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Come Away with Me
Average Customer Review: 4.19 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (26 February, 2002)
list price: $18.98 -- our price: $13.49
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Editorial Review

It is not just the timbre of Norah Jones's voice that is mature beyond her 22 years. Her assured phrasing and precise time are more often found in older singers as well. She is instantly recognizable, blending intimations of Billie Holiday and Nina Simone without sounding like anyone but herself. Anyway you slice it, she is a singer to be reckoned with. Her readings of the Hank Williams classic, "Cold Cold Heart" and Hoagy Carmichael's "The Nearness of You" alone are worth the price of the CD. Jones's own material, while not bad, pales a bit next to masterpieces such as these. They might have fared better had she and producer Arif Mardin opted for some livelier arrangements, taking better advantage of brilliant sidemen such as Bill Frisell, Kevin Breit, and Brian Blade; or if the tunes had simply been given less laconic performances. Jones has all the tools; what will come with experience, and some careful listening to artists like J.J. Cale and Shirley Horn, is the knack of remaining low-key without being sleepy--sometimes less is not, in fact, more. --Michael Ross ... Read more

Reviews (1262)

4-0 out of 5 stars Something Special
After hearing "Don't Know Why" on the radio many times, and finding it creeping comfortably under my skin, when a co-worker loaned me a copy of Jones' CD, I was anxious to give it a listen. I was not disappointed, but found it a promise fulfilled. In time when too much music consists of wailing vocals backed by a drum machine and wrapped in studio production, Jone's soft voice, minimalist setting and delicate phrasing are a refreshing change of pace. The only reason I gave it four stars is because while there are moments when I found myself wishing that a few more risks were taken here and there with settings and material choice. The original material is good, but doesn't quite stand up to the covers here which show what incredible things Jones can do with a truly great song. As one reviewer said, what shines here is not just talent but potential. If Jones does some close listening to artists like Billie Holiday, Shirley Horne and Nina Simone, and manages to distill what makes each of them great without taking the easier route of mere imitation, she will be an artist to watch for some time to come. In the meantime, her first offering shows great talent and tremendous promise.

5-0 out of 5 stars Soothing for a relaxed evening
Formula for a relaxing evening: a comfy chair, a nice hot cup of chai or jasmine tea, some sort of snacks, a good comic book, and some Norah Jones playing on the stereo. Sit back and let the evening go.

The daughter that sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar ignored proves that she can make it on her own. The fourteen songs on her debut album Come Away With Me are a melodic fusion of jazz, blues, and folk (in that order) and easily at home on the CD changer along with Shawn Colvin, Sade, and other such artists.

Smoky, gentle, smooth, and warm--that's how I describe her voice. I find it hard to compare her voice to anyone else, so that shows how special she is. In a song punctuated by her piano, such as the title ballad, a mixture of slow jazz with tinges of country, her voice is the star. Whether accompanied by piano or acoustic guitar, she succeeds in not being overdominated by the instruments and comes full front, singing, wrapping the melodies of the instruments around her.

"Seven Years," a sweet number featuring Norah, an acoustic guitar, and a sitar-sounding National guitar, is my favorite song here. It's a tender portrait of a seven-year old girl, who's "Spinning, laughing, dancing to her favorite song/A little girl with nothing wrong/And she's all alone."

Second place goes to the title track, which is the perfect example of her eclectic mix. It's also a nice romantic song of going away with someone somewhere, whether it be a mountaintop or a field with knee-high yellow grass.

Other noteworthy songs: she gives a nice bluesy-jazz flavor to Hank Williams' "Cold Cold Heart." "Feelin' The Same Way" is the least slow song here, but that's because of the slightly quicker tempo of the drums. "Turn Me On" is another jazz-country ballad that I can't picture any country singers covering without messing it up with their shrill voices. "Painter Song" is classic cafe midnight jazz staple. Ditto for "One Flight Down," with its "Now you know" refrain. Her voice is at its most potent here.

Most of the songs clock in anywhere from two-and-a-half minutes to three-and-a-half minutes on average and are thus bite-sized nuggets of that warm you up inside.

This is one of those rare, one in a blue moon (or is that blue note) special albums that come once in a while and takes your breath away. Come Away With You? Any day, Norah. Just give me the word and I'll be ready. Let me fix some chai first.

1-0 out of 5 stars GET AWAY FROM ME
Cold, calculating, but ultimately callow Upper Middle Class pop jazz from an Ice Queen who sings with all the soul of a doorstop. If this is indeed Ravi Shankar's daughter, she inherited not one iota of her father's passion and artistry. Phony through and through. ... Read more

Asin: B00005YW4H
Subjects:  1. Pop    2. Rock   


Version 2.0
Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (12 May, 1998)
list price: $18.98 -- our price: $14.99
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Editorial Review

It's not that Garbage is doing anything particularly new. At times, singer Shirley Manson borrows Chrissie Hynde's phrasing, Patti Smith's rock beat poetry, and Brian Wilson's chorus from "Don't Worry Baby." But producer Butch Vig provides a modern sheen to Version 2.0 that makes it sound fresh and distinctly modern. Purists may blanch--the album is a hybrid of rock guitars, dance rhythms, and pop choruses--but songs such as "I Think I'm Paranoid" (a rip of Elastica) and "The Trick Is to Keep Breathing" (Depeche Mode, without the chill) sound great no matter what they're called. --Keith Moerer ... Read more

Reviews (504)

4-0 out of 5 stars its a good techno-pop-rock album
well what can i say.....garbage is a great and talented band,but after awhile the music kinda gets on your nerves....shirley has a nice voice....its a godd whisper type voice but its nice....but she tends to sing so slow...it makes me want to say "okay hurry up already" you dont have to be able to sing great to be a lead singer...as long as you have the ability to capture the listener...and this can sorta do that,,,,,,the choruses are cool...its just that she takes ten minutes to get there....like it takes her 6 seconds to say "i am a wolf,but..." but its done in a good way. tracks 1-12 temptation waits 1.is good...and a nice chorus with lots of beats

i think im paronoid 2.harder rock with a nice evil sweetness to it

when i grow up 3.good for 10 years olds,except i love the line "rip it up to shreds and let it go"

medication 4.pretty song with a gothic ring to it

special 5.nice for those who hate their ex lovers and feel like listening to "oooohhh ahahahaahhh"all day.

hammering in my head 6.too techno and way to long at the end....should of ended like a minute ago....its to strung out..have to turn it off at that long point.

push it 7.great song......more angry..yet pretty and it keeps me awake....good song....(first single)

the trick is to keep breathing 8.beautiful song with pretty lyrics

dumb 9.an okay song...a little less techno would be nice but thats garbage so i guess its one of the good tracks.

sleep together 10.a little x-rated....and it doesnt really move me in any way....in fact i dont listen to it at all."if we sleep together...would you like me better...if we cum together.....well go down forever"kinda cheap huh?

wicked ways 11.a rocka-billy track with a religion talk in it.......its a good song.

you look so fine 12.best song on the cd....powerful....the music and the vocals can make you cry and smile.

the best songs on the cd are trick is to keep breathing and

you look so fine theres my review.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another great Garbage CD
I was skeptical about this CD only because I thought Garbage's first (self-titled) CD was so excellent (Which I also highly recommend!), and I thought their second CD would be like so many other highly-anticipated sophomore albums... a disappointing flop. However, "Version 2.0" is even *better* than Garbage's debut album. Their songs are more refined and the lyrics are surprisingly original. Shirley Manson's voice sounds even *better* than before. I fell in love with this band when I saw them open for an Alanis concert quite some time ago, and I have been a loyal fan ever since. If you like techno/alternative music, you will love dancing along to Garbage's songs. The track for this CD includes "When I Grow Up", the song that is on the Big Daddy soundtrack, and two of their other popular songs, "Living Without You" and "Push It". However, the songs that aren't played regularly on the radio are just as good. Shirley Manson is a very talented and beautiful singer, and the band plays great music. You will not regret buying this CD, because if you liked Garbage's first CD, it is even better, and if you have never owned their CDs, buy them both for they will become a valuable part of your CD collection.

5-0 out of 5 stars Garbage does what no other 90's bands could do
Garbage's self-titled debut was a critically hailed triumph. It was a combination of sleek neo-feminism, gothic undertones, and alt-pop rhythms. Vocalist Shirley Manson could do it all -- she was Debbie Harry of Blondie, Dolores O'Riordan of the Cranberries, she was Chrissy Hynde of the Pretenders -- but she was still a leather-clad skanking flirt with a mean growl and a playful attitude. Her familiar yet simultaneously unique personality helped usher in the new era of alt-rock that dominated the late 90s. Despite Manson's in-your-face affectations, their first effort, while remarkable and refreshing, wasn't altogether groundbreaking. After nearly 3 years of intense recording and polishing, Garbage returned with a newer, glossier, and more catty version of their former selves.

Sidelining -- although not totally adbandoning -- their grittier roots was a shrewd choice in the 90s, when a long attention span was hard to find. Garbage is still in all of their glory here -- the insane guitar riffs and acidic lyrics are intact. Here, it's just done better. They take the guitar riffs and skewer them until they're nearly indistinguishable, they take Manson's growl and strecth it out to elastic proportions. Such intense experimentation is usually suicidal -- here, it's more like a steroid shot to an ailing genre. Perhaps the most effective revelation on 2.0 was the full-on implementation of technopop. It's everywhere here -- in between the beats of the punk chorus in "I Think I'm Paranoid," backing the ingeniously distorted guitars of "Push It." Garbage didn't only write the book on crossover alternative pop/rock, they have it memorized and, for all intents and purposes, copywritten.

