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White Ladder - David Gray

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Genre: Folk - Welsh Folk / Artist: David Gray / Enhanced / Audio CD released 2000-05-01 at East West

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      24.08.2010 15:50
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      All in all a classic album

      David Gray was for many years a struggling indie singer song writing, failing to ignite the mainstream with his brand of simple, timeless songs. His first three albums had come on the back of much hype but despite being a solid array of records did not land David in the public eye. But sticking to his roots, David never gave up and launched an album that would stand in the charts for nearly a year on end and finally broke him through into the mainstream. "White Ladder" will remain a classic album for years to come and the one which will define the career of the subdued Manchester singer songwriter.

      The album kicks off with the two tracks that broke Gray into the public eye, "Please Forgive Me" and "Babylon". Both progressive slices of pop music which showcase Grays immense song writing talent and fantastic vocals, not unlike that of Mick Hucknall (in fact one hearing Babylon for the first time I did think it was Simple Red's reinvention). Both slices of timeless pop that stand the test of time.

      The following tracks "My oh My" and "We're Not Right" sound very similar, simple ballads with the same point, about the end of a relationship and the sentiment in Grays voice makes this sound like a very personal account. Both poignant and hard hitting tracks. The album only really takes a slow down after this with the trio of songs "Nightblindness" "Silver Lining" and "White Ladder" being largely forgettable and simple songs but easy enough on the ear to appeal to most.

      It is in the love classic "This Years Love" where the album shines. David and a Piano singing from the heart about a new relationship he hopes to be the best. One of my favourite songs of all time and instantly relatable for everyone who has ever started a relationship and hoped it would last. Its touching, perfect and one of those songs that will stick with you from the moment you hear it.

      "Sail Away" then flies in and is on of the most popular tracks on the album and one of Grays live favourites. More upbeat than most of the album with a sing a long chorus and timeless melody to warm the ears of most listeners.

      And to crown everything off Gray ends the album with a great, true to original cover of "Say Hello Wave Goodbye" which finished the album off in a positive light and reminds us all of Grays immense vocal talent.

      All in all an excellent, essential album that typifies everything Gray worked on for years before breaking through. One of the foremost singer songwriters in the Uk yet remains still vastly underrated Grays White Ladder will always be his finest moment!

      Also on CIAO

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      28.02.2010 19:37
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      Brilliant!

      Continuing my rummage through my CD collection, I stumbled upon White Ladder by David Gray.

      As I am all for sharing my musical thoughts I thought would take it upon myself to "educate" those who are the as yet unconverted to the best album made by Mr Gray.

      Joking aside, this is a classic album. For David Gray this was his big breakthrough, in much the same way that Jagged Little Pill was for Alanis Morrisette. Also like Morissette it was by far his most successful album and he like her has not since made an album of the same quality or commercial success.

      '''I will rate each song from 1-10, 1 being poor, 10 being excellent.'''

      ===Background===

      David Gray has released several albums with little commercial success prior to White Ladder. I have listed them below in his album catalogue. On this album Gray changed his style from folk-rock to alternative rock and experimented using a more electronic sound. This gave him a more mainstream pop feel.

      White Ladder was not an instant success, it took its take climbing up the album charts to the number one spot. It still holds the record for the longest uninterrupted climb to Number One.
      White Ladder is David Gray's 4th Studio Album.

      ===Track Listing===

      1. Please Forgive Me - 5:35
      2. Babylon - 4:25
      3. My Oh My - Gray, McClune 4:37
      4. We're Not Right Gray, McClune, Polson 3:03
      5. Nightblindness - 4:23
      6. Silver Lining - 6:00
      7. White Ladder- Gray, McClune, Polson 4:14
      8. This Year's Love - 4:05
      9. Sail Away - 5:15
      10.Say Hello Wave Goodbye - Almond, Ball 9:03

      All track are written by David Gray except:

      We're Not Right Gray, McClune, Polson
      White Ladder- Gray, McClune, Polson
      Say Hello Wave Goodbye - Almond, Ball

      ===Personal Opinion on Each Track===


      1. Please Forgive Me. A great opening song. I really like this song its one of my favourites on the album. This song song sets you up for the rest of the album. Show casing his greta voice musical arrangement and lyrics. Brilliant start to the album. 10/10


      2. Babylon. His highest charting single to date. This was the song that propelled teh album to number one in the charts. its an u tempo song with a good solid beat throughout. The strings on this song are fantastic. A good solid song. 9/10

      3. My Oh My. A slower song and a little dour in places. Still lyrically it shows his writing skills. Musically its arrangement is good and serves the lyrics well. Its more a filler song on an album.

