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Begin to Hope

Regina SpektorAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (216 customer reviews)

Price: $7.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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MP3 Music, 12 Songs, 2006 $9.49  
Audio CD, 2006 $7.99  
Vinyl, 2009 --  

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Fidelity 3:47$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Better 3:10$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Samson 3:09$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. On The Radio 3:26$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Field Below 5:18$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Hotel Song 3:28$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Après Moi 5:08$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. 20 Years Of Snow 3:30$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. That Time 2:37$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. Edit 4:51$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen11. Lady 4:42$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen12. Summer In The City 3:50$1.29  Buy MP3 


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Biography

Since emerging on the NYC café circuit in 2001, this Russian-born, Bronx-bred artist has been hailed as a truly special talent. With an uninhibited imagination and acute sense of detail both in music and words, Regina Spektor has gone from practicing on an out of tune piano in the basement of her local synagogue to hypnotizing small crowds in NYC's lower East Side to selling out ... Read more in Amazon's Regina Spektor Store

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Begin to Hope + Far + What We Saw From The Cheap Seats
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 13, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sire
  • ASIN: B000FFJ80I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (216 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,400 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

The style known as "anti-folk," as realized by practitioners like Ani DiFranco and Billy Bragg, is derived from a punk aesthetic, and thus tends to be spare and confrontational. But while Regina Spektor's music is anti-folk in the way it subverts the traditional coffeehouse vibe, it's less interested in rebellion and more concerned with the joy of eccentricity, melody and surprise. Begin To Hope is full of surprises, and like her promising major label debut Soviet Kitsch, it displays an easy facility with song structure that enables her to go in different--sometimes wildly off-the-wall--directions without sounding scattered. Classically trained on the piano, she's been compared to Tori Amos, but her music isn't as delicate or precious. Fiona Apple comes up as well, but just because neither fits in the usual female singer/songwriter cookie cutter mold doesn't mean they sound the same. Her voice is actually the primary attraction, cracking and loopy on would-be lullabies like "On The Radio" and "Field Below," then punchy and cute on "Hotel Room." But the music, if understated in the mix next to her vocals, makes an impression as well, breaking in with twisty piano arpeggios ("20 Years of Snow") and occasional touches of electronica. It's a consistently intelligent and daring record, yet remains enormously listenable--a neat trick for anti-folk, or any other genre of music for that matter. –Matthew Cooke

Product Description

Regina Spektor’s last album, 2004’s Soviet Kitsch, garnered praise from Time, Rolling Stone, Spin, Vanity Fair, The New York Times and many others. But this Russian-born, Bronx-bred singer-songwriter-pianist, who emerged from the NYC café circuit, continues to expand her vision. On Begin To Hope, produced by David Kahne (The Strokes, Sublime, Sugar Ray), she broadens here palette with electric guitar, drum machines and seductive electronic loops, finding new canvases for her provocative vocal style. Hope for pop has arrived with Regina Spektor.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
82 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her best yet... June 23, 2006
Format:Audio CD
This is simply a beautiful album, beautiful music, soothing, clever execution throughout. It ends on one of the most beautiful notes I've ever heard- Summer in the City and on up it crackles, sparks, wreaks, and explodes with a creativity of an artist at her best. What ridiculous labels: anti-folk, anti-pop, something to feed bad critics with--yes, Regina sounds a bit like Fiona sometimes (That Time) and is as adept with the keys and weirdness as Tori, but what she outshines both of these artists with is a vitality and energy that both of these self-conscious super stars have been lacking lately.

If Begin to Hope sounds a bit more commercial than her previous efforts, it's only because Regina has access to more musical colors and gets to explore her incredible musical vision on a bigger canvas.

Regina Spektor is plain and simply the best at what she does.
6 stars.

Author of:
A Bottle of Rain
Nowhere Near the Sea of Cortez
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funky, Cool & Fun January 30, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I don't buy many CD's but I saw Regina Spektor on a morning news show recently and was mesmerized by her voice, her life and her poetry/lyrics. I tried to resist, but finally gave in and purchased this CD.

I was not disappointed! I like every song on it. It's so rare to hear a truly original soul anymore who isn't prepackaged and tied with a pretty bow by media mogols, but this CD is NOT your average music. It's funky, cool, fun and unique. Her voice is as much an instrument as her piano and she plays it with abandon.

If you march to the beat of a different drummer, you will LOVE Regina's music. I can't wait to hear more.
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45 of 50 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There's still hope June 23, 2006
Format:Audio CD
In her previous three albums, Regina Spektor specialized in quirky anti-folk. Piano, odd melodies and poetic lyrics.

But Spektor tries a new sound in her long-awaited fourth album, "Begin to Hope." Instead of anti-folk, her music here is more polished and poppier... or perhaps it's anti-pop. Either way, while this album has its middling moments, most of the songs are still Regina Spektor at her best.

It kicks off with the oddball "Fidelity," a trilling little song with the piano edged in synth. Spektor doesn't fare quite as well in the second one, which sounds too generic for her talents -- guitar pop with only a dash of piano, and only a few of her vocal flourishes.

But then the album changes, as if Spektor feels she's done enough "typical" pop. Instead she switches to the soft-edged piano melody of "Samson" ("You are my sweetest downfall"), followed by a strong string of songs that stick to her strengths: piano anti-folk (or anti-pop), and songs that don't sound like anything "On the Radio."

