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Music From the Penguin Cafe

Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Cafe OrchestraAudio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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MP3 Music, 11 Songs, 2008 $9.49  
Audio CD, Original recording remastered, 2008 $15.17  
Audio CD, 1990 --  
Audio Cassette, 1990 --  

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 31, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Editions EG Records
  • ASIN: B000003S2R
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #434,116 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Penguin Cafe Single
2. Zopf
3. From The Colonies
4. In A Sydney Motel
5. Surface Tension (Where The Trees Meet The Sky)
6. Milk
7. Coronation
8. Giles Farnaby's Dream
9. Pigtail
10. The Sound Of Someone You Love Who's Going Away And It Doesn't Matter
11. Hugebaby/Chartered Flight

Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something Rich and Strange March 28, 2000
Format:Audio CD
A unique and strange record, even by the standards of the pan-musical Penguin Café Orchesta, 'Music from the Penguin Café' was originally released on Brian Eno's 'Obscure' record label in the mid-seventies, by mail order only.
'MFTPC' is hard to describe, and very few retrospectives of the group's career (sadly, leader Simon Jeffes died in 1997) give this more than a passing mention, as it's almost beyond criticism - a totally self-contained universe of music, mixing primitive electronics, Brian Eno-style ambient, classical and folk to form a side-step into a timeless, alien environment. Surreal and dreamlike, it has a very distinctive 'live' sound, with birdsong faintly audible in the background of some of the tracks. Imagine Michael Nyman's wiggiest moments, as produced by Brian Eno's second assistant tape operator, and you're half-way there.
After this (and the similar follow-up, 'Penguin Café Orchestra') the PCO settled down and become much more conservative - their later work is tuneful, folky, and much less experimental.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Man, you never can meet CD's this good so often March 21, 2002
Format:Audio CD
The first time I listened to this album was when I was a teen. Ever since, I have been addicted to Penguin Cafe Orchestra's work, but this first album is the best of all.
I owned an LP of this but recently bought a CD again, and listened to it more carefully with a better-sounding system. This made me to rediscover this gem. What a wonderful music they made! I don't think pieces in this album are so "weird". Actually, I found some of them are most relaxing music that I ever heard. But they could be a different kind of music, anyway.
The only and probably minor problem with this album is that, probably due to the inferior recording condition of their day, some pieces are suffering from distortion.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only Penquin you need on a desert island April 17, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Hilariously excellent music. People this talented are impossible to explain. I saw the documentary about them on PBS light years ago. Bought CD, lost CD. Could not live without CD so came back to Amazon and bought it again.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars genius with an eno-esque edge August 20, 2011
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
I am sure at this point lumping any musical aggregate with Brian Eno may certainly sound cliched and can mean so many things to so many people. And the Penguin Cafe Orchestra went on to have a career that last over twenty years that left that territory. But for my money, they did not record one as brillinatly wierd, beautiful and yes, I am sorry, Eno-esque as this debut from 1976 that was originally released on Eno's Opal label. It is chamber music for those who may thing chamber music is too safe or boring, or avant-garde music for those not quite ready to clear the room of all of their party guests. Just when you think the album has settled into a nice ambient groove, the music veers left into something that John Cage might have composed in his mid-career. And then, viola, it turns again into dance hall music from the Weimar Republic. But the musicianship is superb, the music is not strange for its own sake, and well, this first PCO album is a feast for the ears. You may not be relaxed when it is over, but I bet you will want to hear it again. That is, if you like this kind of thing:)Otherwise, you may want to toss it out the window. But isn't that what good music is all about?
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