      4. We're Not Right. A good string introduction to this song. Its a slow song that is practically spoken. I like this because he has a great voice for this type of song. Its a little dour but I can live with it. 8/10

      5. Nightblindness . Again, a great string intro to the song. Another slow song that is very similar to track four. Again I like this song as you get the rawness of his voice. 8/10

      6. Silver Lining. A little more up tempo than the previous two song. This for me is the weakest song on the album. Its just a little bit to dour. 6/10

      7. White Ladder. A more up beat song. The title track from the album. Its a good song but it just does not grab me enough. Again musically and lyrically its good just not really my cup of tea. 7/10

      8. This Year's Love. My fovourite song on the album. Its a great ballad, lyrically its brilliant as is his pianon playing. A great song. 10/10

      9. Sail Away. This song has a great introduction. Lyrically it grabs you from the start.
      Its not really a ballad but it is a slower song. Its a good song that again shows off all his song writing and singing skills. 9/10

      10.Say Hello Wave Goodbye. I much prefer this version that Marc Almonds. I think that Gray gives it a bit more emotion and depth. Its a slow song that is just right to finish the album. 9/10

      ===Life After White Ladder===

      Well to be honest musically wise it has not been great. Like so many artists he has found it impossible to live up to critical cclaim of White Ladder. His subsequent releases have just not reached the same commercial success. I have listened to them and they just dont cut the mustard. This is a shame as I believe he has much to offer. He just cant seem to hit the nail on the head.

      ===To Buy or Not To Buy?===

      I would recommend this album. It for me is a classic album. Its by far his best work to date. It show cases his song writing, singing and musical skill to great effect. Yes there are a couple of weak songs on the album, but find me an album that does not have the same.

      ===Album Catalogue===

      A Century Ends (April 1993)
      Flesh (September 1994)
      Sell, Sell, Sell (August 1996)
      White Ladder (November 1998)
      Lost Songs 95-98 (February 2001)
      A New Day at Midnight (October 2002)
      Life in Slow Motion (September 2005)
      Draw the Line (September 2009)

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        02.02.2010 14:13
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        An album with no bad songs. Everyone is genius. David Gray is brilliant!

        David gray is a singer song writer from Manchester. This album, white ladder, was released on his own label after having issues with a couple of record labels. As a result he hit it off well in Ireland before making it big elsewhere.

        White ladder has a really intriguing cover, being blue with a small black square with a white ladder within it.

        The album consists of 10 brilliantly recorded, sang and composed tracks. Every one is perfect, time and effort have been put into this album and it shows. I may have to say it is one of those rare albums where every single song is worthy of its place. There are no half hearted attempt songs or fillers.

        A collection of modern songs with interesting beats with the inclusion of an acoustic guitar and piano. Together these form a well balanced mix that anyone can sit down and listen to.

        Please forgive me - The opening track on the album and it paves the way for an experience you will never forget. Memorable meaningful lyrics and Gray's dominance as he sings make for an excellent start.

        Babylon - This is the single that got David Gray noticed. A brilliant song which is very catchy and you will find yourself singing along in no time. With an acoustic guitar providing the main backing Gray's voice does the rest. An amazing one at that.

        My Oh My, were not right and night blindness - These songs take on an extremely personal note. It feels so much so as if Gray is singing about his own personal experiences within the songs. I don't know if they are true but it seems that way. Also I believe many people can relate to them in some way or another. They are deeply moving and somehow Gray's voice seems to be able to make them feel so much more than just songs.

        White ladder - The album title. And what a song to name it after. White ladder is another perfect song. Everything in it works so well together. No faults or issues. Perfection!

        This years love - A simple piano driven song, with deep meanings about love. Very powerful, and give the feeling of how to hold onto something dear. An amazing song with simple music and lyrics but works oh so well.

        Sail away - I would class this song as the best and most moving on the album. Another meaningful song which has a superb intro and outro too. My favourite on the album, and many other peoples favourites too.

        An album to remember. David Grays voice can make the songs come to life. The songs can be happy or sad but still be such an enjoyable experience to hear. By far one of the best albums ever made.
        10 out of 10 for an album that doesn't have one bad song on it!
        Oh look out for the secret track. Track 1 - rewind it until around -2.00 and listen away.

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          06.10.2009 12:38
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          Just a thoroughly nice album to listen to

          1) Please Forgive Me
          2) Babylon
          3) My Oh My
          4) We're Not Right
          5) Nightblindness
          6) Silver Lining
          7) White Ladder
          8) This Year's Love
          9) Sail Away
          10) Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
          11) Some releases have a second version of Babylon as track 11

          White Ladder was David Gray's 4th album but he had remained in relative obscurity throughout the first three and it was only the chart success of Babylon that put him on the mainstream radar. Never afraid to experiment, White Ladder fuses a variety of electronic and acoustic instruments to produce a unique sound that has wide-ranging appeal.

          Please Forgive Me - A soothing combination of electronic percussion and piano, the lyrics tell of complete love and admiration. It's a song that most people will be able to relate to and conveys the sentiments very effectively whilst maintaining a cheery, positive vibe (8/10)

          Babylon - Easily the most commercially successful single from the album, Babylon tells a story of emotional turmoil and regret. Again, the fusion of electronic beats and acoustic instruments works really well and complements Gray's unique voice (7/10)

          My Oh My - The acoustic guitar is much more prominent on this track but it feels a little disjointed to me. Lyrically, it seems to be another examination of the singer's mental state (5/10)

          We're Not Right - One of my favourite tracks on the album, the bass-line is so unique, with all the other instruments being punctuated by two massive bass twangs in every bar that make your windows vibrate. