Mid-priced 1997 reissue of this 1986 two-on-one comprised ofthe Scottish trio's two 1985 EPs for 4AD, 'Tiny Dynamine' & 'Echoes In A Shallow Bay'. Eight tracks total, including 'Pink Orange Red', 'Ribbed And Veined' and 'P... more »ale Clouded White'. A 4AD release.« less
Mid-priced 1997 reissue of this 1986 two-on-one comprised ofthe Scottish trio's two 1985 EPs for 4AD, 'Tiny Dynamine' & 'Echoes In A Shallow Bay'. Eight tracks total, including 'Pink Orange Red', 'Ribbed And Veined' and 'Pale Clouded White'. A 4AD release.
"Two EPs on 1 CD add up to the best Cocteaus album? Well, not exactly, but it could be argued that this is their definitive statement, because all of their eccentricities are on display here.
Or at least, all of Elizabeth Fraser's eccentricities:
The dog-barks in the refrain of `Melonella', the curious Russian dance-like melody of `Great Spangled Fritillary'; the `Laugh Lines'-style ranting delivery of `Sultitan Itan''s chorus; `Eggs And Their Shells', containing only one decipherable word, which is enough to confirm your suspicions about the title; three songs whose "lyrics" consist entirely of mispronounced butterfly and plant names...As you can see, this is where the Cocteaus sound more like themselves, and less like anybody else, than they ever had before.
`Plain Tiger' is one of their most gorgeous minor-key ballads (why has it never been `compiled'?), the three centerpieces `Sultitan', `Melonella' and `Fritillary' are among the most unusual songs they released in the '80s, `Pale Clouded White' and `Eggs..' are stronger melodically than anything on the second side of `Treasure', and the instrumental `Ribbed and Veined' effectively recycles the chord pattern of its predecessor, the original and best version of `Pink Orange Red'.
So, eccentric as it is, no fan should be without it, and I recommend it to Cocteau-novices on the basis that "if you can take this you can take anything".
(Important note: I had to use the "Kids" review form to review this, because the ordinary review form wasn't available at the time. I am in fact genghisadonis, aged twenty-something)"
Two outstanding EPs on one disc
Christopher Culver | 09/29/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD features the 1985 four-song EP's "Tiny Dynamite" and "Echoes in a Shallow Bay," which shows the Cocteau Twins in a bit of an experimental period between the "surely this is the voice of God" 1984 release TREASURE and the 1998 new-direction album BLUE BELL KNOLL. The production is much more raw and sparser than the songs of that album. Unlike earlier releases, guitarist and producer Robin Guthrie has here made the drum machine just a prominent as the guitar work.The "Tiny Dynamite" EP begins with the slow "Pink Orange Red". The second track, "Ribbed and Veined" is the second of two instrumentals the Cocteau Twins did in the 1980's (the other being "Rococo" on the "Aikea-Guinea" EP). "Plain Tiger" is the standout of this EP, featuring excellent guitar work and moving vocals. "Sultitan Itan" is the low point of the EP, it doesn't really go anywhere.The "Echoes in a Shallow Bay" EP shows the Cocteau Twins experimenting. The first track is "Great Spangled Fritillary" One of the most remarkable songs the band has ever released, it begins with Liz Fraser intoning the same few lines again and again as the guitar slowly builds in the background. In the end, her vocals explode in a climactic series of wails. "Melonella" is four minutes of Liz Fraser singing the Latin names of butterflies, "hesperiidae, papilionidae..." A random collection of entomological names becomes a one of the most beautiful of this group's songs. "Pale Clouded White" is a swinging song that stands out due to its use of sequencers, which didn't really feature much in Cocteau Twins songs until 1988's release BLUE BELL KNOLL. The EP closes with the soothing "Eggs and Their Shells".What might strike the listener first, especially if he or she has heard mostly the softer Twins of VICTORIALAND or the especially smooth HEAVEN OR LAS VEGAS, is how *threatening* Liz sounds in some of these songs, especially "Plain Tiger." Her voice has a ferocity to it that was never found afterward in the Cocteau Twins repertoire.There are remastered versions of "Pink Orange Red" and "Pale Clouded White" on the Cocteau Twins best-of STARS AND TOPSOIL. I'd certainly recommend getting that, as the sound quality of the remastered versions is incredible. Also, the 1995 "Twinlights" EP included an acoustic version of Pink Orange Red that is interesting in that it shows how the Twins came to interpret the music of this era ten years later.While some of the Cocteau Twins' finest work is on their EPs (especially 1986's "Love's Easy Tears" EP and 1985's earlier EP "Aikea-Guinea"), it's probably best to start with their albums. I'd recommend HEAVEN OR LAS VEGAS or TREASURE as an introduction to their work if you've never before heard this excellent group. Once you've got the albums, the EPs await, and "Tiny Dynamite/Echoes in a Shallow Bay" should be one of the first you get."
The music samples are not Cocteau Twins...
A. Adams | 09/03/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I realized as I was going through all the review, and found this to be one of their only albums providing music samples, that the songs playing are not the right band. Look at your media player, I think it's the Motels. One of my favorite songs by Cocteau Twins is Sultitan Itan, so I wanted to hear the sample, only to be shocked when I heard what came out of my speakers. Don't let this determine your opinion of their sound...
Two reasons to get this
A. Adams | 03/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"its simple "pink orange red" followed by "ribbed and veined" two of the most remarkable tracks that the cocteaus ever conjured up....everything they had been moving towards came together in this fleeting moment and then it was gone."