Astounding Sounds, Amazing Music

March 9, 2009 | Format: MP3

$8.99
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Also available in CD Format
Song Title
Time
Popularity Prime  
30
1
6:03
30
2
9:46
30
3
5:13
30
4
3:38
30
5
3:47
30
6
5:32
30
7
4:42
30
8
3:17
30
9
3:44
30
10
3:06
30
11
2:56
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: January 20, 2009
  • Release Date: March 9, 2009
  • Label: Atomhenge
  • Copyright: 2009 Esoteric Records
  • Total Length: 51:44
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001QR277A
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,491 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

I would not recommend this as a place to start your Hawkwind collection.
E. Oslan
His particular off center humor and singing style are very distinctive, but not everyone is as keen on him as I am.
jomojomo
It's not necessarily a sellout, but it feels like a really weak effort in comparison to previous albums.
B. E Jackson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By S. Joy on June 22, 2009
Format: Audio CD
I own an earlier CD release, so this reviews the music, not the Cherry Red Records/Atomhenge remastering. Here we find Hawkwind stepping away from a powerful lineup (including Nik Turner and Lemmy Kilmister) that had sadly degenerated (relationship-wise mostly, but arguably musically too - to my ear, Warriors on the Edge of Time, the release just before this one, represented a decline from the standards set by the previous three or four albums) and searching for a new sound, a new identity. The return of Robert Calvert, probably their best lyricist ever and a superb collaborator for band leader Dave Brock, moves them in new directions. The sound sometimes resembles Bowie or Roxy Music as much as Hawkwind blanga: it is more lyrically and melodically complex, less hard-driving for the most part, with fewer skirls of sax or audio generator. So if you only like Hawkwind for Brainstorm or Master of the Universe, it will be a shock at first and you may or may not wind up liking this one. But it is a remarkable achievement. As I understand it, the original idea was to develop a set of songs that would resemble the stories in a pulp SF magazine (hence the title), with perhaps a distinct little stage show for each. Until I picked this one up a year or so ago, I couldn't imagine how the band got from Warriors to Quark, Strangeness, and Charm - this fills in the gap. They aren't yet sounding New Wave, but then, in 1976 nobody else was either!

Anyway, it isn't perfect, but it is very good. Highlights include the lengthy Steppenwolf (Calvert's take on the Herman Hesse novel), Kerb Crawler (another bid for a smash hit single that didn't chart well but probably should've), and Kadu Flyer (Calvert's continuing obsession with piloting has him fantasizing an ultralight flight into the Himalayas).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By E. Oslan on April 2, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As a big Hawkwind fan, I was thrilled to see more albums given the reissue treatment, about time! Cherry Red/Atomhenge focus on the albums that came after 'Warrior on the Edge of Time' (when's that one going to be reissued?!) right through 'Sonic Attack' (I think?) and make a damn good argument that there was life after Lemmy. The CD reissue is fantastic, with amazing packaging, bonus tracks, extensive liner notes and photos and of course, excellent sound. The music on the other hand tells another story. It seems that after firing Lemmy (all Hawkwind fans know the whole story), the band were confused what direction to take and it shows. For one thing, the group had seven members, two of whom were drummers, both playing the standard 4/4. For a second thing, the music is just all over the place. Not diverse in a good way but just confused. After "Reefer Madness" and "Steppenwolf" two terrific, although a bit more generic then typically expected rockers, there are several instrumentals that either sound like Roxy Music or incidental background music for a bad 70s sci-fi flick and honestly "Kerbrawler" sounds a bit to heavy metally with its high pitched whales. And probably, one of the most important elements is missing - Lemmy's driving, pulsating bass, the very thing that defined space rock and classics like 'Doremi Faso Latido', 'Space Ritual' and 'Hall of the Mount Grill' ('Hawkwind' and 'In Search of Space' are great too!). With that all said, Robert Calvert's taking over on lead improved the band's lyrics of course, unlike when guitarist/singer Dave Brock's lyrics were the same two lines repeated over and over ("be yourself/see yourself"). And the rockers are great, starting with basic glam rock riffs and expanding with Simon House's keyboard and viola and Nik Turner's sax.Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By jomojomo on December 15, 2009
Format: Audio CD
****************Personnel:

Robert Calvert - vocals
Dave Brock - electric guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
Nik Turner - saxophone, flute, vocals (on "Kadu Flyer")
Paul Rudolph - bass guitar, electric guitar
Simon House - violin, keyboards
Simon King - drums
Alan Powell - drums

Lemmy is ejected from the band and replaced by Paul Rudoph. Robert Calvert returns and takes up full time vocalist duties, also contributing lyrics. Michale Morecock does not contribute to this album.

****************Technical Details:
I have two versions of this album: the 2009 Cherry deluxe remaster and the 1989 Virgin/Charisma master, so I'll compare those two. The 2009 Cherry/Atomhenge release is slightly less dynamic than the Virgin, but it is imperceptable, so for all practical purposes the dynamic ranges are the same. The virgin release has slightly more top end, but the eq of the two releases is very similar. The 2009 release though has more clarity and is less harsh. I suspect that is down to the better DACs we have today.

The recording and mixing are excellent. There is none of the amateurness of the earlier recordings. The vocals are quite forward in the mix and the guitars somewhat buried though, which is not to my taste. The bass is on the verge of being thin, but it is still in the adequate range. All in all, a good sounding record.

*****************The Music
The band had left United Artists and moved to Charisma, and the music reflects this change. This isn't like any previous Hawk album. Many people disparage this record as being an attempt at commerciality and the weak link in the land of 70s Hawkwind. I don't see it that way. I think it is a very fine album, with strong song writing and sharp playing.
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