Garbage is sugared up on romps like "When I Grow Up" and the double-entendre laden "Hammering In My Head" -- they're echoic and icily profound on "The Trick Is To Keep Breathing" and "You Look So Fine" -- they even manage to combine caustic wit and catty come-on with "Sleep Together." Manson and Co. know no limitations when it comes to musical stylings, and this sort of unpredictability is what rock was meant to sound like. ... Read more

Asin: B000006NZV


Average Customer Review: 4.74 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (25 April, 1994)
list price: $17.98 -- our price: $14.99
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  • Explicit Lyrics
Reviews (81)

5-0 out of 5 stars 311, 1993, still doin you right
Okay, I won't lie to you, I didn't listen to 311 until...eh, maybe 8 months ago. I've been a black metal and death metal fan for most of my early years. After that phase music essentially encompassed almost every aspect of my life. When all my friends rushed out to go buy "Evolver" the day it came out, I was confused. What was all this rush about? So I'm thinking, okay, go buy that one, let's see what they got...HOLY S*IT, they got it. Ok, this isn't a single-record deal here. Backtrack to a decade earlier, and this is "Music", 311's major-label debut (Ok, so maybe not real major-label but it wasn't independent). It took me a bit to get into it, but as I keep going through, I see that these are where their most solid melodies and beats come through.

Welcome was a rather interesting album-opener, I think that's what stopped me initially. But afterwards, Freak Out just explodes on and keeps moving with the now solid back and forth groove pattern. This is rap-rock's roots, and this is where all the other bands crowding radio and MTV are. All 311 does is groove, and that's all they need. No one else can touch this combination. Flip between Paradise and Unity and yes, that is still the same band. Although Music still isn't my favorite 311 album (Transistor got me good), I recognize it to be the foundation, and a damn good foundation at that. For these guys to be messin with the same musical revolution they started from high school until their mid 30s is amazing. No one can even claim to stand on the musical world as 311. So just chill out, stay clean (311-stylee) and nod your head to this...

5-0 out of 5 stars If you don't have someone to... (sing along please!)
This one is the bomb, baby, this is the album that hooked me like a fish and hung me out to dry. I first heard "Do You Right" (circa 1993) and that was it. I stole it from my girlfriend so I could hear it all the time.

"Music" is just that. From the reggae hook at the beginning of "Welcome" to the body-slam beats of "Freak Out", "Fat Chance" and "Feels so Good", this album is the all-time party record. I went to see these guys in early 94 at a tiny club in Santa Barbara with Sublime... the show burned my ears off.

Stop criticizing 311s newer albums. Just accept that all good bands want to evolve their sound, try new things, experiment. All bands get bored doing the SAME THING. Even Metallica got bored. Just get down on your knees and thank the Music gods that 311 made this album at all.

4-0 out of 5 stars "Music's" what I need to keep my sanity.
I have enjoyed all of "311's" albums, but I easily like "Music" the most, and that's saying something. Being their debut, this isn't as experimental as later albums, but the combo of rock-rap and funk on here is very solid. And as you will hear, from the start "311" had great and positive lyrics, delivered perfectly from S.A. and Nick Hexum. I also feel, this is the point that "311" became the new "Chili Peppers", for me anyway. They just had that energy. This album is also actually 12 tracks, the last one being one of the best. Overall, if you get anything other than their "Greatest Hits", make it "Music". ... Read more

Asin: B00005ABHV
Sales Rank: 23679


International Dance Marathon
Average Customer Review: 4.91 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (06 June, 2000)
list price: $14.99
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Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent CD
These guys are super and their CD is great from the first track to the last. Personal fave's are 'Noel' and 'Sailing On' in addition to the requisite 'Esta Vida' and 'Forever Young'. Seeing them in person is a treat.

5-0 out of 5 stars Genius, Pure Genius....
Grubb, Boyce, and McMann come back with another great album, this one being the best album ive heard in years. Anyone that enjoys pop music, rock music, classical, 80s, will love this CD. Their sound goes beyond anything Ive heard. Their lyrics are intelligent and mesmerizing, while their instruments are a great completion to their sound. This only leaves one question unanswered, why haven't these guys been signed yet??

5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome
Everyone interested should check out grasshoppertakeover.com and get a copy of 'Elephant Dreams'! This is the best CD I have ever heard. Just saw these guys at Ranch Bowl and it could not have been a better show. If you have the chance, check em out live... especially if they play with Lovetap, Anchondo or Pomeroy! ... Read more

Asin: B00004TVCT
Sales Rank: 330249

Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia
Average Customer Review: 4.45 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (01 August, 2000)
list price: $16.98 -- our price: $13.99
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Editorial Review

"I wear my influences like a f***ing badge," proclaims lead singer-songwriter Courtney Taylor regarding Thirteen Tales from Urban Bohemia. But while the Dandy Warhols liberally steal Rolling Stones riffs, Iggy Pop vocals, Britpop sonic surfing, and even Burt Bacharach horn sections, they give it back in spades, delivering one of the best rock albums of 2000: a masterpiece of sex, beauty, strife, and wry, raunchy-cool attitude. --Beth Massa ... Read more

Reviews (83)

4-0 out of 5 stars A classic, smart, cool album.
Kids...the Dandy Warhols are probably the most eclectic band playing today. In an American scene with either hip-hop, bubblegum teen pop, or rap-metal dominating, the Dandy Warhols are a breath of fresh air for those Americans who like British music more, anyways. ;-) But, the task at hand..."13 Tales from Urban Bohemia" is truly a classic rock album. It opens with one of the best songs ever written, "Godless", featuring a trumpet hook with solid acoustic riffs. Next, the Dandys take you on an 11-minute melodic, pulsating trip, with the tracks "Mohammed" and "Nietzsche". After a few solid but unremarkable tracks, they get going again with "Get Off", "Sleep", "Cool Scene", Bohemian Like You", "Shakin'", "Big Indian", and finally, "The Gospel". Really...those songs are worth mentioning because they are that good. The way the Dandys manipulate style, elegance and rock & roll into a cool, dirty, amazing record truly is art in its hippest form. "Get Off" is an acoustic rocker, followed by "Sleep", a dreamy, gentle number with harmonies galore. "Cool Scene", "Bohemian Like You" and "Shakin'" are basic pop tracks...although each is unique in its aggressiveness and lyricism. "Big Indian" is another catchy indiepop track, and "The Gospel" comes for to carry us home. A fitting ending to a great record. All in all, "13 Tales..." has its downsides, where songs might be a bit too long, but, it's better than everything else out there. If anything, buy it for "Godless", which has melodies so sharp it'll make you cry. I swear.

4-0 out of 5 stars 4 1/2 stars...loads of fun
The Dandy Warhols are one cheeky band. Amidst today's one-hit-wonder pop music scene, where buzzbin bands go from being the second coming to yesterday's news practically overnight (a fate that The Dandy Warhols narrowly escaped with their 1997 hit 'Not If You Were The Last Junkie On Earth'), the band decided to make "one last classic album" in the tradition of the great albums of the late sixties and early seventies, where the entire recording is remembered more than the one or two hit singles it may spawn. That's an audacious thing to do (after all, the music biz is all about pushing singles), but for real music fans, it's a godsend, and the resulting product, Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia, is one of the most enjoyable albums of the year, and definitely the most fun.

Guitarist/vocalist/producer Courtney Taylor-Taylor and his crew plundered the classic rock vaults to create a wildly eclectic album. Notable styles that were 'lifted' are Burt Bacharach ('Godless'), The Beatles ('Mohammed'), Led Zeppelin III ('Country Leaver'), The Byrds ('Cool Scene'), Iggy Pop and The Velvet Underground ('Shakin''), Gram Parsons ('The Gospel') and Buffalo Springfield ('Big Indian'). Some people have also noted the sly irony in the song 'Godless', which borrows the intro to George Harrison's 'My Sweet Lord'. The classic album sound is also mimicked to perfection, with a warm, bass-heavy sound, luscious guitar overdubs, beautiful vocal harmonies, and as a final kicker, cross-fades between songs to give 13 Tales a continuous feel.

Taylor-Taylor's chameleonlike voice is the real star here. One minute he's delivering the vocals in a whisper-like tone, the next he's evoking Lou Reed while doing an eighties-style rap, then he's sounding like Iggy Pop, then he's harmonizing like the White Album-era Beatles, and as a final coup de grace, he sings the country-style album closer 'The Gospel' in a voice that sounds amazingly close to Thom Yorke of Radiohead.

Every song on the album is loads of fun, especially 'Country Leaver', 'Solid', 'Horse Pills', 'Cool Scene', and 'Shakin'', but the real great song (and ironically, potential huge single) is the sardonic 'Bohemian Like You'. Not since Jarvis Cocker's legendary class-war diatribes 'Common People' and 'Sorted For E's & Wizz' has anyone so hilariously lampooned wannabe hipsters. Over a guitar riff blatantly stolen from The Rolling Stones' 'Brown Sugar', Taylor-Taylor sings, "so what do you do?/oh yeah I wait tables too/no I haven't heard your band/cause you guys are pretty new" before launching into a (yet again) Stones-like "woo-hoo!" chorus. Irresistable!

