If the lyrics took a more serious or less comedic tone, this album could easily be a 5 based on its production and composition. It was a pleasant surprise and an enjoyable listen.
Now this is peak fucking Gen X garbage lol. At least it's only half an hour. Congrats man, it's the 1990s and you're pretending to be Sinatra. Aren't you just fucking ironic. 2/5.
Outrageously beautiful and beautifully outrageous (If... you were a horse I'd clean the crap out of your stable and never once complain). Orchestral and theatrical, first impression was Bowie but I think it's more Scott Walker. I assume Father John and Kirin J take a lot out of this kind of thing. Pretty impressive it was all recorded live as well.
His deep, baritone croon has never sounded more affecting, and his songs are easily among his best, making A Short Album About Love much more than a record for hardcore fans.
5. Of course. Canciones: Everybody Knows (except you)
Talk about an underrated love/break up album. Genuinely some of the most beautiful melodies and movements on this short, grand album. Highlights: 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7.
Loved it! So unique, definitely going to listen again.
Absolutely soulful and swanky album, quite tightly packed as well. Huge Surpise here.
Cinematic, epic and really unique. Lovely orchestration and enchanting vocal tone. Very impressive for a live album, an unexpected 5.
A classic example of good trustworthy advertising. It is short, it is an album, and it is truly every sense about love. The vocalist's voice soars as he tells you how we can be together forever, how you would not cry if you were a tree, and how if you were a horse, he'd clean the crap out of your stable and that's when it really hits you that you're in love.
Exactly what it says on the tin. I'm a sucker for orchestral arrangements. Best track: Everybody Knows (Except You)
Enjoyable and somewhat amusing album with tongue-in-cheek lyrics, surprisingly good
entertaining album. The lyrics to the songs are bizarre. Short and not so sweet.
A surprise smash hit out of left field. I enjoyed this way more than I thought I would. Gorgeous songcraft, funny and witty lyrics, and a nice melodic ambiance.
One off 60's orchestra and single singer style. Enjoyable.
New to me but I enjoyed it
Sounds a lot like Magnetic Fields. Pretty listenable
Saved Prior: None Off Rip: In Pursuit of Happiness, Everybody Knows (Except You), Someone, If I Were You (I'd Be Through With Me), I'm All You Need Cutting Edge: If... Overall Notes: Some nice chamber pop. I can see people seeing this as pretentious, but I like it like that. The orchestral moments are beautiful and the lyrics aren't too self-serious. A 4.5 rounded to a 4 because it wasn't anything earth-shatteringly good (and again I'm trying to avoid score inflation), but I really really enjoyed this album. This is like a better version of that Rufus Wainwright album and will probably replace it for when I'm in the mood for some chamber pop.
Nice little album
This was actually great. Started off feeling very twee, but I grew to like it a lot.
Für Freunde des Melodrams wirklich ein gutes album
c'est un peu court jeune homme, 4/5
Zu pompös, um es normal zu hören aber echt cool!
A voice like velvet, great lyrics, clever songwriting, beautiful arrangements... what a joy this album is.
Intriguing and often mesmerizing, although the occasional odd lyric feels out of place with the tone of the album. But well done and I was hooked throughout.
This was actually great. Started off feeling very twee, but I grew to like it a lot.
I've never really heard anything of this genre before outside of straight up musical theatre, which is obviously right up my street. This album was really cohesive and was a pleasure to listen to. My favourite moment was the orchestra at the end of 'If...'. Beautiful music.
New to me, i liked it
Never heard of The Devine Comedy. This is such well written music. Very full and layered. Like an Ogre. I'm interested in hearing more.
I really quite enjoyed this album.
This was a great album to have come up. I know this band from their first best of and this was a great excuse to dive into more of their full albums. I already liked the songs on here that I know but really fell for a few I didn't (specifically "Someone").
the guys voice was lovely n deep. the instrumentals were extremely good and felt very grand and orchestral. lil bit of comedy. lil bit of cringe. pretty cool. 4.5
Rating: 7/10 Best songs: In pursuit if happiness, Everybody knows
Nije moj đir, dost kliše ljubavnih pjesama, al iskreno iskreno jedna od ugodnijih šetnji do faksa, makar se osjećo malo sjebano. Tako da iako nema teorije da bi inace dao ovak visoku ocjenu ovom, pasalo je, tako da neka bude četvorka ko ga jebe.
