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The Cost

4.5 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 20, 2007
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$13.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 10 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Recorded live in the studio, "The Cost" is easily The Frames most accomplished record to date. Armed with some of the best songs they've ever written, the band set out to capture the legendary passion and dynamics of their concerts and they have fully succeeded. Delicate folk melodies weave through blasts of big guitars and artful noise to cinematic effect.

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You're three tracks into The Cost before you find a song, "The Rise," that opens with anything but singer Glen Hansard's voice as the first thing you hear. The beauty is, you're waiting for the voice, with its hints of Cat Stevens's tonality and its utterly distinct Irish lift. It's Hansard that provides the Frames with such a rising vibe, the sense of a band always lifting off, pressed higher by Colm Mac An Iomaire's violin. Mac An Iomaire's strings slip and slide in the thickets of guitar, playing exceptional cat and mouse both when the guitars are clear and crisp and when they're crashing furiously. The Frames wouldn't claim to write epic tunes, but over and over the songs build toward ecstatic sonic events. Witness the hushed open to "People Get Ready" how it morphs into a violin and guitar-grit blast of wind-blown energy or the distortion-scoured hum behind Hansard's lone voice on "True" launching a languorous, piano-driven backdrop as the singer lets loose a first-class yowl--the stuff of anguished beauty. --Andrew Bartlett
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 20, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Anti
  • ASIN: B000M06K98
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,228 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
There is no question that the Frames are a quality band. The problem in the past has been that they frequently release albums that do not represent their best work. I first learned of them through a truly great album by the title FITZCARRALDO (named for the Werner Herzog film about an Irishman named Fitzgerald--Fitzcarraldo was how the locals transformed it--who had the insane dream of building an opera house in the middle of the Amazon). After several albums either somewhat or considerably below the high standards set by FITZCARRALDO, they have released a new album, THE COST, that is very nearly as great as that one. Truth be told, there is very little to separate the two in quality. I think the earlier album has a bit more of an edge. So may prefer the slightly softer contours of this newer album. But I will insist that anyone who loves this album will love equally the other, while fans of the earlier album will be delighted to find the band completely back in form. What is amazing is that it took them so long. FITZCARRALDO was released in 1996, while this one is a 2007 effort. Whatever the cause of their return, I am ecstatic that they are back.

I don't want to get into the debate about whether The Frames or U2 is the better back. Both are Irish, which is what invites the comparison. I will say that I rarely listen to U2, while I have frequently listened to one or another Frames album. I personally far prefer Glen Hansard as a vocalist to Bono. While Hansard lacks Bono's range and power, he has a subtlety and soulfulness that Bono lacks. He possesses some of the soulfulness of the greatest of all Irish rock vocalists, Van Morrison, though I wouldn't make the silly claim that he is on Morrison's level as a singer (for that matter, who is?).
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Format: Audio CD
Dearly loved and appreciated in their native Ireland and huge in the Czech Republic (interestingly enough), The Frames haven't quite managed to achieve that same level of success elsewhere. Nevertheless, the band continue to box on, crafting one stirring, richly melodic album after another for a relatively small but fiercely devoted audience. The Cost is their ninth, and quite possibly the most conventional of any record in The Frames back-catalogue. Where that might mean creative death for some bands, for The Frames it only serves to spotlight the groups strengths. Having reined in some of the more experimental urges and filed down the harsh edges that tainted 2005's otherwise good `Burn The Maps', it's pleasing to hear that The Frames have lost none of their trademark intensity in the process. The ten songs on The Cost, as a result, hang together beautifully, in what is probably their most focused, consistent and downright enjoyable set of songs to date.

There are frequent moments of exhilarating beauty here (especially when Colm Mac Con Iomaire's soaring violin enters the fray). Then there's frontman Glen Hansard's voice, which remains one of the most exhilarating in rock music. Hansard is a vocalist capable of both quiet, contemplative soul-searching and visceral, gut-wrenching catharsis. He never screams, or whines, or grates, he just sings brilliantly and affectingly - like his life depends on it. For all we know it does. On The Cost he seems to chisel heartfelt yearning into every lyric. On the rousing, achingly beautiful `Falling Slowly' Hansard sings "take this sinking boat.. and point it home..
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1 Comment 48 of 49 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Never haveing heard of The Frames, I read a very good review of "The Cost" and ordered it. I am so glad I did. I put it in my cd player 2 weeks ago and I've listened to the whole cd about 10 times. If you buy music to listen to all of the songs on the cd, you'll especially like this one as EVERY song is great. As I said above, don't pass this one up. You will be forever gratefull that you got it!
1 Comment 11 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Dearly loved and appreciated in their native Ireland and huge in the Czech Republic (interestingly enough), The Frames haven't quite managed to achieve that same level of success elsewhere. Nevertheless, the band continue to box on, crafting one stirring, richly melodic album after another, for a relatively small but fiercely devoted audience. The Cost is their ninth, and it's quite possibly the most conventional of any record in The Frames back-catalogue. Where that might mean creative death for some bands, for The Frames it only serves to spotlight the groups strengths. Having reined in the experimental urges and filed down the harder edges that tainted 2005's otherwise good `Burn The Maps', it's pleasing to hear that The Frames have lost none of their trademark intensity in the process. The ten songs on The Cost, as a result, hang together beautifully, in what is probably their most focused, consistent and downright enjoyable set of songs to date.

There are frequent moments of exhilarating beauty here (especially when Colm Mac Con Iomaire's soaring violin enters the fray). Then there's frontman Glen Hansard's voice, which remains one of the most exhilarating in rock music. Hansard is a vocalist capable of both quiet, contemplative soul-searching and visceral, gut-wrenching catharsis. He never screams, or whines, or grates, he just sings brilliantly and affectingly - like his life depends on it. For all we know it does, on The Cost he seems to chisel heartfelt yearning into every lyric. On the rousing, achingly beautiful `Falling Slowly' Hansard sings "take this sinking boat.. and point it home..
Read more ›
Comment 4 of 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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