Spiritualized – Amazing Grace – The EP’s

Back in 2003 Spiritualized released a 3 EP version of their then current album, ‘Amazing Grace’. The first EP came with a box that would hold all 3, but if you only bought EP 2 and/or 3 you wouldn’t get the box. I have the box, and the three EP’s, though I think there was a pin or something included, which I don’t have.

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It is a pretty cool thing, although it may have been a marketing excercise, still, it is a nice artifact. I already had the actual album so this means I now have it twice but that’s OK. I like Spiritualized and am still looking out for a couple of releases that I haven’t managed to find at a reasonable price. The tracks on the EPS’s are also in a different order to the album, I’ve no idea if they are randomly placed or if they are based on track length so that everything was able to fit on a different format.

Tracklist

Ep1
A1 Cheapster
A2 Hold On
B1 Never Goin’ Back
B2 The Power And The Glory
Ep2
A1 Lord Let It Rain On Me
A2 Oh Baby
B1 Rated X
B2 Lay It Down Slow
Ep3
A1 She Kissed Me (It Felt Like A Hit)
B1 This Little Life Of Mine
B2 The Ballad Of Richie Lee

It’s difficult to pass comment on any Spiritualized release when comparisons are always drawn against ‘Ladies and Gentlemen..’ which is quite rightly regarded as a classic album and is, in my opinion, almost perfect, but it is fair to say that, while not quite reaching the heights of that earlier release, this is a damn fine album. It has all the hallmarks that one would expect from a Spiritualized album and is a bit more ‘Indie’ in places, which is neither a negative nor a positive, it is just different. ‘This little life off mine’ is quite wonderful as is ‘She Kissed me’, in fact, there aren’t any bad tracks on the album. Listening to it in the original track order from the album is probably preferable I think, though that may be down to the fact that the original order is how I’ve always heard it so it is a little odd to hear them ordered differently.

This album was supposed to be a ‘garage’ album, as Jason Pierce said at the time “What I liked about The White Stripes was coming up in their slipstream, putting a guitar over your shoulder again and saying, ‘Hey, listen to this sound were making”. The tracks were given to the accompanying musicians in the morning and were supposed to be recorded and finished by the end of the day, As another commentator has noted, only Jason Pierce could produce an album with 11 brass and string musicians, timpani, a dulcimer and sleigh bells, and call it back to basics.

‘Amazing Grace’ does seem very familiar if you’ve been listening to earlier releases, and it also seems effortless.  The ability to create such consistently high quality compositions and performances is quite a rare thing. It is an extraordinarily good album, full of pure beauty at times and sometimes it is noise, but it does all seem to sit together as though that is how all albums are mean to be.

The Listening List

Some more things I’ve listened to, without all the covers this time as I will never keep up if I do that every time:

20/04/2017 – 18/06/2017

Sufjan Stevens • Nico Muhly • Bryce Dessner • James McAlister – Planetarium
Slowdive – Pygmalion
Lambchop – Is A Woman
Kraftwerk – The Model
Portishead – Over
Sonic Youth – Daydream Nation
Slowdive – Souvlaki
Björk – Biophilia Remixes | Part Eight
The White Stripes – Under Great White Northern Lights
Forest Swords – Compassion
Delia Derbyshire And Elsa Stansfield – Circle Of Light
Slowdive – Just For A Day

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Nirvana – In Utero
Jonas Reinhardt, Jürgen Müller – The Encyclopedia Of Civilizations Vol. 1: Egypt
Nirvana – Nevermind
Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols
Zomby – With Love
Spiritualized – Amazing Grace 3 EPs Box Set
Slowdive – Slowdive
Sonic Youth – Sonic Nurse
Sonic Youth – Murray Street
The Future Sound Of London – Archived
The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead
The Smiths – Meat Is Murder
Mogwai – Rock Action
David Bowie – No Plan EP
The Smiths – The Boy With The Thorn In His Side
Cocteau Twins – Four-Calendar Café
Mew – Visuals
Cozmic Corridors – Cozmic Corridors
Steve Reich – LSO Percussion Ensemble – Sextet | Clapping Music | Music For Pieces Of Wood
Gorillaz – Plastic Beach
Asobi Seksu – Citrus
Gorillaz – Humanz
Atoms For Peace – Before Your Very Eyes.
Björk – Biophilia Remixes | Part Six
The Future Sound Of London – Archived : Environmental : Views
Field Music – Tones Of Town
Bjørn Torske – Nedi Myra
Faust (7) / Ulan Bator – Faust / Ulan Bator
Richard Pinhas, Camera (10) – Camera / Richard Pinhas
Actress – AZD
Cocteau Twins – Milk & Kisses
Mew – Frengers

Your F***ing Sunny Day (Episode 26)

  1. Boards of Canada – Reach for the Dead (from Tomorrow’s Harvest)
  2. RUN DUST “SO FAR”
  3. Gajek – Curved Engines pt. 04 (Plaid Remix)
  4. Gala Drop – You And I
  5. MONDKOPF – Cause & Cure (OFFICIAL)
  6. Massive Attack, Azekel – Ritual Spirit
  7. Solomon Grey – Choir To The Wild
  8. Mark Pritchard – Beautiful People (Official Video) ft. Thom Yorke
  9. björk: lionsong
  10. Max Richter – Richter: Three Worlds: Music From Woolf Works / Mrs Dalloway, In The Garden
  11. Mogwai – Killing All The Flies
  12. MONO – Dream Odyssey
  13. Spiritualized-Ladies and Gentlemen We are Floating in Space
  14. Akira Kosemura – You
  15. Four Tet – My Angel Rocks Back and Forth
  16. Lamb – Gorecki