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  PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
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    PostPosted: 06 Oct 2017, 18:29 
Darkling
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Ok so I thought I would make a new thread so we can all discuss the pros and cons of the new album rather than in the other threads about the album.

On first listen I was taken aback by some of the songs. After having 3 or 4 full listens I'm starting to warm to the album. I wasn't sold on ATPG and SG but when they are played throughout the album they blend in well. I'm really liking Rock in space. It's so cheesy yet reminds me of Queen and I love Queen. Happiness reminds me of an American Pie/Teen movie style song but I like it.
Not overly keen on Seagulls though. Probably my least favourite of the album.
Overall for me it's better than I expected. I'd give it a solid 7/10 for me. Not the best work but certainly not the worst.

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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 06 Oct 2017, 18:56 
Darkling
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Love Buccaneers, Japanese Prisoner and Barbara.
I think Rock in Space is weak. Possibly their worst song.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ____
2006-03-05 – Stockholm
2011-07-08 – Gävle
2012-06-08 – Norje
2012-08-31 – Stockholm
2013-02-17 – Stockholm
2013-02-22 – Gothenburg
2015-06-06 – Norje
2016-12-10 – Stockholm
2017-06-29 – Stockholm


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 06 Oct 2017, 19:37 
Darkling
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IDK why Happiness is getting so much love, to me it's pretty basic and uninspired, whereas Wish I Was in Heaven is kind of what Happiness should have been. Either Heaven or Beautiful Cry? would be an excellent next single that could break them into a larger audience through the more diverse sound and interesting but catchy melodies. Open Fire was a surprising success for them, so I hope they've taken the hint that they can have success with singles outside what they think people expect from The Darkness (aka Solid Gold).


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 06 Oct 2017, 21:05 
Darkling
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Uniball-wow! Utterly fantastic riffing, sonically wonderful.

Rock In Space reminds me a bit of Flash by Queen and Justin's vocals in the chorus sound Kate Bush esque, insanity!

Rack of Glam and Japanese Prisoner of Love are just as fantastic on the album as they are live.

I'm a bit disappointed that there isn't really a true ballad on the album like Conquerors..


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 06 Oct 2017, 23:36 
Darkling
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Production-wise - the album is brickwalled as can be. It loses so much clarity when turned up.

The guitars are also too low.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 07 Oct 2017, 01:44 
Darkling
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PermissionToLand wrote:
IDK why Happiness is getting so much love, to me it's pretty basic and uninspired, whereas Wish I Was in Heaven is kind of what Happiness should have been


I believe that I can answer the question: it's catchy as hell. No, it's not what I'd normally go for. It just happens to work for some reason. Each to their own, though!

Impromptu wrote:
Love Buccaneers, Japanese Prisoner and Barbara.
I think Rock in Space is weak. Possibly their worst song.


Disagree - but it's all down to personal taste after all. I think the worst songs they've ever released are on OWTTHAB and Hot Cakes. Girlfriend, Blind Man, Knockers (the chorus ruined it), Every Inch, Everybody Have a Good Time, Forbidden Love, Love is Not the Answer.

Every one of those songs is utter shite. But that's just my opinion.

Hot Cakes was their most inconsistent album IMHO.

As far as the production of this album goes, I think it's inconsistent. Some songs suffer because of it but mostly it's listenable.

Overall I'm satisfied but I don't think that it will ever be my #1.

Permission to Land and Last Of Our Kind are IMHO the most consistent, solid, well-produced, and all round wonderful Darkness albums.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 07 Oct 2017, 07:14 
Darkling
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Concrete-Lion wrote:
Production-wise - the album is brickwalled as can be. It loses so much clarity when turned up.

The guitars are also too low.


Agreed, but what album isn't brickwalled these days? "Professional producers", my ass...

Makin'Out87 wrote:
I'm a bit disappointed that there isn't really a true ballad on the album like Conquerors..


Huh? There's Why Don't the Beautiful Cry? and Stampede of Love.

