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The Wild Geese / Code Name: Wild Geese
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Always been a big fan of this film ever since seeing it in the cinema in 1978.
Just got this blu ray and the transfer is excellent. 5 out of 5!We all have different ideas on a good transfer but watched the first 40 mins andthen put on the DVD for comparison and then back and the picture is much clearer,more brighter and colourful. Great job. Not gonna get any better than this.The desert Africa scenes in the sun look fantastic.
Another note is the DVD copy times at 2hr 8mins and the Blu Ray is 2hr 14mins.Where the difference is I have yet to compare.
EXTRAS - You also get a whole extra film of the unofficial sequel - Codename: Wild Geesestarring Lewis Collins, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgnine and Klaus Kinski. This clocks inat 1hr 23mins. Watched the first few minutes and has a dodgy Beverley Hills Cop typesoundtrack but looks ok - can't complain though having a 2nd movie for free.
BOOKLET - another surprise is a 22 page booklet covering information on the productionof The Wild Geese, Euan Lloyd (the producer) and Codename: Wild Geese all with photos.Lets face it, most blu rays you get nothing!
SLEEVE - a final nice touch and the icing on the cake is the sleeve is reversable so ifyou don't like the revised image you can turn it around and get the classic DVD coverversion (which I prefer).
To sum a up a great upgrade from DVD for various reasons. This looks even better thansome 90's movies goddammit!!!! Seeing Burton, Harris and Moore in HD.....class!!!!
A Life Within A Day: Deluxe Edition
Squackett - CD
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Downloaded this and have given it several listens for a fair review.
Firstly through interviews, we were told this was classic Genesis meets Yes. Don't go expecting Dance On A Volcano crossed with Yours Is No Disgrace though which is what I was expecting.Personally I don't think this meets the mould. I'd personally say it's a bit closer to GTR meets 90125 crossed with some Zeppelin and The Beatles which is no bad thing.Makes a decent hybrid actually..
A Life Within A Day - Probably the albums most prog orientated track. I'd more say it's Yes crossed with Led Zeppelin with a heavy Kashmir type riff. A fast Yes typejazzy middle section really lifts this track into the class!!Tall Ships - Opens with a nice acoustic part from Steve giving way to a bass riff from Squire leading to a chorus that smoothly sails in (excuse the pun). Great track.Divided Self - Starts with a Beatles type riff from Steve. Basically a pop tune with a nice solo from Steve.Aliens - This one sticks out like a sore thumb (sorry Chris). The melody and playing is actually quite nice but the lyric just stands out as a bit wierd.Sea Of Smiles - Good catchy chorus on this one. One of the albums strongest tracks.The Summer Backwards - Another Beatles(y) type track. Nice one this. Quaint. Seems to finish too early though.Storm Chasers - The albums 2nd heavy number. A thumping Zeppelin type drum beat with Steve taking lead vocals.Can't Stop The Rain - Classic Squire on this one. The albums best track for me. Could've sat nicely on Fish Out Of Water 2.Perfect Love Song - Joined onto the last track. A great riff from Steve. A nice closer.
To sum up a pretty strong album. The production is excellent and the vocals are perfectly layered in. If you enjoyed Beyond The Shrouded Horizon then you'll like this.To be honest I think fans of Genesis, Yes, Zep and The Beatles would enjoy this.I'd have preferred them to just stretch the song a little more to let them breath a bit. Some of them you're sitting enjoying and they seem to end too quickly.At 46 mins you feel that there's 15min missing as we're so used to Cds being about an hour long.Chris and Steve's vocals do sit nicely together, I think this is one of the many plus points of the album.Still well worth checking out and I'll be playing this all through the Summer.
Here's to the possible upcoming tour. Hope they do Silently Falling :)
Fly From Here (CD & DVD Digipack)
Yes - CD
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The album definately sounds more cohesive than the last few previous efforts. Mind you there were good things about The Ladder and Magnification. Hell, I even liked Open Your Eyes.
For those not in the know this album features the studio versionof a track performed on the 1980 Drama tour called We Can Fly From Here available on The Word Is Live box set. Not only have they extended it to 23mins in 5 parts, it's also the longest track in Yes history.
Note - The album has been produced by Trevor Horn who broughtGeoff Downes back in full time on keyboards who has now rejoined the band for the upcoming tour.
Gotta say it's kind of like :-
50% Drama30% Tormato20% 90125
Great album. Really enjoying it. Life On A Film Set is really good.Who cares it's an old Buggles track. Would love to hear that live!!Fly From here is damned good. Sad Night At The Airfield is coming home to me, especially the lines "Turn your self around, turn your life around".Some nice harmonies. The transition into Bumpy Ride could have been a bit smoother, sorry. But that's what they need. More quirkiness like Bumpy Ride - it sounds like it could've come from Tales!!! I think the band could really realise, "hey we've gotta stop chasing these 5 min pop songs".I doubt we'll ever get another Soundchaser or Yours Is No Disgrace.That's because now write differently, arrange and write better. But then why bother!
