Back on Top [Bonus Tracks]

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After so many songs ranging through so many styles, it is a pleasure to have Van Morrison return to the music that suits him so well. Steeped in blues and R&B, Back on Top finds Morrison celebrating life and its pleasures to the limit. The up-tempo "New Biography" takes a sharp stab at those who say they know him just so they can see their names in print. "Golden Autumn Day" is a near perfect summation of his music up to today and provides a rare glimpse into his personal life as well. On this and other cuts, Morrison sounds like he's taken a lesson or two from tourmate Bob Dylan, and there's a thread that runs from Dylan's recent work right on through to this one. "Goin' Down Geneva" is a great blues cut, while ...
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01/29/2008 CD Original recording remastered, E Good

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide
After so many songs ranging through so many styles, it is a pleasure to have Van Morrison return to the music that suits him so well. Steeped in blues and R&B, Back on Top finds Morrison celebrating life and its pleasures to the limit. The up-tempo "New Biography" takes a sharp stab at those who say they know him just so they can see their names in print. "Golden Autumn Day" is a near perfect summation of his music up to today and provides a rare glimpse into his personal life as well. On this and other cuts, Morrison sounds like he's taken a lesson or two from tourmate Bob Dylan, and there's a thread that runs from Dylan's recent work right on through to this one. "Goin' Down Geneva" is a great blues cut, while "In the Midnight" is bedroom music, pure and simple. "Back on Top," the title track, swings along with such ease that you're tempted to check and make sure you didn't put in Moondance by mistake. The meditative "When the Leaves Come Falling Down" will even remind one of Morrison's meditations on Astral Weeks. No matter which track you pick, there's not a weak cut here. [Morrison fans who put out their hard-earned cash for the original edition of Back on Top, which was released in 1999, will have to think hard about whether or not they want a remastered version -- which doesn't sound remarkably different, if at all. There are two bonus cuts: an alternate, shorter version of "Philosopher's Stone" and the beautiful, unreleased mid-tempo jazz ballad "Valley of Tears." Why this latter track was left off the album is a bona fide mystery; it's as strong, if not stronger than, just about anything else here. The latter tune also stars Jools Holland on piano, and adds Matt Holland on trumpet and Leo Green on tenor saxophone, in addition to Pee Wee Ellis on baritone.] ~ James Chrispell and Thom Jurek
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/29/2008
  • Label: Polydor / Umgd
  • UPC: 600753054536
  • Catalog Number: 001064102

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Van Morrison Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals
Jools Holland Piano
Pee Wee Ellis Baritone Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Background Vocals
Brian Kennedy Background Vocals
Geraint Watkins Piano, Hammond Organ
Liam Bradley Drums, Background Vocals
Leo Green Tenor Saxophone
Mick Green Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Electric Guitar
Bobby Irwin Drums
Ian Jennings Double Bass
Gilson Lavis Drums
Mark Morgan Drums
Mike Sanchez Guitar, Piano
Nicky Scott Bass
Fiachra Trench Piano
Matt Holland Trumpet
Technical Credits
Dave Bartholomew Composer
Fats Domino Composer
Van Morrison Composer, Producer
Walter Samuel Engineer
Fiachra Trench String Arrangements
Matt Curtis Art Direction
Tim Young Remastering
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Customer Reviews

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    Posted December 5, 2008

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