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Review: Blue Nile

Review: Blue Nile


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I was not down when my friend mentioned she wanted to go to Blue Nile for her birthday. But it was her birthday, so a girl’s got to do what a girl’s got to do. I had never eaten Ethiopian food and wasn’t very eager to try.

Personally, the pictures I (obviously) stalked on yelped looked anything but appetizing, but I sucked it up. I had mentioned to a few different people I was going and they all swore it was amazing, so I began to have a bit of hope.

Photo by Julie Mirliss

We arrived and I instantly liked the vibes; music was playing in the background and the large restaurant was designed with beautiful artwork. We were seated immediately, then our waitress promptly handed us towels. She carefully explained the menu, including the all you can eat option (alright, I can mess with this place…). My friends are all vegetarians, so we ordered The Vegetarian Feast (the other option being The Meat Feast, which is the same thing, plus chicken and beef); I got chicken on the side.

Photo by Julie Mirliss

Within the vegetarian feast, every dish is vegan (so really…it’s a vegan feast). It comes with six different stews and Injera bread, an airy pita bread, that acts as your flatware. Did I mention you eat with your hands? You scoop up the stews with the bread. Messy, yet marvelous.

Photo by Julie Mirliss

We got refills of the cabbage, potatoes and yellow split pea. Everything was delicious. Although I took advantage of the all you can eat, I didn’t leave feeling too full. It wasn’t even necessary to order the meats, and I recommend sticking to the the vegetarian feast – it’s cheaper and more than enough food.

I highly recommend this place if you’re feeling adventurous or just tired of your typical, AA cuisine. Even if you’re like me and think the pictures don’t look appetizing, trust me on this one. I was a skeptic as well.

Blue Nile, you surprised me. I will be back.

Location: 221 E Washington St. Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Hours of Operation: Tues-Thu 11:30 am – 3 pm, 5 pm – 10 pm, Fri-Sun 11:30 am – 3 pm , 5 pm – 11 pm

The post Review: Blue Nile originally appeared on Spoon University. Please visit Spoon University to see more posts like this one.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


The Blue Nile, High

I n his original sleeve note to Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, the pianist Bill Evans compared the method by which that album was made to the procedure followed by a certain kind of Japanese calligraphic artist: an inordinate amount of care over the selection and preparation of materials followed by a fleeting moment of creation in which nothing can be repeated and nothing erased. Sometimes simplicity is the hardest thing of all to bring off.

The songs on High, the fourth album from the Blue Nile, give no clue that they took eight years to create. So exquisite as to be almost transparent, they sound like the result of a few quick brush-strokes. Eight years, however, is the gap between the new recording and its predecessor, Peace At Last. In turn, Peace At Last came seven years after Hats. And Hats followed A Walk Across the Rooftops, their debut, by six years.

This time, at least, there is a practical reason for the lengthy period of gestation: an ME-type illness kept Paul Buchanan, their singer and guitarist, out of action for a couple of years. Nevertheless, there is something magnificent about the sheer doggedness of the Blue Nile's adherence to the unorthodox trajectory of their singular career. The group's three members - Buchanan, Robert Bell and PJ Moore - have produced for public consumption a mere 33 songs in just over 20 years. But their impact has far exceeded that of many more productive outfits, and by distilling such limited quantities of a particular emotional essence, they have encouraged a loyal following.

Existential melancholy is the mode they explored in A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats. In songs such as Tinseltown in the Rain and The Downtown Lights, Buchanan evoked urban solitude with greater precision than any singer since the mid-1950s Sinatra. The Blue Nile made torch songs for the Thatcher years, and they turned the lean, floppy-haired Buchanan into an enigmatic archetype.

Such an image tends to persist, particularly when time passes and the subject remains lean and floppy-haired. "It probably comes across like I'm the man in the car advert," Buchanan admits in an interview in the current issue of Uncut magazine, "with the big raincoat, walking in the rain, and all of that." But there is more to him, and to the Blue Nile, than a particular strain of stylish gloom, and those prepared to hang around after the popular success of Hats discovered that its successor marked a considerable change of tone. While making Peace At Last, they downplayed the neon-lit synth washes and the robotic drum machines with which they had evoked the alienation and the relentless beat of modern city life. More open and organic sounds, including finger-picked acoustic guitar and a choir, were matched to a set of unashamedly optimistic lyrics celebrating family, community, peace, faith and love.

What made the new combination work, even for those besotted by the earlier headlights-in-the-rain ballads, was that while he celebrated the consolations of life, Buchanan still sounded like a man on the edge of an emotional precipice. The sound of his voice - mostly a murmur in the listener's ear, occasionally vaulting up to a heart-aching upper register - told his listeners that this was the same guy who had gazed through the window of the late-night train and seen only the emptiness of his own existence. "Now that I've found peace at last," he sang, "tell me, Jesus, will it last?" He was waiting for an answer, knowing that a false step might mean a plunge into the abyss.

Although High marks another shift of mood, its ingredients are familiar enough. Now, however, the emotional commitment of Peace At Last is combined with the observational detachment of the earlier work. So while Buchanan is still watching the world through a window - in the opening song, The Days of Our Lives, the window belongs to someone else - his eye has grown more compassionate.

Almost all of these nine songs are so well turned as to validate his claim that the group discarded "hundreds" more while preparing the material for High. The exception is Everybody Else, a curious, uneventful trifle. Otherwise the Blue Nile's gift for an impassioned chord change is frequently in evidence, along with the instrumental economy that was such a telling feature of the previous album.

With three songs in particular they touch their peak. The glorious descending melody of Because of Toledo carries a western narrative full of fractured, inconclusive images: "Girl leans on a jukebox/ In a pair of old blue jeans/ Says, 'I don't live here/ But I don't really live anywhere'. " The urgent She Saw the World is propelled by the kind of mid-tempo 4/4 that pushes ahead of the beat (think of the Beatles' Things We Said Today or the Stones' Honky Tonk Woman) under pensive, hovering strings - a magical contrast. The closing track, Stay Close, emerges from a shimmer of what sound like Mellotron strings and woodwind (but are probably something far more expensive), turning a momentary thought and a snatch of melody into a quiet hymn that concludes with a stately diminuendo.

In pop, most people do their best work within five or six years. How extraordinary, then, that after more than two decades of activity, the Blue Nile remain on course, their range expanded, their focus more refined, unshaken in their determination to proceed at their own measured pace.


Watch the video: Blue Nile Review: Prices, Selection u0026 Diamond Inspection. Expectation vs Reality


Comments:

  1. Kigajin

    Now all is clear, many thanks for the information.

  2. Zolokasa

    Cool article, write more! :)

  3. Dor

    My friend, there is a lot to write about, ... but so that! High five!

  4. Frisa

    hitler super

  5. Tristen

    Sorry for interfering, but in my opinion this topic is already out of date.



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