Klinkt ook bijzonder. Gaan we nog meer van horen
Interesting! Somewhat eerie love songs with strange lyrics (if you were a horse).
Optimistic (mostly) collection of brass, drums, strings. Abba-adjacent.
Solid album from one of my favourite artists. Does exactly what the title suggests and more.
I love Neil Hannon. A man out of time, a voice from the 50s and the wit of Noel Coward but with 90s instrumentation. It's so enjoyable. He can break your heart in one line and make you laugh your arse off with the next (is there a better delivered line than "I told the passers by/I made a small boy cry"). I have always loved Everybody Knows. If is a revelation - big swelling orchestration and a writer's challenge of coming up with as many situations as possible. If I Were You feels like Frank Sinatra retold by Morrissey (in a good way, not a racist way). This actually feels like a lost Scott Walker album! I really like it. Not everything on here is essential - which is a shame with its brevity, but at it's heights, it soars.
Pleasantly surprised! I'll listen to more of this band.
Very good album, but this musical style does not appeal to me enough to give it 5 stars, so 4 stars it is.
Divine Comedy has made the perfect (chamber) pop song numberous times (Our Mutual Friend, Tonight We Fly, The Booklovers etc etc) . This min-album: If. The remaining songs are around 4*. Lyrics: 5* (of course).
I wasn’t expecting much from this one, but I kind of loved it! Very pretty throughout, and I like how his voice added a little bit of edge to offset the sugary sweet coating. This might be my favorite week here ever. B
Why include this Neil Hannon project, and not the cricket-themed concept album side project "The Duckworth Lewis Method"? That would really get the commenters foaming at the mouth about the UK-centric bias! 😆 Anyway, this is a perfectly pleasant listen - I got a Frank Sinatra album picked the next day, which makes for a nice contrast... Fave track - "Everybody Knows (Except You)"
Really liked the music, especially the classical aspects of the music, and his voice eventually grew up on me. 3.5/5.
Pretty good, not something I would seek out though.
it was in fact a short album about love
Well, this was a surprise. I'd likely never pull this album off my shelf and play it, but it was compelling, interesting, and entertaining.
its alright but idk why its so special
A bit sappy, but will give it another listen
Arranged well, with vocals up front. A cohesive love story.
No idea what to expect. Bombastic rich lounge music? It kept my attention.
I wasn't too thrilled about the prospect of a "chamber pop", but thankfully it wasn't too bombastic, it actually has some pretty good melodies. Would listen again.
It wasn’t great, there were some shortcomings. However, the fullness and depth of the music and atmosphere was really good. It was good throughout. Nothing too special, but nothing bad. Solid 3.
1997, orchestral Pop, nicht ganz meins, roter Faden, bleibendes Thema, beständiges Album deswegen starke 3
Nicht ganz mit warm geworden #listenagain
Goh, weer eens iets ander. Theatraal, musical-achtig soms en best mooi, maar het hield m’n aandacht niet vast.
saw these guys supporting Beck in the early 2000s in London. symphonic sound and his voice is incredible. Highlight of the album is "If..."
somehow cheesy, old fashioned and awesome. Dudes voice is great and its pretty epic. The orchestra is a bit watered down, but I suppose thats what combining genres gets you
This was pretty fun. Nothing groundshaking or incredible, but I found this to be a really enjoyable listen. Saved: Everybody Knows (except you)
Reminds me of Burt Bacharach/John Barry/Neil Diamond/Jarvis Cocker. Glorious and heart-breaking pop, arrangements and lyrics. Great fun in concert too.
