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I Just Wasn't Made for These Times


Price: CDN$ 12.99
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 17 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: MCA - Universal Special Imports
  • ASIN: B000002OX9
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #30,696 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Meant For You
2. This Whole World
3. Caroline, No
4. Let The Wind Blow
5. Love And Mercy
6. Do It Again
7. The Warmth Of The Sun
8. Wonderful
9. Still I Dream Of It
10. Melt Away
11. 'Til I Die

Product Description

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Audio CD
I hate to critique the fans of Brian Wilson who took the time to review this album, but, to those who speak ill of the song selections and performances, I'm afraid you might be missing something. I wonder if you are waiting for the fun-in-the-sun hits of the early '60s, and, if so, I agree that this is the wrong album for you. But, for those who want to read about this album as it stands...
First, the performances. No one questions that Wilson's voice is worse now (and was worse in the mid-90's, when the album was recorded, although [in what is becoming an extended aside], I would argue he sounds better in 2002 than he did in 1995) than it was in 1966. But have you heard Roger Daltrey or Paul McCartney lately? (I would include Lou Reed and Bob Dylan, but, well...) It just isn't reasonable to assume that a 60-year-old man can still sing with that sweetness Wilson had during his first decade in the business. The musicianship in the instrumental performances is top notch. I would argue that, with the honest, natural arrangements and instrumentation, this album contains the definitive versions of Melt Away and Love and Mercy. (The album versions are so drenched in '80s-style synths and reverb that the brilliance of the songs is drowned.) And while I prefer the Wondermints' clarity in their background singing, these soulful background singers are certainly more than capable of handling their parts.
As for song selection, I couldn't be more pleased. Meant For You, criticized for being short (apparently...?) by another reviewer, is a beautiful, open, optimistic piece that leads this album off as perfectly as it did Friends in 1968. I lead off my own, personal "Brian Wilson's Greatest Hits" CD with it, too.
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Format: Audio CD
My first reaction after listening to this disc was "Why?" The only justification I could imagine would be if Capitol refused to allow Brian permission to use the original recordings in the documentary (to which this serves as the "soundtrack"). What Brian has done here in re-recording some of his most beloved Beach Boys (and a few solo) tracks is akin to changing the formula for Coke. Why mess with perfection? Brian's voice on these recordings, while not entirely ruined, is certainly a far cry from what it used to be. It is actually painful to listen to him, 30 years on, trying to recreate the vocal magic of "Warmth of the Sun" and "Caroline, No". The studio backup singers are adequate but they may as well have been accompanying Michael Bolton. The most agregious misstep here is the version of "Til I Die" which completely misses the point of the "Surf's Up" original. Curiously, only one demo is included, "Still I Dream Of It", a song Brian allegedly intended to give to Frank Sinatra. I'm not sure why this song was included as there are probably shelves full of more deserving outtakes or demos lying around the vaults. I love Brian's music, especially his self-titled solo album, but this is really wasted energy.
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Format: Audio CD
This piece of work is a fantastic highlight of why Brian IS the man. True to his art form, not just a hit manufacturer, Brian makes an album which can take you to the extreme depths of human emotion. He contrasts his fun in the sun theme well with the last track, Happy Days are hear again. She Says That She Needs Me, originally meant for Pet Sounds album, also sends cold shivers down your spine, if you just let the pure thrill of this man's reflection on his past despair, into your heart. Till I Die (the Endless Harmony version especially) is my favourite song of Brian... It is quite haunting, I can feel that high pitch moog tone vibrating inside of me just thinking about it! Anticipating each forth coming note as if I am anticipating a haunting, alien experience to unfold!
How can a beach boy ever have written songs like that? Well, Brian was afraid of water, he wasn't a surfer! His genius is in his ability to write songs from a human feeling perspective. He then takes you a step further, and enables you to discover or remember feelings you never even knew about.
This album I would guess recruited a lot of Brian fans especially out of the Beach Boy fan population. I am one of them!I sure hope Brian will continue to serve up such luscious art delicacies as this album in the year 2028.
Brian makes you celebrate life as a gift in which we can experience and share different emotions, positive or negative, both can be experienced in the beautiful light. Brian not only captures the grandness of life, but also represents the best art can offer the human experience.
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Format: Audio CD
In future decades, Brian Wilson will be placed alongside great, timeless American musicmakers like George Gershwin and Cole Porter, while the Beach Boys will probably be seen as an artifact of their era, just like the corny Gershwin and Porter musicals where their songs were first introduced are now seen as charming but dated.
This album is the first step in that direction. Its impresario, Don Was, sets up a great studio band and chorus (including the old Linda Ronstadt hand Andrew Gold) to represent some of Brian's best songs in an almost concert-like setting. The vocal blend on songs like Caroline, No, Warmth of the Sun, and (especially!) 'Til I Die shows that the brilliance of Brian's arrangements transcends the Beach Boys and their particular vocal qualities and cultural iconography.
At some point soon, I hope that the idea behind this all-too-brief selection is taken on the road: Brian with full band and chorus, giving his brilliant songs a full professional presentation, without Beach Boys Hawaii-shirt nostalgia, but instead an acknowledgement that THIS is the man who made this music, and THIS is how it should be heard.
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