Sunday, 24 January 2016

Astral Weeks (1968) - More Fan Comment

Best Ever Albums is a definitive site for album comparison. There are all kinds of stats and comment about The Man and his output over the years. The comments below concern Astral Weeks.  But why not?  Astral Weeks is considered one of popular music's great works with some saying it is even better than Lionel Richie's best work. Now that might be an exaggeration!

Sam Manning   -   Easily one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever created. Van Morrison's magnum opus deserves its mention among the Beatles and Dylan albums of the 60s. A groundbreaking, unique, smooth, and inspiring record. Sweet Thing is magnificent.

Ape Iron   -   Pure emotion. A bard like few others...

Dr Qwert   -   My personal favourite. There's no other album as layered as this, each listen you can fixate on a different element and how that plays off another. Lyrically solid. Good raw and improvised tone. And utterly unique.

Baby Blue Sedan   -   When I first heard this I considered it the worst thing I had ever listened to. If not for the acclaim I would have ignored it forever, but I came back and I'm very glad I did. It's not an immediate or inviting album. It's not easy to connect to. Morrison is a storyteller first and foremost and could care less if you relate to what he's singing about. But the lyrics are true poetry, and the more you hear them and are able to dig into them the better they get. And the instrumentation (which I at first wrote off as a sloppy mix of styles) is pretty unique and is the perfect backdrop to his vocals.

Schnouttz   -   Listening to this album is like falling in love for the first time.

Timhop   -   A truly remarkable record of deep introspection, layered with all kinds of transcendental imagery from his Belfast childhood. Nothing quite like it had ever been done before, and he never did anything quite like it again, except perhaps on snatches of Veedon Fleece.

Mez   -   Such a unique album. I agree with recent reviewer "It is from another world". It is one of the most stellar unique albums I have ever listened too. I revisit this one periodically & fairly regularly. Nice by the fire with some adult liquid refreshments.

Hahol   -   Music from another planet! Impossible to duplicate and categorise! A masterpiece....

D.P.   -   One of my new favourite albums. Beside You calms me like no other song. This is easily one of the best albums ever.

It Says Dilbert   -   I've listened to this album more than 8 times and still haven't been satisfied with it. Every song on this album is good but there is only one "great" track. Best Track: Beside You.

Pizza in a Cup   -   One of the relatively few "universally acclaimed" records that I simply don't get. I have tried repeated listens, but ultimately to me it just sounds some jazz musicians dicking around while a drunk guy shouts bad poetry at you. Much like religion and politics, I just don't discuss this record in uncertain company.

Devilbry   -   This album took me several listens, like 4 or 5 for it to finally "hit me." At first I thought all the songs were repetitive and slightly boring but now I find myself playing this album when I am in a certain mood. This album makes me feel better and can be very therapeutic. You can really feel Van Morrison's emotions coming through his vocals and they can in no way be replicated.

Mighty Ram   -   Only bought and listened to this based on it being in so many top charts over the years. Gradually getting more and more into it, seems to be taking a while so not sure how much higher it will go in my top 100. Hey, it's made it, so there's the seal of approval!

Maverick   -   Such an amazing album - one of the greatest ever. No radio-friendly songs but every one is amazing and they flow so well together. You can't help but almost fall into a trance listening to it. Madame George and the title track are my favourites.

Migglemo   -   Absolutely incredible. Truly mesmerising. Trance music. It was years before I "got" this. Must be given time to take it all in.

Hazey Twilight   -   I'm having a really hard time why so many people consider this as one of the definitive best of all time. It's slow, boring and tedious to get through and every songs sounds exactly like each other. And don't get me started on Van Morrison's voice (EUEEEAAHHHHEUGHEAAAAHHHHHH - seriously, what is he doing?!) This is an album that really confuses me, if you like it, more power to you. But, this is probably another reason why I don't like Folk (despite Pink Moon, Illinois and Bob Dylan being considered "folk", the difference between them is that they subjectively sound better to me).

Sheep   -   Love this album. It has such great bass, singing and it isn't too folksy to turn me off. One of the greats of the 1960s for sure.

Kinky Afro   -   I bought this album after listening to his Best of Volume 1 and was different to what I expected. Doesn't get you straight away and then it just clicks. I've forced this album onto more people than I care to remember as everyone should have this in their life!

Joss H   -   So beautiful, the first time you hear it is like walking into a brick wall but you unravel it as you listen to it more and more. This album is a part of me.

Cromni   -   I discovered this album much later than most of my top 10, but it immediately established itself as a favourite. I had listened to and really admired Van Morrison for a long time, and had even seen him perform. How this gem escaped my attention for so long is scandalous. It's not like I lived under a rock. I got to see him perform the album live a few years ago in LA, and it was disappointing. I liked him better the first time I saw him. I didn't like the arrangements of the songs at all. But then I listened to the album again and forgave him.

J. Huik   -   Visionary is a word I use too much and is used too much by everyone, period. But it applies here, when you consider what fortitude it must have taken for Van to get this album past record execs. This is beautiful music with nary a "hit" in sight. I've listened to this for 20 odd years now and will still listen to it 20 odd years from now.

Sandalsote   -   While this album is almost a perfect piece of music it just seems to be a little less soulful than some of his other stuff. In spirit I think this is a modern album and in a way it lacks some very special aspects of Van's music but creates a different kind of musical magic

M Hurley   -   This is the most beautiful, personal, and layered piece of music I have ever heard. It's the closest thing to perfect I can think of.

I Am The Walrus   -   There are very few albums that changed my perspective on music, especially on first listen. This is one of them. Absolutely incredible.

JoeMT   -   I don't think I could have made it through college without this one. The best study music ever, I wore out the CD from playing it so much.

Elston   -   Possibly my favourite album to play late at night. Astral Weeks is one of the few pieces of music that has made me shed a tear, but the album as a whole is beautiful beyond words. Like many great works of art, it can be hard to get into at first.

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