Oooh look, it's more 1990s British indie rock. I remember the name, but not any of their songs/albums. To be fair, this one is reasonably decent. Although considered a studio album, it was recorded live in a concert hall with a small orchestra and an audience (though thankfully you can't tell on the album that this was a live show). They are songs... about love, ranging from the romantic to the absurdist and twee. "If you were a horse, I'd clean the crap out of your stable" is a great line to sing with earnestness against orchestral accompaniment. I'm not opposed to orchestral pop, and the guy's voice does suit this setup. A bit like the Springsteen record, I can appreciate the craft and I wouldn't object to hearing their other material. But I'm not falling in love with this record. 3.5
A mini album of 7 songs recorded around Divine Comedy’s commercial peak (Casanova). My first listen to this album in a very long time, most familiar with the single Everybody Knows, a great pop song). Throughout the arrangements are sophisticated though at points lyrically over-baked but for what it is, it’s a great piece of work.
3 i guess. not really my jam but it wasn't actively bad so I can't really give it a 2. Just not my style, vocals were a little "whiny" which might not be a fair description but is the first word that came to mind.
What's with the weird animal comparisons?
was not expecting this sound based on the album cover...pursuit of happiness feels like a musical track...ok i think entire vibe of this album will feel like a musical, not something i'd listen to often
A dramatic and cinematic album. It does stay true to Wikipedia's genre of "orchestral pop" in that it sounds like the easy listening albums of the 50s and 60s; however, although it's relaxing, it's not the most interesting or original. Favorite track: In Pursuit of Happiness
not as good as the other album it recommended
Scott Walker is one of my all-time favourites, so you’d think I would love this, but something about it didn’t land. The delivery is too arch and there’s too much whimsy for my liking. It was ok overall, but verging on irritating in places.
Like a Broadway show
7 canciones y unos 32 minutos. Solo con las castañuelas de la primera canción ya me ha ganado Neil. También está la grandiosa Everybody knows (except you). Luego se pone tristón y para mi gusto pierde pero es interesante como con tan poco material se puede hacer tanto.
Crooning geezer with BIG strings
I don't really know how to classify this album. It's got an orchestral quality to it, and some very heavy crooning going on. The album does a good job setting expectations, it really is a short album about love, and there is some comedic elements to it. Overall I couldn't get too into this, I didn't like the lyrics between the absurdist comedy lines and the very shallow concept of "love". On the other hand, I liked the orchestral side, it was refreshing to hear something like this in a late 90's album. The arrangements were very pleasant and listening to just that without the lyrics I probably would have rated this higher.
Album correct. Un son intéressant mais les compositions sont pas à se jeter par terre
Pompöser Orchester Popkram. Sänger klingt zwischen Morrissey und Morrison. Hat mich nicht mitgerissen.
3rd February 2022 Listened on the sofa while working, went to watch The Glow at the Royal Court with Harry in the evening which sucked. Enjoyed this, britpop with cheek.
Well this was certainly different. I'm not a big fan of this genre but it was better than expected. The ironic lyrics and nice orchestration gave it a passing grade.
Holy Burt Bacharach! If this was from 50 years ago, I’d give it a higher mark. I like this type of orchestral pop when it captures the spirit of that era. It could be a Scott Walker tribute album.
This was... not to my tastes. I felt like this person’s singing really didn’t mesh with the music. And I couldn’t figure out if the lyrics were supposed to be as creepy as they were...
Definitely interesting, especially lyrically, but in the end none of it really clicked. This one deserved a revisit down the line.
Loungey and weird but nice.