People will probably overemphasize Taylor-Taylor's social commentary, but that's just prevalent in one song. As for the rest of the songs on 13 Tales, there's a reason the lyrics weren't included with the cd; as Taylor-Taylor sings in 'Cool Scene', "I really don't care what I sing/and I really doubt you know what I mean." Hey, forget about finding witty bon mots in the songs, sit back, and have a blast listening to this fabulous album.

2-0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Find Second?
I just don't understand bands that have sensational released songs and the rest of their album's unreleased songs are nothing like the released ones either in quality, style or sound. A lot of songs on here seem to have had no effort put into them whatsoever when either writing or performing them.

Bohemian Like You is a sensational song, probably the best they've ever done. It is clever, catchy and one you can sing along to and would also be an excellent live song as well. You cannot say the same thing about any one of the other songs on this album. Some of these songs start of great but never seem to find second gear. You're listening, expecting something great to happen any moment but the song stays in the same first gear introduction format for its duration. Some of these songs even seem to be stuck in a loop repeating exactly the same thing for between three and five minutes. Even the songs which you are into at the start you get sick of halfway through them. The dreaded F word, Filler comes to mind.

The Dandy Warhols have had great success with Bohemian Like You from this album, We Used to be Friends from Welcome to the Monkey House and Not if You Were the Last Junkie on Earth from The Dandy Warhols Come Down. Why? Because they open their mouths in those songs and actually seem like they are interested in singing them. The rest of the songs on here are either mumbled, sung so softly you have to struggle to understand what is being said or are just plain terrible. ... Read more

Asin: B00004TA8K


Rock Steady
Average Customer Review: 3.48 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (11 December, 2001)
list price: $13.98 -- our price: $13.98
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Editorial Review

As much as No Doubt have protested that they are a singular unit and not "Gwen and her guys," Gwen Stefani's much-touted duets with rapper Eve and techno mogul Moby did nothing to juice the boys' spotlight, which had been steadily dimming since the release of 2000's Return of Saturn. But all that banter is silenced with Rock Steady, on which the music is definitely the star, unfettered by Gwen's cutesy-clouded feminism or dumped-by-the-boyfriend woes. Having mostly departed from their ska home base, No Doubt's well-navigated exploration of hip-hop beats, reggae, and the reunion of '80s keyboards and guitars finds the group picking up the pop-rock baton that Garbage dropped with an unsettling thud. Rock Steady's delegate of stalwart producers perfectly decorate the disc with their respective expertise; Ric Ocasek (new wave), Prince (R&B), Nellee Hooper (trip-hop), Sly & Robbie (dub), and William Orbit (trance) offer some staying power to music that's always been on the edge of disposable. Despite their disparate styles, the songs complement each other like stars and stripes. This is No Doubt's best album to date, and as they continue to expand their influences, the party only gets bigger. --Beth Massa ... Read more

Reviews (624)

5-0 out of 5 stars Rock Steady: A Full CD Review
"A real love survives, a Rock Steady vibe. A real love survives, a Rock Steady vibe," proclaims Gwen Stefani of No Doubt on their fifth album "Rock Steady" released on December 11th of 2001. "Rock Steady" is a superb album with original songs of different genres, excellent lyrics, up-tempo beats, and some fantastic surprises. This Orange County, California group has been together for a surprising fifteen years, comprising of Gwen Stefani (vocals), Tony Kanal (bass guitar and keyboards), Tom Dumont (guitar and keyboards), and Adrian Young (drums). The vibe on "Rock Steady" is fun! It's a party album with upbeat and sonically satisfying songs filled with pop influenced dancehall/reggae, rock, and 80's electronica. The album's great musical variety has a wide appeal made for bringing in many new people to the ever growing list of No Doubt fans. The first major song on "Rock Steady" after the intro is "Hella Good" a dance song with a driving beat produced by Nellee Hooper (of late U2 and Bjork fame). It may possibly be the album's standout track with a funky beat that is slightly reminiscent of the peak-era Blondie sound and maybe even a 50's skating rink dance party on steroids. In "Hey Baby," the first single of "Rock Steady," the first thing that the listener hears is the extremely infectious chorus "Hey Baby, Hey Baby, Hey!" This flirty track is Stefani's latest proclamation of "girl power" and includes a rap portion by Bounty Killer. Produced by Sly and Robbie, this song would most likely be fitted in the pop/Jamaican/reggae/dance genre. "Hey Baby" is one of my favorite songs on the record; it seems almost perfect. "Making Out" is once again, one of the best off the album and my personal favorite. This song is about the loneliness and anticipation of a long-distance relationship. This funky almost Disco song was produced by William Orbit who worked with Madonna. You can never get tired of this song and you can't help but sing along with Gwen. "Underneath It All" is a very powerful reggae influenced song with an almost eerie description of a bad relationship flowing in between Stefani's sweet shining vocals. Overall, this slow-tempo number is just beautiful and is a pleasure to hear anytime. A different song in "Rock Steady" is "Detective" produced by Nellee Hooper. This song was a tremendous risk and variation of the style of the group but is assured to be a definite hit song. "Don't Let Me Down" is track number seven and is a No Doubt classic. It was produced by Ric Ocasek, borrowing some of his patented new wave style, complete with an 80's-like synth hook, reminding him of his days as frontman of the Cars. This song will always leave you craving for more and is another favorite of mine. Maybe this song will be a future single? It would be a bad decision if the band chose not to release this hit song, because it has already seen some radio play. Another Jamaican/reggae influenced song on the album is the playful "Start the Fire" produced by Steely and Clevie. No Doubt's outstanding talent and diversification is brought to an exclamation in this track, complete with authentic Jamaican drums. With a name like "Running" a person would be sure of a fast paced, up-tempo song, but that description is almost the opposite of this light and dreamy song. Produced by Nellee Hooper, this romantic and warm number is a wonderful example of a true slow song with fantastically fitting vocals and lyrics. "In My Head" is another fun song about the worry of a long-distance relationship. It includes several surprises and beautifully layered harmonization by Stefani. The vocals in this song are amazing and fit in perfectly with the strong emotions found in it. The next song "Platinum Blonde Life" is the true definition of rock. Stefani's backing vocals for herself are a delight. This song is truly rocking steady. Track twelve "Waiting Room" is the only song on the whole album that hasn't taken a hold on me like the others. It was produced by The Artist (Prince) and includes back-up vocals by him. It was originally planned to be part of "Return of Saturn" but it didn't seem to fit in with the other songs. The chorus reminds me of a bad Spice Girls song. The title track "Rock Steady" has an exceptional beat that goes pleasantly well with Stefani's brilliant vocals. Nellee Hooper was the producer of this romantic and passionate number. It complements "Running" nicely and is a skillfully written and produced song to conclude a truly spectacular and entertaining album. This is an Enhanced CD containing both regular audio tracks and multimedia computer files including the music video for "Hey Baby," a seven minute video of the making of "Rock Steady," and a screen saver. It is a pleasant surprise. All of the songs were very well written and produced; much hard work and time had been put into the making of this record and that is quite a skill in a short twenty month period. It is an accomplishment for any band to mix in so many genres and styles into one album without it sounding chaotic. Making all the songs on such a record spectacular in every sense (as in "Rock Steady") is a jaw-dropping feat. "Rock Steady" had already sold 254,787 copies after its first week of release. If I was to rate this album, I would give it 9½ out of 10. I took off ½ a point because of "Waiting Room" and it not being up to the No Doubt standard that they are known for. Otherwise, the whole album is full with such high quality, fun songs and I think this is one of the top albums of 2001; a definite must have. There's no doubt that the band is in for promising years of future success and precious time in the spotlight.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Real Love Survives...A Rock Steady Vibe
Exposed navels, bleached blondes, three guys and a cheeky charismatic lead singer are usually the images that come to mind when describing the Southern California quartet No Doubt. Now with that, add a seasoning of Caribbean style rhythms and catchy hooks to get the band's latest offering, Rock Steady. The foursome's fifth studio longplayer is a collection of delectable island-splashed pop with dance club appeal.

Always the explorationists, the group takes a new creative step in their sound and music. Released only a year after their 2000 smash Return To Saturn, the boys and girl of No Doubt fall into no particular formulaic pattern. Rather than boring their listeners by treading the same musical ground of past hit albums, the band expands and further defines its own unique brand of So Cal ska.

Innovating instead of reduplicating, Rock Steady takes chances and experiments with new soundscapes. The album takes its cue from dancehall-reggae, hip hop and new wave, never juxtaposing but intermixing - exploring their influences in the genres like never before.

Songs indicative of this newfound exploration include the lead single, "Hey Baby," the dance numbers "Hella Good" and "Start The Fire" and the retro-pop of "Underneath It All," which harks back to the second wave ska of The Specials.
Working with a mix of producers ranging from hip-hop virtuosos the Neptunes (Mystikal, Kelis), Nelle Hooper (U2, Björk), reggae duo Sly & Robbie and former Cars frontman Ric Ocasek, who provides the songs "Making Out" and "In My Head," the album is musically eclectic while managing to stay conceptually cohesive.

