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John Cale

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John Cale Music For A New Society album cover
3.28 | 18 ratings | 2 reviews | 39% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1982

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Taking Your Life In Your Hands (4:45)
2. Thoughtless Kind (2:45)
3. Santies (5:56)
4. If You Were Still Around (3:24)
5. Close Watch (2:11)
6. Mama's Song (0:58) *
7. Broken Bird (4:43)
8. Chinese Envoy (3:11)
9. Changes Made (3:12)
10. Damn Life (5:11)
11. Risť, Sam And Rimsky Korsakov (2:12)

Total time 38:28

* On CD editions included at the end of "Close Watch"

Bonus track on 1993 CD remaster:
11. In the Library of Force (5:56)

Bonus tracks on 2016 remaster:
11. Library Of Force (unreleased) (4:47)
12. Chinese Envoy (outtake) (3:39)
13. Thoughtless Kind (outtake) (2:34)

Bonus CD from 2016 remaster - "M:FANS" :
1. Prelude (2:17)
2. If You Were Still Around (5:19)
3. Taking Your Life In Your Hands (5:44)
4. Thoughtless Kind (5:28)
5. Sanctus (Sanities Mix) (5:20)
6. Broken Bird (5:11)
7. Chinese Envoy (3:52)
8. Changes Made (3:55)
9. Library Of Force (feat. Man In The Book Excerpt) (3:09)
10. Close Watch (5:15)
11. If You Were Still Around - (Choir Reprise) (4:45)
12. Back To The End (3:35)

Total time 53:50

Line-up / Musicians

- John Cale / vocals, guitar, keyboards, composer, producer

- Risť Cale / vocals (11)
- Mike McLintock / backing vocals
- David Young / guitar, keyboards
- Allen Lanier / guitar
- Chris Spedding / acoustic guitar
- Robert Elk / bagpipes
- Tom Fitzgibbon / bagpipes
- John Wonderling / autoharp
- David Lichtenstein / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Rob O'Connor

LP Island Records ‎- 204 951-320 (1982, Europe)
LP Domino Recording Co. Ltd. ‎- REWIGLP93 (2016, Europe)

CD Rhino Records - R2 71743 (1993, US) Remastered by Miles Green with a bonus track
2xCD Electric Drone ‎- REWIGCD93 (2016, Europe) Remaster by Adam Moseley w/ 3 bonus tracks plus a CD including "M:FANS", a complete reworking of the original album, and a new track (#12)

Thanks to snobb for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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JOHN CALE Music For A New Society ratings distribution

(18 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(39%)
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(22%)
Good, but non-essential (22%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (6%)

JOHN CALE Music For A New Society reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars MFANS is another critically acclaimed album from John Cale that yet has to start speaking to me. It combines the mellowness of 1919 with an ill-fitting artsy pretension. Not the most exiting of combinations thinkable.

It starts with recycling Close Watch, a new recording of the best tune from Helen Of Troy and one of the highlights here. Broken Bird maintains the same reflective ambience. The sought-after punk with art pretension of Changes Made is rather awkward though. It had better been left off the album to make more room for pensive musings such as Chinese Envoy. Not a really strong piece neither but at least it provides some sort of thematic cohesion that could have make this album a bit better then the sum of its parts.

Damn Life is a simple rock ballad that is arranged into a pretentious affectation, with the Beethoven's 9th inclusion as the most preposterous climax. Also If You Were Still Around and other tracks that follow merely sound like art-posturing to me. Only Taking Your Life has the mark of quality of the opening tracks. Overall, this is an average singer-songwriter album for me but certainly not among the best in that field.

I have to conclude that the most popular albums from John Cale suit me the worst. Both this one and Paris 1919 have only kept to disappoint me in the many years they've been gathering dust on the attic. But then, I'm a kind of prog/new-wave/metal/zeuhl hybrid sort of person, so I've obviously not understood any of this at all.

Latest members reviews

5 stars The inclusion of John Cale on this site is a brave decision, if not a truly progressive one. His general work doesn't sit comfortably next to any conventional, classic Prog Rock, yet his uncompromising compositions, his avantgarde approach to Rock'n'Roll and Pop holds more of its own to most o ... (read more)

Report this review (#244682) | Posted by Thommy Rock | Wednesday, October 14, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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