Luke wrote:
I believe that I can answer the question: it's catchy as hell. No, it's not what I'd normally go for. It just happens to work for some reason. Each to their own, though!

Impromptu wrote:
Love Buccaneers, Japanese Prisoner and Barbara.
I think Rock in Space is weak. Possibly their worst song.


Disagree - but it's all down to personal taste after all. I think the worst songs they've ever released are on OWTTHAB and Hot Cakes. Girlfriend, Blind Man, Knockers (the chorus ruined it), Every Inch, Everybody Have a Good Time, Forbidden Love, Love is Not the Answer.

Every one of those songs is utter shite. But that's just my opinion.


I mean, it's catchy in the way every garbage pop song is; very simplistic melody, almost amelodic, and repetitive. No offense, but it's quite possibly their worst song ever IMO. I actually agree with your worst songs list, except Blind Man. It's got some weak lyrics but the music and performance are excellent.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 07 Oct 2017, 12:21 
Darkling
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a few unorganized thoughts:

- favorite parts of the albums: the verses and prechoruses of I Wish I Was In Heaven, Stampede of Love rock breakdown (I don't know how to call it but I'm sure we all know what I mean), the gentle guitar in Seagulls and more or less the entirety Lay Down With Me Barbara.

- why does Why Don't The Beautiful Cry end so suddenly?

- a lot of spoken stuff

- Solid Gold sounds pretty good when listening to the whole album, on the other hand Southern Trains feel a bit out of place to me

- I really like the guitar outro on Japanese Prisoner of Love

- Buccaneers are really good, the best song in the first half of the album by far

- which brings me to the observation that the second half of the album is better than the first one (excluding the bonus tracks), which isn't that usual, is it?

- Rack of Glam is the biggest jam (if I can call it like that and if you get what I mean) on the album

- I really don't know what to think about Rock in Space. When I listen to it, I like it and it's a fun song to jam to, but when I don't listen to it and I think about, it is like the song doesn't leave any taste, any real impression. I's like it's stuck halfway between a filler and a funny experimental track.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 07 Oct 2017, 13:14 
Darkling
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@PermissionToLand Why Don't The Beautiful Cry? and Stampede of Love don't sound sad enough to my ears, they aren't like a Conquerors/Living Each Day Blind/Out Of My Hands/Holding My Own etc, so not true ballads to me...


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 08 Oct 2017, 03:12 
Darkling
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Makin'Out87 wrote:
@PermissionToLand Why Don't The Beautiful Cry? and Stampede of Love don't sound sad enough to my ears, they aren't like a Conquerors/Living Each Day Blind/Out Of My Hands/Holding My Own etc, so not true ballads to me...


How is Conquerors sad? if anything, it's triumphant, like We Are The Champions. I don't think that fits any definition of a ballad. Neither does Out of my Hands.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 08 Oct 2017, 09:29 
Darkling
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PermissionToLand wrote:
How is Conquerors sad? if anything, it's triumphant, like We Are The Champions. I don't think that fits any definition of a ballad. Neither does Out of my Hands.


Really? That's interesting, I've always considered Conquerors to be sad. More or less in the same way in Space Oddity is sad.

On the other hand, I agree that Out of My Hands is nowhere near to be a ballad.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 08 Oct 2017, 13:03 
Darkling
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PermissionToLand wrote:
Makin'Out87 wrote:
@PermissionToLand Why Don't The Beautiful Cry? and Stampede of Love don't sound sad enough to my ears, they aren't like a Conquerors/Living Each Day Blind/Out Of My Hands/Holding My Own etc, so not true ballads to me...


How is Conquerors sad? if anything, it's triumphant, like We Are The Champions. I don't think that fits any definition of a ballad. Neither does Out of my Hands.


Lyrically, yes, Conquerors is defiant/triumphant etc, but musically it's not, at least in the verses. It's the last track on Last of Our Kind (Minus Bonus Tracks of course) which is a traditional slot for a ballad. There is a sombre/melancholy mood to the music,and I'm surprised you don't interpret it that way. We Are The Champions is also ballad like but not as sad sounding, more rousing. Ballads in general have a sadder/more desperate sound to them...


