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THE SINGLES

Magenta

Neo-Prog


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4 stars This is just a great start for a magenta virgin, its got old and new. I do prefer the older more proggy material, but the newer stuff is still excellent. In a fairer world this band would be huge, christinas voice is sublime and yhe best voice in prog rock at the moment. Give it a few listens to sink in, then like me you could not be without magenta.

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Send comments to ian picken (BETA) | Report this review (#126766)
Posted Monday, June 25, 2007 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars A real treat for fans of Magenta, xpecially for overseas fans like me. Many Magenta´s key songs were released as singles only and are hard to find. Now they are all put together in one CD, almost all of them newly recorded. This is a great idea, since the new versions are very close to the originals ones most of the time, but they were also better recorded and produced.

Also an excellent starting point for anyone who wants to know this fantastic band from UK, The Singles is way beyond fans and collectors of their early staff: it shows that everything´s not lost in the UK prog scene. Magenta is one of the great new prog bands of the millenium and should get the credit for it. I wouln´t call this CD essential or masterpiece, but it is a great showcase for Rob Reed habilities as a songwriter and for the band as a whole as musicians, specially Christina Booth, one of the best female singers in the prog scene today. Rate: 3,4 stars.

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#126994)
Posted Thursday, June 28, 2007 | Review Permalink
2 stars The first eleven tracks are re-recordings of songs from the band's singles and EPs. One token folky instrumental aside, they offer a bland mixture of power ballads and stadium rockers, and make me wish I was listening to some progressive rock. The final three tracks are reworkings or alternate versions of epic tracks from early in the band's career. They make me wish I was still listening to the first eleven tracks.

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Send comments to Politician (BETA) | Report this review (#127200)
Posted Saturday, June 30, 2007 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This compilation album regroups singles of the band, but not only.

The opener "Speechless" is a very old song written somewhere in 95 when Rob and Christina were playing in the band "Tripa". It's a poppy-prog song like they were writing regularly with this band.

From their album "Seven", several songs are taken out. The very good "Anger" which is available in its full version. Almost poignant to listen to it. The long and wonderful guitar solo in the last part of the song is always a pleasure. Such a delicacy for the ears. We learn from Rob that it is the third take of this track. This should be the definite version (dixit Rob : "I'm not recording it again"). Superior to the album version.

The whole of the EP "Broken" is fully featured here which makes this one completely obsolete. The title track and the excellent and passionate "Lemminkainen's Lament" are the highlights. This mix holds a superb guitar solo instead of some Celtic music featured on the single version. I far much prefer this one.

"Call Me", "Opus 3" were just average and my opinion about the orchestral mix for "Sloth" was not enthusiastic since these strings were rather useless.

The advantage of these shorter songs (except two) is that they sound more as "Magenta" (even if the "Renaissance" mood is there of course).

One of my least favourite is "Cold". Just a mellow acoustic and dull piece of music. I was also a bit afraid while listening to the start of "King Of The Skies". Heavy orchestrations, but just for a few seconds and not too invading after. It's a rockier song than usual, almost heavy. Not bad.

The most interesting numbers/versions are "Speechless", "Lemminkainen's Lament" and of course the full "Pride" song (extended by eighty seconds when compared to the original album version).

This is good mix of "Magenta" song. A more personal part of their repertoire (except "Pride" which is "Genesis" and "Yes" influenced).

Three stars.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#153323)
Posted Saturday, December 01, 2007 | Review Permalink
SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
2 stars A collector's dream

Given the fact that this is a compilation album simply entitled The Singles, it is pretty obvious both what it contains and that it emphasizes the more commercial and less progressive side of Magenta's repertoire. The track list contains the full contents (but the versions found here are apparently re-recorded ones) of all of the band's EPs and singles released between 2004 and 2007. Magenta released two EPs in 2004 called Broken and I'm Alive respectively and a single in 2006 called Night And Day and then another single in 2007 called Speechless. Everything from these releases is here, b-sides and all.

With the exception of the three bonus tracks, all the songs found on this compilation are between four and six minutes in length and seem to be more or less tailored for being played on the radio and television. As such these songs are among the least progressive ones in the Magenta output overall.

The band's debut album, Revolutions, is represented here by Sunshine Saviour, which is a snippet of the multi-part epic Children Of The Sun. Seven is represented by three tracks in Anger, Pride and Sloth. The latter two are found among the bonus tracks and are alternative versions of the original album tracks. The extended version of Pride is the highlight of this compilation - it is a mystery why they chose not to include this version on Seven at the expense of some of the overlong tracks on that album. All of the rest of the songs featured here are strictly non-album tracks. The band's 2006 studio album Home is thus not represented at all.

Taken for what it is, this is a nice compilation for fans of the band and it really makes life easier for collectors. But, by its very nature, this is a release primarily for those fans and collectors. Any Prog fan is advised to start with the regular studio albums.

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Send comments to SouthSideoftheSky (BETA) | Report this review (#422330)
Posted Friday, March 25, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars Full of lovely prog songs !

This is the first album of Magenta for me to hear, and I chose this album when I was in a CD store remembering that many of the prog listeners said that their music is good but too long. After the first check I realized that the opinion is right to some extent. Christina, the lead singer, sings in today's manner unlike Annie to whom her voice is similar. As a result, this album is supreme as not only as a prog music but also a contemporary music. As I always insist, you need such a prog music that you can listen in the car and in this sense this album is one of the perfect for me.

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Send comments to Katsuhisa (BETA) | Report this review (#423740)
Posted Sunday, March 27, 2011 | Review Permalink

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