Author and spiritual teacher, Eckhart Tolle, writes in his intriguing book, 'The Power Of Now': ‘Unless and until you access the consciousness frequency of presence, all relationships, and particularly intimate relationships, are deeply flawed and ultimately dysfunctional… The reason why the romantic love relationship is such an intense and universally sought-after experience is that it seems to offer liberation from a deep-seated state of fear, need, lack, and incompleteness that is part of the human condition in its unredeemed and unenlightened state.’ This is, I believe, the fundamental flaw in the theme of The Divine Comedy’s otherwise musically luxuriant 'A Short Album About Love.' Opening with a moment of rich, deep horns, courtesy of the Brunel ensemble in an enticing chord progression, they are just as quickly replaced by the fast strumming of an acoustic Irish guitar… and off we go in an exuberant musical explosion accompanying the lyricist in his ‘Pursuit of Happiness.’ The song builds to a joyful climax as singer/songwriter Neil Hannon raises his voice to a near scream, ‘Just as long as we are together forever I’ll never be anything other than happy!’ It’s a terrific song and I was eager to listen to the rest. Unfortunately, the next song found his love unrequited, the remaining theme for the duration of the LP. Rather than exploring other options, one song after another grew into a relentless quest for his self-confessed 'need' (a word repeated many times) for romantic love. And despite the lush orchestral accompaniment and wonderful arrangements, by the fourth track I was growing weary, and relieved when I reached the end. I would’ve welcomed this 'Short Album About Love' (true to it’s word at a mere 32 minutes running time) to have been even shorter, eliminating tracks four, five, and seven. The second to last song, ‘Timewatching,’ was a wonderful bit of music (I’m a sucker for the minor key), but again, Hannon expressed his dependence upon his love interest for his wholeness. I want to encourage the listener to consider if this ‘in love’ is really ‘love’ at all, or as Tolle suggests only a misplaced attempt to achieve completeness both physically and psychologically from a pre-enlightened and redeemed broken state of being? ‘Love is a state of being. Your love is not outside; it is deep within you. You can never lose it, and it cannot leave you. It is not dependent on some other body, some external form. In the stillness of your presence, you can feel your own formless and timeless reality as the unmanifested life that animates your physical form. You can then feel the same life deep within every other human and every other creature. You look beyond the veil of form and separation. This is the realization of oneness. This is love. What is God? The eternal One Life underneath all the forms of life. What is love? To feel the presence of that One Life deep within yourself and within all creatures. To be it. Therefore, all love is the love of God.’
This was cool
Huh; this was very strange, but I kind of liked it. If Henry Mancini ever went through a post-punk phase it seems like it would sound like this.
This album has so much potential but ultimately suffers in its execution. I’m a big fan of chamber/symphonic pop but was disappointed with this album. First of all, the lyrics are melodramatic to the point of being over earnest drivel. The vocal delivery is somewhere between Jim Morrison and Frank Sinatra which is a cool sound, but paired with the often obsessive lyrics of unreturned love, they come off as incredibly cheesy. All meaning here feels forced and for me it just doesn’t work. It gets a three for the musical execution and the grandiosity of its vision, but it is closer to a 2.5
"Baroque pop," very heavily orchestrated with heavy instrumentals and just... HEAVY overall. Not my fav, and don't think it's objectively super well done either. 2.
This should’ve been like 3 songs and maybe I could’ve stomached it as a short concept EP or something. Or maybe it could’ve just been like, without the lyrics. Maybe it just didn’t age well or something because its highly rated per Wikipedia and dude has had a crazy long career. I feel like he wants to be Sinatra, maybe. Or we’re all just jaded. Who knows.
It's alright. I guess I learned about what "chamber pop" is and I guess it's just not something I really listen to. It was okay.
Starts out ok, decent music. Weird lyrics. If... has ridiculous lyrics but sure... pretty odd albums with some ok parts but mostly forgettable
Nee. Ansatz begrüßenswert, durch wenig aufregendes Songwriting wurden hier allerdings leider viele klare Chancen vertan. Sehr gute 2 Sterne.
A funny album.
Grand and pompous (in the best possible sense of the term). Fun to listen to but I don't see myself revisiting it.
I gave this album three listens, trying to give it the benefit of the doubt. But every listen, the only part that caught my attention was when he started talking about how he wished his lover was a horse or a dog. Okay buddy.
