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10 Reviews
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the lost classic, April 5, 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
As all the hipsters clamor for the past, the new thing seems to be (after the exhaustion of the television/iggy/voidoids shtick by the strokes) early '90's "shoegazer" rock. After recently seeing a review of Interpol, I noticed a reviewer compared them with KOD. Hmm... thats really weird...
KOD was a great pop band, with a unique sound. Singer/bassist Patrick Fitzgerald's lyrics were pointed, yet utterly heartwrenching, while Julian Swales work with effects-laden guitars has yet to be matched (or imitated). The production on this record is a bit too glossy at times, but it works to good effect on the opener "Railwayed", the dreamy (literally) "Hypnogogic" and the astounding "Drive That Fast". The band achieved a sound quite beyond anything at the time (or since really...). Mark my words, in 3-5 years time, those strokes boys will be trading in their white belts for delay pedals for their guitars, at will be citing Echo and the Bunnymen instead of the Velvets. I could only hope...
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still Gives Me Chills, August 31, 2004
By 
W. T. Cook (Alexandria VA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
I can't believe it's been 13 years since I first heard this CD. Funny thing is I listened for 3 or 4 years before I actually listened to the lyrics too.

Another KOD reviewer on Amazon had problem with some of the gay-themed lyrics. If you can't get over that, then frankly you don't deserve to hear it. The guitar effects will put you in a trance, and the songs flow together seamlessly. One of the reasons KOD didn't have mainstream success is their songs are some heavy duty songs about LOVE, both gutwrentching, and glorious.

One of the top 10 CD's that changed my life.

Just buy it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 Years Later, still listening to this!, January 6, 2005
By 
Mad Dash (Minneapolis, MN) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
I remember hearing Drive that Fast and thinking, got to get this. Then I heard the whole album and listened to it regularly for years. Recently, my brother bought me an album by a band called Interpol. Damn if this is not the same vocalist, or a darn good admirer. So what did I do? pulled KOD cd's out and listened all over again! How good is this album? When my wife and I went back to Hawaii for our 5th (5 years ago)anniversary, this was one of my 12 cds to come with (I have over 800 cds). Why are they gone! Come back! Please more of this!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a great wave of gorgeous sound, April 16, 2006
By 
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
Geez, it's been over a decade and a half since I purchased this cd! How the time flys by. And with the passing of time I keep returning to "Strange Free World", an album that ages like the finest of wines.