Last edited by Makin'Out87 on 08 Oct 2017, 13:20, edited 1 time in total.

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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 08 Oct 2017, 13:16 
Darkling
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Best: JPOL, I Wish I Was in Heaven, Happiness, Uniball, Stampede of Love

JPOL: Best riff, best solo, best vocals.

IWIWIH: Very surprising. That little riff after the verse and in the chorus is great

Happness: Most surprising off the album. From the 90 sec samples I thought it was going to be the worst song. Very cheery and summer-y. Great solo. Great verse

Uniball: The transition into the chorus makes me love the chorus, when I initially thought it was mediocre. Fits well. The double solo thing going on towards the last half of the solo was kind of messy, though.

Stampede of Love: Power ballad frenzy. Much prefer this over Why Don't the Beautiful Cry?



Worst: Seagulls, ATPG
- I don't dig either of these. Listened to them tons and they aren't growing on me. Seagulls' chorus SUCKS


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 09 Oct 2017, 23:27 
Darkling
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My thoughts on the album are rather scattered, honestly.

The singles seem more appealing to me when on the album in the context of the material, actually. So that's good, at least.

I think the best songs on the album are "Buccaneers of Hispaniola", "Southern Trains", "Japanese Prisoner of Love" and "Uniball".

The rest I'm unsure of. This is the first Darkness album where I think there's actual bad songs on it ("Stampede of Love", "Seagulls") and that is rather unfortunate. Those two tracks are really weak and the lyrics to "Stampede" are funny - but that's not why I loved this band. They can often be tongue in cheek - but not outright comedic, Spinal Tap level.

I think the drumming is great although with the production and song structure, I think they were too on the nose about showing that this is Rufus' first album with them. He's more prominent than any drummer prior.

The guitars are too low - at least the distorted ones on the harder songs. Which is odd. The album is too bass/drum heavy.

The record just seems to be a collection of good to great rockers peppered with passable ballads in between. It's telling when everyone that I see is saying the same song is the strongest one ("Japanese") - usually that means the other material just isn't as strong.

Overall, there seems to be a regression from the last album to this one. Lyrically, it's less mature than anything they've ever done as a whole. There seems to be more pop in some songs than ever before. And the ballads just don't hit me too well.

With Last Of Our Kind, The Darkness released my favorite album of 2015.
With Pinewood Smile, The Darkness did not release my favorite album of 2017. And I know they could have.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 11 Oct 2017, 06:13 
Darkling
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Makin'Out87 wrote:
Lyrically, yes, Conquerors is defiant/triumphant etc, but musically it's not, at least in the verses. It's the last track on Last of Our Kind (Minus Bonus Tracks of course) which is a traditional slot for a ballad. There is a sombre/melancholy mood to the music,and I'm surprised you don't interpret it that way. We Are The Champions is also ballad like but not as sad sounding, more rousing. Ballads in general have a sadder/more desperate sound to them...


Now that you mention it, the verses are more of a down mood.

Concrete-Lion wrote:
The record just seems to be a collection of good to great rockers peppered with passable ballads in between. It's telling when everyone that I see is saying the same song is the strongest one ("Japanese") - usually that means the other material just isn't as strong.


Passable? Why Don't The Beautiful Cry could be their first crossover hit if released as a single. However, Happiness is pure pop garbage I'd expect of One Direction or something.

And I've seen almost every song listed as a favorite already on TDA.

JPOL actually disappointed me the most because the live version was so much better. Right now I'm digging Buccaneers, Heaven and WDTBC? the most.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 12 Oct 2017, 05:22 
Darkling
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I really don't want to feel this way - but I think this is their weakest album.

There is not one song on Pinewood Smile I would take over any song on Last Of Our Kind. Definitely not one I'd take over anything on Permission To Land or One Way Ticket. There's probably a couple off Hot Cakes.