Un poco soso. Falto de ritmo
I did not know who this band was before I listened to this album and I do not care to find out anything more about them. These were some way overly corny songs right here. I did love the orchestration and the inclusion of horns right off the jump and thought I might enjoy it, but then this dude started singing. He sounds like a lounge singer with no mystery whatsoever. He's got all the croon but I don't want to spoon. I get he's in love and thats nice and all but that doesn't mean you can stop trying man, that's when the hard work starts! Example A, B, & C: "If your name was Jack I'd change mine to Jill for you." "If you were a horse I'd clean the crap out of your stable." "Dont let a frog get you down." Most of those lyrics were from the song "If," which was the point of no return for me. Being open about your feelings and being unsubtly earnest are two wildly different things when it comes to songwriting. This was not for me. Glad it was a SHORT album about love. 1.5
Its a good album but the sound isnt super my jam. The vocals are incredible and the orchestra is great (wikipedia has the genre as orchestra pop). Could be just me getting used to the headphones Interesting how short this album is compared to other albums on the list, but that could just mean there is less fluff?
Het album is 2x langsgekomen, maar ik heb geen moment echt bewust geluisterd. Er was niks waardoor ik echt in de muziek werd getrokken.
Mij te braaf en gepolijst
This wasn't my cup of tea but it was true to its title by being quite short, so I listened all the way through. I was most suprised that I hadn't heard of this band or recognized any of the songs despite it being squarely in my peak listening/discovery days. It reminded me of maybe the Pogues or some such indie lyrical band.
Nothing to note actually
An angsty and emotional entry from a band that can't compete with the Smiths, but truly wishes they could.
Some good cheese but also depressing
I've never heard of the band or any of the music on this album. By the time I got to "If you were a horse I'd clean the crap out of your stable..." I was confident that I did not like this album. I didn't find anything that changed my mind after that.
nope. i see what he's trying to do, but it's too british (yes I read he's actually scottish)
Hated it at first, but some of the lyrics grew on me. Still don't need it in my life.
I was not familiar with this band or any of the songs. Comparing a woman to horse and cleaning her stable was certainly an interesting choice. I am sure that worked endlessly. No need to listen to again.
Bland and not exciting in any way. An underwhelming album about love.
This sounds really bland. I like the lyrics, but the orchestration is not extraordinary.
it was okay, I don't know that I'll re-listen a lot though. a lot of the songs had pretty music and almost spoken word vocals that reminded me of the beginning of "Stranded at the Drive In" from Grease; still not my favorite tho, probably 2.5/5
Very Good voice Alternative but slow music
Really not my thing, miserable album about love doesn't seem to do it for me in this style.
Comes off like music for films. Melancholy. The lead singers vocals are standardly strong. Wishing for more haunting from him though.
disappointed….. glad it was short
The Divine Comedy's fifth album is centered on love songs and is another chamber/orchestral pop album. The melodies and lyrics were easy to get lost in and pretty enjoyable. If someone were to listen to this album just after beginning or ending a relationship, then I think the album would have a bigger effect on them, then it did for me.
Mi fa venire in mente un po' i Baustelle e Bublé. Non ho ancora capito se mi piace o se lo trovo melenso.
Casanova felt like Pulp parody. This feels like Magnetic Fields parody.
Yeah, interesting but I’m more confused by it. What did I just listen to? 2.5 stars but I’ll subtract a 1/2 star for how it left me feeling.
Slightly better than Casanova, but not by much.
I usually like the juxtaposition of oddball irreverent lyrics and serious instrumentation, but it just doesn’t work for me in this case. The singer has a great voice, but I’m not picking up what he’s putting down. It doesn’t feel like an authentic expression of self, it feels contrived and forced. Not a standout.
Didn't really care for this album too much, apart from a couple of tracks. My fav is I'm All You Need.
The first Divine Comedy album that this list introduced me to got my first 1 star rating. Not looking forward to this but I'll try to keep an open mind... Not nearly as bad as the first one but still garbage. This artist doesn't have any reason to be on this list once, let alone twice.
The only reason this is classified as "chamber pop" is because nobody had coined the term "emo" yet. It's mostly a bunch of sad-sack, poor me, rain songs which just wears on me. The orchestral arrangements are good, though, and the production values are high. The vocals are a bit overly-dramatic but not offensively so. The best thing that can be said about "A Short Album About Love" is that it's appropriately titled. All the songs are about love in some way or another and, with a runtime right at 32 minutes, it's blessedly short.
