The Shamen ‎– Hempton Manor

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Tracklist

Freya 5:57
Urpflanze 5:50
Cannabeo 6:16
Khat 5:58
Bememe 6:43
Indica 5:49
Rausch 6:09
Kava 5:15
El-Fin 5:21
The Monoriff 5:57

Versions (4)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
tplp62cd The Shamen Hempton Manor(CD, Album) One Little Indian tplp62cd UK 1996 Sell This Version
TPLP062 The Shamen Hempton Manor (The Altered Stately Home)(3xLP, Album) One Little Indian TPLP062 UK 1996 Sell This Version
VJCP-25272 The Shamen Hempton Manor(CD, Album) One Little Indian, Virgin VJCP-25272 Japan 1996 Sell This Version
842124 2, 72438421242 1 The Shamen Hempton Manor(CD, Album) One Little Indian, Virgin 842124 2, 72438421242 1 Germany 1996 Sell This Version

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philipondroid

philipondroid

April 10, 2015
referencing Hempton Manor, CD, Album, tplp62cd
"context is not a myth"
the contract breaking nature of this record is important, but so is the wider world of UK dance music at the time, and the direction that The Shamen approached it (perhaps that should be trajectory).
>
Nearly 20 years on it is worth the time to listen to, though perhaps not if you don't like trance (whatever that name-tag means now).
1996 was a heady year and a number of genres in electronic-dancefloor-music were mutating:
Jungle/D'n'B was becoming a cocaine fuelled alterative to House and getting neutered in the process.
House was migrating into super clubs and Ibiza-house was becoming trance
and what had been trance very suddenly went weird or Goa or Crustie or something.
>
context.
So the Shaman were at the end of their contract with 1LI. The relationship had seem them become chart-hugging super-pop but with the obvious price of selling their credibility. Hempton Manor was tossed off with no commercial sense and much more freedom, I am assuming here that both sides wanted to end the contract and the Shamen were given freedom to produce something that would conclude the legal obligation and allow them to part company.
>
So what is Hempton Manor. it's actually a good goa album. The complete freedom and the haste reflect what was happening there and then in clubland, but unusually it has been done by an accomplished and professional group with a good studio and good ideas, but trying to do something different in a new genre of music that didn't yet have strict rules.
Goa was and is a very divisive label. The year before Juno Reactor a successful and capable group had been thrown of NovaMute for making an album that would become one of the first Goa recordings. All the music press hated it and lots of UK clubs wouldn't play it. But it endured, matured and eventually came back as Psytrance, or some such!
>
Imho, this is part of the reason why Hempton Manor is odd. A band who know the rules and work in a genre suddenly experiment with a new sound and a new format. And yes, there are places it doesn't work, there are places it is a bit thin, skechy even. Some of the tracks start or end with place holding breakeats in a way that would suggest these could be replaced or would be replaced for a full commercail release.
Replay the album and it stands up well, it is a well balanced work that does present a new sound, now frozen in time, that was still in development in 1996. It's good, but very dancefloor. Not something for a quiet afternoon. But it works in its own context and against a different set of peers than the previous two albums (or two and half if you include the commercial re-release of en-tact):
1995/1996 the Megadog years; Juno Reactor, the Orb, Dreadzone, Fluke, System7, The Herbalizer. Techno for field festivals and alternative lifestyles. Nothing to do with chart music.
>
listen again and enjoy!
mikael.bystrom

mikael.bystrom

August 7, 2013
referencing Hempton Manor, CD, Album, tplp62cd
I doubt you'll like this even if you like any Trance (Which I don't). This is probably the worst album Shamen ever made. It's not worth the time it took to listen thru and I want it back badly.

With the exception of tracks 7: "Rausch", 8: "Kava" and 10: "The Monoriff" that holds up some basic musical quality, all the rest of the tracks on this album are pure shite. The tranceinducing technorhythms Shamen helped to spawn and the depths of albums like Axis Mutatis as well as any trace of genuineness have been replaced with trancestyle-influenced emptiness where no sounds express anything but pointlessness. The compositions are so thin and childish you can easily visualize the piano roll of the sequencer and the ride of the synthesizer parameters while you listen. While that is depressing to resort to, it is still way more fun than trying to listen for what's not there or to dance around to this garbage.
onelittle

onelittle

December 15, 2004
edited over 11 years ago
referencing Hempton Manor, CD, Album, tplp62cd
When One Little Indian label boss Derek Birket signed The Shamen, he offered them complete creative control. However during the promotion of Boss Drum Birket went against the wishes of Colin Angus and created cheesy pop mixes of the singles, which The Shamen hated.

Even though these mixes broke the act and made them briefly into chart stars, Colin felt betrayed and compromised.

So when he delivered the follow up album, Hempton Manor, Colin decided to get his own back on Birket. As well as making the album much less commercial, he was very specific on the track titles and running order. Why? ...take the first letter from each track, and they spell: F U C K B I R K E T