Vocally, it's still Gwen's show, but the album offers one noteworthy guest appearance. The artist once again known as Prince, a long time No Doubt collaborator who offered his services for the group's last LP and various B-sides, reappears with "Waiting Room," a tribal, funk-laced duet. On a majority of the songs, Stefani's vocals are strong and assured accentuating nicely with her band's sound.

Lyrically, the songwriting is less confessional and regret-oriented due in large part to No Doubt's decision to include new writers. You won't find a syrupy ballad in the vein of "Don't Speak" or "Simple Kind Of Life" here; the vibe of Rock Steady is contextually mid-tempo with emphasis on bass speaker approval - dealing with everything from raucous fans to the typical Stefani templates of longing love and bedazzlement. All night parties and good times seem to be the principal theme of the group's dancehall tinged melodies and upbeat subject matter.

Rock Steady, after all, is a celebration of No Doubt's influences and appreciations combined with a forward-thinking inimitability. Though inventive, their native So Cal punk origins are still visible. While other members of the ska-punk community opt for re-creation, No Doubt continually pushes the supposed limitations of the genre and gerrymanders its boundaries.

1-0 out of 5 stars Hella What?
No Doubt, what have you done to your good name? Being an avid fan of this band, I went out and bought this CD right when it came out. I had only heard one song-"Hey Baby", which I thought was decent at the time, but I figured that since this was No Doubt, the CD was guaranteed to be great. I thought wrong. <br /> <br /> "Hey Baby" quickly lost its appeal after I listened to the song a few times. This song has virtually no substance. What does it mean? Absolutely nothing. "Hella Good" had a decent beat, but that's all. The annoying reggae beat of "Underneath It All" turned me off the first time I heard it. In fact, the only song I can stand to listen to anymore is "Making Out&amp", and I'm not even sure why I bother. What really bothered me was the change in Gwen's voice. Some fans say that she has matured as a singer, but her characteristic voice is what got me listening in the first place. Now I simply get bored hearing her. <br /> <br /> Overall, this album really confused me. What is No Doubt aiming for? Hip Hop? Dance? Reggae? 80's synth pop? Being a big fan of the New Wave/Synth pop era, I must say that this is a poor attempt at recreating that music, and in fact, sounds more synthesized than any 80's music I've ever heard.<br /> <br /> Save your money for Tragic Kingdom or Return of Saturn. ... Read more

Asin: B00005QDW1


The Joshua Tree
Average Customer Review: 4.64 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (15 June, 1990)
list price: $13.98 -- our price: $11.99
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Editorial Review

Having nearly exhausted their capacity for pop-song politics on War and The Unforgettable Fire, U2 turned toward themes of personal identity and complex relationships on The Joshua Tree. Not that the group was willing to come down off the barricades entirely: "Mothers of the Disappeared" and "Bullet the Blue Sky" turned a jaundiced eye toward Central America and the United States' role there. But the predominant mood here is one of self-discovery and the hunger for something more on tracks like the pulsating "Where the Streets Have No Name" and the gospel-ish "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For." The album's masterstroke, however, is "With or Without You," a nasty love song dressed up as an ode of devotion and care. It ranks with the Police's "Every Breath You Take" as the most misread smash hit of the '80s. --Daniel Durchholz ... Read more

Reviews (323)

5-0 out of 5 stars Tremendous, epic rock album.
For me, The Joshua Tree is the best album of the 1980's. It had a notably long recording process, and saw the group travel to the Heartland of America for inspiration and for the memorable B&W cover art. The inspiration they found was in the direction of spirited, uplifting and sometimes heartbreaking sentiments delivered with fervour. Every song on the 11-track album is memorable. I'll start with my all-time favourite U2 song: Where The Streets Have No Name. I love this song dearly - it is about casting off one's shackles to find a true freedom of the spirit. I believe this theme is extended to the second single I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For, which is about the search for spiritual meaning and an affirmation of faith despite a questioning soul. Songwriting does not get any better than these two tunes. With Or Without You is a brooding song that starts slowly , then winds into a majestic chorus before fading to a wonderful instrumental coda. Again, it evokes a strong passion clearly stated with no filters. U2 never made music this direct again, spinning off into irony and camp during their glittery 1990's Lemon sojourn, but these 3 all-time classics will never be forgotten. One Tree Hill is a passionate song for a NZ friend of the band's who was lost in an auto accident. Running To Stand Still is sort of exploring similar territory to 1984's Bad , but has a different feel, while the bleak Exit is an undiluted cry from someone at the end of a very dark tunnel of despair. The gentle refrain of Mothers Of The Disappeared is also about the painful emotions of the bereaved, but offers solace in the face of tyranny. In God's Country is a more straightforward tune that may have referred to the USA itself, where many patriots believe themselves divinely blessed. And why not?!!! U2 found the wellsprings of the rock and soul traditions in God's Country on their 1987 concert tour, and their American experiences are documented of course in the Rattle And Hum movie . This title comes from the incendiary track Bullet The Blue Sky, which is about the fear of the military and economic might of the USA in certain Central American regions. This became a dramatic concert favourite thereafter. Red Hill Mining Town is another track with a memorable, soaring vocal performance by Bono. The lightest touch on the album is in the tune Trip Through Your Wires. All in all, a richly emotional album with great music and inspiring lyrics. I have seen it written that the sound quality isn't the best. Not being an audiophile, I wouldn't know, but I really don't believe that matters much. All that matters is the music and the message. This is a 5-star masterpiece. Highly Recommended!

5-0 out of 5 stars One for a desert island!
Being a U2 fan for many years, I thought the best U2 album was 'Achtung Baby' and didn't think any album by them could come close to it.

Well that all changed last week when I finally got around to buying 'Joshua Tree'. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it wasn't just an album to parade U2's probably three most famous songs. Talking of these three famous songs, if someone can name me an album which has a better trio of opening tracks than 'Where the Streets..', 'Still Haven't Found..' and 'With or Without You', I will truely be amazed. But as I was saying. This album isn't just about those three true great musical anthems. The first other song on the album that really struck me was 'Running to Stand Still'. A beautiful ballad about a heroin addict, it sees Bono at his song writing best. And then there is the truely amazing and unique 'Exit' - a real musical journey, building you to a musical frenzy and back again.

Other highlights of the album include the classic-rock styled 'Bullet the Blue Sky' and the ode to America 'In God's Country'. Most other classic albums have at least one 'album filler' track, but not with 'Joshua Tree'.

To conclude, all I can say is, do you think your music collection is complete? Well its certainly not complete without 'Joshua Tree' and if you don't own this album you are depriving yourself of a truely timeless epic album.

I certainly 'found what what I was looking for'...

5-0 out of 5 stars A Timeless Classic
"The Joshua Tree was the album U2 HAD to make, the only one they COULD make"

Those are the words of Eamon Dunphy, author of "Unforgettable Fire - The Definitive Biography of U2", on U2's process of making a new record in 1986 and early 1987. That might sound like an over-dramatization for a rock record, but once you've heard the record, that thought goes out the window. This record, U2's exploration of America, is one of the quintessential rock records ever recorded. It is, varying with opinion, U2's masterpiece of masterpieces. Since this album was recorded back when it was still 'ok' to talk about records in the context of 'sides', I will say that every song on the first 'side' of this record is a classic. 'Where The Streets Have No Name' with an intro that ranks with the best of all time, 'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For' with a theme of longing that anyone can relate to, 'With Or Without You'(my favorite U2 track), one of the most popular breakup songs ever, 'Bullet The Blue Sky' with its hypnotic talk/chant at the end at Edge's furious and passionate solos, and 'Running To Stand Still' with its atmosphere of deep pain being held in. The second 'side' was comprised of lesser-known but no less mesmerizing songs: 'Red Hill Mining Town', 'In God's Country', 'Trip Through Your Wires', 'One Tree Hill', which was written for roadie Greg Carroll, who died in a motercycle wreck running an errand for U2, the dark and moody 'Exit', and the mournful and haunting ballad closer, 'Mothers Of The Disappeared'.

This record catapaulted U2 in a realm of superstardom seldom seen by any band. They were not expecting it and they were taken by surprise a bit. I own this record on vinyl, cassette, and CD, and I even have the 'Classic Albums' DVD for it. This album has that quality about it, that sets it apart from from all other albums that don't pocess it. What quality is that? This was the first U2 record I ever heard, and I remember listening to it for the first time at age 13, and thinking to myself, before the album was even half over, 'hey, whoa, this band is one of the best ever'. That's the quality. Just like when you listen to 'Revolver' or 'Abbey Road' or any record of that quality, before it is even finished, you know the band is one of the best ever. I was completely blown away. It is a draining experience, one that will leave you exhausted when the album reaches its conclusion.

Spiritually, emotionally, lyrically, musically, commercially, U2 reached their peak with this record, and it was a peak they would remain on for a while to come, starting with the "Joshua Tree Tour", their biggest tour to date at the time. And not only did U2 reach their peak, but it is also important to note that on this record, Bono reached his peak as a singer. For U2's whole career up to this point, he had progressively improved as a singer with each outing. On this record he made the leap from being a very good rock singer to being one of the great rock singers of all time. I submit he is still the best, most emotional, most evocative rock singer of his time.

