Rings Around the World [UK]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Super Furry Animals' leap to a major label in the U.K. with Rings Around the World isn't that drastic of a change -- Fuzzy Logic was also released on Epic in the U.S., Creation was subsidized by Sony, and they never were exactly wanting of money on their previous records -- but the band nevertheless seizes the opportunity to consolidate their strengths, providing an introduction for listeners that may not have been paying attention before. As such, it's hard not to consider it as a bit of a missed opportunity, since this is the first SFA album not to progress from its predecessor, or offer the shock of the new, and that's hard not to miss -- but, if this is the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Super Furry Animals' leap to a major label in the U.K. with Rings Around the World isn't that drastic of a change -- Fuzzy Logic was also released on Epic in the U.S., Creation was subsidized by Sony, and they never were exactly wanting of money on their previous records -- but the band nevertheless seizes the opportunity to consolidate their strengths, providing an introduction for listeners that may not have been paying attention before. As such, it's hard not to consider it as a bit of a missed opportunity, since this is the first SFA album not to progress from its predecessor, or offer the shock of the new, and that's hard not to miss -- but, if this is the first SFA record you hear, it'll likely intrigue, even dazzle, with its kaleidoscopic blend of pop, prog, punk, psych, and electronica. Still, this is nearly Super Furry Cliff Notes, offering a glossy, big-screen variation on all of their themes -- decadently lush pop-psych, chugging rock & roll, bitter leftism, sublimely warped imagery, experimentalism wrapped in luxurious productions. Alluring, to be sure, and satisfying, too, and there certainly are wonderful details scattered throughout the album, the least of which are cameos by John Cale and Paul McCartney. Plus, there is exceptional songwriting here, such as the cinematic "Juxtaposed With U," "Sidewalk Serfer Girl," and "Receptacle for the Respectable," which encapsulates nearly every side of the band within five minutes. Still, it's hard not to want a little more from the band that was the best pop band of the late '90s. It's hard not to at least want surprises since there are none or, if it's going to be a consolidation, to have it be a statement of purpose, since it lacks either an overarching theme or a music that gels. So, it's not what it could have been, but what it is is still pretty damn great, satisfying with its melodies, textures, and ideas. Compared to what Super Furry Animals have done before, Rings Around the World pales slightly but noticeably, but compared to the dead world of mainstream and indie rock in 2001, it still shines brightly.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/30/2001
  • Label: Sbme Import
  • EAN: 5099750241325
  • Catalog Number: 502413
  • Sales rank: 170,048

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Super Furry Animals Primary Artist
John Cale Piano
Paul McCartney Track Performer
Nick Cooper Cello
Sally Herbert Violin
Stephen Hussey Violin
Chris Jenkins Percussion
Sonia Slany Violin
Huw Bunford Group Member
Dafydd Ieuan Group Member
Marcus Holdaway Cello
Cian Ciárán Group Member
Guto Pryce Group Member
Gruff Rhys Group Member
Howard Gott Violin
Anna Smith Background Vocals
John Telfer Flute
Sophie Harris Cello
Nick Barr Viola
Jacqueline Norrie Violin
Gary Alesbrook Trumpet
Brian G. Wright Violin
Clarence Smith Viola
Sophie Sarota Viola
Lucy Theo Violin
John Mark James Fonts
Sophie Sirota Viola
Osian Gwynedd Piano
Kris Jenkins Percussion
Clare Smith Viola
Technical Credits
Sean O'Hagan String Arrangements
Christopher Shaw Producer, Engineer
Sonia Slany String Arrangements
Super Furry Animals Arranger, Producer, Engineer, String Arrangements
Eric Tew Engineer
Marcus Holdaway String Arrangements
Stuart Hawkes Mastering
Richard Wilkinson Engineer
Damien Shannon Engineer
Peter Fowler Illustrations
Christopher Shaw Producer
John Mark James Logo
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