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The Box - All the Time, All the Time, All the Time CD (album) cover

ALL THE TIME, ALL THE TIME, ALL THE TIME

The Box

Crossover Prog


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Gooner
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I was in Grade 9 when this album came out, and it changed my life in how I listened to music. Thinking back about what I grew up listening to at that point in my life, it was Mike Oldfield from my mother's collection and Rush, Saga, Asia, Rainbow, Genesis and various New Wave bands from my older brothers. The Box's _All The Time, All The Time, All The Time..._ was something entirely different to these ears. The Box is one of those bands you just can't pigeonhole. Too progressive by New Wave standards, but neither symphonic or too avant garde to be considered a prog.rock band. Sure there's plenty of synthesizers here, but they sound neither '80s, '70s or '60s for that matter. It's hard for me to realize that this album came out almost 25 years ago. It sounds as fresh as it did in 1985. All I can say is that this album is full of amazing songwriting that got me through some alienating times as a teenager in the '80s. Right from the opening notes of _Remnants_, you know you're into something special. One of the finest examples of space since the rhoades piano, it begins with what might sound like a reverbed fretless bass and a low end moog. Confuses me to this day. Just amazing. Bark Psychosis, The Sea And Cake, Disco Inferno, Talk Talk and many post rock bands could've been influenced by these guys had they heard of them(they were really only known in Canada...mostly Quebec, Ontario and The Maritimes). Jean-Marc Pisapia, if I could compare his vocal style to anyone it would be that of Chris Thomson of the band CAFE JACQUES(another band that many here have not heard of). Points of reference and appeal factor to prog.rock listeners would be the stranger side of Supertramp, the flighty side of Split Enz and the spacey side of The Police. Two tracks from this album made it to the radio..._My Dreams Of You_ with it's crafty keyboard programming and the classic _L'affaire Dumoutier(Say To Me)_ which is a creepy story about the murder of Elizabeth Dumoutier where the culprit is deamed not guilty due to insanity. It's a storytelling tune, sort of a New Wave version of Rush's _The Necromancer_ in approach. Both of Canada's official languages of English and Francais are used to great effect here. The accompanying video was a real sight to behold - a man walking in the middle of the road balancing himself on the yellow line(i.e. the tightrope of insanity). One of the flightiest and strangest tunes I'd heard this side of Barclay James Harvest's _Suicide_ from OCTOBERON. The chorus (Say To Me) will have you repeating it in your head days/weeks after hearing it. This is a masterpiece of progressive pop/rock thrown in with the likes of 10cc and Split Enz. THE BOX never recorded another album like it.

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Send comments to Gooner (BETA) | Report this review (#206417)
Posted Wednesday, March 11, 2009 | Review Permalink
b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Second album of The Box from 1985 named All time, all time, all time is another worthy album. Many said that this is their peak of their career and the best they ever done, agree to that , but I must add something, this album must be heared along with the first one, they go hand in hand. Some improvements can be heared here over the first, specially they get rid of the drumming machine and has real drums on this second album, the sound is more polished here, sometimes I have the feeling that they were influenced by Split Enz or even Supertramp eclectic elements. All time, all time is more complicated over the previous one in musical terms, is now more mature and is with some prog leanings for sure. Musicianship is brilliant, smooth and elegant and with amazing songwriting. From the first piece Remnants you can expect to hear something great and well played. All the pieces are simply great, showing that this second album is a great aqusition for many, again this album has a special place in my collection along with the first one. The musicians are top notch, another well done vocal parts who sound very intristing and elegant specially on my fav tracks Remnants, And Say Goodbye, School and My Dreams of You. Beside the music , the visusl factor is very well puted, and I mean another excellent cover art ( the back cover is the same with the one from front but is enlarged, excellent painting) made by the painter Richard Hetu. So, another timless album in my opinion, who desearve a wider recognition because they desearve it, among the best albums I ever heard along with the first one. A masterpice of music in general, now with a much prog leanings added. Recommended to those who can enjoy Talk Talk and bands from art pop. 5 stars for sure, smooth and elegant all the way

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Send comments to b_olariu (BETA) | Report this review (#209475)
Posted Wednesday, April 01, 2009 | Review Permalink
Peter
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The 1985 sophomore album from Quebec's The Box, like its predecessor, is a sparkling slice of engaging, intelligent 80s pop. This time around, Jean Marc and the boys have replaced the debut's drum machine with a real drummer, and the group's sound is thus more organic and "warm." Other than that change, ALL THE TIME, ALL THE TIME, ALL THE TIME is a perfect counterpart to the first album; the band used the same producer (Marc Durand) and the same evocative cover artist in Richard Hetu.

