Thursday, June 29, 2006

Extra Wonderful Review

Extra Wonderful review by Music For A Future Age

Ok, so first of all I've never been a big fan of Wonderful the album. I love the song Wonderful and Beautiful Dream, and like Gotta be A Sin, but overall the album I have played a couple of times and just never liked it much- I'm not sure if it's because it isn't like older Ant stuff, or what really. But I bought Wonderful cd singles 1 and 2 at the time and Gotta Be A Sin 1 and 2. So most of these tracks I already had, and had heard the others.

The first 6 are from Wonderful singles. Of them, Goes Around and Woman Love Run Through Me and Norman are the best of the bunch. There is the first of a "remix" of Wonderful- this being the Clearmountain Unedited mix. I get the impression through the few different mixes of Wonderful that they were striving to get the very best mix, though it is such a simple song and catches your ear so quickly that I think the many remixes are unnecessary. One listen and you already either love it or not.

Tracks 10- 15 are from the unreleased single Beautiful Dream, and these are the ones that Ant Fans will really want, because apart from some dodgy quality mp3s, these are impossible to get hold of unless you paid an enormous sum of money for the few CD singles that escaped the net and are sold now and then on eBay (the last one went for over £2000!, so both of them together would probably cost you at least £3000!) Well now at last you don't have to pay THAT much money to own these tracks, you can at least download them. And a note about downloading these tracks: there are a few different sites to get them off of, Carty has started doing a table here of the different sites. Some of them allow you to change the download bitrate of the mp3s, and me if I was going to pay for these, I would want the highest I could get, to make it worth my paying!

So, after Beautiful Dream the single mix, we have Let's have A Fight, Billy Boy, and Shake Your Hips. These are much better b sides than the Wonderful ones (except for Norman, which is written all by Adam, no Marco, and one of Adams's quirky little songs almost like his older Ant day b sides!). Let's have A Fight and Billy Boy are great little tracks, and Shake Your Hips is a cover of a Max (Kevin Mooney) song. Try and get hold of the Max version too, and see if you can hear the difference between the songs!

The remixes of Beautiful Dream are ok, Adam re-recorded the vocals for them. Again not songs I have played an awful lot.

Onto part 2, and these are the live recordings that were spread over the Gotta Be A Sin singles from Adam's run at Shepherds Bush in 1995. These are VERY worth getting hold of, they show Adam doing what he did a lot better than many of his contemporaries- putting on a great live show.

Dog Eat Dog in particular and Cartrouble caught my ear, with the 2 drummers really shining, and on Dog Eat Dog you can hear Dave Barbe playing like his Bow Wow Wow days, tympanis ahoy! It would have been great had Adam got him back to record an album again with another drummer, most of these songs just don't sound right with one drummer, they need two, and on these live rercordings, they got them!

So I would say for the hardcore- wants- everything fan, you'll want all of the tracks for completeness, but for the casual fan, perhaps just go for the live ones.

1 comment:

Michèle said...

I think Wonderful is wonderful. Adam's old stuff is great, but he's matured nicely here. This listener likes to reminisce with the old stuff, but prefers sounds like Wonderful for day-to-day listening. I wish he'd do more!

Your review was very helpful, by the way. I'll have to consider another purchase . . .