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Topic: WORLD'S DUMBEST REVIEW< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
Man In The Rain Offline




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Posted: June 05 2002, 16:01

Okay, so I recently went to allmusicguide.com in the hope of finding out some info about some albums I'm considering buying (Rancid, Natalie Merchant, Cure etc). So I searched for Mike out of curiosity, and this was the review. The entire review.

QUOTE:
New Age meanderings begin to dominate, but the textures change just enough to hold interest. — Bruce Eder

Okay, so once my anger had subsided, I thought:

HMM...how can I channel the force for positive uses? So I thought that, I'll write my own review! Ha, that'll show them - they trumpet the fact that they encourage visitor contributions to improve site content. So I wrote a review, which I guess is flawed because its EXTREMELY complimentary, but still I find no excuse for not substituting mine for THAT pathetic excuse for a review. Oh and by the way, normally their reviews are about 5 paragraphs long. Anyway, here's my review, with the additional email text that I sent to them. I'll post more details here if I get a reply from them:

An epic work of exceptional beauty and depth, Ommadawn marked the creative peak of a 22 year old genius genuinely expanding the bounderies of pop and rock music. Overshadowed by its far more well-known predecessor Tubular Bells, Ommadawn is in actual fact the superior work.

The album showed Oldfield's keen interest in the musical styles of a vast variety of different cultures eleven years before Paul Simon's Graceland, featuring a notable African influence with the appearance of London-based drumming group Jabula. Cheiftains’ Paddy Moloney also makes a guest appearance playing Uillean Pipes, lending the record an Irish air. Oldfield blends his range of influences effectively and creates something genuinely new and ground-breaking.

There are moments of sheer unbridled joy, and moments of unbearable tension. Oldfield's refusal to be bound by anyone else's conventions of how music should sound and be structured resulted in a unique and incredibly innovative masterpiece that still sounds remarkedly fresh and exciting today. With timeless melodies and a significant range of emotions convincingly conveyed by the music, Ommadawn is an underrated masterpiece. Oldfield was never to top this record; he came close with an unofficially termed ‘sequel’, 1990’s Amarok, and 1996’s orchestral composition Mont St. Michel (from Voyager), but nevertheless he remains an innovative and maverick talent. One hopes that one day, proper respect shall be paid to his remarkable musical legacy.
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The existing review on allmusicguide.com for this album is:

New Age meanderings begin to dominate, but the textures change just enough to hold interest. — Bruce Eder

Are people really expected to believe that someone who can't be bothered to write more than a one sentence review for a record has actually bothered to listen to it properly and review it fairly? I think not. That is why I felt the need to submit my own review. Normally amg is an extremely reliable guide and I have used it to advise me in purchases of Peter Gabriel, Cure, and Smashing Pumpkins albums. However I felt that this review certainly did not do this record justice. It would be very nice if my review could be substituted for that already on this page, because I feel that it is far more accurate and fair.

I am a music fan with very broad taste - I have extremely open-minded taste in music, which is why I can appreciate both Enya's 'The Memory Of Trees', and At The Drive-In's 'Relationship Of Command'. I judge music on its merits and not on other people's ideas of what is good and what is not. I hope that my review is included on the site! Thankyou smile

Oliver


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Hergest Ridge 165 - Ommadawn 038 - Incantations 243
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Korgscrew Offline




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Posted: June 05 2002, 20:10

I actually tend not to trust AMG. It can be very useful when there's no information available anywhere else and really, considering its size, they do alright (I'm imagining here the task of collecting together information for so many albums...) but I think it really falls down on the details. An example would be one Mike Oldfield album where the photographer was listed as having played guitar. There are more like that as well...

It's generally a good source, though...just sometimes things have to be double checked (in fact, I think it's always a good idea to double check information...even if I'm the source of it - silly mistakes enjoy nothing more than creeping in where they aren't wanted...)

