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Kontiki

4.2 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Audio CD, November 18, 1997
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Despite their Texas address, chief Cotton-men Robert Harrison and Whit Williams have located their music in a Brit Invasion vibe, with tunes often sounding like outtake gems from Revolver ("My Before and After," "Aurora Bori Alice"). When melodies throb and harmonies lock, there's also an undeniable Squeeze-iness to the results. These guys aren't alone in tipping caps to U.K. pop, but they make the music with an inventive spirit lacking on a lot of other folks' discs. -- Option

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Camp Hill Rail Operator
  2. Homefront Cameo
  3. Spin My Wheels
  4. My Before And After
  5. Private Ruth
  6. Vegetable Row
  7. Aurora Bori Alice
  8. Church Of Wilson
  9. Lily Dreams On
  10. Password
  11. Animal Show Drinking Song
  12. Prophecy For The Golden Age
  13. She's Only Cool
  14. Autumn's Birds


Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 18, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Copper Records
  • ASIN: B000003ONC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #283,859 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I bought this CD. I listened to this CD. I listened to it again. And again. I saw them live 3 times. This band can dish it out live like none I've ever seen. THE BEST LIVE BAND EVER. Period. The CD is absolutely amazing and anyone who likes The Who, The Kinks, The Beatles, Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Squeeze, GBV, and The Byrds absolutely needs to own this. I can't say enough about it. Even my daughter who's 15 likes this! And the live show is like The Who and The Attractions and The Kinks all rolled into one!! Very powerful stuff. I'm glad this band exisits. With all the c**p out there, its wonderful to see that these 4 guys still care about melody and quality songwriting.
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Format: Audio CD
The best impression of the Beatles since, well the Beatles. This album sounds very much like a live record, and includes a host of great songs. Church of Wilson sounds like the Beatles crossed with Nirvana, and Aurora Bori Alice as good as its gets. For everyone that has made they way through all the Beatles LP's, this is there new one, in the form of Cotton Mather. This must go down as one of the best albums of the last ten years. It's not as forward as OK Computer, Morning Glory or any Verve record, but its sweeter than them all put together. A great album, 5 and a bit out of 5.
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By A Customer on July 21, 1999
Format: Audio CD
I haven't been this impressed by a new band for 20 years. The Beatle comparisons are obvious but rather irrelevant-the album stands by itself. What makes this work are great performances and absolutely terrific songs! I do have to say that as a Beatles Fan Club member since 1964 this doesn't really sound like just Revolver to me, I hear bits of the White Album and Abbey Road as well. And there are things the Fabs never did. I do wish lyrics would have been enclosed so I could sing along! Give this great album every star you've got. ricard sullivan, lincoln nebraska.
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Format: Audio CD
What a find this band was! Their name kept popping up on on-line music sites using the 'recommended if you like the Beatles' service. I'm frequently a sucker for such comparisons and am frequently disappointed. But not this time!
'Kon Tiki' is definitely one album you shouldn't miss if you like the Beatles. As a previous poster said, it's like a great lost Beatles album. Remember the exitement waiting for 'Rubber Soul' or 'Revolver' to finally come out and when it did, you played it over and over and over and you weren't disappointed? You can experience that feeling again!
I don't know anything about this band except that they're from Austin, Texas (!), but I'd swear the lead singer is channeling John Lennon. It's eerie.
Plus, they've got the harmonies (ah, those harmonies) and the interesting choice of instruments and musical frills you just don't hear these days. And it doesn't sound like they said, "hey, let's make an album that sounds like the Beatles." It sounds real. Sincere. Not just fun or an exercise in cleverness like 'The Rutles' (whose work I really must recommend also -- listen to 'Shangri-La' on 'Archaeology'). It's really that good.
Having said all that, you'd think I'd give it 5 stars, but I have to say there IS a bit of filler to it (but wasn't there always on a Beatles album also?). Still, about 80% of it is just amazing and you won't be sorry if you buy it. Would I lie to you?!
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Format: Audio CD
Kon Tiki is indeed brilliant, but to put this record on the same tier as "Sgt Pepper" would probably even embarrass the Mather lads. Personally, I like their first ("Crafty Flower Arranger"), and second cd (Cotton Is King") a little better, if just for the slightly rougher edge and slightly less self-conscious lyrics. Songs like "Ivanhoe" and "Payday" make me want to rebuild Liberty Lunch and The Electric Lounge by hand, brick-by-brick, just to put Cotton Mather inside and watch them perform, back when it was the original line-up (okay, maybe not with Wendy on drums, but then again, why the hell not?) Let's just say that if you're a "pop tart," you really ought to have at least one CM record in your collection. Kon Tiki will certainly do.
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Format: Audio CD
The songs "Password", "My Before and After", and "Homefront Cameo" are so good they alone are worth the price of the CD. Comparisons to the Beatles are apt. These three songs are certainly on par with either Paul's or John's three best post-Beatles songs. They are well-crafted, crisply produced pop-rock and the lead vocalist sounds like a morose John Lennon. The rest of the CD isn't at the same level but is not simply filler. Much of it is also Beatle-like but is comparable to the more experimental side of the Beatles rather than their mainstream stuff. I look forward to when Cotton Mather's earlier stuff becomes available again.
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Format: Audio CD
Just kidding. There is definitely something about Harrison's voice that is Beatles-esque...but this is a damn solid album on it's own even without that aspect. It's tough to change the sound of your voice, and sometimes you must embrace who you are, even if you sound like you're ripping off the Beatles. The old singer from Midlake said the same thing about his own voice with respect to the inevitable comparisons to Thom Yorke he gets. He said he'd love to sound more like Jethro Tull, but ends up sounding like Radiohead instead. Anyway, the songwriting on Kontiki is very good because every song has good structure, nice chord changes, and a pop sensibility. The guitar work is solid, the guitar sounds are varied and interesting. All of the instrumentation is good, really. These guys are pros. I'll add that the album has held up well for me after repeated listens. I've had it for at least a year now, and definitely still go back to it and like it. The lyrics are obscure enough to be interesting, but aren't at all hipster-cool-weird-annoying. I don't know any facts about the production of Kontiki in terms of who did it or where it was recorded, but I like it a lot. I think the production choices tend to cast the music in its best light, and also contribute to keeping the record interesting and varied, while also providing continuity of sound. Sometimes I tend to not like bands that push the vocals way out front, but I did not mind it here at all because the recording is truly well balanced between vocal and music, despite the up frontness of the vocals. Lastly, I think it's a great shame that Kontiki was released in the 90s, when radio airplay was devoted to baritone voiced "alternative bands", boy bands, and Britney Spears.Read more ›
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