And though that tour would eventually lead to U2 being sick and tired of their current form, and to the brink of a breakdown, that was still a good two and a half years away. At this point U2 were excited to be as popular and relevant as they would ever be, which, incidentally gave them the leverage to pull stunts like the now legendary liquor-shop-roof-quasi-show during which the 'Where The Streets Have No Name' video was shot. U2 had arrived. ... Read more

Asin: B000001FS3


Average Customer Review: 4.89 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (22 April, 1997)
list price: $18.98
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Editorial Review

The melding of South African styles and Simon's trademark sensibility made for one of the most intriguing albums--not to mention commercial hits--of the '80s. At once lively, thoughtful, gorgeous, and tough, Graceland acknowledges splits both in South Africa's social fabric and in Simon's personal life (the title track is a clear descendant of the earlier "Hearts and Bones," a song about the singer-songwriter's brief marriage to Carrie Fisher). Humor is hardly absent from the mix, though; witness the addled "I Know What I Know" and the fable-like "You Can Call Me Al." --Rickey Wright ... Read more

Reviews (139)

5-0 out of 5 stars Probably the best album of the 80s
Not much good came out of the 80s besides the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (and even THEY weren't good then). And actually, Paul Simon didn't come out of the 80s, either. He and Garfunkel had been recording some time before then. But "Graceland" came out of the 80s, and God, am I glad.

All things taken into account, this is simply a fantastic album. There isn't one bad song on it. The entire album is like one big dream unfolding song by song. All the tracks are so much fun. This is the ultimate road-trip or pick-me-up album. It's so full of hope you just can't help but smile when you listen to it.

One reason for this is Simon's never-ending penchant to utilize new kinds of music, which he found for this album in the form of Chikapa "Ray" Phiri and his South African band, Stimela. Phiri arranged many of the songs heard on the album. But Simon didn't stop there. For the zydeco swing of "That Was Your Mother," he enlisted New Orleans' own Rockin' Dopsie and his band, and he collaborated with Los Lobos on the upbeat closer, "All Around the World (or The Myth of Fingerprints).

The highlights are, well the WHOLE album, but the true standout tracks (to me, anyway, everyone has their favorite) are probably the driving opener, "Boy in the Bubble," featuring a proud accordion and one of the greatest choruses ever penned ("These are the days of miracle wonder/This is a long distance call/The way the camera follows us in slo mo/The way we look to us all/The way we look to a distant constellation/That's dying in the corner of the sky/These are the days of miracle and wonder/So don't cry baby, don't cry"). Also be sure to check out "I Know What I Know," whose lyrics and hook will make you laugh, and "Under African Skies," a duet with Linda Ronstadt that's just too beautiful to skip over.

In fact, the only song that I don't really love on this album is "Crazy Love, Vol. II," and it's not that it's a bad song... it's probably just that I want too badly to get to "That Was Your Mother" to hear what might be the best one-liner I've ever heard ("I saw this girl there/She was pretty as a prayer book/Sweet as an apple on Christmas Day/I said good gracious/Can this be my luck?/If that's my prayer book/Lord let us pray!").

Overall, the brilliance with which this album was constructed, both musically and lyrically, is a testament to what an unbelievable talent Paul Simon is. This album needs to be in everyone's music collection. Look at it this way: you might as well have gotten SOMEthing out of the 80s!

5-0 out of 5 stars Simon's resurrection
Simon's career had been in a comatose state before this album, so what a completely unexpected, pleasant surprise it was when it came out in 1986. His work with South African musicians and vocal groups (especially the awesome Ladysmith Black Mambazo) really shines on every track. Though sometimes Simon has the tendency to sound like he's trying to be too clever, and despite lyrics that frequently make little sense (at least to me), the real story here is the complete joy of the African rhythms and sounds combined with Simon's obviously inspired and enthusiastic singing. The well-known hits are all great, and even lesser-known numbers are gems, like the duet with Linda Ronstadt, "Under African Skies," (one of my faves on the album). The last two numbers try to create a tie between African music and American musical styles: "That Was Your Mother" is a great New Orleans cajun/zydeco song, and "The Mystery Of Fingerprints" features the alw! ays-good Los Lobos as a backing band. This is one I've played over and over. It also got me interested in pursuing more African music, a rich genre to which I had previously not been exposed.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing
This album is the best album that has ever been made. Yes, that is correct. What is "Graceland"? Musical Euphoria. This is no exaggeration. Everyone should listen to this, you will love it. ... Read more

Asin: B000002NBY

Cocoon Club
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (30 April, 2002)
list price: $16.98
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Reviews (14)

5-0 out of 5 stars Omaha Don't Be Mistaken, This is a Kansas Band!
You gotta check this CD out, it's hard to compare to anything else. If you don't know the facts, Pomeroy is a street that runs right down to the Campus of Kansas State University, and there's a song on the CD that's all about chillin' in the ville! Pomeroy is a mixture of so many different musical styles, rap, electronic, rock, funk, pop, the list goes on. I've seen them in Manhattan (Kansas that is) a few times and they are definitely worth catching live. Do yourself a favor, pick up this album, you won't be disappointed!

5-0 out of 5 stars POMEROY IS THE SHIZNIT!!!
You will definitely LOVE this CD. Pomeroy has a style all their own. It's kind of hip hop, kind of funk, kind of rock. It's really hard to describe, but it's GREAT! Buy this CD, and if you ever have a chance, check out a POMEROY performance. ...

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the most talented bands ive heard in a while
i saw these guys about 3 months ago in dallas and they blew me away. i then bought there cd and was blown away again. If you are looking for something different from the crap they play on the radio defenetly check out this cd its a mixture of 311 funk and rap check it out ... Read more

Asin: B000066C3L
Sales Rank: 171376
Subjects:  1. Pop    2. Rock   

A Rush of Blood to the Head
Average Customer Review: 4.44 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (27 August, 2002)
list price: $18.98 -- our price: $13.49
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Editorial Review

Coldplay required a lifetime to make their wonderfully assured debut,Parachutes. But it tookless than two years for the moody British quartet to deliver a masterful follow-up. As a band Coldplay have advanced to a stage where they outshine nearly every oneof their rivals in terms of imagination and emotional pull. A Rush of Bloodto the Head is a soulful, exhilarating journey, moving from the catharticrock of "Politik" to the hushed tones of "Green Eyes" without once breaking itsmesmerizing spell. Singer Chris Martin takes his voice on soaring flights,reaching places only JeffBuckley previously dared to go. And the music is nearly flawless, apersuasive cross between PinkFloyd and the Verve.Even if they haven't come up with another "Yellow," you would be hard-pressed tocare. This is exquisite stuff. --Aidin Vaziri ... Read more

Reviews (854)

3-0 out of 5 stars Should be 2.5 bt 4 a band that made parachutes i'll round up
Coldplay's new album to be released on 26 august 2002 and exicitment courses. Into the shop and then into the cd player, shoot score! WELL good album. and then i listened to it again and i worked out how irritating a whisper is and then daylight and then Mtv murdered clocks and narrowly avoided distroying the scientist. Last month they release one of the weakest songs: god put a smile upon your face. And we're supposed to be happy. Parachutes was an album of absolute brilliance ft. amazing songs like Parachutes, Everything's Not Lost and Trouble. The album's only amazing points are Amsterdam, AROBTTH, and Warning Sign. there are other good points like the scientist and politik. but what has become of the band who wrote See You Soon and Careful where you stand and even Bigger Faster. Check out those songs and you'll understand how good coldplay really can be. The thing is right, Coldplay were a band that envoked so much emotion inside of you that you wanted to burst into tears and alot of that was due to the subtlety of the music making it seem like they were holding some part of themselves back for the next release and urging you to listen to the album over and over again. This time round Coldplay goes pop, they sound like a band more concerned with sales than music and it shows with how successful it has been. There is no doubt Chris Martin is brilliant but he is using that brilliance soley to make money

5-0 out of 5 stars Voted #1 album of 2002 in Billboard Magazine
I first saw Coldplay live a few months ago. What a treat! This is one of the few bands that sound the same live as they do on their CD- no studio creation here. The band opened with the 1st track on "Rush of Blood to the Head", which is "Politik"- once you've heard lead singer Chris Martin perform that one live, you'll be a hardcore Coldplay fan forever.

With the huge success of the band's freshman CD "Parachutes" came the fear that their sophomore effort wouldn't be able to measure up. Not so. Beautiful and powerful all at once- particularly "Green Eyes" (being a green-eyed girl myself, I'm fed up with all the blue or brown eyed girls getting all the swoony songs- every other song about green eyed girls makes them out to be evil!). I can't get enough of this London band, who announced at their concert that they couldn't believe how America has embraced them. Humility, charm AND indisputeable talent. Get this CD and DEFENITELY see Coldplay live when you get the chance.

4-0 out of 5 stars They are still kicking it!
The sophomore effort from Coldplay is in no way a "sophomore jynx". It is not an extension from Parachutes either. It is totally different; not so much as a radiohead record but never-the-less different. Instead of coming off as indieish and a complete band effort, it sounds more mature and like a showcase for Chris Martin. This is due to the seemingly more emphasis put on the lyrics and vocals. Both of which are improved from their last outting. Also, their seems to be more keyboard used here especially on the two hit singles "clocks" and "scientist". It is difernet also in that it is much longer than thier debut; by over twelve minutes.

