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A Map Of The Floating City

Thomas DolbyAudio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)

Price: $13.63 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Nothing New Under The Sun 4:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Spice Train 5:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Evil Twin Brother (Feat. Regina Spektor) 5:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. A Jealous Thing Called Love 4:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Road To Reno 3:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. The Toad Lickers (Feat. Imogen Heap) 4:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. 17 Hills (Feat. Mark Knopfler, Natalie MacMaster) 7:41$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Love Is A Loaded Pistol 2:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Oceanea (Feat. Eddi Reader) 4:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Simone 5:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. To The Lifeboats 3:36$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Frequently Bought Together

A Map Of The Floating City + The Sole Inhabitant (Deluxe Edition) + The Flat Earth - Remastered & Expanded
Price for all three: $46.38

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Redeye Label
  • ASIN: B005ME7DUO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,909 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Thomas Dolby, the iconic '80s star whose smash hits ''She Blinded Me With Science'' and ''Hyperactive'' helped define the MTV generation/revolution, will break his 20-year silence with A Map of the Floating City. The album, featuring appearances by special guest artists Mark Knopfler, Regina Spektor, Natalie MacMaster, Bruce Woolley, Imogen Heap and Eddi Reader, will be will be released on Lost Toy People Records as a physical CD, and in a special Deluxe Edition featuring a second disc of instrumentals and bonus tracks. Of the album, which is divided into three parts, Dolby says, ''The new songs are organic and very personal. A Map of the Floating City is a travelogue across three imaginary continents: In Amerikana I'm reflecting with affection on the years I spent living in the U.S.A., and my fascination with its roots music. Urbanoia is a dark place, a little unsettling . . . I'm not a city person. And in Oceanea I return to my natural home on the windswept coastline.''

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing musical talent returns! October 25, 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
In many ways, it is unfortunate that most Americans' first exposure to Thomas Dolby was "She Blinded Me with Science". Although it put him on the map and made him a recognizable figure in music, it was not at all indicative of his body of work. I think in the long run, it hurt his popularity here in the US, and turned him into a 'one-hit-wonder'.

Dolby is a brilliant songwriter and musician, often blending many styles of music seamlessly into a tapestry of storytelling genius. This new album is no exception. There are heart-wrenching ballads, a middle-eastern flavored dance tune, an intentionally silly bluegrass-techno combination, a gritty intropection on the evils that men do, a fist-pumping declaration of his return, and so many more rewards to be had.

Like all of his previous work, this album is not a first-time listen and love affair. You need to take the time to let yourself sink into the music and let the words wash over you. You will find before too long that you can't get that lyric out of your head, and that melody is haunting you.

Thank you, Mr. Dolby. It was well worth the wait.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I'll tether my blimp wherever there's a party on. December 9, 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
The division over "A Map Of The Floating City" is understandable. It's actually been 17 years, not 19 since his last release, 1994's "The Gate To The Mind's Eye" soundtrack. I count that as his last album since he created all 9 tracks, granted half the album is instrumental. "Map" isn't at all like the cold, menacing and moody, synth stylings of "The Golden Age Of Wireless", and it isn't quite like "The Flat Earth", "Aliens Ate My Buick" or "The Gate To The Mind's Eye" either. It probably shares more in common with Dolby's 1992 outing "Astronauts & Heretics", as it is more organic and diverse in its sound.

I can see how some Dolby fans would be disappointed and others absolutely bowled over by it. He throws all his tricks into a blender and comes up with 11 diverse tracks that somehow manage to fit together to make a decent listening experience. I will say that upon first listen I was not sure I liked "Map" at all. I was even thinking it was his worst album thus far. But as I continued to listen again and again, and let the music and themes sink in, I found myself thinking the opposite--almost. I'm sorry, but I can't help but feel that "The Golden Age Of Wireless", "The Flat Earth" and "Astronauts & Heretics" are his best recordings. He was truly firing on all cylinders with those three.

However, "Map" is a growing experience. It may be that in the years to come I might like it even more than I do now. It certainly is musically diverse without one track sound like another, and without one track really sounding like anything he has done in the past. However, I did find fault with a couple of musical choices. For example, the beat and rhythm of "Nothing New Under The Sun" has been criticized by someone else here as sounding like Madonna's "Material Girl". I don't think so.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful November 26, 2011
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
Map of the Floating City extracts the essence of the best of about five different musical genres developed principally in the US over the past century. Thomas Dolby's heavily nuanced characterizations of those genres are perfect. He makes no musical mistakes from the standpoint of composition, and instead of indulging in "new for new's sake" - he instead focuses on the obvious - There Is Nothing New Under The Sun. Beginning with this brilliant irony - the old being essentially the new, T.D. shows his mastery of these modalities without pretense. He caused me to appreciate styles where the originals were not rendered as sweetly. Of course there are the silly aficionados who like the sound of the scratches on old 78's - I am not among those, and T.D. will be lost on them. As an American, I find T.D.'s mastery of our cultural nuances to be disconcerting. But then it makes sense, the modern era of the American continent was founded by the British - their accents became our accents, our southern rock 'n roll began with British expats here -- so why shouldn't a Brit master our musical legacy?

