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Pieces of April Soundtrack

4.4 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, November 4, 2003
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

For his second foray into movie soundtracks (2001's sublime score for Eban & Charley was the first), underground pop impresario Stephin Merritt supplies a succinct set boasting equal appeal to longtime fans and newcomers. The latter should appreciate the inclusion of material from the best-known of Merritt's multiple bands, including three numbers plucked off the Magnetic Fields' critically lauded 69 Love Songs, and two from the 6ths' Hyacinths and Thistles, featuring guest warbling by Momus and Squirrel Nut Zippers' Katherine Whalen. The big draw for devotees is five new selections: "All I Want to Know" is enlivened by sitar licks, while clip-clop rhythms impart the bittersweet "Dreams Anymore" with a hint of classic country kitsch. Merritt's lyrics remain as sharp and funny ("We belong together/Like sex and violence," he croons on "Heather Heather"), but it's the ever-inventive arrangements--like the offbeat blend of ukulele and harmonium on "One April Day"--that make these gems especially memorable. --Kurt B. Reighley
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 4, 2003)
  • Original Release Date: 2003
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Run Time: 80 minutes
  • ASIN: B0000DZTIO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #178,994 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
My only problem with this release is that it is too short, only 27 minutes long. Way to short for us fans who have waited for a follow up to "69lovesongs." But that's a small complaint.
This CD is an excellent sample of some of "The Magnetic Fields," "the 6ths" past CD's. Also includes here are some new songs that are very good. These songs again are about love, being in it, falling out of it, longing for it. They follow in Stephin's writting tradition and classic manner. Only wetting my taste for a TRUE follow up to "69lovesongs."
I have followed Stephin for many years and he hasn't let me down yet. If you have a taste for great song writing, off beat musical arrangements then this is for you. If your into formulaic top 40 music then by all means pass this by.
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Format: Audio CD
Wow, I bought Pieces of April on DVD and unusually for me let the film play thru the credits. I was rewarded with the song 'You You You You You' by the 6ths. With the net so good for researching the track/artist I was surprised to find this CD as I hadn't noticed much music during the film and indeed I was right as there are a few 'added extras' on the disc. The CD is an absolutely wonderful introduction to the music of Merritt anf the two groups - The 6ths and Magnetic Fields. I for one will certainly be investing in further Cds by these.........I hope to spread the word a little more over here in the UK.
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By A Customer on January 9, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is an absolutely wonderful starting point for future fans of the excruciatingly beautiful work of Stephin Merritt. This is one of those albums that takes on a whole new light in the wee hours of the morning. You know what I'm talking about...you're down and it's 3:45 in the morning and you've got nowhere to go and no one to go there with. You reach for this album, put it on, and listen intently while staring out you're window at the street light. The songs begin to sound completely different, you notice how achingly beautiful, yet extremely sorrowful the ukulele line is in "One April Day" (one of 5 new Magnetic Fields songs on the soundtrack). You'll also realize how brilliant "Epitaph for My Heart" is and how powerful and moving "You, You, You, You, You is (this song is performed by one of Stephin Merritt's many side projects, The 6ths). All in all this is an exceptional album, that hopefully will encourage newer listeners to explore overlooked albums by the Magnetic Fields (Stephin Merritt's most noted band) and the 6ths.
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Format: Audio CD
At first I didn't think there was enough new material on this soundtrack to make it worthwhile, but the four previously unreleased songs are so completley wonderful, especially "All I want to know" and "Heather". This is an essential for any Stephin Merritt fan.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
...And absolutely, as everyone else is saying, a terrific introduction to Stephin Merritt's music. That he hasn't gotten more airplay (at least within the U.S.) and more attention is a testament to the homogenization of corporate American radio because Merritt is a tremendous songwriter whose lyrics can range from exuberance to sorrow--often within the same song! Gorgeous little trifles like One April Day, I Think I Need a New Heart, The Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side, and both songs by The 6ths will grown on you, stick in your head, and, sometimes, even change your mood when you most need it.

I'm delighted I bought this album. I've already bought a second by The Magnetic Fields (I), and plan to buy them all.

What a wondrous world that has a songwriter like this in it!
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Not much more to say about this. Not only did I enjoy the movie, but I believe the use of The 6ths and Magnetic Fields songs enhanced my enjoyment. Often I think a soundtrack can get in the way of a film, or too obviously telegraph to me what I should be thinking or feeling. But in this case, Stephin Merritt's diverse compositions (some only heard as snippets in the film, but beautifully rendered and well-produced here) served the drama perfectly.

Some of the songs may not be for everyone - Merritt is nothing if not eclectic. (Just witness his work with Lemony Snickett and the Gothic Archies.) But several of the songs are melodiously raucous, and one or two might even make your heart hurt a little.
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