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#2300 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 21:51:00 Which solo Foxx should I get?
maryann Offline
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I recently was able to get SOR on cd and it brought back all my great memories of 'how it all started" for me. Having been squarely in the Ure camp all these years, I feel a bit guilty about not giving Foxx a go also. Which should I start out with(bearing in mind how much I really really like SOR) ??

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#2301 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:03:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Alex S Offline
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Metamatic or The Garden, definately.

Actually, if you're a big fan of Systems, then perhaps I'd go for The Garden first.

The Garden is more organic, a good balance of synths and guitars, and overall it's not as 'bleak' as Metamatic. Plus it has the track "Systems of Romance" on it, which is great. I often wondered if it was written for the SOR album but dropped (anyone?).

Personally I prefer Metamatic, but it's quite a departure in comparison to SOR. Metamatic is very icy and very heavily electronic - the only guitar is bass. Perhaps that's why it's so distinctive.

If you're really unsure, then go for the Modern Art compilation, for a taster of almost everything! In fact buy it anyway, it's quite cheap!

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#2302 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:06:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Flip Martian Offline
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Most people will say "Metamatic".

Bearing in mind you like SOR, I would suggest the 2nd solo album "The Garden" though. Far more of a "band" type sound with guitars drums and basses alongside the synths. Metamatic is almost all synths and drum machines (apart from a little bass guitar now and again).

There's a track on "The Garden" called "Systems of Romance" too... smile To me, its his best album as its far more lively and a rounded full sound but like I say, most choose "Metamatic".

Let us know what you think when you decide on one! smile

EDIT: Ha! Alex just beat me to it. smile

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#2303 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:14:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Alex S Offline
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Ha ha!

Considering we both said exactly the same thing, then I reckon it's the right suggestion!

Great minds and all that...

excited

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#2304 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:15:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Flip Martian Offline
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Exactly! biglaugh

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#2305 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:17:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
OracFTW Offline
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yeah,
although if you're a big fan of crap 80s music,
get "In Mysterious Ways" instead laugh

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#2306 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:48:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
maryann Offline
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Okay, since I never do anything in an understated way I will go for both (or whatever is easiest found here and isn't incredibly overpriced; they love sticking a "Made In England" label on everything and charging extra for an "Import")
As for the "crap 80s music" comment, I am not sure which groups you are exactly referring to...

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#2307 - Fri, 24 Mar 2006 23:58:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Shadow Man Offline
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The Garden and Metamatic are the right albums to start with John's solo work. wink

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#2308 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 00:03:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Alex S Offline
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I bought In Mysterious Ways (at bargain price) - knowing it was widely regarded as Foxx's weakest and most commercial work - simply to complete my collection of his albums. it's erally an album of an album of low-key emotional ballads.

In Mysterious Ways is well produced, though offering a typically mid 80s sound, instantly blending Foxx in with the crowd from what he once stood out. Some of the song writing is typically Foxxy, though lyrically I thought some of it tends to resemble something more like Sting, Phil Collins or even Midge Ure might sing, as the album progresses from big 80s pop songs to acoustic ballads.

What is most distinctive about this album, are John's vocals. Technically, this could be his best performance as a vocalist in the traditional sense.

To this day I'm not even sure if John Foxx knew what he was thinking when he took such a drastic change in style - maybe he simply became disillusioned by the business - since it turned out to be his last album for a decade.

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#2309 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 00:47:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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In Mysterious Ways is John's U-Vox, isn't it. :p It's really not that good, aside from "Morning Glory" and "In Mysterious Ways" which I love. Absolutely beautiful songs. I was quite shocked by the change in style and, though artists are certainly allowed to do that, I don't think I could ever get used to the drastic turn he made. I feel the same about U-Vox.

As for recommendations, I can add nothing more to those who've recommended Metamatic, The Garden, and even Modern Art. I couldn't agree more. Metamatic and The Garden are easily his best work from that time, and Modern Art gives you a little bit of everything. Get whatever you can find!

