Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
2008 digitally remastered and expanded two CD edition of the trendsetting Electronic/Art Rock band's 1980 release, the first of their albums to feature Midge Ure on lead vocals and guitar. Includes a bonus CD featuring re... more »
2008 digitally remastered and expanded two CD edition of the trendsetting Electronic/Art Rock band's 1980 release, the first of their albums to feature Midge Ure on lead vocals and guitar. Includes a bonus CD featuring relevant B-sides, live tracks, rarities and previously unreleased tracks. Replacing original frontman John Foxx with Midge was a bold and brilliant move made even sweeter by Ure's emotional vocal performances and his knack for a good tune. It didn't hurt that the band finally achieved their deserved success with this release. Includes the singles 'Passing Strangers', 'Sleepwalk', 'Vienna' and more. EMI.
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Fantastic Music, Disappointing Package
Coincidence Vs Fate | Warwickshire, UK | 05/29/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This will be the fifth time I've bought Vienna; vinyl and cassette way back in the Summer of 1980 (yes, I am that old), the original CD release in the 90's, the recent(ish) expanded version and now this, the "Remastered Definitive Edition".
Well, there's not a lot to say about Disc One apart from: it's the best post-Foxx album by miles. Not only do you get the classic (and that term really is apt here) single "Vienna", you get a couple of `should have beens' in "Sleepwalk" and "Passing Strangers" and one `why choose this as a single?' in "All Stood Still" . The album starts off in fine fettle with the absolutely fantastic instrumental "Astradyne", an immense seven-minute synth extravaganza. Apart from the throwaway "Mr X" there really isn't a bad track on here, with "New Europeans" being a particular highlight. So, if you've never heard this album before you'll in for a real treat.
If, like me, you bought this CD purely for the bonus disc then, as I was, you maybe a tad disappointed. Why? Well, we've been here before haven't we? The b-sides have already appeared on the excellent but long-deleted "Rare" CDs AND on the previous expanded incarnation of this album. In fact, the only unreleased material you get is a couple of rehearsal recordings of "Sleepwalk and "All Stood Still". Historically interesting perhaps, but hardly essential and certainly not worth the price of buying this CD.
Another disappointment is the booklet; some nice photos maybe, but extremely thin with no insight or comment from any of the band. Compared to other remastered releases (particularly the excellent Thompson Twins releases on Edsel) this is a real let-down. OK, so if material doesn't exist in the archives then you can't add it to anything, but this smacks of a cash-in, rather than being a truly essential release. It's nice to have the b-sides on one CD, but still...
Now, before you have a pop, I'm certainly NOT having a go at the music, Ultravox were truly magnificent on this album, it's just that the overall package smacks of bandwagoning, which is a real shame - Ultravox deserve better."
QUALITY NEW WAVE, NOT THAT BOW-WOW-WOW CRAP!
Roscoe C. Pernwickle | Morgan Hill, CA USA | 08/20/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After frequenting many so-called eighties clubs in the bay area, it is disconcerting to realize all the quality music of the new-wave genre has largley gone unnoticed in the dance floors. This album is a prime example of such an overlooking. They prefer to spin vaucous nonsense like "You Spin Me Right Round, Baby" and Bananarama and the like at clubs these days, when they forget the grandeur of music such as this. Ultravox's Vienna is a masterpiece of the new wave era, so completley utilizing the sterile yet emotively haunting atmosphere of early synth pop. I am a big fan of the John Foxx era output, but this album is somehow much stronger than "Rage in Eden" and "Quartet" combined. I would equal this album with the previous three in quality. "Astradyne" has an elegant kraut-rock/prog feel to it, while Mr. X is eerie, forboding pop that makes Gary Numan seem docile. If you are lucky enough to find the Ultravox! albums: (self titled), Ha! Ha! Ha! and Systems of Romance, get them immediatley, then buy this album. Other comparable new wave albums that are equal in scope and beauty to those are Japan's "Gentlemen take Polaroids" and Tuxedomoon's "Desire"."
After The Foxx
Mark Champion | San Antonio, TX United States | 10/16/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The first post-John Foxx Ultravox release finds the band hung over from the former lead singer's post-New Romantic influence: whereas "Systems Of Romance" defined the electro-lush contingent, "Vienna" (the album) strains to break newer ground and only partially succeeds. Missed is departed visiting guitarist Robin Simon; new singer/guitarist Midge Ure, fresh from the not dissimilar Rich Kids, veers the band toward a more conventional and more than slightly bombastic rock sound. The exceptions are the instrumental "Astradyne" wherein Billie Currie saws and soars over a heavy, steady rhythm and "Mr. X," an attempt at space-spy-film noir which cops Foxx's "Touch And Go" (or the other way around). Also effective is "Vienna" (the song), which manages to stay just this side of pretentious in a genre most willing to pretend. "The feeling is gone," declaims Ure in the title track, and it is hard to disagree after the intensity of "Ha! Ha! Ha!" and the wash of! "Systems." Not a bad album by any means, but not the Ultravox of yore, either. (And why the altered, song order?)"