Once more, the songwriting is excellent, and a convincing cut or two above that of many of the Box's better-known 80s contemporaries. Keyboards and guitar dominate the overall sound, but the bass is also quite prominent, and combines with accomplished drumming for a rock- solid, danceable foundation. Jean Marc's vocals (sung in English, with a pleasing accent) are very likable -- he comes across as a regular guy; someone you'd like to have a beer and chat with. The lyrics are thoughtful, tight and often nostalgic, as they deal with the perennial themes of bygone romance, childhood wonder, and the seemingly unending tedium of schooldays which are yet missed. Every one of the eight songs is a keeper, but some are particularly good: my favourites include the haunting, atmospheric opener "Remnants," the wistful "And Say Goodbye," and the catchy "My Dreams of You" with its sing-along refrain. The absolute standout track, though, is also the longest at 5:53, and perhaps the "proggiest" piece here: "L'Affaire Dumoutier" recounts the story of a brutal murder, and the subsequent trial verdict of innocence by reason of insanity. The infectious music and a lovely lead break are neatly juxtaposed with the grisly subject matter; the result is a disquietingly beautiful, powerful song that you'll want to revisit many times.

The Box's ALL THE TIME (x 3) is a fine album that should easily appeal to fans of better-quality 80s pop, and well worth seeking out. I've been enjoying it for twenty-five years now -- you might say I listen to it ALL THE TIME. 3.49 stars.

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Send comments to Peter (BETA) | Report this review (#277996)
Posted Thursday, April 15, 2010 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars First of all a big thankyou to Julian (Gooner) for allowing me to hear this long out of print album. THE BOX were a band I was very familiar with as an avid music listener in the eighties. They had several hits on the radio during that decade and I always appreciated their clever and creative tunes. They are from Quebec but the words were in English and Jean-Marc their singer has such a good voice.

I feel the need to mention my buddy Thomas (tszirmay) who many on here know for his flowery, humerous and well written reviews. Thomas is one of i'm sure a few on this site who was there when Prog began and has been a faithful fan ever since. His parents immigrated to Canada from Hungary when he was a baby and Thomas lived a charmed life including going to private schools which is where he became good friends Jean-Marc the lead singer from THE BOX as well as the lead singer from MEN WITHOUT HATS. This was of course before these guys became somewhat famous in Canada but Thomas tells me both of these guys were into Prog.

I was certainly taken back to the eighties everytime I listened to this over the past couple of weeks. The synths and beat can't help but bring that era to mind but for me it's a good thing because it takes me back to a great time in my life. So lets take a quick look at this charming album from 1985.

"Remnants" is a top three for me in fact it's my favourite which is surprising because i've never heard this one before. Love the atmosphere to start and the relaxed guitar that joins in. Vocals 1 1/2 minutes in. Man this is pure emotion for me. There's some beautiful tension late. "With All This Cash" is all about the humerous lyrics. I'm not big on the accompanying music but hey that's not what this song is about. "And Say Goodbye" opens with solo multi-tracked vocals then those eighties sounding synths with a beat take over before the vocals return. A feel good tune for me that is mid-paced. "School" opens with the school bell going off then this uptempo synth-led soundscape kicks in. How good is this ! The words are about hating school. Great stuff. "Friends" is pretty good song about friends of course.

"To What We Shall Believe" is a catchy eighties sounding track with vocals. Some nice guitar before 4 minutes. "My Dreams Of You" is tough to keep out of my top three but i'll rate it as my fourth favourite. This has the album's title in it of course repeated during the chorus. Synths and a beat lead the way before the vocals join in just before a minute. Great track ! "L'Affaire Dumoutier (Say To Me)" is a six minute track that was on the radio a lot back in the day. If you heard this now you would probably be surprised at this. I would call this proggy as we get narration coming and going throughout describing the whole affair. This includes other people speaking as well. It's about a murder and is very creative to say the least. Very catchy too which is why it was a hit. There is the radio edit and an extended version as part of the bonus tracks. A top three. "Evil In me" is the final song and the other top three for me. Lots of synths to start before it kicks in with deep bass and drums. This reminds me of SAGA. Great chorus too. I need to mention one bonus track that really "does it" for me, it's called "For The First And Very Last" . It actually reminds me of FRUITCAKE but with better vocals. An emotional and laid back tune that I really enjoy.

Well these albums are hard to come by but if you can get any of their first three recordings i'd jump on it. I hear their most recent release is excellent as well. A solid four stars.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#911174)
Posted Thursday, February 07, 2013 | Review Permalink

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