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Product: Audio CD
Title: Devils & Dust
Label: Sony
Artist: Bruce Springsteen
Rating: 3/5
Customer rating - 3 out of 5
Won't play on my car CD player


I have only listened to the CD once so won't give it a rating (disregard the 3, Amazon made me choose a rating to proceed), but wanted to issue a heads up about the DualDisc format. The CD side will not play on the CD player in my car. From what I have found online, this is not unusual with DualDiscs. I don't like it when something sold as a CD won't play in a CD player!

One comment on the music: I am astonished by the lyrics of "Reno". Not offended, astonished. The best way I can think to describe it is poetic pornography. In another sense, it can be viewed as an upraised finger from Bruce to the far right.



Product: Audio CD
Title: Elton John - Greatest Hits 1970-2002
Label: Utv Records
Artist: Elton John
Rating: 4/5
Customer rating - 4 out of 5
Excellent, but nowhere near complete


Let's be realistic here, even in this case. While this is so far the best attempt made, I do not believe that Sir Elton is one of those artists that you will ever be able to put together a complete greatest package of. All songs here are outstanding of course, but there are so many omissions because he produced that much wonderful material.
All songs here sound wonderful (great mastering job). But I still believe that you (like myself) will still want (or need) several other Elton albums & collections. Because of this, I now find the Greatest Hits Volumes 1 & 2 to be primarily unnecessary to have. However, you may still want to own the 1976 - 1986 collection. I for one can't live without Mama Can't Buy You Love. You may also want to still have Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (check out the new spiffy Deluxe Edition).
If you're also into his late 80's to mid 90's work I still suggest owning Reg Strikes Back (the first half is outstanding), Sleeping With the Past, The One & Made in England.
This is now a great place to begin your Elton collection, but do not end it here. It will whet you appetite to get more.



Product: Audio CD
Title: Slow Dazzle
Label: Universal Int'l
Artist: John Cale
Rating: 5/5
Customer rating - 5 out of 5
MIND BLOWING ROCK


As a unit, this is Cale's best album. The sequence of Dirtyass Rock 'n Roll, Darling I Need You & Rollaroll is out of this world, a hypnotic tour de force with disturbing cinematic imagery e.g. "... Chuch of Christ Jesus Kentucky/Rattlesnakes and strychnine and prayer ..." Guts is an amazing piece of psychotic rock. Ski Patrol is a haunting ballad that reminds me of a John Berryman poem, "Song Of The Tortured Girl." Other favourites include I'm Not The loving Kind and Taking It All Away, both slow sad songs. I'm not crazy about Mr Wilson or his gut-wrenching take on Heartbreal Hotel but most of the critics and his fans are! Buy this album but also investigate the compilation "Seducing Down The Door."



Product: Audio CD
Title: Polytown
Label: Creative Music Prod.
Artist: David Torn, Mick Karn, Terry Bozzio
Rating: 5/5
Customer rating - 5 out of 5
Proto-BLUE


Bought this in search of other material like Bruford Levin's Upper Extremities, and it comes close. Damn close.
Karn's fretless electric bass is Jaco-with-attitude, and Bozzio plays some mighty big drums. All of his heads are damped down so they hit with (to coin a phrase) an "ominous thud." And of course Torn is the guitar that does not sleep.
This is Group 87 brought into the 90's, or King Crimson if Fripp still had integrity. This is music of such ferocity and determination that it might just cause the rest of your collection to whither in shame.
Grapple with it.