Som titlen antyder, kort popalbum, Singer/songwriter, meget hyggeligt, ikke noget at håbe hurra for
Didn’t grab me. Singing was good, but it was overall slow and somber, and the vocals weren’t enough to keep me interested
I think their greatest hits would have been a better option here. It includes the Father Ted theme song.
Never heard of this before today. This is weird. Sometimes this reminds me of Beck’s Mutations (an album I really love) and at others more showtimes-y, almost FJM kinda stuff. Unfortunately the swings in energy and style don’t compare to those aforementioned artists, and thus ASAAL comes off very one-dimensional. I imagine this album was a bigger novelty at its time, but I can’t help but feel like I’m missing something here because this sounds pretty middling to me. 2
I didn't care for this at all. initially, I thought it was maybe going to be something like Belle and Sebastian, but it just was nothing in the end. 2/5
I gave this a try but failed to see the magic.
Wow I really hated this. This is the closest I've come to giving a one star since U2. Gonna have to really think about it.
Some of these lyrics are... insane? This is indeed an album of love
“A Short Album About Love” by The Divine Comedy (1997) Love songs including such laughably memorable lines as “If you were a horse, I’d clean the crap out of your stable” and “You are the way, the truth, and the life” (Where have I heard that line before?). Look, a good love song has to have lyrics you’d imagine singing to your beloved. Not on this album. These songs tread aimlessly in the broad space between passion and goofiness. Frontman/lyricist Neil Hannon is either joshing, deranged, or both. Quirky compositions with startlingly conventional arrangements poorly sung with backing instrumentals performed with eye rolling you can actually feel. Orchestra abuse. This sound is a late 1990s throwback to the worst aspects of late 1960s commercial pop. Not fit for a serious listen. He’s putting us on. 1/5
This should have been cleaned out with the stable
I only like one or two songs by The Divine Comedy, and neither of them are on this album. One positive is it's length.
Another one my Irish relatives won't be pleased about. Can't stand this band. Can't even muster any objectivity. 1/10 (ahh yeah that felt good)
Clearly Neil Hannon is nostalgic for a bygone era in which albums were elaborately arranged and scored for a small army of musicians, with nary a synthesizer in sight. He also tries to resuscitate a style of songwriting which is all about melody. Nothing wrong with either of those two things. But in order for this to work, you have to have the talent to write memorable melodies, and a great deal of taste in orchestration. Neil Hannon has neither. The arrangements are hamhanded and suffocating. His melodies are crap, like a Broadway musical that flops on opening night. Finally, I find his baritone unpleasant, utterly without charm, interpretative skill or nuance. A Short Album About Love may indeed be short, but not short enough for my taste.
Skipped through it. All pretty dull to be honest.
Tego jeszcze wyspiarze nie grali, popowy album w aranzacjach orkiestrowo synfonicznych, czyli takie brytylskie rubiki, tylko ze klaskania nie ma, ale za to sporo innych dzwiekow przewija sie przez ten krotki, nie tylko z nazwy album o milosci, bo material to 31 na 7 trakach, daj slabemu spiewakowi 20 osobowa orkiestre za plecami a i tak nadal bedzie spiewal o jakis milosnych glupotach, dawno zaden album mnie tak nie znuzyl w tak krotkim czasie, na plejke nic nie leci, bo stawialbym w ten sposob mine losujac traki
What a snooze
A short album of shit.
Not my style
The "crooners with a dreary orchestral background" genre is the last genre that needs to be revisited. Overall I wasn't a fan of the 60s / 70s recordings that were this style. I do enjoy some of those older recordings where the singer was something special but this genre got very tired by the mid 70s and Burt Bacharach et al. were handed their fedora and shown the door. By the late 90s the genre went from being tired to being boring.
Fav tracks: everybody knows, if i were you, timewatching Es una voz peculiar, a ratos no me gusta mucho Me gusta la dinámica