shiny Happy People"), to better accommodate movie soundtrack contributions, and spotlight gems from the less commercial, post-Bill Berry albums Reveal and Up; with its baroque piano and multi-tracked vocal harmonies, the Beach Boys homage "At My Most Beautiful" is particularly gorgeous, while the burbling keyboards and slightly dazed singing of "All the Way to Reno" will appeal to Flaming Lips fans. --Kurt B. Reighley

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Jack Johnson - In between dreams

7048032.jpg

This album is absolutely superb! Laid back, funky, tap your feet, rhythmic, bluesy classic tunes. From 'Sitting, waiting, wishing' to 'banana pancakes', Jack's voice is mellow and his lyrics are thoughtful and tell a story of something about his life and experiences.

His voice is somewhat like a jazzier, more optimistic David Gray, his sound like a smooth ride on the perfect wave with mellow surfer tunes.

:guitar:

I second this nomination. I just got this CD....great choice, earth-angel!!! :coolio:

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I put a strong second on the R.E.M. nomination, I'm a huge fan, and that collection definately is a good representation of their work(though I would swap out 'Stand' for 'Half A World Away' from out of time) I was so pumped to see that E-bow the Letter was on it when I picked that disc up, it's such a great song and New Adventures In Hi-Fi is so underrated.

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I hope it's not too late to nominate... I'd like to nominate Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers "Americano!" Roger Clyne is the most unbelievable lyricist ~ and most down-to-earth performer ~ I've ever met. Please see www.azpeacemakers.com. Some reviews below:

If you're sick of rage rock, tired of the melody-devoid primal screaming of bands such as Slipknot, Staind, Tool and Papa Roach (we can't all be Rage Against the Machine), let me suggest Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers. Here's what allmusicguide.com (the second-best Web site out there) says about his latest album, ¡Americano! : "¡Americano! is one fine album; it should be played at earsplitting volume in pool halls, bowling alleys and backyard bashes and on college radio stations. It should blare from the CD players of fast cars roaring down empty highways under the stars and just before dawn. Indeed, it should be savored and celebrated by those swaggering street denizens known as the rock & roll faithful as proof that the good stuff never disappears."

But don't listen to me. Or them. Listen to Roger. Try the tracks Counterclockwise and Switchblade . Then go ahead, raise your goblet of rock." -- John Walters

"¡Americano!" Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers

From the title track to the gorgeous "Your Name on a Grain of Rice" to the gut-wrenching "Switchblade," no other Arizona songwriter captures the Sonoran Southwest like Roger Clyne, and he and his band?s latest CD of classic, sweat-drenched American rock ?n? roll is the best work of his career. Here is one vote for Clyne to supplant Dolan Ellis as the state?s official balladeer. -- Chris Hansen Orf

"...rock 'n' roll is still out there...Americano! is proof that the crazy, reckless, restless, swaggering soul of American rock is still burning a hole in the night sky...guitars blaze, quake and quiver, drums slip, thud

and thunder with killer melodies and hooks and the occasional reggae or mariachi rhythm laced through the middle to keep it all honest and interesting" -- Thom Jurek

:rockon: :rockon: :rockon: :coolio: :happybanana:

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Here's list #11:

Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975 - The Eagles

In Time: The Best of R.E.M. 1988-2003

In Between Dreams - Jack Johnson

Troubadour - Donovan

The Colour and the Shape - The Foo Fighters

Thanks to everyone who participated! ::

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Peachy, greatest hits are the majority of what's been suggested the past couple of rounds. And there haven't been too many more than 5 nominations, either. Please (pretty please!) suggest a period album - or three of them! ::

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