It was obviously a first class idea to bring Downes back in. Geoff has a great melodic style and can really do a great job in layering keyboards with Howe's guitar. The fact he was brought into do most of the keyboards at late notice is amazing. I think he and Horn have saved Yes again like a 2nd coming (and then Rabin appears later! Anderson, Wakeman and Rabin anyone?)
All the tracks are well done and (of course) the production is clearand beyond perfect. You can hear everything with clarity. What's more it's just nice to listen to a new Yes album for the first time in 10 years.
Asia: Spirit Of The Night - Live In Cambridge 09
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Guess you're wondering how this compares to Fantasia?I liked Fantasia but it was just a tad too dry for me. Also I alwayshad a problem that Carl's drums took a back seat.
Well this recording corrects all that. It was mixed by Mike Paxmanwho recently produced their new album Omega and Mark Evans.They have done a fantastic job and instead of it sounding dry havemanaged a nice balance in all the intruments and vocals andgiven the whole sound a nice ambience.
It's worth buying alone for My Own Time and Open Your Eyes.Two cracking tracks and great versions here.
Only problem is it's 65minutes long. Too short. A minor gripe.If you said to me have a badlt mixed 100min concert or an excellentlymixed 65minute concert I'll take this one any day.This is THE Asia live show you have been waiting for.
The Syn - CD
Since they reformed in 2004 I have bought all their releases. For thosethat wonder what this is like since Chris Squire left after one album - the excellent Syndestructible in 2005 - this is possibly an even better album surprisingly.
The lineup for this is Francis Dunnery - ex It Bites and Tom Brislin on keyboards who toured with Yes in 2001.
Every song on this album is great. There is not one song that is weakwhich was the first surprise. The next is the feel and emotion that come from the songs. If you have heard any of Steve Nardelli's vocals you have to admit he is not the best of singers but he makes up for itwith great lyrics and can produce some neatly crafted songs.
Quite a lot of the tracks have a laid back acoustic feel with nice vocalharmonies courtesy of Dorie Jackson. Note there is 10 tracks on the CD and not 9 as listed above. This CD has hardly left my CD playersince I got it a week ago and have now played it enough to give it a decent review.
BTW the lineup that recorded this CD have since split up. A shame cuase it would be great to hear another album by this lineup.
In case you don't know you should check out the 2CD Original Syn release which has 3 tracks with ex-Yes guitarist Peter Banks recorded 2004 including the excellent 14min Illusion and a 16min version of Time And A Word which I first laughed at but is fantastic.
Asia: Fantasia Live In Tokyo
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I bought the DVD version when it first came out.The Blu-Ray landed on my doorstep this morning and have watched bothflicking between the two starting them at the same point - out of interest.
The picture quality is definately better, sharper. A bit of a no braineryou may think but there have been movies I've bought on Blu-Ray alreadyhaving them on DVD and cannot see improvement. The best indication is it's on a par to the Yes - Montreux '03 Blu-Ray. Stunning visually.
As for the audio I played the DVD then switched to the Blu-Ray withoutadjusting the audio level and was nicely surprised that it was way louder! Ok, could've been re-mixed as I've commented in previous reviewsthat Palmer's drums have lost a lot of power in the mix but having livedwith this release for a couple of years it is one of the best concertreleases in my collection.
To sum up - excellent sharp picture (playing on a PS3 and 40" Sony HDTV)improved audio, fantastic set list (people moan about Yes, King Crimson,Buggles & ELP tracks, but I feel if they want to play them fair enough) - I'm just glad they're back and really touring and putting out product!
All in all, for £10 this was a really good upgrade and worth the cost of 3 pints of lager for multiple evenings worth of entertainment.
Last thing - one star deducted for audio mixing. Don't let that put you off though. Since they've reformed I've seen them 4 times. Next time guys, stick some mics in the audience to capture the real power of your live show.
Asia - CD
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I saw the band twice on their UK tour in Dec 2006. The strength and power of the Palmers drum knocked me out.Was looking forward to this set. A few tracks in I immediately noticed and was horrified that Palmers drums have been very badly mixed way too low and on several tracks you can hardly hear him. It actually soundslike just a soundboard bootleg with overdubs.
they could and should have done better for guys of this experience. Apparently according to Downe's blog it wasmixed by the whole band. I find that hard to believe.A shame as it's a cracking set list. I just hope the mix hasbeen corrected on the live DVD.