This record excels on many levels along with the aforementioned. It works more as a pop record and therefore seems more appealing to the casual listener. It also contains the groups strongest songs to date. However, despite its brillience, it is not perfect by any means. Among its flaws lie within lyrics. The greater emphasis draws people in. And on a couple songs, like the title track, the lyrics try to be way too philisophical and fail to accomplish their goal. Also, the record contains a couple straight forward rock songs. They are not bad but not what Coldplay excels at.

All of the flaws seem to make this record feel less complete, inviting track skipping and quick boredom. These are not qualities that Parachutes had and therefore AROBTTH is a slightly inferior record. I must urge people to pick this up though since it is still very very good. Don't expect the utter brillience from the first album to carry over however.

Politik- good opener despite werey lyrics.
In my place- pure pop
God put a smile upon my face- best rock song on the record
The scientist- sweet piano and lyrics
Clocks- captivatingly brilliant piano play
Daylight- worst track but listenable
Green eyes- good range of vocals and lyrics
Warning sign- beautiful
A wisper- driving guitar
A rush of blood to the head- too philisophical but still good/great
Amsterdam- best track ... Read more

Asin: B000069AUI
Subjects:  1. Pop    2. Rock   


The Very Best of Marvin Gaye [Motown 2001]
Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (17 July, 2001)
list price: $21.98 -- our price: $17.99
(price subject to change: see help)
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Editorial Review

Another Marvin Gaye overview/introduction? Why not? Pullingtogether the usual hits from "I'll Be Doggone" to "Grapevine," "What'sGoing On" to "Let's Get It On" to "Sexual Healing"--all musts for anyR&B or pop fan--this two-CD set also offers treats for the Marvinconnoisseur. Foremost are the previously unreleased "Where Are WeGoing?" which marries Nixon-era (and beyond) social concerns to alilting groove that brings to mind Spinners records ofthe period, and an alternate mix of Gaye's rare version of "His Eye Ison the Sparrow." Very Best also pays proper tribute to Gaye'sfinal years at Motown with the full 11-plus minutes of the intensely,casually funky "Got to Give It Up," Here, My Dear'ssmoldering "Anger," and several tracks from the under-heard LoveMan/In Our Lifetime sessions. More than just aprofit-generating package from the parent company, it's a loving, roundedselection that's sure to widen newcomers' perceptions of a greatartist's creativity and spirit. --Rickey Wright ... Read more

Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars Mercy, Mercy Me these discs are a great compilation
Marvin Gaye wrote the book of Motown. He brought style. He brought millions of fans to his side, and to Motown. His music has come in handy lately in the hard times America is going through right. His song "What's going on" was done by twenty or so artists in different ways and made into a cd benefiting victims of September 11. Remember the crazy clothing, the high platform boots. Remember his music. Remember him. Think what one song has done to help our nation. This cd brings out all his qualities. His first disc of the pair portrays the love appeal with 'Ain't no mountain high enough', "I heard it through the grapevine' and 'To busy thinkin' 'bout my baby' and others. The second disc has more insightful, deep songs like 'Inner City Blues' 'Where are we going' and 'What's going on'. It has the sex appeal in 'Let's get it on' and 'Sexual Healing'. And of course the a girl-heartthrob song 'Distant Lover' This awesome album brings out the best attributes in the legendary Marvin Gaye.

5-0 out of 5 stars "how sweet it is to be loved by you...Marvin Gaye"
Remember it, as though it was yesterday ~ "I HEARD IT THROUGH THE GRAPEVINE", an song and album from the late '60s...played it till' I wore it out...couldn't go anywhere back then and not hear this being played on the radio, local music stores or jukebox...a personal favorite of mine was ~ "AIN'T NO MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH" and AIN'T NOTHING LIKE THE REAL THING", Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell blending their voices like angels, tunes that are still going strong even today...then this beautiful hymn ~ "HIS EYE IS ON THE SPARROW", is so inspirational (gives me chills everytime I hear it)...the first disc has duets with Kim Weston and Tammi Terell that are priceless...the second disc has classic recordings of ~ "MERCY MERCY ME(THE ECOLOGY)", "INNER CITY BLUES(MAKE ME WANNA HOLLER)" and "LET'S GET IT ON", back then a very suggestive title for its time...and the triumphant hit ~ "SEXUAL HEALING", once again Gaye proved he had his sensual romantic soulbound style intact, he was the man...this 2-CD-release shows the passionate and exuberant side of the artist and man ~ MARVIN GAYE...a must have for all fans young and old!

Total Time: Disc One 54:05 on 19 Tracks & Disc Two 76:09 on 15 Tracks ~ Hip-O 440-014-367-2 ~ (2001)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Marvin Gaye Retrospective
It took Motown nearly 20 years to finally get it right, and release the first career spanning collection of Marvin Gaye's music. It begs the question one question, however: what took them so long? Marvin Gaye was arguably the most influential rhythm and blues artist of his generation and this moderately priced 29 track double C.D. is the best retrospective of Gaye's work. It is the only "Best of" CD that will aquaint the casual fan with the scope of Marvin's career. There are some unreleased treats for the collector, but the avid fan will want it because it's the first comprehensive set of Marvin's hits since the refinement of digital technology. Many of Marvin's early hits were actually mixed through car radio speakers, so they would sound good on an AM car radio, which was the primary method of marketing music in the early sixties. The muddy mixes of many of Marvin's early hits are cleaned up, and the upper and lower registers of don't "bleed" into mid range sounds.

Marvin Gaye acquired and lost three monetary fortunes during his 23 year musical career. Each time Marvin was confronted with failure, he successfully reinvented himself and gained an even wider following. He became the first black popular music performer to gain complete artistic control over his work, which laid a blueprint for independence to guide other black artists, most notably fellow Motown musician, Stevie Wonder. Marvin Gaye introduced topical and political commentary into his music with his transcendental 1971 album, "What's Going On." Curtis Mayfield may have predated Gaye in the use of social commentary, but no album produced, before or since, has carried the stunning immediacy of "What's Going On." It has become an artistic benchmark by which all other musical accomplishments have been measured.

"The Very Best of Marvin Gaye" doesn't overlook any aspect of Marvin's multifaceted career. The dapper young star of the Motown stable with a string of AM radio hits, his successful pairing with Tami Terrell and Kim Weston for duet albums, his stellar 1970s career as both a protest artist and singer of jazz infused love ballads and his final incarnation as the sleek singer of "Sexual Healing" in his trademark smoking jacket. Marvin Gaye lived in an era that produced the most talented rhythm and blues singers in history. In the ten year span from 1963 until 1973 artists like Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, Curtis Mayfield, James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, and Al Green were either emerging or established performers.

Despite all of his personal demons, Marvin Gaye's career spanned well into the 1980s, when most of his peers from the golden age of soul had either died prematurely or had developed a formulatic approach by using the same production template for every album. Marvin refused to use a cookie cutter approach. Marvin Gaye wasn't afraid of taking chances, reinventing himself and redefining his artistry. ... Read more

Asin: B00005LZT9


Sexy Karate
Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (08 April, 2003)
list price: $15.98 -- our price: $15.98
(price subject to change: see help)
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Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Big Beat Evangelists Strike Again...
The 2 Skinnee J's...how do you describe a band that invents a genre that so neatly fits smack dab between countless re-inventions of oldschool genres, but creates a sound so driving and uniqe that it begs to be its own category? This album (their third full album release) is entirely recorded and prodced by the band themselves, so there is guaranteed not to be any "sell out" songs on it. The J's are the their usual eclectic selves. The old Skinnee crew stays true to their self-proclaimed title of the Big Beat Evangelists, with the majority of the tracks on this cd having such an open, bob-your-head, driving sound that you'll wonder how something as 2-dimensional as a cd can hold such a fat sound. Get In the Van (track1) begins with a sample of a triad of bass-guitar notes repeated within what quickly develops into a surprisingly compicated, yet easy-to-understand drumbeat...and the lyrics sneak in at the last moment bringing the whole song to a finale that, instead of ending, simply gets better as it continues. On deck for track 2 comes an amazing commentary on their attitudes and experiences making music for the past 11+ years, supported by yet another mammoth-sounding, though sparse, beat. One Summer (#3) calls to mind sweaty, sunny, chill days spent wandering the streets of Manhattan...but never fear 'cause the J's have "Got the Gatorade for your thirsty minds."
I cannot go through each song on this album. They're too good to compress to a few sentences each, or even a single listening. Grab this up, listen straight through, and it should knock you down like a sack of intellectually-charged bricks fired fired from your speakers. If it doesn't, check your pulse and learn the lyrics...they're amazingly well arranged, have quite a bit of humor, and discuss issues that actually need talking about. Seeing them live is the only thing better than hearing them on cd, though unfortunately they plan on an "Indefinite Sabbatical" starting this summer (2003). Playing amazing music for more than a decade straight while waiting for the american population to get up and realize their skill would wear me down as well... The only issue i have with this album is that it could be plenty longer. At only ten songs, it forces me to listen to it multiple times to get the same dose I normally require.

5-0 out of 5 stars The J's do it again!
I got this cd a few weeks ago (pre-order), and I've been listening to it nonstop. 2 Skinnee J's potentially final album is just what you'd expect from them if you're already a fan. Like 311, they have a penchant for hooks and a talent for mixing mellow tracks with big beats! Tracks like "One Summer", "Who Wants This", and "I Can't Hear You" are energetic and infectious. On the other hand "Inside My Room" is chill, melodic and something you can just sorta lay down and groove to. For the most part, this album is on par with Volumizer and Super! Mercado - maybe even better, depending on which aspect of the J's you like. Check it out!