Mrs. X

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#2310 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 00:54:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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I really like "MORNING GLORY", actually, to be fair - I'd love to hear him do that one live on the next tour!

And I really am rather fond of "STARS ON FIRE", it does evoke that slightly-cringeworthy-yet-oh-so-very-real-and-human feeling of being ridiculously blissfully goofily in "love".

Most of the rest of the album is just wick and the production values (eg the drum sound) are naff. But then so were most records in 1985!

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#2311 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 01:29:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Steve Roby Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mrs. X:
In Mysterious Ways is John's U-Vox, isn't it.
I used to think so, but then after buying the other recent CD reissues I felt like I really ought to get In Mysterious Ways, too, and found myself liking it considerably more than I expected, based on memories of listening to my LP copy.

Where U-VOX is the ponderous product of a band taking itself way too seriously, In Mysterious Ways is a much lighter work, full of relatively uncomplicated songs of love and joy. The production sound is certainly dated, and the love ballad (with occasionally over the top backing vocals) isn't quite what one expects from John Foxx, but those lyrics, that voice... it's still unmistakably him. Certainly not the place to start, but worth investigating eventually.

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#2312 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 01:53:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
OracFTW Offline
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Yes but the video to "Lose all sense of time" is inexplicably done in the style of Terry Gilliam's Python animations,
I mean AHINE!?!?

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#2313 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 01:59:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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I know it's heresy in certain circles but Metamatic is actually my third fav Foxx album.

I like In Mysterious Ways , are you surprised Flip? wink

Personally I generally veg out to Golden Section with John's stuff, that is my fav album by him without a doubt followed by The Garden.

Modern Art is definately the place to start in terms of finding your Foxx vibe tho...

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#2314 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 02:07:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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Hi Maryann
So many choices of where to start with Johns solo stuff. Althought I had the first 4 albums in my collection, it was finding "Modern art" that my interest took off again.
I would suggest Modern Art for starters and if you look around it can be found quite cheap on the net.

I'm sure you'll like most of Johns solo stuff and won't be disappointed.

Without a doubt Metamatic stands above the crowd for me. smile

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#2315 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 02:08:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Alex S Offline
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Actually, I think you might be interested in tracking down the Omnidelic Exotour reissue, mainly for the second disc of re-recordings, which are all fantastic, but also features several tracks from Systems of Romance, reworked and re-recorded.

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#2316 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 02:36:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
maryann Offline
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Thanks all for the input. I just tried (and failed) now to buy anything by Foxx. At least the store had a marker with his name on it so I am encouraged. I prefer to hunt for things first as opposed to just Amazon-ing it; more of the thrill of the find. But I will definitely search for Metamatic and The Garden.

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#2317 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 02:46:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Fredrik Offline
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Like Si, I'd also like to draw your attention to 'The Golden Section' which John once described as his 'roots album'. You can really hear his fondness for pop of the 60's there. Some really good pop tunes like 'Endlessly' and 'My Wild Love'.

The four 80's albums are more different from each other than perhaps Ultravox with Midge ever were. I'm sorry but there's no escaping the fact that you really have to get all of the albums to discover how versatile an artist JF is!

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#2318 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 03:11:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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Interesting reading the above.
As people have said, if you're a fan of SoR then The Garden is the one to get.
No-one has mentioned any of his most recent works...

They're ALL very different.

I'm a fan of "In Mysterious Ways" too and hearing it twenty years on I think it stands out far more from its contemporaries than The Golden Section ever did. That for me is his weak spot, and contains some of his less imaginative songs. Some of his best too though - Ghosts on Water for instance.
So its impossible really to say whcih album is representative of his career as a whole.

You could do a lot worse than getting Cathedral Oceans 3 as well...

