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Paul H posted:

It's a real shame that Prodigal Son and In Love With it All have been abandoned because the former was never released by either CH or Tim, and the latter is now considered part of Tim's catalogue. I adore both.

Agreed as i have always wished they had released Prodigal Son either as CH or FB. When i saw the fb in Plymouth 2004 i met Tim and he asked me what song would i like to hear.I said "Prodigal Son" which he replied "too obscure".

Strangeness and charm would have been interesting i feel if done by ch or fb.

 

Last edited by Dorthonion

this is something of a confessional --- since the release of the original woodface, i have religiously skipped all i ask ... i've always considered it misplaced, an orphan, a song i never identified with, a song that tim wrote so tim got it on the album  -- im still not a fan of the woodface version ... just my humble opinion.

HOWEVER ... as i've spent time getting to know the deluxe pack, im totally surprised by what a beautiful simple song all i ask is, and how much better it sounds with just accoustic guitar and not the awful sappy strings that are on woodface.

really stands out as one of the surprises of the woodface demo sessions (given we've heard most of them before) ... but all i ask in this form was new to me and a real pleasant surprise ... and a reminder of how a nice simple song that was right can be overproduced and overthought and turned into something that really doesn't work. 

 

 

silent stream posted:

and a reminder of how a nice simple song that was right can be overproduced and overthought and turned into something that really doesn't work.  

I think I need to start a "Sappy Strings" Support Club. I adore "All I Ask" and I think the strings are an integral part of what makes it special (ditto "The Long and Winding Road" where I truly think the strings are the best part of the song). Ah well, different strokes and all... I'm thrilled you're enjoying the song at any rate!

I also like the strings on All I Ask, and for that matter also on You're the One to Make Me Cry. I appreciate them from an arranger's craft standpoint...it's continuing the tradition of Nelson Riddle's string arrangements with the old crooners like Sinatra. In fact, I forget who it is but the guy who arranged the strings for All I Ask, who was very old at the time, was a very famous arranger and had worked on lots of classic old records.

I also don't quite get the "sappy" label because there's a fair amount of jazz-like dissonance in that arrangement, which keeps it way more interesting than it might have been.

I totally started out where Silent Stream was. I disliked both "All I Ask" and criticized the strings as sappy. That lasted for maybe 10 years. Then my tastes shifted as I became a more generous listener. These days I'm with Lavar78 and Slowpogo. I think the song is great and the strings are a critical element in the arrangement.

Hmm. It's an interesting one for me as I can't find anything wrong with All I Ask, but it does absolutely nothing for me. I don't object to the strings (and I do generally like sappy strings, such as on You Are the One to Make Me Cry) but neither the demo nor the final version sound all that good to me.

It may be that I just find the melody uninspiring, in which case no amount of production would change that for me. That being said, it's a good song to half tune out and just let it provide a relaxing bit of ambience (especially with the strings )

I think my indifference to All I Ask stems from it lyrics, which IMHO are pretty vacuous.

If you compare its  lyrics to Into temptation or Your the one to make me cry, they seem to lack both effort and insight. With this lack of  substance, the tune, production and string arrangement just don't hold water.  For me it's a skip track, no debate.

I'm a Neil fan first and foremost, but this song was my first introduction to Tim's more direct style. I love the lyrics for their earnest simplicity. Its plea is so universal that I've often wondered what in particular inspired him to write it. Childhood? Adulthood? Relationships? Being an artist? Feeling pigeonholed? A general desire to explore? Independence? Tennis?

Hi all, I hope this isn't considered a wasted post... I have not been active on the forums for a long time and I had missed the news about these releases and I just stumbled across the Woodface and first album reissues at a shop today.   I'm listening to the second disk for the first time right now. 

Great thread and I'm going to try those alternate listening orders for Woodface posted earlier.

"It's only natural..." (playing now) 

 

Chris Camfield posted:

Hi all, I hope this isn't considered a wasted post... I have not been active on the forums for a long time and I had missed the news about these releases and I just stumbled across the Woodface and first album reissues at a shop today.   I'm listening to the second disk for the first time right now. 

Great thread and I'm going to try those alternate listening orders for Woodface posted earlier.

"It's only natural..." (playing now) 

 

Hope you are able to get all the deluxe reissues; I was in heaven for months after they came out! SOOOO much great bonus material!

Always been a fan of All I Ask. I've always considered it a stand out track with a great string arrangement. I can totally understand why it may not be to everyone's taste. It's very different to everything else on the album and is sung by Tim rather than dual harmony like the other co-written tracks. It's a stand out vocal  too,  one  of the best post split enz imo. There is a great live solo tim version from Jools Holland iirc, just Tim and piano. Beautiful version.

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