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Shifty Adventures in Nookie Wood

John CaleAudio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

Price: $12.98 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 9, 2012)
  • Original Release Date: 2012
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Domino
  • ASIN: B008SVS05K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,704 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. I Wanna Talk 2 U
2. Scotland Yard
3. Hemmingway
4. Face To The Sky
5. Nookie Wood
6. December Rain
7. Mary
8. Vampire Cafe
9. Mothra
10. Living With You
11. Midnight Feast
12. Sandman (Flying Dutchman)

Editorial Reviews

Shifty Adventures in Nookie Wood is an album that seems born out of John's mischievous youth. It is the result of sessions held at Cale's LA studio. With days spent experimenting with MPCs, pounding fists onto pianos, manipulating glitches and lots of signature viola drone while patiently waiting for songs to reveal themselves. There was also a spontaneous session with Danger Mouse that resulted in the opening track, "I Wanna Talk 2 U." As a producer Cale has reached a new plateau on this record. He deftly manages to blend equal measures of chaos and beauty.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Cale's best October 11, 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I dunno what the reviewers are listening to -- I've seen several reviews of John Cale's first CD in seven years, Shifty Adventures in Nookie Land, and they describe an odd-ball disc that Cale scratched out of his studio. Nothing could be farther from the truth. My guess is these are novice reviewers who relied on ancient bios of Cale's work with the Velvets, and who don't know his catalog. Anyone who knows Cale's last 5-6 albums will immediately recognize what they're hearing. There's nothing odd-ball about it. Tight new songs with Cale's trademark orchestration and production -- nothing left to chance, nothing sloppy. If there's anything experimental here, it's the musical ideas. It's the same high caliber experimentation Cale always delivers. When his recordings hit the disc, there's no producer that can compete with the quality of his work. You can tell this is a man who is facile with orchestras, ballet, rock bands, electronic music, acoustic sound, and that touch of the spaghetti western. Cale is always listenable. This disc is outstanding -- lush beats, lyrical melodies, and the sometimes gutteral edge he's known for. Then there's the drone. Can't match it. At 70, his voice is rich and emotive as ever. Adventures is a new sound that reflects the best of what's going on in music today, brought out by a master. If you like Cale's work, you won't be disappointed. Based on the reviews in various publications, I was expecting a "street" record made off the cuff. This is first-class John Cale. Highly recommended whether you know John Cale's records, or if you're new. One listen, and I know I'm going to hear something new on each track with every listen. Thanks, John, for a good one.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shifty sounds October 9, 2012
Format:Audio CD
John Cale is a co-founder of The Velvet Underground and I took note of this album because of the involvement of one of my favourite producers Danger Mouse. "I Wanna Talk To You" is a lovely funky rocker with Danger Mouse and it sounds spontaneous and free. "Scotland Yard" is a choppy Bowie-esque number taking a look at the UK riots of summer 2011.

Other standouts are "Face To The Sky" (filled with interesting drum and synth flourishes), the eerie "Nookie Wood" (with hushed vocals), "the catchy December Rains" (Disco-ish with auto-tuned vocals), the brilliant ballad "Mary", the haunting shuffle "Vampire Café" (with semi-spoken lyrics touching on homophobia), "Mothra" (again, auto tuned-vocals set to skittery beats), and the funereal ballad "Midnight Feast".

Filled with unexpected piano turns, strangely beautiful synth effects, and colourful drum patterns, John Cale has always been at the cutting edge of Rock, and aged 70, he shows no sign of slowing down or losing his bite.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ".....a thousand yard stare."....John Cale October 12, 2012
By Keene
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Cale has always had a journalist's and an artist's eye for war (Check his album Sabotage) and life (Music For a New Society and all other albums). For Cale to evoke Hemingway on this album is very appropriate. Cale has reported on the horror and the terror and the beauty of life throughout his career. To my ears and mind he's done it better than almost any other musical artist out there. Cale has not gotten bogged down (not for long anyway) on the "nada" that froze Hemingway and finally destroyed him. Hemingway was one of the greatest writer/journalists that ever lived and the song "Hemingway" captures his artistic essence, filtered through Cale's expression. I love every song on this album but "Hemingway" with Cale's graveyard stomp piano and great vocals and lyrics, is my favorite.