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#2319 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 03:16:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
METAL BEAT Offline
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Quote:
Actually, I think you might be interested in tracking down the Omnidelic Exotour reissue, mainly for the second disc of re-recordings, which are all fantastic, but also features several tracks from Systems of Romance, reworked and re-recorded.
Again good choice. I think John and Louis did a fantastic job on reworking and updating all the original Ultravox songs. I'm glad it was released for the general public because unfortuneatly I missed ut on the original limited edition. frown When I look at all my CD's, boots 'n' all John as a vast output. Maryann as you can gather I'm very biased. One thing if I was you I'd leave the Cathedral Oceans stuff until last, however much I love it his ambient music it is totally different to anything else.

I hope you have a healthy bank balance!!! biglaugh

As you can see we are all getting excited about John's new album already
Regards
Peter smile

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#2320 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 06:18:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
1.Outside Offline
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Anybody able to answer Alex's question about the track Systems of Romance? I've always wondered about that. Was it a SOR 'reject' or was he simply completing something in his mind maybe?

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#2321 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 06:39:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
1.Outside Offline
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To answer the question, back in the early-mid 80s I loved Metamatic, The Garden and The Golden Section. The Golden Section was different and I enjoyed it's variety, born of its many obvious influences (e.g. The Beatles).

I've just read the discography on John's site for the first time and realised just how much of his stuff I have! I bought everything, right up until In Mysterious Ways. I seem to remember him releasing a few gatefold sleeves back then.

I have to admit. I've not heard any of his stuff since IMW.

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#2322 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 18:10:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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I guess there's nothing really to add to what's all ready been said but I wanted to participate in the subject anyway. Lol.

Definately Metamatic and The Garden are the two albums any John Foxx fan should own. It's surprising how much of a difference there is considering the short gap between the two releases. I'm sure I read an interview with John in the dim and distant past in which he stated that the song Systems Of Romance was worked on during the sessions for SOR the album but never actually recorded. He then resurrected it for The Garden album. Perhaps Rob could confirm that.

Of his more recent releases I think Crash And Burn definately should be investigated. However I'm biased and suggest that every release has something to offer. Andy

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#2323 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 18:44:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Flip Martian Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Si_W:

I like In Mysterious Ways , are you surprised Flip? wink
Nope... wink After your Dollar and previous Haircut 100 revelations..definitely not. laugh As for The Golden Section...no no no no no...Simmons drums a go go... kiss biglaugh

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#2324 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 18:47:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Flip Martian Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by 1.Outside:
Anybody able to answer Alex's question about the track Systems of Romance? I've always wondered about that. Was it a SOR 'reject' or was he simply completing something in his mind maybe?
I'm sure I read somewhere it was left over from the album...not totally sure though. If that IS the case, it will obviously have been reworked a lot. Great stonking track though. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Cool]" src="cool.gif" />

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#2325 - Sat, 25 Mar 2006 19:25:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Shadow Man Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by feline1:
But then so were most records in 1985!
And this the reason I lost my interest into synth music in the mid-eighties.

Most bands went into a Pop style like OMD, Human League and so many Others.
But John's "The Golden Section" and "In Mysterious Ways" are better than the most stuff of that time. I can imagine John lost his interest into the music scene at that point for a long time.

But it is great he came back and remembered about his "roots" of Metamatic. The other side with C.O. sound is nice too. This man makes curios of the next one!!!

He is an genius! lurve

Hope we can enjoy his talent for many, many years in the future...

( HOOO, hold the horses Shadow Man laugh )

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#2326 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 00:18:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
robert Offline
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Lisened to in mysterious ways this morning and found myself jiveing around the room in my underpants. My girlfreind was not impressed. smile

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#2327 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 00:26:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Si_W Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by robert:
Lisened to in mysterious ways this morning and found myself jiveing around the room in my underpants. My girlfreind was not impressed. smile
Which bit? IMW or your choice of underwear? lmao

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#2328 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 01:20:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
robert Offline
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My not so cool marks and sparks undies. smile

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#2329 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 01:45:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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I'm a fan of all JF albums, especially The Garden, and The Golden Section. Songs like "Systems of Romance, Europe After The Rain, "Endlessly" and "Running across Thin Ice.." are really great. Too bad I can only think of one or two other of my friends here in USA that can stand to listen to good ol' John...I must live on the wrong side of the Atlantic..

