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Reviews Written by
Brendan Diamond "raven2017" (Niles, IL United States)

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Metal Machine Music
Metal Machine Music
Offered by Fulfillment Express CA
Price: CDN$ 18.83
49 used & new from CDN$ 4.01

5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Record Of All Time!, April 28 2004
This review is from: Metal Machine Music (Audio CD)
I don't know if the entire music-listening world is completely uneducated, utterly oblivious, or simply that much dumber than me, but how can anyone give this record less than a perfect score? For those fans of Brian Wilson and the lost (and now found) Beach Boys' masterpiece "SMiLE," you should be salivating over "MMM Part 2," which has harmonies obviously rivaling the Brian/Carl ones, as well as a bass line that could kick Mike Love's behind any day.
For fans of jam-based rock outfits like the Grateful Dead, Phish, or the String Cheese Incident, check out "MMM Part 4." For all the noodling Trey Anastasio does, he never quite gets to the point like Uncle Lou does, and the crescendo is phenomenal. Besides that, "MMMP4" makes Tweedle Dumb and Tweedle Dumber from the Dave Matthews Band sound like a Barbara Streisand/Kathy Lee Gifford duet.
Anyone who digs punk rock a la the Ramones or the Sex Pistols (or possibly even the Damned) should check out "MMM Part 3." It's got that catchy riff, one that Iggy Pop would've died for back in the early '70s, and even throws a bit of Bowie-esque glam in for good measure.
Finally, "MMM Part 1," perhaps the most ambitious piece on the whole record, is also quite easily the best. Uncle Lou draws on some of the great soul singers of the '60s and '70s--Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin--but creates a sound all his own. Pete Townshend would've given his little whirlybird thing that he does up just to be able to put this much soul into ANY of his songs (remember, Pete's the one who coined the phrase "Maximum R&B."
What's the matter? Can't hear the stuff I'm talking about? Oh, I understand. See, you need to turn the volume up. Louder. Louder! Now sit back and enjoy.

Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism
Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism
by Ann Coulter
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 39.95
66 used & new from CDN$ 0.62

1.0 out of 5 stars Now Who's Treasonous?, Nov. 12 2003
It's a little bit frightening, this United States that Ann Coulter portrays. Yet in her constant attacks on liberal Americans (without whom, by the way, the U.S. would be a dictatorship of one political viewpoint and party), Coulter never even comes close to criticizing conservatives. Nowhere in Ms. Coulter's catalogue does she criticize the political "slip-ups" of Ronald Reagan, the unabashed lying of the current administration, or the fact that this country has prospered immensely under 20th-century liberal leaders such as Harry S Truman and Theodore Roosevelt (yes, there was a time when Republicans were liberals, Ms. Coulter). This book is meant to be nothing but inflammatory in a much, much harsher sense than even Al Franken's latest or anything Michael Moore has ever done. If readers like inflammatory books, this is the one for you; if you're like me, however, looking for something fair and balanced, this is certainly not the way to go.

Palace at 4am
Palace at 4am
Offered by village_music_world-usa
Price: CDN$ 19.69
9 used & new from CDN$ 1.82

2.0 out of 5 stars The truth about Wilco's talent..., April 13 2003
This review is from: Palace at 4am (Audio CD)
Admittedly, one could have gotten very nervous upon learning Jay Bennett was leaving Wilco; his pop sensibilities helped make "Summerteeth" one of the best records of the '90s and "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" the best record thus far of the new millennium. However, we may have been wrong: Jeff Tweedy, Wilco's leader and perhaps the more creative of the two, is where Wilco's big steps and successes have come. Disagree? Listen to some of the Wilco tracks in comparison to the Bennett/Burch ones...
"My Darling," from "Summerteeth," outweighs dramatically the one presented here in terms of both production and singing ability (Tweedy has matured greatly as a singer since his Uncle Tupelo days while Bennett seems to have gotten even worse since debuting on Wilco's 1996 masterpiece "Being There").
That being said, there are a couple absolutely brilliant tracks on here, "Shakin' Sugar" and "Venus Stopped the Train." Wait a minute! Check your fileshare programs, everybody! Find a song called "Alone" from the "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" demos, and you'll see it bears a striking resemblance to this song--it IS, in fact, the same tune. Same is true of "Venus Stop the Train" from the same sessions. The fact is that Bennett had a hand in writing all three mentioned songs. All are brilliant songs, but most will likely find Wilco's versions better mainly because of Tweedy's involvement. Jeff has also proven that he can create well-crafted pop tunes without Bennett's involvement (see the great "Chelsea Walls" collaboration with Wilco drummer Glenn Kotche); Bennett has a long way to go to live up to that (especially if he keeps singing, which isn't highly recommended).

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