Instead she leans on soft piano ballads, silky piano folk and jagged little rock songs. Songs like "Edit" and "20 Years of Snow" are pure Spektor, with the cascading piano melody and the quirky singing, while "That Time" is a strange, mocking little rocker about reading Shakespeare and burying bits of a cat's body. The finale is a quiet, meditative song about loneliness in the city, and missing the one you love. For anyone who misses a lover, this will be a heart-tugger.

And the special edition has a bonus EP, perhaps for fans who adore her quirkier side. There are the bittersweet piano ballads like "Another Town" ("my soul feels so old!"), the bittersweet "Baobabs" and "Dusseldorf.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet voice, beautiful piano, great recording! January 19, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I now realize that Regina Spektor is not new to the music scene, but she is new to me. I'm thrilled to have discovered her! "Begin to Hope" is a tremendous album.

Thanks to VH1 for playing "Fidelity" practically every morning. For a week or so I tuned in just hoping to see her video. I finally decided I had to try her ablum relatively sound unheard. Taking that chance was a great decision.

First, in my opinion, Regina has the sweetest voice you'll ever hear. I could listen to it all day and not tire of it. Second, add to that her piano playing, and you have a very powerful combination. She sings and plays with such flair and artistry. She is extremely talented (all this and cute, too).

She makes use of varying styles: folk, classical, pop, and even hints of soul, blues, and jazz. And she does it all meticulously and beautifully. The instrumentation is generally sparse, her voice and piano are featured, while some songs are "fuller" than others. The mood ranges from fun to reflective. She impresses me as being intelligent and witty with her creative use of voice and piano. The lyrics are thoughtful, poignant even.

Certainly this CD isn't for everyone. But for the right taste, this album positively hits the spot. Highly recommended!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
This seems to be the Regina Spektor album which is finally bringing her to a more accessible or palatable place with general audiences, and it couldn't happen to a more deserving artist.

For my tastes, Regina is one of the most original and creative artists in the singer-songwriter world, and the quality of the work has been uniformly fierce and satisfying since she first appeared on the scene with indie releases and local NYC appearances. Now she is becoming a certifiable minor phenomenon, with 5 CDs out and a growing European and American following.

I was prepared to be resistant to this CD since it definitely leans a tiny bit more toward the commercially accessible side, but this has been done without any sacrifice to the essential quirkiness and individuality that Regina seems to so effortlessly exude. There is noticeably more studio "polish" to the production, though surprisingly less acoustic instruments than on SOVIET KITSCH (the wonderful string playing which illuminated certain songs on that previous album is conspicously absent here, though the ghost of a violinist seems to be audible briefly in "20 Years of Snow").

Some of these songs were already very familiar to Regina fans, as she's been performing most of them live for quite some time. One, "Samson," was on a previous album, but she's done it here at a slightly faster tempo, and with the additional emotional element of synth strings.

BEGIN TO HOPE covers an admirable range of styles, from the relative pop-iness of "On the Radio" and "Better" to an almost Randy-Newman-meets-Paul-Simon gospel influence in the expressive "Field Below.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love her voice
Really like this CD I would suggest it to anyone looking for a mellow sound while they are driving thats when I listen to it.
Published 4 days ago by mizzrena34
5.0 out of 5 stars i like it
if you like regina spektor this whole album is good. but everybody's taste in music varies so i cant tell you what you will think of it.
Published 2 months ago by Sarahanne1984
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the best albums from Regina Spektor
I got a copy years ago through CD Baby (before it changed owners) and was delighted. The music and the words are interesting and challenging and fun at the same time. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Quintus Horatius Flaccus
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Vinyl with some slightly different mixes.
Awesome vinyl, and has some slightly different mixes than the regular CD album. Great quality and 180 gram discs, and nice sleeve.
Published 4 months ago by Jesse T. Shookman
5.0 out of 5 stars Regina's Begin to Hope
I really enjoy listening to Regina's unique music, she is an amazing artist! I saw her at a music concert just a few weeks before this CD came out, and became a huge fan!
Published 5 months ago by Tina Rosenbaum
5.0 out of 5 stars Unique vocals
Great album! I love it! She has a unique voice, makes for sweet ballads. Every song is different yet unforgettable!
Published 8 months ago by T
4.0 out of 5 stars The first CD is good
The first CD is very nice--some quite beautiful and uplifting. The second CD is iffy at best. Only a couple of songs can be listened to without cringing.
Published 8 months ago by Barbara Brady
5.0 out of 5 stars One of her finest
Consistently entertaining and artistically cutting edge --- Regina lives up to her reputation as one of the most enjoyable performers of the modern era.
Published 8 months ago by paul
4.0 out of 5 stars A Nice Album
The album begins as sort of a quirky pop album with such appealing tracks as "Samson," "Fidelity," and "On the Radio." It wanders from there into to a quirky non-pop album. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Savonarola
5.0 out of 5 stars I Love Regina!
Though not every song is a hit, her voice has a transferable happiness in almost every song. Of the 5 extra songs in the 2 disk version, "Baobabs" stands out the most. Read more
Published 12 months ago by I'm here
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Why is she all of a sudden a huge seller on amazon?
CBS Sunday Morning did a segment on her today. It was great. She is from Russia - her parents came here during the cold war and had to leave her piano behind. Interesting life.
Jan 21, 2007 by JM |  See all 14 posts
No Booklet?
Yes, there should be a booklet - with lyrics & photographs etc.
Dec 8, 2006 by Angela |  See all 2 posts
What's the difference?
the difference is there is a 5 song ep in the special edition. i highly recommend the special edition. the ep is woderful!
Jun 14, 2006 by Judy T. Verger |  See all 3 posts
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