"It's difficult to find something different and original in the dance scene, but the three dance tracks (What Time is Love, 3 AM Eternal, and Last Train to Trancentral) on this album are truly amazing, particularly considering that half of KLF's output consisted of stolen material (hence the name, Kopyright Liberation Front), plus the fact that this came out years ago. Those songs are the definition of stadium techno, songs that make a dance club seem not big enough to give them justice.The quiter material should not be ignored, particularly the second half, more of an ambient/chill-out feel with some great lap steel and female vocals. The single included with the CD is an example of KLF's wacky creativity, bringing in country legend Tammy Wynette to provide vocals.There's much myth and fiction that surrounds KLF, but this album is certainly their most solid work, and only frustrates the listener to no end thinking of the potential KLF held, had they not "left the music business". Damn and blast Bill & Jimmy for destroying the Black Room tapes..."
One of the greatest music industry jokes has turned into a t
E. J. Sawdey | Galesburg, IL United States | 08/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you ran into James Cauthy & Bill Drummond today, they would probably tell you how much they hated the KLF (which stood for the Kopyright Liberation Front). After releasing "The History of the Jams a.k.a. the Timelords" LP on TVT (which features sample theivery that rivals the Beastie Boys' "Paul's Botique") and realising a #1 hit song ("Doctorin' the Tardis"), he two musical pranksters wanted to release a pop album, just to see how easy it is to win a #1 single. And you know what? They did just that.
If one listens to "the White Room" today, it's obvious that they were intentionally trying to make the most ridiculous album they could think up of. (Recall, they even released a book before this album's release entitled "The Manual: How to Make #1 Singles With the Least Amount of Effort"). This is a full-on yet masterfully constructed prank. Just listen to the lyrics of the version of "Justified & Ancient" that closes the LP (the one WITHOUT Tammy Wynette): "They're justified & they're ancient / And they know what time is love / Rockman, he's just made of bricks / and Kingboy loves his screws / The JAMS don't need no master plan / To do whatever, whatever they can / Oooh nah-nahnahnahnah" This is not high art by any means. Yet, the more one sees that it's a joke, the funnier the album gets.
But the music? For just about being 15 years old at this point, it holds up REMARKABLY well. Opening track "What Time is Love?", after the brief mellow chorus of "Justified & Ancient", a sample of MC5's "Kick Out the Jams" kicks in, and then full-on techno keyboards start up (which sounds like the theme that guys who made the "Mortal Kombat" theme blatantly stole from). It's a dance-floor grinder in the highest order, and harder than any of the songs on the album.
"Last Train to Transcentral" continues on the electro-dance-burner trend. "3 A.M. Eternal," though good, isn't even one of the best singles on the album. Though the radio singles are no doubt fascinating (and hearing Tammy Wynette, a country starlet, sing jibberish like "All Bound for Mu Mu Land" is very amusing), songs like the title track get lost in the mix. And "The White Room" is a fantastically catchy piece of work, featuring mellow almost monologue-ish verses (which somehow sound like Chris Martin nowadays), and an irresistable oboe (!) rythym line. Even the 4-chord keyboard melody of "Make It Rain" manages to make its catchy way into your head. And to balance it all out, the mellow "Build a Fire" makes surprisingly effective use of slide guitars for the penultimate chill-out song on the LP.
It's an odd contradiction of an album. For something that was made as a total joke and only to make money, it holds up to the test of time amazingly well. Sure, they may be waiting for World Peace before they record again ... but, for all we know, this could be just another elaborate joke ..."
Great Dance Classic!
Mr. Music Man | Wolf Point, MT | 01/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hey the packaging is very missleading! I thought it was going to be two cds but then discovered that they added the single to JUSTIFIED AND ANCIENT onto the White Room Album which i thought was so cool! So i don't have to have two cds and keep trading. I bought this cd for the JUSTIFIED & ANCIENT song but then found out that there are some great dance tunes along with some slow grooves. BUILD A FIRE is a great song to chill to. The other singles WHAT TIME IS LOVE?, 3 A.M. ETERNAL, LAST TRAIN TO TRANCENTRAL are very good and bring me back to the days in Bismarck. So if you remember when you first heard these song then they'll take you back! My love though is JUSTIFIED & ANCIENT STAND BY THE JAMS 7" (this is the radio edit and is only 3 min long) STAND BY THE JAMS 12" (this is a longer version with a break that i think is very cool a guy comes on and explains about the Justified and ancient traveling in their ice cream van very cool) ALL BOUND FOR MU MU LAND (this has Tammy singing the Chorus but Maxine Harvey sings the lyrics. This is 7 min long also. Very cool) LET THEM EAT ICE CREAM (this is like a dub version it has the guitar form the song and the hype men talking but no words just the music) All in all i love this cd!"