I loved Ride's "Nowhere", Catherine Wheel's "Ferment", MBV's "Loveless", Slowdive's "Just for a Day", and Lush's "Deluxe", but "Strange Free World" by Kitchens of Distinction stands out among the best of the shoegaze set, and is the sadly unedrappreciated leader of the pack, the alpha chief star destroyer, if such a thing exists. Produced by Hugh Jones (some Echo and the Bunnymen), this second K.O.D. release from the year 1991 is gold from beginning to end. Unfortunately, this was a time when all of this great music from the UK was being overshadowed by a dumb stateside genre of music called grunge. Blech. Now, kids are discovering this stuff once again, but still not enough in my opinion. While most of the groups I mentioned earlier were great, their voices tended to get lost in the layers of guitars and effects and the lyrics at times were a bit vague and abstract, which is fine. However, it's refreshing to hear an album that is just as sonically engaging, if not better sounding than the others ("shoegazey" if you will) yet with honest, cohesive, clear lyrics and excellent vocalls pitifully copied by the likes of the vastly overrated Interpol (God, and those annoying clothes and haircuts--come on people!!!). Again, while the atmospheric, shoegaze aspect of the music is very appealing to me, it's those timeless lyrics that bring it home again and again. And, these guys can raise the tempo and rock like none other. Songs like "Gorgeous Love" and "Drive that Fast" are just a couple of the highlights on this unsung classic released during a very exciting time in current music history,and still sound brand new today.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Near Work of Shoegazing Genius, April 27, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
My favorite KOD song is nestled close to the end of "Strange Free World"; "Drive That Fast" is the quintessential Kitchens of Distinction song and was a regular feature on MTV's "120 Minutes Into The Future" during the summer of '91. Sounds of Julian Swales's guitar being processed through heavy effects echoing from my car speakers in an almost levitational, shimmering-in-the-air fashion meshed perfectly with a percussive bassline, the loping rhythm of both a set of bongos combined with hard-hitting drum-work, and wistful, reflective, incisive lyrics sung in Patrick Fitzgerald's crisp, distinctive, slightly gravelly voice practically demanded that I purchase this CD as soon as Tower Records could stock it. "Strange Free World" contains three other tracks that complement the pensive energy and contemplative lyrics of "Drive That Fast" ; 'Railwayed", "Quick As Rainbows", and "He Holds Her, He Needs Her". And while I find almost every other cut on this CD to be eminently listenable to upon each of their own merits, "Strange Free World" lacks the overall track-to track cohesion of "The Death of Cool", and keeps it, unlike that CD, from becoming one of the few definitive baroque releases in the shoegazing genre. Nevertheless, "Strange Free World" is a must-have whose out-of-print status makes its purchase a necessity; below the waves of delay and reverb lie superlatively crafted pop melodies that still have the power to captivate 19 years and two replacement CD's later.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing atomospheric mood music, June 28, 2006
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
i heard the song "pda" by interpol a couple of years back and it brought me back to this disk. such an amazing sound. this was their best cd and is some of the best of the late eighties and early nineties. they recorded this disc at a little island studio and it's as if they somehow transferred the vacation attitude into the music. it's difficult to explain it except to say the songs on this disc build an incrediclby wonderful mood and just seem to flow one to the next. it's like the best of the Catherine Wheel and the best Lush mixed together - great guitar, atomospheric and solid song writing. a totally enjoyable musical experience that stands the test of time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it already!!, June 19, 2003
By 
Deirdre Nance (Nutley, New Jersey United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
KOD's second album is a pop masterpiece. It's hard to believe that they were only a 3-piece band! Strange Free World is a vast improvement from their debut Love Is Hell. Standout tracks include Railwayed, Drive That Fast, and Gorgeous. Heck, every track flows beautifully from one to the next. You won't be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sophomore effort that's just as good as the original? Whaaaaa???!!!, January 8, 2007
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
Yes folks, KoD succeeded where many bands haven't: they made a second album that was just as good as their first amazing debut!

:O

Yeah, it has the same powerful vocals, guitar and rhythms as their first. Not to mention it has another killer title (the latter two albums do as well)- that always helps!

This was the first KoD album I heard but "Death of Cool" is my favourite. You can never get enough of the ethereal genius that KoD creates.

This is a great start in the KoD world. Fans of KoD, should own this as well as the other three albums. Oh and the EPs, singles, compilations...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing album, February 22, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
I can't believe I waited over 20 years since first hearing this record to own it! One of my very favorites. Transformative.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Influential Now Than Then, February 18, 2004
By 
SandmanVI (Glen Allen, VA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Strange Free World (Audio CD)
'Strange Free World' is without a doubt KOD's best album and it is seems to have grown in stature since its early 90's release. At the time they were a fringe alt rock band generally tied to the shoegazer scene with the likes of My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, Ride and Slowdive. Today many emo bands (and fans) are looking back and referencing this KOD album as an important influence - and rightly so.
The shoegazer thread is there with the band's use of shimmering walls of guitar and often subdued vocals. That's where the similarity ends though. Where others kept their heads to the floor and voices lilting in the background, KOD occasionally rocks with a solid beat, bristling rhythms and vocals that burst to life with passion, fire and even anger at times - a shoegazer crime for sure.
Standout tracks include "Railwayed", "Quick as Rainbows", "Within the Daze of Passion" and the brilliant "Drive That Fast". I could give this 5 stars but KOD doesn't quite match the greatness of its influences The Smiths, The Church or My Bloody Valentine. SFW is a great album from any era and a must for modern emo kids.
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STRANGE FREE WORLD
STRANGE FREE WORLD by Kitchens Of Distinction (Audio CD)
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