Musically this is a lush beauty. Much time, evidently, was spent on the production and arrangements here and it shows. His voice is in good shape and especially the background vocals are gorgeous. Even when he changes the sound of his voice through studio effects he pulls it off terrifically. The rhythms and percussion, instrumentation and various sound effects are uniquely Cale. Every song has something unique to offer and the lyrics are deep and sometimes mysterious. It moves with a shifty artistry. Cale has said that he doesn't like to do the same kind of music all the time with the same sound and really his whole career has made that obvious. This is so different that it may take some listeners time to get it but it will be worth it. This is an adventure in music, sound and poetry.

Nookie Wood, with all it's creatures is a strange and wonderful place to visit.......later for "nada'.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars John Cale- still going at 70 October 18, 2012
By Connak
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Seven years after the release of his last album, John Cale has released his fifteenth studio album. For over four decades, Cale has been famous for being one of the founding members of legendary rock band the Velvet Underground and for his own solo material. In his long musical career, Cale isn't afraid to try one genre at least once. With that being said, Shifty Adventures in Nookie Wood is a very good album. While it might not be a classic, it certainly is an impressive piece of work from the 70-year-old Cale.

As mentioned before, Cale will try any genre at least once. This album sees Cale experimenting with electronic music. While that may sound like a turn off for most people, Cale makes it work. "I Wanna Talk 2 You" is the album's first song and it's great to hear Cale's voice after all these years. Cale collaborates with Danger Mouse on the first track, which is pretty interesting. Hearing all the electronic sounds might be strange first but in the end, "I Wanna Talk 2 You" is a great track. "Scotland Yard" is a great sounding track. The song takes advantage of the electronic sounds used on this album. Cale's voice on this track, although a bit aged, sounds like it did on his earlier albums. "Face to the Sky" might be my personal favorite song off the album. It's interesting to hear Cale use Autotune (if not, then some other kind of sound effect makes his voice sound robotic) on one of his own tracks. The music itself makes the track even more brilliant and quiet catchy as well. "December Rains", at first, sounds like a weak track but the lyrics are actually quite clever. "With Google getting on your nerves/And politics left and right" sings Cale "Kiss your private life goodbye/Lights out say goodnight." Cale also declares on this track "I'm trying to keep the noise down".
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A real gem
Terrific double album from JC. Nice, quiet vinyl. Great selection of tunes. Find new favourites every time I play it.
Published 2 months ago by Rachael Long
5.0 out of 5 stars second listen
Like several of the other reviewers, i thought this album sucked the first time I heard it. All the songs sounded the same, and they sounded fairly middle of the road. Read more
Published 4 months ago by electroncloud
3.0 out of 5 stars Love J.C.
I do't know if this album is one of
Cale's best, but I generally like everything he does, so I'm always glas to buy a new release. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Douglas Snyder
5.0 out of 5 stars Sounds like a vampire castle on steroids.
Nookie Wood is by far the most thrilling experience of 2012. It's spooky, electronic, atmospheric, catchy and even a bit juvenile. Read more
Published 12 months ago by M. A. Ball
3.0 out of 5 stars Cale Finally Reaches Too Far
I have no less than 17 John Cale solo albums, numerous live albums and most his works with other artists and I have to say this one of, if not the, weakest thing John has done in... Read more
Published 13 months ago by K. Watson
5.0 out of 5 stars Shifty Adventures
To anyone arriving at the astonishing catalogue of works by John Cale, how to plunge in is a bit like looking at a map of the globe with an open air ticket and wondering which... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Cable Hogue
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite
I'd be comfortable describing myself as a John Cale superfan: I have just about everything he's recorded. I think he's arguably one of the most brilliant living musicians. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Joshua D. Sites
5.0 out of 5 stars I Wasn't Familiar with John Cale - So Glad I Met His Music
I really enjoy this album. John Cale has a great voice that I didn't know about until I heard him sing at the end of a late-night talk show. Read more
Published 19 months ago by E. J. Parks
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!
The sounds of joy, pain and experience. A work of Art, rather than traditional Rock. John Cale at his best. Some will like it, some won't, but it speaks volumes.
Published 19 months ago by Starhenge
3.0 out of 5 stars John Cale is still an explorer
I have to give Mr. Cale credit for still exploring new sonic territory. At this point in his career, he really has nothing to prove to anyone. Read more
Published 20 months ago by R. P Pomeroy
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