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Yet another review of "Begin to Hope"

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I totally agree with that. You have to change and grow, its very important. I also have no problem with her being popular, as you say she deserves it - being probably the best female songwriter who ever lived (not sure if Joni Mitchell might be better sometimes?)!

My only concern is that this new album doesn't sound like it has come from the heart, it sounds like its come from someone else's ideas of how to sell her music. This is probably just becasue the new sound is a bit of a suprise and will take some time to get used to - my problem. I just think it's important that people make music they like, not what they think other people want to hear, and I am sure Regina would agree with that.

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Having read through a few opinions of this album it seems clear that people are disappointed. Not only that, but people seem to feel guilty as if it's wrong to feel this way.

I love Regina's music, I really do, and she is the greatest solo artist that I have ever witnessed. But it is these live shows, and the soul, power and energy in her music which has left people feeling disappointed with the album.

I have a live bootlegged version of On The Radio (and also remembering the feeling of witnessing that song on a couple of occasions) and the album version is pitiful compared. The way she controls her voice at the end of the chorus as it drifts somewhere so beautiful is stunning. But on the album, it is just lost through the structured timing.

The way I think about it is, when in 30 years time, I look back on my albums and think of Begin to Hope. I won't consider, "oh this is what she wanted to do with the songs", or "this is her moving forward." I will think "man that could have been better."

She should have been left in a room with a piano. She wasn't and it has suffered. I don't mind saying it, as it's just an album. So for people to say things like "I don't like it, but that's not her, it's just me," is crap. Stop making excuses.

I just look forward to The Lowry in Manchester on Saturday, where the real Regina will be.

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she reckons she was in the drivers seat tho, if thats true then u cant blame her cos obviously she likes wot shes done.

i'll admit to feelin guilty about not likin the album and stickin her in a room with a piano woulda been much better but its gotta be a good thing that shes movin away from that.

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i have listened to the album a lot more today and I am liking it more with each listen. Its strange to have a beat under the music, when so much of her previous work has a lot of shifs in the timing.

What got me into Regina Spektor to begin with was hearing "us". It just grabs you. It's hard to describe, but there's something amazing there that is very rare. I haven't heard anything like this on begin to hope yet, but that's not to say its not there. Need to listen to it more...!

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I think that is the point though. If something grabs you, then it grabs you. You cannot force something to do this.

There are some great songs on this album. It's just that they have been captured in the wrong way.

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I like the album - but do think that putting Fidelity and Better at the start was a mistake. She probably shouldn't have put those two on her Myspace page either, as they're what most people are moaning about.

If, perhaps, Bartender or Blue Lips or Bobbin' for Apples (or any other song beginning with 'B') had been there, no one would be complaining. But the new versions of Samson and That Time are improvements.

Interestingly, all the UK reviews I've read love the record for the quirkier stuff - so if there was a little bit of compromising going on for new listeners (and why shouldn't she?), then it probably wasn't necessary after all.

I've seen Regina 8 or 9 times now, and I've never heard some of the songs (eg Lady), so I'm happy. And there's always the internet...

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the only thing that dissapointed me about Begin to Hope was that I already new most of the songs and had already grown a likeing with them... so it wasnt much of a surprise for me.

I think having fidelity and better on her myspace was cool, but done too early. I wish she hadnt released half of the album on iTunes before the release though... i couldnt resist and bought them all and so Begin to Hope wasnt new to me at all.

i wish Bobbing for apples would have been on and also may 8th floor... im dreaming about a studio version of 8th floor!

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QUOTE]so if there was a little bit of compromising going on for new listeners (and why shouldn't she?),

Why shouldn't she compromise her music and her integrity to attract new listeners? I don't think I need to answer that. No artist should compromise their art to try and make people like it. The decisions that they make should be based soley on what they think is best, not what other people will like. Not that Regina did this. I think this is what ruins so many good musicians (R.E.M.'s last album is a good example.)

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quote:
Originally posted by AMB:

Artists grow .

That's so true, I think that Begin to Hope is just a progression of her previous music, and it's not as though it's lost any of its heart. They sound is still completely Regina's and although it is a lot more polished, and I do feel that at times it can feel just a little too... shiny, it's still excellent.

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