Still, I hope you get somewhere with that review. It is about time that some people started listening properly to albums like Ommadawn, rather than dismissing them as new age rubbish before they've even put the album on to play.
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Man In The Rain Offline




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Posted: July 11 2002, 18:17

Well they changed their review! It seems that complaining to them actually gets changes made. There is now a more substantial review, written by a different critic (sadly, they declined to use MY review). Whereas I still disagree in parts with the new review - it seems to rather damn Ommadawn with faint praise - it is certainly an improvement on their previous one sentence attrocity:

REVIEW
**********************************************
Although it features the beautiful recorder of Leslie Penny and the Chieftains' Paddy Maloney playing the uilean pipe, Ommadawn didn't gain Mike Oldfield the success he was looking for. The album was released in the same year as the David Bedford-arranged Orchestral Tubular Bells and nine months after Oldfield picked up a Grammy award for the original Tubular Bells album. The most pleasing attribute of Ommadawn is its incorporation of both African and Irish music in its symphonic rock & roll mainframe. Boosted by a hearty amount of different horns, piano, cello, trumpet, and synthesizer, the album has its moments of rising action, but the whole of Ommadawn fails to keep its lovely segments around long enough, and there are some rather lengthy instances that include bland runs of unvaried music. Another plus is Oldfield's use of a choir, giving the album a soft, humanistic feel when contrasted against the keyboards or synthesizer. While it does include flashes of Mike Oldfield's brilliance, the entire album may seem a little anticlimactic when compared to some of his other releases. — Mike DeGagne
**********************************************

I am now seriously considering suggesting to people here that we seek to make further complaints to allmusic guide in order to improve the accuracy of their Mike Oldfield content. If we make our collective voices heard then maybe we could get some album ratings improved - if anyone else cares? Or maybe its not worth it. Oh well, at least this changed  :)

Oliver


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Hergest Ridge 165 - Ommadawn 038 - Incantations 243
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Korgscrew Offline




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Posted: July 11 2002, 19:30

Leslie Penny? Oh well, at least they gave it a more favourable review ;)
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raven4x4x Offline




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Posted: July 14 2002, 00:11

How can they call Ommadawn anticilmatic? I'm not sure they have the right album here. Anticlimatic is the one thing Ommadawn is NOT, especially at the end of part one. I suppose they might be refering to On Horseback, but I really like that song.

Yeah, some albums don't even HAVE reviews. They don't even have a star rating for Crises, Earth Moving, Discovery and Guitars. And don't get me started about Heaven's Open having a better rating than Amarok!!!
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Korgscrew Offline




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Posted: July 14 2002, 10:08

I suppose what they mean is not that it's lacking in climaxes, but that it's a bit disappointing compared to what you might have expected after hearing some of his other albums. Fans will still disagree on that point, though...
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James Offline




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Posted: July 20 2002, 22:47

Goodness!
Bland is not a word that comes a million miles close to Ommadawn.The cinsiderable amount of work Mike put into this work.Mike spent a lot of time just choosing the many textures and timbres,bland oh nooo get your ears syringed please. :(
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qjamesfloyd Offline




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Posted: April 10 2014, 09:29

I thought I'd check out AMG to se if they have changed their review, no, still the same one after 12 years, not only that, but it still says Leslie Penny :p

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Travellerman Offline




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Posted: April 10 2014, 11:41

I don't bother with reviews or reviewers, they're 99% meaningless opinion that doesn't interest me at all. I'll read them after I have an album.. to obtain another perspective or nugget of information perhaps.

Saying "...the entire album may seem a little anticlimactic when compared to some of his other releases..." just about proves my point I think.

Utter tosh. :D
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qjamesfloyd Offline




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Posted: April 11 2014, 04:34

Your right, utter tosh ;)
I think most reviewers just don't like Mike's music, and as such cannot be objective about it. They seem to compare every album to TB, which is just stupid.


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9 replies since June 05 2002, 16:01 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

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