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Thought For Food

Books Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 29.88
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Thought For Food + Lemon Of Pink
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Product Details

Product Description

Filled with endearing and enduring songs, the Books revisit their wide-eyed beginnings with this remastered Thought For Food, repackaged with all-new artwork and expanded to include lyrics for every song for the first time ever. Carefully and thoughtfully remastered from the original mixes by Zammuto at his new studio outside his home in Vermont, TFF now boasts a warmth and clarity that surprisingly reveals an increased harmonic depth. --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Pseudo-intellectual Feb. 7 2003
Format:Audio CD
This modern composition is not quite jazz, or minimalism, or folk, or anything... The Books try to hover somewhere in-between all of these things. Like most other post-punk, conceptual, and No-wave artists they attempt to illogically fashion their own assortment of non-music. I may be deemed incorrect in the eyes of enthusiasts, but I am no longer impressed. Ok, I will admit that there are some high points, and I will probably never discard this CD into the for-sale / burn on the fire stack. But, this does not deserve a 5 or even a 4. The arrangements jangle along with plucks and twangs, and they occasionally become something great. However, the great parts only last for a few minutes, and the other tracks just meander haplessly in search of themselves. In the meantime audio samples joggle through meaninglessly like an insomniac halfheartedly channel surfing cable television. Some dull moments tend to echo Aphex Twin's monotonous cacophonies, only without the abrasive and offensive refuse that he typically falls back on. But, the Books keep clanking along hoping that everyone will be fooled. This album reminds me of the variety of the people attempting to establish themselves as Artists by constructing Color field paintings in 2003. Hello, does anyone out there remember John Cage and the philosophical roots of this audio technique? The past has already proven that anything can be art, and likewise anything can be music. These statements opened the way to the endless creative operations of the mind. For the Books to merely replicate these accounts of the past is excessive and trite. There is no apparent inventiveness or endowment here. In my opinion, it seems that people see transparent nonsense as an equivalent to genius. So, I recommend this to any person who believed that 'Kid A' was a revolutionary masterpiece. You deserve yourselves.
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Format:Audio CD
Rare. Innovative. Mind-expanding? Smart. Exciting. Meditative. If I had to choose a bunch of All Music Guide adjectives to sum up this album, those would be them. The Books' Thought For Food is a hard album to pin down as it's electronic, and yet feels more like folk than IDM. Maybe this is what Momus was talking about? Probably not, since he was talking about folk musicians starting out with synths and making their music with those instruments as a starting point. The Books are more complicated than a simple metaphor or equation can explain.
So I'll start by saying that The Books are two men: Nick Zammuto and Paul de Jong. According to a dead-on review of the record by Mark Richardson, there are four main instruments on the album: Guitar, violin, samples, and silence. Sometimes a guitar and cello will make up a bed for the samples, sometimes vice-versa. Each song is its own unique world. But throughout the whole of it, what really makes the album stunning, is the samples. Each is allowed to breath. Nothing on the album feels muddled. If Negativland is the beer, The Books are the wine. This is sampladelic music refined.
On the first track, perhaps my favorite song of the year, "Enjoy Your Worries, You May Never Have Them Again," there is a constantly shifting beat, as samples each struggle to get to the front. There is a contemplative and dramatic guitar line that makes its way throughout, but the clicks, glicks and beats will start and stop at a moments notice while samples of tennis matches, army generals, and a woman I recognized as "Hazel" from the NPR show Lost and Found Sound each jostle for attention but are cut off before they can say anything. It's just an impossibly profound song that doesn't come out and directly say anything.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Rainbow, rainbow, rainbow! Dec 22 2002
Format:Audio CD
A creaky old train slipped on the rails, spilled it's junked record collection, and various documentarian relics, and someone decided to provide folk guitar accompaniment.
A stretch of samplings and wrinklings, saturations and drips, The Books' Thought for Food is a loverly album dears.
Try to think of it as something ancient, meaning the near past, coupled with the presence of mind to not discount it, but to change it, to twist and frist it into a miscellany of true spirit. A brew for drinking!
Like on the song "All Our Base Belong to Them" starts "I was born on the day that music died" by a slow and low voice, there is no joy in this present that we have created, no tangible excitement, but we still make music.
We are used to the cliché of post-modernity, the neon Statue of Liberty clothed in pudding, wearing sunglasses.
Here, just because we are bringing seemingly disparate things together (sampling and guitar, quotes and a hip 1870's beat) but here, we believe in it, we accept it. We don't want to analyze it, or figure out the "symbolism" or the "gender issues," we just want to listen.
So listen, listen! Even if you have a heart condition.
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4.0 out of 5 stars "Welcome to the human race... you're a mess" Dec 5 2002
Format:Audio CD
Innovative. That's a word I haven't heard very often referring to new releases this year. I always love albums that are difficult to explain to someone that's never heard it, especially if that person listens to as much stuff as you do, giving you a wide selection for points of reference to choose from, yet still coming up short in your attempt at an accurate description. Collectively known as the Books, the duo of Paul de Jong (from New York) and Nick Zammuto (from North Carolina) have produced an album that contains some pretty off-the-wall sound samples, disturbing dialogue, and even some old-fashioned singing (huh?). All this takes place over the top of some type of music, usually very simplistic in nature, such as an acoustic guitar and a violin. While odd voice samples are nothing new, you've never heard them employed in such a way as found here. This doesn't come off completely flawless, however. Thought For Food feels a little rough around the edges. On some tracks, everything comes together beautifully. In other tracks, they slightly miss their mark. When you've got something that sounds as fresh as this, why nitpick?
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Triangulating this sound
Okay, silly exercise of triangulating between reference points nearly as obscure.
The Books is somewhere between the raw acoustic two-guys strings and percussion of... Read more
Published on March 28 2004 by Stephen E. Witham
5.0 out of 5 stars different but beautiful
I dont really know what to write for this review. The music is weird and kind of like stuff I have heard, but somehow it works in a most unusual way. Read more
Published on Dec 26 2003 by Willoughby
2.0 out of 5 stars Seriously, it�s not that good.
I would like to reassert my previous criticisms. After months of repeated listens and fair-minded scrutiny this CD is nevertheless mediocre and trite. Read more
Published on June 11 2003 by Wm. Mars
5.0 out of 5 stars what the
An excellent piece. each song sounds different, so if you only listen to it once, which you should at least do, listen to all the songs all the way through.
Published on May 26 2003 by C. Hopf
5.0 out of 5 stars Huh.
Just to spite the fellow below, who actually still believes that the term "pseudo-intellectual" is even remotely insulting, when in fact it is a term of speech employed solely by... Read more
Published on May 12 2003 by "writing_static"
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful and detailed
the endless spirals of complexity on this album are remiscent of works by boards of canada or up in flames by manitoba. Read more
Published on May 7 2003 by Floating Skull in the Hallway
5.0 out of 5 stars pitchforkmedia review, a soft heart melting ice.....
Every once in a while a record like this one appears out of the ether without clear reference points. Read more
Published on Nov. 18 2002 by treblekicker
5.0 out of 5 stars It's got to be done
I'm not at all qualified to write a review of a cd like this, but people stumbling across this have to have some idea of how great this cd is, so theyll know to buy it. Read more
Published on Nov. 11 2002 by Alec Empire
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