CD The Optimist LP (CD 923304),
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The Optimist LP

  • 1. Feeling Oblivion
    2. Underdog (Save Me)
    3. Emergency 72
    4. Future Boy
    5. Door, The
    6. State of Things
    7. By TV Light
    8. Slack
    9. Starship
    10. Road, The
    11. Mind Over Money
    12. Optimist, The
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 30696

  • Credits
    ProducerTurin Brakes; Al Stone

    This is an Enhanced audio CD which contains regular audio tracks and multimedia computer files.
    Turin Brakes: Ollie Knights, Gale Paridjanian.
    Additional personnel includes: Rachel Fulgoni (violin); Ben Davis (cello); Phil Marten (harmonica); Eddie Myr (acoustic bass); Phil Passera (electric bass); Andy Newmark, Rob Alum (drums).
    Engineers include: Al Stone, Charlie Francis, Albert Pinherio.
    Part of the so-called quietcore movement in Britain, where folk meets pop. The Optimist is by turns delicate, impassioned, wistful, and androgynous. The lyrics come at the listener indirectly, quite a few of them refer to relationships in an angsty manner, and there are oblique ecological and anti-corporate references. It's as if After the Gold Rush (with its silver space ships) and the films The Man Who Fell to Earth and Bladerunner have all been put in a blender. Maybe this belies Ollie Knights' film studies background, or it's alien(ation) fallout from Radiohead. The standout track's are "The Door," which is infused with the sound of "Breathe" by Pink Floyd; "State of Things"; and "Mind Over Money." Elsewhere, "By TV Light" has the atmosphere of a sozzled aftermath, and "The Road" has some tasty slide work and a raga-like guitar motif. After repeat plays, the meanings of many of the songs are still a little obscure, but the feeling definitely grows. There seem to be traces of earthlings here and there - is that the spectral presence of the renowned Homosapien Paul Simon? Despite the acoustic setting this is almost as weird and original as Mercury Rev or early Captain Beefheart. File under: I'm not sure what's going on here, but it's interesting. ~ Mark Joseph

  • Critic Reviews
    Entertainment Weekly (5/4/01, p.69) - "...Fragile, delicately understated music, a soundtrack for stasis and confusion....clearly speaking to something in the British psyche..." - Rating: B-
    CMJ (4/30/01, p.13) - "...Diverse and sincere...this is nice, acoustic pop without an ounce of pretension..."
    NME (Magazine) (12/29/01, p.59) - Ranked #37 in NME's 50 "Albums Of the Year 2001".
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