4-0 out of 5 stars Live
The 2Skinnee J's Music always comes off better live than it does on plastic. From way back in the day, when all you could have was sing earthboy sing and bootlegs, to the newest collection of material in order to know the intensive electrifying presence of those deemed 2 skinnee, you must see them live. ... Read more

Asin: B00008RV30
Sales Rank: 91110
Subjects:  1. Pop    2. Rock   


Average Customer Review: 4.54 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (29 September, 1992)
list price: $13.98 -- our price: $12.99
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Reviews (153)

5-0 out of 5 stars STP's Finest Accomplishment
STP's Core came out during the grunge hype, but they sounded heavier than the grunge bands that were huge at the time. Many people attacked them for being Pearl Jam imitators, probably because Scott Weiland's voice was coarse and some compared him to Eddie Vedder, but if anything, their crunchy style sounded more in the league of Alice In Chains (circa Dirt).

Despite who they might be compared to, Core sounds original and fresh, and added more of a hard-rock bombast to the alternative scene, since the band boasted bands like Zeppelin as an influence, as opposed to Huser Du or the Sex Pistols. Eric Kretz's drumming sounds larger than life, and Dean DeLeo's guitars are screaming, and he is one of the most overlooked guitarists ever. For a debut, STP sounded like they connected very well early on in their career, and their compositions were very sophisticated and confident for a new act. Core still stands above the rest of their impressive catalogue, and still stands above a lot of music out there today, even after STP and their ilk of music seemed to 'go out of style.' This album is full of classics, like Creep, Plush, Crackerman, Sex Type Thing and Sin. One of the greatest rock albums ever.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Huge Debut
Heavy riffage abounds on STP's formidable debut, as Scott Weiland begins with a muffled cry that is none too positive. From there, a thunderous snare pound by Eric Kretz sets "Core" off and running. "Core" is everything critics have made it out to be, both appraising and not so appraising. Yes, it is grungy. Yes, it does contain elements of Alice in Chains and Nirvana. Yes, "Core" is bombastic, lengthy, and ambitious, especially for a band accused of being full-fledged con artists. Finally, "Core" could be construed as a rather trendy, cliched album, in that it followed the overriding grunge-mania that the aforementioned groups had well established just minutes before. It's funny, however, how all that copy-cat talk now seems so irrelevant. With the early 90's well over, Stone Temple Pilots seem more pioneer rock artists than mere fakes, four people who actually made masterful songs at the onset of grunge. STP formed well before the members of Pearl Jam even knew each other (1987), and were even rumored to be a metal-like hair band in their infancy. Whatever, STP created a masterpiece with "Core." The album sounds almost "classic" these days, as countless rock/grunge/punk/electric/swing/rap-metal 90's acts create their "hit" and fall obscurely by the wayside, unrenowned for much of anything. Say this for the Pilots, they always get some sort of reaction. If rocking out was in vogue during the early 90's, "Core" sure didn't disappoint. "Sex Type Thing," "Sin," "Naked Sunday," and "Crackerman" are all cornerstones of the albums guitar-laden sound that put STP on the map and made them so popular. In their loud array of chugging riffs comes an undeniable pop melodicism, mixed with well written songs that are too good to be brushed off. What seperates the determined "Core" from such BUSH-league acts like Sponge is its tough themes, truly haunting sound, and its overall morose outlook, which is far from staged. The album is further set apart by the genuinely crafty songwriting, courtesy of the Deleo brothers. For his part, Weiland's lyrics don't shy from life's darker moments. Despite all this talk of darkeness, these songs are all radio-ready and meant for the masses. "Core" stands out for its boldness and heavy musical savvy.

3-0 out of 5 stars STP's worst, but a solid foundation
This is a good album, but it's hard to listen to after listening to the following four STP albums. Weiland's voice lacks the vocal quality that it has on the next four albums, the songwriting lacks the melodic and artistic qualities that the next four albums have, and Core simply lacks the diversity that the next four albums have.

It's certainly a very good album to rock to, but it pales in comparison to the STP of the future. Purple was already several times more melodic than Core. Tiny Music expanded upon that with new vocals and several directions. No.4 combined Core and Purple with Tiny Music, and pumped out some nice power-ballads. Shangri-La was simply a beautiful artistic album. Core seems like a generic rocker compared to those.

Standouts here are Creep (the only different sounding song on the album, aside from the pointless "Wet My Bed" and "No Memory.") and Plush (a classic). The rest of the album is just a collection of good/decent rock songs, that could be best described as filler. As I said, not a bad album, but a good rock album and a good start. But it has nothing on the STP that would develop over the rest of the decade. ... Read more

Asin: B000002IU3
Sales Rank: 2397


Average Customer Review: 4.78 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (29 September, 1998)
list price: $18.98 -- our price: $14.99
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Editorial Review

It takes a few listens to sink in, but on Aquemini, Outkast have pulled off a rare feat in hip-hop: they've made a good record that's a masterpiece of subtlety. What's more, it's their third record, and they've yet to fall into a rut--and that alone puts them in line for an award. The Organized Noize production crew is sublime, working with live musicians and crafting hook-filled soundscapes that complement Big Boi and Andre Benjamin's melodic patter. (See "Rosa Parks," "Chonkyfire," and the epic "Liberation," which features Erykah Badu, Cee Lo, and Big Rube--and clocks in at just under nine minutes.) Classy and intelligent, Outkast haven't sacrificed anything in their quest to make challenging, innovative hip-hop that forgoes idle boasting for the duo's message. A sample, from the title track: "Now, question: Is every nigga wit dreads for the cause? / Is every nigga wit golds for the fall? Naw / So don't get caught in appearance." --Randy Silver ... Read more


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Reviews (246)

5-0 out of 5 stars How to follow up ATLiens? An Impossible Task
After Releasing ATLiens in '96 which is considered by me one of the top 3 greatest albums ever, it seemed nearly impossible to even come close to another album like ATLiens. With all the contreversy surronding Speakerboxxx/Love Below it is good to look back at the 90's and see Outkast's first 3 albums which are all 9+/10, 5 Mics worthy:

1. Hold On, Be Strong- Intro

2. Return of The "G"- The song really showcases Dre, his flow is on point, Big Bwoy is found on the second first but I find myself not enjoying his verse as much as I usually do. Good simple beat with some noises in the back that play with the mind. Lyrics= 9 Beat=10 Flow=9 Total= 9.3

3. Rosa Parks- One of the more popular Outkast songs with a great beat, hook and lyrics. AH-HA baby uhhuh ya ya baby I said Ah-Ha Hush that Fuss, everybody move to the back of the bus. Do you wanna bump and slump with us? We the type of people that make the club get crunk. Lyrics=10 Beat=10 Flow=10 Total=10

4. Skew it on the Bar-B- Raar Ya. Featuring one of my favorite MC's RaEKwOn The Chef, (Wu Wu Wu ), he spits a sick verse, the beat is a crazy dance mix and the hook is one that u gotta sing a long to and everyone comes hard on it. Lyrics=10 (Raekwon), Beat=9, Flow=10. Total= 9.67

5. Aquemini- The title track is easily, the best, song on this album. A slow smooth beat, one of my favorite of all time. Perfection of lyrics, relaxed flow. Perfect. Lyrics=10, Beat=10, Flow=10. Total=10

6. Synthezier- A weird song, but you have to enjoy the synthizer of course to enjoy this song. Dre's second verse is pretty sick. Lyrics=8 Beat= 9 Flow=8 Total=8.3

7. Slump- At this point in the album and on (Excluding Da Art's of storytellin) the cd really begins to become a southern album with real hard beats that you'd expect from Organized Noise. It's just a slow southern jam. Lyrics=9 Beat=10 Flow=10. Total-9.67

8. West Savanah- A solo by Big Boi, probably my favorite song in my car, one of the best flows I've ever heard on a song, and another good down south classic. Lyrics=10 Beat=10 Flow=10 Total-10

9. Da art of storytellin' pt 1- The classic Single that tells the story of two girls and problems they went through with the crew. It's a classic if you haven't heard it you probably don't know much aboot rap. Lyrics=10 Beat=9 Flow=9.5 Total-9.5

10. Da Art of storytellin' pt 2- A little 2 minute follow up to pt 1 with a more up pace beat and no chorus. Not much to say about it, it's d.a.s.2. Lyrics=9 Beat=10 Flow=9.5 Total- 9.5

11. Mamcita- Never really felt this song, I think this is the one that hurts the album's overall rating. The first verse by whomever is whack. Lyrics=7 Beat=5 Flow=8 Total-6.67

12. SpottieOttieDopaliscious- One of the first Dungeon Family/Outkast songs I heard. No real rapping going on here, it's mostly a long song of complimation of a great southern beat and some horns. Lyrics= 8 Beat=10 Flow= 8 Total-8.57

13. Ya'll Scared- Featuring the Goodie Mob(Check out Soul Food) I don't like the beat so right away it's hard for me to like it. Lyrics=9 Beat= 7 Flow=8 Total-8

14. Nathaniel- Interlude

15. Liberation- One long ass song. Don't really like it though. Lyrics= 9 Beat-8 Flow-9 Total- 8.67

16. Chonkyfire- haha this song is crazy. I always love outkast cause they play with your brain. It's the perfect song to end the album with. Only thing I dont like about it is how the beat changes when Big Boi starts to rap. Lyrics= 9.5 Beat= 9 Flow=10 Total- 9.5

Lyrics=9.1 Beat=9 Flow=9.2 OVERALL=9.09/10


5-0 out of 5 stars Best album in years
With two superb albums already behind them OutKast comes forth and brings one of hip-hops greatest albums of all-time in "Aquemini". It is a perfect mixture of music and lyrics that takes hip-hop to a new level. Very few albums have used the variety of live instruments that this album boasts. This album also shows Andre and Big Boi's willingness to take chances and this makes their songs that much greater as they are perfectly executed.
"Return of the 'G'" has a slick bass line as this laid back beat plays with OutKast's fast-paced rhymes allowing their deep storytelling to unfold. "Rosa Parks" is one of the most enjoyable songs ever made as its upbeat string influenced beat breaks off at the end of the song to a harmonica solo and handclaps that embody the musical ride of this album. "Skew It On The Bar-B" features super fast rhymes over a hard beat. The song also benefits from an outstanding Raekwon guest appearance. "Aquemini" has a very relaxed beat as OutKast create pictures perfectly with their rhymes. About halfway through the song the original beat is added onto by more instruments making the song more upbeat. "Synthesizer" is an amazing song featuring George Clinton as OutKast discusses how everything in this world is becoming fake, "sythesized", and people need to be satisfied with what they have. "Slump" features some extremely catchy background singing and an imaginative hook that is half-singing/half-rapping. "West Savannah" is a song that was made at the same time as the first album was and they put it on this album. It has the definitive sound of that album and works good with this album as it just adds to the diversity. The song sports a nice semi-singing hook that with the lyrics evokes old-school images. "Da Art Of Storytellin' (part 1)" follows a story of a girl and Andre steals the show with his vivid storytelling. "Da Art Of Storytellin' (part 2)" is a high-pitched heart pumping song that shows the ingenuity of this album. "Mamacita" has a thumping bass line and good guest appearances. "SpottieOttieDopiliscious" has a wonderful drum and trumpet beat that is simply intoxicating. "Y'all Scared" features Goodie Mob and is a very good concept song. "Liberation" uses Cee-Lo's marvelous singing on this song. "Chonkyfire" uses a hybrid of rock and rap in the beat as OutKast raps on top of it.
This album is an extraordinary musical journey that all hip-hop fans should listen to. Released in 1998 it was the best album released in many years and still four years later in 2002 there has not been a better hip-hop album released. This is one of the better albums in hip-hop history and deserved the five mic rating that The Source gave it. This is something that all hip-hop fans should have in their collection and because of the musical diversity represented on this album fans of other music genres might like this release too.

5-0 out of 5 stars ThErEs JuSt SoMeThInG aBoUt It
This album is beyond amazing.I'm really getting into Outkast's music-I have three of their albums now(this one,stankonia,and speakerboxx/luv below) and all three of them r classic.This one is just the most original.But its still cool!That's what you'll love about it.It doesn't matter what kind of music you like, you'll love this album.Obviously Andre is one of the best rappers ever-his verse on da art of storytelling reminds me of how Biggie was-u know how they could rap about something they experienced and you'd feel like you were there experiencing it with them?That's it.Big Boi is great too-but if u really wana hear the best of him listen to speakerboxx.andre always stands out on their albums together.rosa parks was a huge hit-and i can see why it has a nice beat,catchy hook, and unbelievable verses-especially andre.GOD,he is good.But anyways-return of the g has a nice fast delivery and it has an orchestra on it-how many other rappers can rap over an orchestra?then theres skew it on the barb which is another nice track with raekwon,aquemini-which sticks in my head alot-is classic,synthesizer is weird but it grows on u.I luv slump-tht is a great song 2 jus chill2,same 4 west savannah and the funky,mellow spottieottiedopalicsious.I wish theyd rapped on that song,tho.I enjoy most every track,I like the guitar on chonkyfire-tho i like mostly rap,I'm a sucker for guitars,i actually play bass.To close,this album is just a classic up there with life after death,reasonable doubt,and all eyez on me.To represnt the South in their classic record report,the Source chose this record.Im not surprised-its soooo great.If u like rock,funk,rap,hiphop,soul,r and b,hell music period...youll love this record.CLASSIC. ... Read more

Asin: B00000BKI1


The Hits/The B-Sides
Average Customer Review: 4.57 out of 5 stars
Audio CD (14 September, 1993)
list price: $39.98
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Editorial Review

Assignment: To write 100 words on 56 songs by the greatest artist the '80s produced. Even with single edits substituting for full-length versions in a handful of cases, The Hits/The B-Sides is a mighty testament to the man we once called Prince. (For that matter, we still do.) In addition to most of his singles, from "I Wanna Be Your Lover" to "Thieves in the Temple," from "When Doves Cry" to "7," this triple-CD set throws in some worthwhile new music and a full disc of the fantastic flips that made buying 7- and 12-inches a must even when you already owned the A-side. "You can be the side effect," he mutters herein. "I'd rather be the dope." Witness some of the funkiest pharmaceuticals around. --Rickey Wright ... Read more


  • Explicit Lyrics
Reviews (54)

4-0 out of 5 stars Took Him Awhile, But It Was Worth The Wait
The hits are augmented with a handful of new songs ("Pope", "Peach", "Pink Cashmere"), and Prince's versions of songs he wrote which were made famous by other artists ("When You Were Mine", "I Feel For You", and a live version of "Nothing Compares 2 U").

There are definitely a few tunes missing that you wish were here, like "Money Don't Matter 2 Night", "Mountains", "Take Me With U", "Let's Pretend We're Married", "D.M.S.R", "The Morning Papers", "Batdance" (no songs here from the Batman soundtrack for some reason), "Insatiable", "My Name Is Prince", "America" and "Paisley Park" (originally slated to be the first single from "Around The World In A Day", but abruptly demoted to a mere album track in favor of "Raspberry Beret"). And the abridged version of "1999" is disappointing, but oh well.

An artist as insanely prolific as Prince, both in terms of raw output and in the number of singles he's released, is just not going to be able to cram everything on three discs, particularly when one disc is devoted to a roster of obscure but interesting B-sides.

Unless you're a die-hard fan, you probably won't be listening to the B-sides disc very often. These mostly non-commerical tunes definitely expose Prince's genius a little more and definitely have some historic merit, but for the average pop music fan they just aren't catchy enough to bear frequent listens. Exceptions to that rule are the 80's club hit "Erotic City" and "She's Always In My Hair", in which the lyrics awkwardly make reference to the controversey surrounding Prince's no-show for the "We Are The World" recording session in 1985.

5-0 out of 5 stars The only Prince CDs you need!
This 3 CD box set summarizes Prince's musical career and evolution during his years at Warner Bros/Paisley Park Records. I have never been much of a Prince fan until a girlfriend of mine purchased this for me for Christmas, and it has not left my CD changer since. The first 2 CDs contain all of his hits, while the 3rd one contains all of his B-sides and rare tracks. All the songs are sequenced in random order, and I like this because then you can appreciate each song on its own terms.
All the classics are here: "1999", "Kiss", "Get off", "Cream" and "When doves cry". Prince has had numerous hits, but there are also those lesser-known gems that I have just discovered with this collection, like the funky early '80s jams "Why you wanna treat me so bad", "I feel for you", "Pop Life", "Controversy", "Soft and wet" and "Uptown", just to name a few. The 3rd CD is equally interesting, with some songs equalling, if not surpassing the quality of the classic hits. My favorites off this disc includes "Erotic City", "Horny toad", "Scarlet pussy", "She's always in my hair" and "200 balloons".
Overall, I am very satisfied with this box set. If you are checking out Prince's music for the first time (like me), this is probably the only collection you need. It has all of his best songs from his most musically fruitful period at Warner Bros. Having this box set has motivated me to check out his earlier albums, including "Dirty mind", "Controversy" and "Around the world in a day". This is an awesome collection that will show you exactly the kind of musical power Prince possesses during his heyday. Highly recommended!

5-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Collection
Call him a genius, a wizard, a lengend, or just far ahead of his time. But the one thing you cannot call him is lazy. This magnum opus of music is far better than any greatest hits collection you can find of Prince, after one listen you can easily say that Prince Rogers Nelson is an icon.

Disc 1 & 2 are his released tracks from his Warner Brothers albums, and though the tracks aren't in chroniclogical order, it is well worth the funky voyage. With tracks like "Let's Go Crazy", "Dirty Mind", "1999", amongst others this album speaks for the legend in his own time. The Hits (disc 1 & 2) are sold individually.

Disc 3 is the real treat, they are the B-sides of the hits he released as singles. What makes this a prize is it's not like these tracks are not bad, they are excellent, as a matter of fact after one listen you'll wonder why Prince did not put thes on an album. The highlights are "Irresistable Bitch", "Feel U Up", and "She's Always In My Hair".

Warner Brothers released this when Prince opted out of his Warner Brothers contract, so to keep the fans happy they released the previously unreleased material.

To cut a long story short, this album is not a waste of time, listening and the most part money. 5 Stars all the way ... Read more

Asin: B000002MNF

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