Woo
www.woo-music.co.uk
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Music for spiritual healing, relaxing and meditation
Woo Archive - Music Reviews by NME, Melody Maker, All Music Guide...
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Buy Light of all Beings; independent, experimental, synth, alternative, ambient, euphoric, electronic music Buy Light of all Beings; independent, experimental, synth, alternative, ambient, euphoric, electronic music
Buy Light of all Beings; independent, experimental, synth, alternative, ambient, euphoric, electronic music   Buy Light of all Beings; independent, experimental, synth, alternative, ambient, euphoric, electronic music
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Woo music album CDs to listen to, download and buy online as reviewed by NME and All Music Guide. Buy music CDs; electronic, ambient, trance, indian, london, spiritual,electro music.
Buy A la Luna CD; independent music, electronic, instrumental, experimental jazz, synth, english swingtime, alternative, songs, nostalgic... Buy Its Cosy Inside CD; independent music, electronic, instrumental, experimental jazz, synth, english swingtime, alternative, songs, nostalgic... Buy Whichever Way CD; Independent music, electronic, instrumental, experimental jazz, synth, english swingtime, alternative, songs, nostalgic.. Buy Live from Venus CD; independent music, trance dance, electronic, alternative, ambient, euphoric, transcendental, uplifting, new age.... Buy Forever Healing CD; independent music, electronic, alternative, ambient, euphoric, transcendental, uplifting, new age, music for meditation and healing...
Buy Dobbins Lost His Coconuts; Independent music, electronic, instrumental, experimental jazz, synth, english swingtime, alternative, songs, nostalgic...   Buy Light of all Beings CD; independent music, electronic, alternative, ambient, euphoric, transcendental, uplifting, new age, hare krisna, music for meditation and healing...   Buy Ruby Past Lives CD; independent music, electronic, alternative, ambient, euphoric, transcendental, uplifting, new age...   Buy This Love Affair CD; independent music, instrumental, alternative, love songs, ballads, poetic songs, nostalgic...   Buy Planning for a Miracle CD; independent music, electronic, alternative, ambient, euphoric, transcendental, uplifting, new age, music for meditation and healing...  
 
Woo music reviews by NME, Melody Maker, All Music Guide...
Melody Maker - Review by Steve Sutherland
TALES FROM THE ATTIC - Review of Whichever way you are going, you are going wrong (The Sunshine Series)

THERE'S a faithhealer's advertisement in the front window, Laurel and Hardy smile down on the hall and a uniformed beauty from World War II peers out from a bush in the garden. There's a converted bedroom full of joss-sticks and amps, eight years' worth of almost all-night improvisation stashed in cassettes growing slowly forgotten, and a pair of thin brothers giggling with glee as they tumble like schoolkids out onto the lawn. Welcome to Gladstone Road, Wimbledon. Welcome to the world of Woo.

It's almost too easy to treat the cover of Woo's debut album as some kind of profoundly symbolic group statement - it plumbs the absolute pits of amateur psychology to take its title "Whichever Way You Are Going, You Are Going Wrong" - and to see innocent, near-naked child surrounded by so-called intellectual superiors clipped from an old copy of Charles Kingsley's "Water Babies" as emblematic of the states of mind that motivated Woo. Fact is, though, you wouldn't be too far wrong. Mark Ives left his folk-rock group and RAF career on the Isle of Wight in '72, eased himself into an office job and settled down with his brother Clive, an ex-art student turned semilucrative illustrator. To pass the time they made tapes. Millions of 'em. Mark fulfilled a life-long dream, jacked in his job and tripped round India picking up dysentery on the way back. Now he does a little cleaning, gardening and cooking and indulges his passion for tennis while his brother's becoming involved with a kiln. They make a few tapes on the side.

Cocooned from the world in their semi-detached, Mark and Clive attempted forms of meditation music mostly for their own amusement, often with little success. Then two accidents happened. First a friend in Chichester sought out Cherry Red with a bunch of local demos, all - it turned out - totally unsuitable. Mike Alway, Cherry's chap: played the disappointed impresario a selection of more worthy stuff and the friend suggested he contact the Ives. Said they sounded like the Velvet Underground. They didn't, but no matter.

Mike came calling to Gladstone Road, marvelled at selections from the mountain of tapes and simply suggested, somewhat dumbstruck that the world might also like a listen. This had never occured to the Ives."What happened to me was for eight years or so I was just playing music and writing stuff because it was just the sort of thing I did," Mark blushes. "There was no kind of intellectual reason for playing. I met people in Sri Lanka, India who lust sat there" - he drums his hands on the kitchen table - "and you ask them why they play and they say 'Because I do'. That's it really."We didn't feel people would be interested before," confirms Clive. "Nothing on the radio seemed to suggest our music would be accepted. Then we heard Mike's record collection."
The second accident was finding that picture. It somehow seemed to provide a purpose, a reason to make their private play public, a reason for Woo to exist. "See this guy here? He's innocent, right?" Mark paws the child-figure on the cover. "He's self-contained and he's got no problem but all these people are trying to tell him 'go here, go there'.

"'The Attic', the only vocal song on the album (lyrics by Roger McGough), is about an ex-art-student who had great dreams 'n' all that but ends up putting his work up under the roof because certain things have got to him. I mean, I've known people who have given up playing because other people have said 'Ah! That's terrible!'
"I bloody had that! My uncle was a saxophone player, a brilliant jazz player, and for years he said 'You're useless' and he meant it! I used to go 'Ah? I'll never play the saxophone' and I never did but I'm very happy playing the clarinet ... it's a struggle to get over that." What Mark means - and he admits himself he's got no way with words - is that Woo's 12 gorgeous instrumentals - carefully, soul-searchingly selected from their past experiments to form "Whichever Way" - are designed to convey optimism through mood and atmosphere. "Just getting love across," as Mark puts it.
Call them old hippies if you Iike - accuse them of anti-social behaviour, lack of sexuality, tweeness, lack of contemporary suss, even bark without bite, but never doubt their compassion or their capacity to communicate it.

Tell them their soundscapes are like wishy-washy watercolours against today's bold, brash graffiti, tell them you can't understand why they don't appear either escapist or angry in one of this century's darkest times and Mark will simply smile.
"That's our answer. Now's the time to be brightest. Everything's grim,I know, but there is something greater and if you can get in touch with that...POW! Perhaps, through our music, we do glimmer on something, God or whatever your terminology is."

Don't laugh or panic. Woo - named after a line in the film "What's New Pussycat" - don't want to sell you any religion. That's why they seldom use words. They just want to confirm in you a peace, that may be already there, crouching dormant behind your emotions. If you've ever relaxed in a long, lush soak with Vini Reilly, John Martin or even Skidoo, Woo could very well do you good too. Because whichever way they're doing it, they're doing it just right.

 
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