Minor details that I love to quibble about - which are definite oddities to me include the line in "Road to Reno" where "he filed the number off" -- I cannot understand why a murder suicide-minded individual would file the numbers off of a gun he intended to kill himself with? Doesn't really make sense - doesn't matter - just a cute oddity. I'd love to here T.D.'s explanation of it.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thomas is back and great as always! October 25, 2011
Format:Audio CD
Got to see Thomas Dolby a couple of weeks ago on his promotional tour for this new CD. It is great to have the master back, after 20 years away he sounds better than ever. The new CD will delight established fans and also find a whole new audience If you like his work, be sure to check out his 2008 Greatest Hits Live two disc set called The Sole Inhabitant (Deluxe Edition) ASIN: B0018BD9AI on the Invisible Hands label. Great DVD and great CD of some of his best songs. She Blinded Me with Science, Leipzig Is Calling, Europa and the Pirate Twins and I Live in a Suitcase to name a couple! [...]
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars NOT "She Blinded Me with Science" !! December 8, 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I wanted to review this recording a month ago. I really did. But I haven't been able to stop listening to it long enough to write 10 paragraphs or so about it. The short of it: this is is Thomas Dolby's best album, ever. And that's the truth.

I had accepted as reality that Thomas Dolby had stopped making recorded music forever, if you don't count ringtones he's made for Nokia that presumably made him many multiples of the money he made recording and performing exceptional pop music in the `80s and `90s. However, in 2006 he made the DVD titled "The Sole Inhabitant," the result of a performance at the Berklee College of Music, in which Dolby entertained an auditorium full of music students and fans with a lecture/demo on techniques he used to create his body of work to that point. The DVD gave me hope that we had not yet heard the last of new music from Thomas Dolby.

So, after a series of EPs, an interactive game, and pre-release buildup featuring extensive use of social media, we get "A Map of the Floating City."

The title bears the promise of what used to be called a concept album.

In the 1960s, there was a TV show in the US called "Naked City," set in New York City. At the end of each week's episode, the booming voice of the male announcer proclaimed, "There are eight million stories in the Naked City. This has been one of them."

However many stories there are in The Floating City, we now know eleven of them. They are the tunes that make up "Map."

The first song, "Nothing New Under the Sun," exposes the frustration of writing music and the promise of finding a brand new, fascinating reason for continuing with the process. Topic after topic rolls off Dolby's tongue until he observes that "any fool can write a hit.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful journey.
When a story is written there is the start of a journey and an ending. Thomas Dolby takes you through the "Floating City", a city full of love and dreams in a very careful... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Morgan J. Hall
4.0 out of 5 stars Hey, a new Thomas Dolby album
I recently stumbled upon this album here on Amazon, having no idea that Thomas Dolby had finally put a new album out, almost 20 years after "Astronauts and Heretics". Read more
Published 11 months ago by Bice
5.0 out of 5 stars A great album
Thank you Mr Dolby. You have made good on your brilliant reputation with this release. I hope it pleases you like it does your admirers. Read more
Published 11 months ago by John Vavrek
3.0 out of 5 stars Trying to hard to be something he isn't
I'm a long time fan of Thomas Dolby, this isn't has best work though some of it was interesting. The album isn't a total loss, it isn't horrible, just that he has done better.
Published 11 months ago by Michael M. Minor
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic, and yet different
This is a fascinating CD from a versatile artist. In some ways it's classic Thomas Dolby, but as usual there are surprises. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Tracey A. DeLillo
5.0 out of 5 stars Thomas Dolby is back!
After releasing his fourth CD, "Astronauts & Heretics", in 1992, Thomas Dolby seemingly disappeared. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Jeff L
Thomas Dolby is beyond.... far beyond...... in all the magical ways an artist can be. An unassuming man with a mild way and calming presence, when you step back and look at his... Read more
Published on May 29, 2012 by Shazam!
3.0 out of 5 stars Frustrating - wanted to love it, but can't (long time TD fan)
As a long time Thomas Dolby fan, (from 1983, almost 30 years) I have been grateful that in the last few years, there have been remastered editions (and collector's editions) of The... Read more
Published on April 17, 2012 by Mark Treitel
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent foray into music after 20 years
Dolby continues his fascination with electronic music, but he has admirably expanded his musical palette. Read more
Published on April 6, 2012 by K. Lowe
4.0 out of 5 stars Mapping Dolby's World
The Blinded by Silence guy returns after a near 20 year absence with a studio album that, frankly, I doubt many were hotly anticipated. Read more
Published on March 8, 2012 by Tim Brough
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