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#2330 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 04:23:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alex S:
Plus it has the track "Systems of Romance" on it, which is great. I often wondered if it was written for the SOR album but dropped (anyone?).
Here's a quote John on this track. I can't find the sourde at the moment, but maybe its from some sleevenotes? I'll track it down:

"Written in 1978 [Bsg - at the same time as Walk Away??] and I used the title for another album. The main song was written swiftly, but I didn't quite have time to finish the main theme. Didn't fit on 'Metamatic' so I kept it. One of those songs that takes about ten minutes to write and you just know it works."

Hope this helps, Alex

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#2331 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 05:31:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Pater Noster Offline
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Very interesting and the stylistic link is quite obvious with the Robin Simon style choppy guitar; on both "S.O.R." and "Walk Away".

Grant

Quote:
Originally posted by birdsong:
Quote:
Originally posted by Alex S:
[b]Plus it has the track "Systems of Romance" on it, which is great. I often wondered if it was written for the SOR album but dropped (anyone?).
Here's a quote John on this track. I can't find the sourde at the moment, but maybe its from some sleevenotes? I'll track it down:

"Written in 1978 [Bsg - at the same time as Walk Away??] and I used the title for another album. The main song was written swiftly, but I didn't quite have time to finish the main theme. Didn't fit on 'Metamatic' so I kept it. One of those songs that takes about ten minutes to write and you just know it works."

Hope this helps, Alex[/b]

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#2332 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 06:03:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Alex S Offline
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Thanks.

Actually that quote does ring a bell now. I wonder if it's in the SOR sleevenotes on the remaster... anyway - cheers!

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#2333 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 08:25:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Pater Noster Offline
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I suspect it's possible to do divination by skidmarks, and that it has a long pseudo scientific name. LOL

Grant

Quote:
Originally posted by robert:
My not so cool marks and sparks undies. smile

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#2334 - Sun, 26 Mar 2006 19:17:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
BlueVision Offline
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Maryann, if you want to "connect" somehow to SOR-era, then I would point to THE GARDEN.

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#2335 - Mon, 27 Mar 2006 00:03:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
Craig Offline
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To further answer your question Alex, in one of the service magazines, John was asked the same question and his answer was that while writing the song, he felt something was missing - that something was 'the human host' (the sampled voices he used extensively on The Garden), so that was when he completed the song - but he liked the title so much that he still used it for the 1978 album.
Knowing, probably both this and Birdsong's quote are close to the truth.
Cheers

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#2336 - Mon, 27 Mar 2006 00:58:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
the church puddle Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by birdsong:
Quote:
Originally posted by Alex S:
[b]Plus it has the track "Systems of Romance" on it, which is great. I often wondered if it was written for the SOR album but dropped (anyone?).
Here's a quote John on this track. I can't find the sourde at the moment, but maybe its from some sleevenotes? I'll track it down:

"Written in 1978 [Bsg - at the same time as Walk Away??] and I used the title for another album. The main song was written swiftly, but I didn't quite have time to finish the main theme. Didn't fit on 'Metamatic' so I kept it. One of those songs that takes about ten minutes to write and you just know it works."

Hope this helps, Alex[/b]
This quote is from the booklet to The Golden Section Tour, just in case it is driving anyone mad. wink

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#2337 - Mon, 27 Mar 2006 22:15:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
maryann Offline
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Yes, you all helped me make up my mind. I will have to get ALL of them but I will start with Metamatic and The Garden. Thanks to all. And I personally would like to defend those who admitted liking Haircut 100. I do have that one album but I think I was coerced into buying it at the time lmao

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#2338 - Mon, 27 Mar 2006 22:16:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
maryann Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by BlueVision:
Maryann, if you want to "connect" somehow to SOR-era, then I would point to THE GARDEN.
BlueVision, methinks you are on to me.

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#2339 - Mon, 27 Mar 2006 23:33:00 Re: Which solo Foxx should I get?
BlueVision Offline
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Really? wink

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