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Out of Season Import

4.4 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, November 12, 2002
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Mysteries
  2. Tom The Model
  3. Show
  4. Romance
  5. Sand River
  6. Spider Monkey
  7. Resolve
  8. Drake
  9. Funny Time Of Year
  10. Rustin Man


Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 12, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Go! Beat
  • ASIN: B00006ZSAD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #267,266 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
In my humble opinion, most of the reviewers below, by focussing on the stylistic aspects of Beth Gibbons' new album, have completely missed the point. Let me add also that I'm one of Portishead's most rabid fans, and that I consider their almost impossible to find "Trip Hop Reconstruction" (differently titled depending on the country of origin--mine's Australian) to be one of the greatest albums ever--along with Dummy, Portishead and Roseland of course. But maybe albums like "Out of Season" should be reviewed both by normal people who can critique them effectively on their purely stylistic attributes, and those who are "damaged" in some way, and who can therefore critique something like this on a more general aesthetic level. Because this album bears comparison with the greatest musical art in western civilization that seeks to encompass the emotions of loneliness, alienation desolation and despair. I'm serious. I recently compared it to Brigit Fassbaender's Schubert "Winterreise," Shostakovich's 14th Symphony, the "Abscheid" from Mahler's "Das Lied von der Erde" and Moussorgsky's great "Sunless" and "Songs and Dances of Death" cycles. That's about as good as it gets, and this magnificent album easily belongs in that "elite" company. The songs range from excellent to unbelievable as do Paul Webb's haunting arrangements and accompaniments. But it's Gibbons vocal performance that elevates this into the realm of high, serious art. I've never heard a singer (I'm speaking here solely about the perforance rather than the material) who is able to convey the meaning and essence of what if feels like to be completely, hopelessly isolated from the world. This isn't solitude, it's bleak, stark loneliness.

Lucky for them, most people don't get it.
Read more ›
1 Comment 21 of 23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Don't buy this album expecting Portishead. Gone are most of the elements of trip-hop. Beth Gibbons explores a new set of vocal stylings along with the new accompanyments. There are many moments where the typical Protishead fan would have a hard time recognizing Gibbon's voice. For example, I think she sounds a lot like Billie Holiday on the track "Romance." There are also tracks where her voice (and the mood of the music) remind me of Tori Amos or Karen Carpenter. For those of you who hate any attempt to compare the sound of one artist to another, suffice it to say that this album sounds pretty retro- borrowing from a few different time periods. I love Portishead, but I think I am going to grow to love this album as well (I have listened to it about five times). I think it is definitely worth owning if you have enjoyed Beth's previous works....
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Format: Audio CD
Portishead's Dummy was one of the nineties most special records -beautiful, swooping torch songs set to an (at the time) fresh and original sounding 'trip-hop' and scratching fusion. And then there was that voice. Beth Gibbons' vocals simultaneously made and destroyed Portishead. She was simply too good for the confines of the project, often sounding like an ingenious sample rather than the inspiring showstopper she really is.
So, here, four years after Portishead's 'difficult' second album, comes Out Of Season, recorded with ex-Talk Talk man Paul Webb. This is stirring, emotionally volatile stuff. Ten simple, elegant folk songs, sparsely arranged, all individual and distinctive with ample room for Gibbons to showcase her talent. At its best, Out Of Season is truly incendiary. The opener Mysteries is at least the equal of Dummy's finest ballad (Roads), while Tom The Model is naggingly catchy without ever coming close to grating. Romance is all Shirley Bassey-kitsch, while Resolve, perhaps the highlight, is utterly heartbreaking.
Highly recommended.
1 Comment 8 of 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
The record is a great improvement in the vocal preformances of Beth Gibbons. If, in the Portishead albums, she had a great voice but still somehow immature, here she displays a great versatility and she easily adapts her voice to the sound of the songs. In some songs she sounds like Billie Holiday, in other songs she sounds like Nina Simone..it's really amazing, you would tell there are different singers throughout the record.
HEr songwriting is also impressive. Together with Paul Webb they managed to write a great bunch of songs. The musical style is very quiet and relaxed..basically an acoustic version of Portishead. Being without the electronic base, all the songs tend to be more focused on the voice of BEth, however the arrangements are always interesting, albeit very simple. Most of the times the songs have just a piano and some guitar, sometimes a violin or a horn is in the background, but the vocals tend to predominate. The only song where there is a real orchestral arrangement, with some horns in the background, is Tom the model, which is the best song of the album and is a bit reminding of some motown stuff. Other real masterworks are Show and Sand River. But the general tone of the album is very good and there is not one single bad song. All in all, a great record, which establishes Beth Gibbons as one of the great singers of this decade.
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Format: Audio CD
You know her best as the ethereal voice of Portishead, but in "Out of Season" Beth Gibbons strays away from indie trip-hop into melancholy acoustic pop, jazz and folk, collaborated with Paul "Rustin Man" Webb of Talk Talk. This autumn-toned collection is melancholy and pensive, a bittersweet little gem.

"Out of Season" starts off strong with the gentle, plaintive "Mysteries," followed by the shimmery "Tom the Model," the piano ballads "Show" and "Resolve," jazzy "Sand River," and the brilliantly murky "Spider Monkey." It finally wraps up with the bizarrely enticing "Rustin Man," a wavering outflow of shimmery sonic currents and Gibbons' submerged vocals.

The opening lines of "Sand River" ("Autumn leaves/Beauty's got a hold on me/Autumn leaves/Pretty as can be") pretty much describe "Out of Season." The cool prettiness of Portishead carries over to the folkier, simpler tunes.

Beth Gibbons' vocals are outstanding, clear and sensual in just about every song. "Rustin Man" and "Romance" are the exceptions. In the former, her voice sounds seductively mechanical; in the latter, she almost sounds like she's parodying a torch singer sometimes. It's a little disconcerting, but her voice is almost uniformly beautiful.

The instrumentation is stripped-down to bare bones: piano and acoustic guitar, most of the time. Adding a bit of extra flavor are gentle string accompaniments, and a bit of subtle organ work. And the songwriting goes more towards being moodily evocative, with quiet lines like "And those water-coloured memories/Soft as a summer's breeze/You're as pretty as can be."

Though a little uneven at times, "Out of Season" is like a fall morning -- cool, pretty and faded. Beth Gibbons' foray into non-Portishead turf is a solid one, and this collection of autumnal ballads is definitely a keeper.
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