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Topic: What a load of......, just listened to cd 1 & 2< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
TOBY Offline




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Posted: Sep. 29 2005, 13:00

Personally I actually prefered Tres Lunas to L+S simply becasue there are some good tunes on it and I thoroughly enjoyed MVR (got a Mac now so can't play it again, boo). I don't think L+S is awful and I'm certainally not about to burn my MO collection in protest of it. On the contrary I think TOAA is the most emotive piece of music he's writen in ages with the best guitar solo he's writen in ages, heck I'd say the double album was worth it for just that one track. There is though for me to much either, plinky plonky synth noises or tunes that aren't memorable and seem to go no where. Thats certainally my opinion thus far after 4 days with it. If you took the best tunes from Tres Lunas and the best tunes from L+S you could have a pretty damm good set of MVR related chill out listening. Time to make my ipod playlist methinks......
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Ian Too Offline




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Posted: Sep. 29 2005, 15:05

I'd just like to say that I agree with Timeslip's comments about bass lines, though I think it's for a different reason.

There do seem to be distribution problems here in the UK, so I can't comment about L+S. I'm goint to London Saturday to see A History of Violence, so I'll pop into HMV or Virgin to pick up a copy.  At least I'm going to be able to give L+S a decent listen over the weekend, so there is a bright side to the delay. What with the paperback of Going Postal and the DVD release of The League of Gentlemen's Appocalypse, it's going to be an expensive weekend. :)

Anyway Timeslip, I would imagine the only feeling Mike would have after playing the same riff for 5 minutes is relief! It must require a lot of concentration and stamina to maintain the effort for something which is only there to help set the atmosphere, so I can well imagine why Mike would chose the electronic approach.

However, in my opinion it is a mistake, because although I seriously doubt the emotional importance of the bass riff in most music, I do think the minor imperfections do lend the track depth. This because the brain is very good at filtering out noises that carry no information, so if the riff is repeated exactly, it will be ignored and that will make the track sound flat; especially to ears which have encountered the finale of Incantaions or Ommadawn.

I feel exactly as you do about Tres Lunas, but I do enjoy Thou Art In Heaven and Sirius for the wonderful solo guitar work. The rest of the album I find uninspired and I am hoping for better from L+S.


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What Remains to be Discovered by John Maddox
Also doing far too much decorating than is good for one :)
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TOBY Offline




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Posted: Sep. 29 2005, 15:17

I don't know, there are some seriously good and emotive bass lines out there and Mike has certainally produced some emotive one's in his time. The famous bass line during the intro of TB is a good example and I always thought Mike's bass playing on The Lake was particularly strong.

Bass is always someting you take for granted in a track and rarely pay attention to it but I always love music where the bass lines are really expressing themselves and doing something of their own.
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timeslip Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 02:37

Quote (TOBY @ Sep. 29 2005, 15:17)
I don't know, there are some seriously good and emotive bass lines out there and Mike has certainally produced some emotive one's in his time. The famous bass line during the intro of TB is a good example and I always thought Mike's bass playing on The Lake was particularly strong.

Bass is always someting you take for granted in a track and rarely pay attention to it but I always love music where the bass lines are really expressing themselves and doing something of their own.

Glad someone agrees with me, lol

Talking as someone who was without a bass player in their band for 4 months, i can tell you with complete authority that although as a whole its easy to take the bass for granted its extremely noticable without any or boring and flat playing!

However i was talking about mainly the rythmn guitar and lead licks, as opposed to the bass riffs.

But it hold true with both
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Abs Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 05:07

Greetings fellow great music lovers. Here's my take on L+S after having listened to Light in full 3 times and Shade in full 4 times (far easier to work out to than Light).
IMO this is the best album (excluding TSODE - my favourite MO album) since Amarok. Yes, this includes comparisons with TB2 and TB3. This is based simply on the amount of enjoyment I get from listening to both CDs.

Highlights of the Light CD include:

First Steps
Blackbird
Rocky
Our Father

But the standout tracks for me are Angelique and Sunset. My favourite track is Our Father. Although this is not the best track on the Light CD and is a tad repetitive I think it's a nice tune to relax to much in the same way as No Man's Land from Tres Lunas.

Can't really get into The Gate and although Closer is a nice tune I don't really care much for different versions of traditional tunes. Similarly the bonus track of Pres de Troi doesn't do anything for me.

The Shade CD is my favourite.

Quicksilver is a very good dance track but would have loved it even more if the TB motif had not been used and if parts of it did not sound a bit like Robert Miles' music. However, I think the last couple of minutes are stunning.

Slipstream, although good, is a standard dance track. Also I found this track a little disappointing as I was looking forward to this track more than most due solely to the name. Slipstream suggested a turbo-charged, thumping kind of track but instead it's a decent tune that just meanders.

Romance isn't bad (its definitely not utter rubbish). I quite like it and I think the criticism comes from the familiarity of this track. On its own it's a good tune.

Despite what I said about Closer earlier I really like MO's version of Lakme. Its a very uplifting track.

Now to the best bits.

Nightshade is an exceptional dance track. The drums for once are good and its such a different and refreshing track from MO.

My favourite track is Resolution. I think this is an awesome track (although TOAA, Surfing and Ringscape are better!;) even though it does remind me of a Sterephonics track. This could be used in a big budget film where our heroes are ready to do battle and get payback against some monster aliens on some far out planet.

Surfing is excellent. The voices work well and the guitar solo is exceptional and played with emotion.

TOAA - WOW! Exceptional guitar solo again possibly even better than the one on Surfing.

I like the Ringscape version on Shade better than the game mainly because of the organ which I think works well. Slightly disappointed that the guitar melody doesn't develop any further.

In summary, ignoring the bonus tracks, there are 2 tracks I am not overly keen on but this leaves 14 tracks that range IMO from good to exceptional. This can't be said of MO's recent albums.

Overall I still feel that the guitar has again been underplayed and I think it's a shame that this album could not have been released 7-8 years ago at the height of trance music. But its definitely one of my favourite MO albums already.

Also I know if someone's spent their hard-earned cash to buy this album they're entitled to their opinion, good or bad. I think a lot of people have seriously high expectations (e.g. the next Amarok, Ommadawn, etc - rightly or wrongly so) and immediately compare this to the other albums which I suppose is natural.

But I think people need to chill, put the album on loud on a decent music system and not think of past albums. Just try to enjoy. This is right here and right now - not in the 70's. MO's released some dodgy albums of late BUT THIS AINT ONE OF THOSE!

Sorry to end on a rant.
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TubularBelle Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 06:09

Welcome to the site Abs (are they made of steel?) You are the first person besides me who I have seen say that it was good music to excercise to. I plan to follow in Galadriels footsteps, and lose weight with inspiration from Mike. Platinum use to be my excercise album so I need something new. Haven't heard the whole album yet but I had heard 6 in total, and I don't mind Romance, it will probably end up being my favourite track. But after listening to the two hour radio program from Poland (I think?) which aired on Sept 14th, I have now heard several more tracks. There will be no surprises left for little old me. It is valuable to be able to hear these tracks mixed in with all his previous works, old and new and to get a better perspective of whether they stand out from the others in quality or style. I want to hear it all again before I comment properly but the general sense I got was not from the music as it all seemed to blend in quite nicely but from the 'sound', the new tracks seemed slightly muffled to me and the older tracks had more crispness and clarity to them.

You must really like this album, you listed 5 favourites and a few that were even better than your favourites!! What more can you want?


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I hate getting up early. I didn't even realise there were two 6 o'clocks in one day!
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timeslip Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 12:15

Listened to it a lot over last couple of days (see prev comments for initial opinions) and really starting to grow on me.
All my initial complaints, looping, the dodgy guitar samples in Resolution etc etc, still stand, and myself as a musician would appriciate it more if it was done `the hard way` as opposed to letting the computer do the lions share of the work.....

However

Theres some great tunes there....

I do have to say tho if the albums were done as a series of long pieces(same songs just interwined) as opposed to the 3-4 singles i bet it would be a lot more warmly recieved
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DarkenedEdo Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 12:42

I'm really sad, but I agree with axious.
The new Mike's studio setup will include a lot of VST, like Vocaloid, Spectrasonics Atmosphere, Spectrasonics Trilogy and Spectrasonics Stylus (used a lot). He uses the preset sounds, without editing them. The entire album is made quickly, the impression is "ok, this tracks is not bad, go with another one". There isn't a general project, but few tracks together in the same album, a sort of B_side compilation.
A lot of songs seems to be demos. Sometimes the guitar parts are played as "good the first, let's print".
The 2 links of First steps that merge the 3 parts are forced and made without care.
All the musicians in this forum know exactly what i mean.
It could be an excellent J.M. Jarre album, but being an Oldfield album it's a poor product. I've heard in the Fan Music section something better.
Sorry, i love Mike, and this is the reason because i'm so disappointed.


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Tubularman Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 13:19

ha ha ha Tubularbelle  :laugh:  very funny avatar!! I saw that something was moving but didnt reconized what it was. But now as i see,    i almost laught me do dead ha ha!!

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Cinos Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 13:32

Quote (DarkenedEdo @ Sep. 30 2005, 12:42)
It could be an excellent J.M. Jarre album, but being an Oldfield album it's a poor product.

I'm not sure what you mean here. Would it be better if it was exactly the same, but made by Jarre? That makes no sense.
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Sir Mustapha Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 13:46

I think the idea is that if Jarre was making the album, he would have done it better, because of his higher skills with synthesizers.

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Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
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Sir Mustapha Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 15:08

Awright!

Impressions after first listen:

Most of the album is still a bit fresh in my memory, even if I'm at work, and a little annoyed at stuff. But so far, the album is nowhere near being 1/4 as good as Sigur Rós's "Takk...". Maybe repeated listens will make me like this one more. Maybe.

So far, there's only one standout track: "Angelique", and that's only because of that goddamn catchy piano riff, which is already clinically, hopelessly stuck to my brain - just like the theme for "The Backyardigans". The arrangement for the track doesn't let me down, actually. "Sunset" is pleasant, and... err, yeah. As for the rest, well, "Closer" is Nearer My God To Thee; "First Steps" is basically an overlong version of the title track of Tr3s Lunas; "Quicksilver" is a mess of random synthesizer effects over an electronic beat that grows more and more generic as it proceeds; "Romance" is utterly, utterly atrocious; "Resolution" has atrocious "The Great Gig In The Sky" vocals; "Tears Of An Angel" is every bit as "... huh?" inducing as it was when I listened to the preview; "Surfing" is not half-bad; and "Ringscape" is a straight-to-the-point "Snow Cavern Flight".

A conclusion: DAMN THE VOCALOIDS. DAMN THEM ALL TO HELL. To me, "The Gate" was the final drop. The Vocaloids do nothing good to me. Really.

That's all I have to say for now. A track-by-track review will be coming when I have a formed opinion in each track (hopefully after twenty listens).


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Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
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pipetune Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 15:23

With the best will in the world - L&S is v poor.
The problem older artists have is that if they bring out a poor album in the later part of there career it destroys or can destroy all the credibility which the artist built up over the years. Suddenly you wonder if the other stuff was just a fluke because if he really was a genius, he wouldn’t have released or even made this album.
Quite honestly this dance stuff is a bit long in the tooth now. What’s wrong with real musicians anyway? I know Mike has ripped out all his old recording equipment and replaced it with a computer, trouble is it sounds exactly like an album made on a PC in somebody’s bedroom.
I find the album actually very tedious to listen to, it’s boring. The main reasons for this is lack of a tune, little guitar, re-cycled sounds and patterns which repeat far too many times. Lack of a producer has always been Mike’s problem. You need somebody to tell you - that is not good enough – you can do better.
:/
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Sir Mustapha Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 15:42

Quote (pipetune @ Sep. 30 2005, 15:23)
I know Mike has ripped out all his old recording equipment and replaced it with a computer, trouble is it sounds exactly like an album made on a PC in somebody’s bedroom.

I beg to differ. Bedroom music most often reeks of enthusiasm, honest effort, creativity, too. People who do music on their bedroom often have great ideas boiling inside their heads, and are aching to make it come true in any way possible - even if it means using an old Casio keyboard. Light + Shade sounds like the atmosphere of a studio with laptops, big synthesizers, monitors with "cool" looking software, blinking switches, and a big, comfy chair in which a man lazily fiddles around with built-in settings. And, of course, there's no signs of human beings in a radius of ten kilometers around the studio.

Just a bit of venom for ya... don't take this too seriously.


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Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
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TOBY Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 15:52

I think its very easy to think an artist looses credibility when they start releasing was is perhaps considered bad work after releasing what is perhaps considered good work. (I'm being diplomatic with my choice of words here)  The fact of the matter is Mike is very much not alone in growing older, changing his artistic attitudes and releasing work of questionable quality. Lots of musicians of his generation, and younger, have fallen into similar artistic traps and compromised themselves is various ways and for various reasons to the perceived detriment of their music. Look at how many other musicians have 'lost it', 'regained it' and 'lost it again' and this goes on and on.

Personally I do agree with you Pipetune on most of your points especially on the issue of Mike working with a producer, I think this is with out a doubt the most needed thing in his career.
I was reading an article in a magazine recently about Paul McArtney hiring Radiohead's uber producer Nigel Godrich to produce his recently released album. Apparently in the first meeting Paul had with Nigel Nigel said 'I'm going to be blunt with you Paul and say I can't actually remember the last time you released a halfway decent album' to which McArtney was obviously very shocked (afterall NO ONE speaks to Paul McArtney that way) but knew there and then that Nigel was the right man for the job because he knew Nigel would push him to his artistic limits.

When I read that I did think to myself how interesting would it be for Mike to work with somebody who was that honest with him but who had his best interests in mind. I can't see it ever happening I just don't think Mike is that adventurous anymore.
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Sir Mustapha Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 15:56

Quote (TOBY @ Sep. 30 2005, 15:52)
When I read that I did think to myself how interesting would it be for Mike to work with somebody who was that honest with him but who had his best interests in mind. I can't see it ever happening I just don't think Mike is that adventurous anymore.

Well, he dumped Tom Newman, after all...

--------------
Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
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TOBY Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 16:12

I don't think its any coincidence that with the exception of Ommadawn ALL of Mike's best works have been collaborations in the producers chair.
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moonchildhippy Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 17:41

Quote (TubularBelle @ Sep. 30 2005, 11:09)
Welcome to the site Abs (are they made of steel?) You are the first person besides me who I have seen say that it was good music to excercise to. I plan to follow in Galadriels footsteps, and lose weight with inspiration from Mike.

Welcome to TubularBoard Abs, or should that be Tubular Slimming World??? Mike Oldfield's new slimming aid  Light + Shade.  Well it's working for me :) .  I volunteered to deliver Slimming World leaflets to  about 200 houses in my area, well it's excersise, Had L&S playing  on my CD Walkman as I was doing this :) .

Tracy your avatar is very funny.  Like to use picture of The Beacon or Hergest Ridge for mine , but can't get it to upload.


Sir Mustapha   Posted on Sep. 30 2005, 20:42
Quote (pipetune @ Sep. 30 2005, 15:23)
I know Mike has ripped out all his old recording equipment and replaced it with a computer, trouble is it sounds exactly like an album made on a PC in somebody’s bedroom.

I beg to differ. Bedroom music most often reeks of enthusiasm, honest effort, creativity, too. People who do music on their bedroom often have great ideas boiling inside their heads, and are aching to make it come true in any way possible - even if it means using an old Casio keyboard.

I agree Sir M.   The 1971 Demos of Tubular Bells could be classed as flat music, not 'cause it's dull or boring, but as it was made in Mike's home at the time, a flat in Tottenham, north London using the most basic of recording equipment, TB Demos to me sound fresh and exciting, so full of raw energy and vibrancy      :D .  BTW Does anyone know the adress of Mike's old flat in Tottenham , just out of interest.


--------------
I'm going slightly mad,
It finally happened, I'm slightly mad , just very slightly mad

If you feel a little glum to Hergest Ridge you should come.


I'm challenging  taboos surrounding mental health


"Part time hippy"

I'M SUPPORTING OUR SOLDIERS

BRING OUR TROOPS HOME NOW!!
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Ugo Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 18:21

Am I the only one in here who absolutely loves Romance, Quicksilver, Slipstream, Surfing, Lakme and almost all of the "Light" CD? I have a very vague suspicion that I am. :)

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Ugo C. - a devoted Amarokian
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Marky Offline




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Posted: Sep. 30 2005, 18:56

No Ugo, I am still listening repeatedly to both sides and have yet to find a track I disapprove of.. I think its a grossly under-estimated album by the early reviewers on this site, and has some really good and sometimes exceptional,and very listenable music on it! Hey - listenable: that's what music is for! Revolutionary!
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237 replies since Sep. 25 2005, 08:26 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

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