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Ocean Rain

4.6 out of 5 stars 78 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Original Release Date: 2000
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sire
  • ASIN: B000002L5U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,045 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

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By Tim Brough VINE VOICE on May 2, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Like the placid water and serene blue of the album's cover photography, the fourth recording from Echo and The Bunnymen conveyed a retreat into a calmer space. After the relentless aggression on "Porcupine," the change in direction to midtempo, texture heavy songs on "Ocean Rain" was a surprise to those who came to the table once they'd heard "The Cutter." Gone was the brute force, and in was a sudden rush of romanticism. It made for an intriguing set of songs, and certainly for a major shift in the perception of the band (and in leader Ian McCulloch).
It also lead to a batch of incredible songs. "The Killing Moon," "Crystal Days" and "Silver" are awash in strings and romantic allusions. In the liner notes, McCulloch recalls that he "fell in love with Paris" while the band was recording there, and the spirit of "Ocean Rain" reflects that. The tones are often muted - DeFreitas uses brushes and other odd percussion to spectacular effect. On the other hand, McCulloch was still not beyond self-aggrandizing overstatement. His "Thorn of Crowns" will prove that.
"Ocean Rain" also sports some of the Bunnymen reissue series' better bonus selections. The five songs from "Life At Brian's" are interesting in that the band sounds loose and relaxed, and the recording of The Beatles' "All You Need is Love" show a sense of humor. There's also a pair of live cuts (including Mac's comment about "the greatest album ever made") that shows E&TB as a first class concert act.
While I am hard pressed to decide which Echo album I like more, "Ocean Rain" or "Porcupine," the days I give the nod to "Ocean Rain" are when I listen to "The Killing Moon," which I consider to be one of the finest songs to emerge from the whole 80's liverpool scene. This album is worth having for that one song alone.
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Format: Audio CD
While Crocodiles (1980) remains my personal favourite Bunnymen album, it is without a doubt that Ocean Rain remains their most accomplished album and their career high. The albums that had followed Crocodiles had been miserable (Heaven Up Here) & messy (Porcupine) though there had been a wealth of great songs: Never Stop, Back of Love, Zimbo, Show of Strength, Clay, The Cutter...
Recorded mostly as Studio Des Dames in Paris (the location of The Cure's Lovecats recording also), it found the Bunnymen with Gil Norton, Adam Peter & Jean Yves crafting an orchestrally-accompanied classic. Probably the best Scott III influenced album till Suede's Dog Man Star! The strings & experimentation of the flawed Porcupine pay off here, as they pretty much deliver the proposed 'greatest album ever made' (this statement has worn thin with overuse by McCulloch to every subsequent release, no matter how mediocre).
McCulloch's lyrics are suitably nonsensical, the right balance between Lear and Le Bon- Crystal Days is gorgeous stuff, though the opening single Silver has a breezy quality that suggests seasons other than the autumn or winter that dominated the feel of the early recordings. Nocturnal Me ("bury me internally") is the miserablism of Heaven Up Here given a more original direction- this is the greatest night-time music! Pity this edition doesn't get across the greatness of the album cover- this & Porcupine need to be owned on LP just for the brilliant covers which perfectly render the contents of the recordings in visual form.
It's the latter four songs of Ocean Rain that really stand out, often cited by journos as the greatest album side in history (fair enough I suppose!), what's left of The Bunnymen still play all four of these songs in a row live.
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Format: Audio CD
Beautifully constructed, this is by far the best work Echo and the Bunnymen ever did. This album seeps into your pores like thick honey and coils into your heart and your brain until it's lodged in and found a home. The music from a band at their creative peak, the songs range from haunting ("Eternal Me" "Ocean Rain"), hopelessly upbeat ("Silver"), to songs that still make me cry ("Killing Moon"). One of those (sadly) rare albums without a weak song, this is a MUST have for anyone who lived through 80's, for all the nostalgia about Culture Club, Wham, and Kajagoogoo, Echo and the Bunnymen's "Ocean Rain" is the real deal and proof that music of importance and staying power came out of that time.
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No one is going to be able to exist forever within the confines of their body on a strictly physical plane; that's just simply a fact that mankind has come to universally acknowledge. But what happens after our corporeal existence comes to an end is a subject that's inspired endless and universal debate; is there an essence that ascends to an afterlife presided over by a supernatural entity responsible for supervising, guiding, and directing our lives here on Earth, or is the force that animates us simply extinguished upon our death(s) ? That debate has been at the center of the lyrical content composed by lead vocalist Ian McCulloch of Echo and the Bunnymen, and there's absolutely no question that he's resolute in believing the latter; in fact, his lyrics are positively militant in their expression not only of his personal atheism, but in his conviction that mankind, not a personal Deity, will be responsible for saving us from ourselves, on the band's penultimate recording of their pre-breakup career, "Ocean Rain".

Most heavily orchestrated and lushly arranged of their first five releases ( especially on "Silver", "Nocturnal Me", "The Yo-Yo Man", "Seven Seas" and the title track) "Ocean Rain" is the band's most cohesive work, with a definitively fluid progression, and a level balance in the electro-acoustical presentation that first emerged on "Porcupine".
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