Y. Ronnen | Toronto, CA | 03/23/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you will count the minutes on this album, you will discover that : A. Most of the album is not dance, but a very quiet one. B. The dance trax on this albums are probably the most revolutionary ever written.After four years of releasing trax under strange names (Justified ancients of mu mu...), and after a not so successful career (except a single UK No 1 as Time Lords) the KLF really made it. They released "What time is love" - a shocking house/techno track that changed the world of dance music forever. After that, came four more hits, and it was over. The KLF were no more (well, not exactly..).The first part of the album is the groundshaking one, with hits like "what time is love", "3 am eternal" (the most successful in the charts, but my less favorite) and their best track : "Last train to trancentral". The second part is quiet, TOO quiet, and I must admit that I never listen to it (I think it's boring), but some may find it interesting. One track that I do want to talk about is the original version of "Justified and Ancients" that appears in it's original and lowbeat version here. This track has no chance to become a hit when you hear it in the album version, and yet it was one of their biggest when it was released with the vocals of Tammy Wiennet (hope I spelled that right).A word about editions..I have the original UK edition of this album, and I have the US edition too (the one that Amazon sells). To my opinion, the US edition is a much better one. It contains the radio mixes of the singles (the original version of "Last train" in the UK edition is really not that hot), and it contains a bonus CD of "Justified and ancient" (the radio version).So you may ask why five stars when I don't find the album perfect as a whole. The reason is that the hits are fantastic and they worth buying the whole CD. The only thing missing here is the KLF's last single "America: what time is love", but besides - great music that shaped the sound of dance as it is today, 9 years later."
3 AM Eternal
Josephll | CET | 01/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"KLF was one of the oddest bands in music history, a British project between Bill Drummond and Jimi Cauty that crerated as much hype as they created controversy. They were known as the Jams/Timelords and lastly KLF and their speciality was ripping off classics and making dance remixes of them that would go on becoming mega hits. Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Gary Glitter and Abba were some of their victims but they got sued by ABBA and the in order to convince them they went to Sweden, but when they didn't find them they burned all copies on a field instead, keeping just a few and selling them as bootlegs. However, Bill Drummond had been around in the music business since the 70's Punk scene and exprimented with all kinds of genres. He released a solo album in 1987 that was a farewell to the music business but only 6 months after the retirement he met Jim Cauty and decided to make a Hip Hop record with him. The result was the formation of the Jams and the album "1987" that was a hybrid of Hip Hop, Electronica and major Samples to the point that Diddy actually looked quite creative. Thie big break however was their UK #1 hit from 1988, "Doctorin the Tardis" that samples Gary Glitter's "Rock N Roll" (among others) and the band known as the Timelords back then bacame the pioneers for Acid House, a very popular sub genre of the late 80's. However, it would be shortlived cause 2 years later they changed direction again when they once again became pioneers and released one of the first ever Ambient Dance albums Chill Out, although it was sample heavy it's now considered a classic and proves the importance of studio tecnique. Cauty also went on founding The Orb one year later. The most important record they ever made was "The White Room" a back to back record to Acid House and fullpacked with single-hits.
This time around they were so well known that they could afford hiring guest artists instead of sampling them, the most famous example was country singer Tammy Wynette on their single "Justified and Ancient". The album starts with a trademark, "What Time Is Love" that feature a rap from Isaac Bello, Electro-dance beats in fast pace and backing vocals from a woman. It's all part of a expriment of sounds and if you like this one you're gonna like the rest. Another good example of Acid House is "Make it Rain" with a woman singing backed by electro beats and saxophone in a rather slow pace this time. "3 AM Eternal" their biggest hit reached #1 in the UK and #5 in the US, quite un-ordinary that songs like this become hits in US that is not exactly known for their dance scene. This song is simular to the first song, but with more female vocals and In my opinion is also their all time best. "Church of KLF" could have been longer and feels more closer to ambient with a dreamy sound. "Last Train to Trancentral" is more hard hittin Electro beats, rap from Ricardo Da Force and this time robotic backround voices. It reached #2 in the UK and is a hell of a party song. "Built a Fire" is the slowest song a sounds like country meets Ambient, it's also instrumental. The title track is also slow and not much singing here either but beautiful sound, good example of their talent and ditto with "No More Tears" with a somewhat reggae sound mixed with Ambient, check the piano playing in the end. The aformentioned "Justified and Ancient" closes the album, however on the album you have a guy singing the vocals instead. It's a slow song with sing-a-long melody and doesn't sound much like the other songs.
Overall, This album was their creative and commercial peak and made KLF superstars over a night. But instead of a continuation of their music they did their best to create more controversy at the Brit Awards when they performed their song "3 AM Eternal" with a metal band making it unlistanable. After this they deleted their entire catalogue and declared that they wouldn't be back before there was world peace and KLF kept their promise cause this was their last album ever. As crazy as it all was, they still get credit for this album which is a dance classic that few other bands have been able to create with the wonderful hybrid of sounds that it got. If you want some quality dance music on one album that is both cohenrant, beautiful and exprimental, look no further. 5 stars.