I'm quite let down. Seems the new Cheap Trick and the new Alice Cooper albums will remain my favorite of 2017.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 12 Oct 2017, 17:30 
Darkling
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^ I wouldn't say it is their worst or weakest album. That would be Hot Cakes which is like The Darknes on autopilot. It doesn't have any great heights (With a Woman, Concrete and Living Each Day Blind are lacking that magic something imo), on the other hand it has considerably low lows (Every Inch of You, Everybody Have a Good Time).

Of course I'll need more listens and more passed time to properly make my mind about Pinewood Smile (I used to listen non-stop to Hot Cakes and LOOK when they came out, yet my opinion is very different regarding the two albums). Right now I would say that it is on par with OWTTHAB, maybe slightly better (OWTTHAB isn't very cohesive to me, it's a bit overproduced to me and it has two terrible songs - Blind Man and Seemed Like a Good Idea At The Time).

Anyway, I suppose that my opinion will change in one way or another, my opinion isn't the only right one ofc and everybody can have their opinion whether other people agree or disagree with it. :)


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 12 Oct 2017, 20:14 
Darkling
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Nerevanin wrote:
^ I wouldn't say it is their worst or weakest album.


So far, I would. It's just so disjointed. And the swearing just feels very forced - this is their most profane album yet and I don't think it works.

Nerevanin wrote:
That would be Hot Cakes which is like The Darknes on autopilot. It doesn't have any great heights (With a Woman, Concrete and Living Each Day Blind are lacking that magic something imo), on the other hand it has considerably low lows (Every Inch of You, Everybody Have a Good Time).


I love Hot Cakes - it's such a fun album. I'm always in a good mood when I hear it. It's not as stellar as the two albums prior and the follow up - but I'll be damned if it's not a fun, great rock album. And it does have a few of my favorite Darkness tunes on it ("Nothing's Gonna Stop Us", "With A Woman", "Concrete").

Nerevanin wrote:
Right now I would say that it is on par with OWTTHAB, maybe slightly better (OWTTHAB isn't very cohesive to me, it's a bit overproduced to me and it has two terrible songs - Blind Man and Seemed Like a Good Idea At The Time).


I feel the new one lacks cohesion. I don't know. I want to love this album - but I feel let down.


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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 12 Oct 2017, 22:56 
Darkling
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I have to be honest, I really wasn't overly keen on the album at first. At all. I thought it was very hit and miss...

However, now that I'm on about my 30th listen, I actually really enjoy listening to it and all of the different elements.

The only sing I'm still not too keen on is Lay down With Me Barbara... maybe it's because my mum is called Barbara... I don't know. I'm not keen on the chorus anyway.

Also, I think there's too many spoken skit parts. The bit at the start of Happiness is unnecessary, as is the bit at the end of Barbara (although I've already established I'm not keen on the song anyway).

That aside I really like it, and since finally picking up my signed copy of the cd from my mums today and reading through the lyrics, I like it even more. There were certain parts of Bucaneers and Uniball for example that I wasn't picking up the lyrics of... there are some genius lines on this album.

I had it down as a 7 out of 10 but I think it's been raised to an 8. In my opinion, probably their second best album.

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  Re: PINEWOOD SMILE - Everyone's Thoughts.
    PostPosted: 13 Oct 2017, 02:40 
Darkling
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Concrete-Lion wrote:

I'm quite let down. Seems the new Cheap Trick and the new Alice Cooper albums will remain my favorite of 2017.


That's the problem, there have been many, many great albums released this year.

THUNDER, CHEAP TRICK, ALICE COOPER, SNAKECHARMER, FOZZY, CIRCA SURVIVE, STEEL PANTHER, DEEP PURPLE, MASTODON, the list goes on...

And there's still EUROPE, TYLER BRYANT & THE SHAKEDOWN, and many more to come.

It's been a great year for music.

For me, Pinewood Smile has been a mixed bag and there is much more consistent and better albums released this year IMO. It won't be taking my #1 spot.


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