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Idiot Savants

Rate It! Avg: 4.0 (12 ratings)
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Idiot Savants album cover
01
Better Must Come
6:13
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02
Interleukin 2; For Anthony
6:13
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03
Please Let Me Sleep
9:04
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04
2 Times Nice
6:12
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05
No Last Surprise
5:43
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06
Gathering Dust
6:04
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07
Whisper To The Wind
8:31
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08
That Blows My Name Away; For Rachel
4:15
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Album Information

Total Tracks: 8   Total Length: 52:15

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Well. Maybe...

zootAlors

Lots to enjoy here. But some weaknesses too. Lets get these out of the way first... Drum machines rather plodding - lots of room for more inventive programming or, if you're going to use them as little more than click tracks, then pull them down in the mix (think John Martyn - almost inaudible drum tracks at times). Some rough recordings - demo-ish without redeeming magic in the performances. Ok. The glass is more than half full - lucious vocals are a feature on this collection. And some really groovy bass playing. And lovely acoustic guitar work. Conclusions? If you're new to TDR, move on (to Tempus Fugit or Sporadic Three - if you like the work, you'll be back), but this one won't convert anyone. If you're already amongst the faithful - go ahead - it's not the best but it's still worth having. Loyalty has a price and downloading this album is worth that price. Get Whisper to The Wind if nothing else. Sail On Vinnie - see you at the next port...and that's a promise.

They Say All Music Guide

After several inconsistent releases, the Durutti Column hit a purple patch in the mid-’00s. Even the famously self-critical Vini Reilly recognized this, going so far as to describe Idiot Savants’ predecessor, Keep Breathing, as one of the only albums in his extensive catalog worthy of a passing grade. With Idiot Savants, however, the Durutti Column’s run of good form falters slightly, as the album’s strengths are marginally outweighed by its weaknesses. Reilly’s music has often integrated sampled vocals, drawing on everything from Annie Lennox to opera, and that approach is at the heart of this album’s standout, the rousing “Better Must Come,” which incorporates the refrain from Jamaican child star QQ’s hit of the same name. The reason Reilly first started working with samples was that Tony Wilson (the Durutti Column’s original manager and biggest champion) disliked his protégé’s singing; regardless, on “2 Times Nice,” another high point, Reilly turns in a convincing vocal performance, mixing his flat melancholia with unlikely bursts of heavy metal guitar. Elsewhere, he enlists guest singer Poppy Roberts — most successfully on the delicate “Interleukin 2,” a piece composed specifically for Tony Wilson to relax to whilst undergoing cancer treatment. (Wilson himself named the track for one of the drugs he was taking.) These three numbers stretch over six minutes each and are compelling throughout, but a few other lengthy tracks wear out their welcome: “Whisper to the Wind” and “Gathering Dust” soon begin to meander blandly, notwithstanding Roberts’ presence, whereas the nine-minute “Please Let Me Sleep” would have been more effective had it ended after the beautiful Spanish guitar passage that occupies the first five minutes. Given the overall inconsistency, this isn’t an essential entry in the Durutti discography; nevertheless, it shows that Reilly can still come up with fresh, inventive work. Not bad for an artist three decades into his career. – Wilson Neate

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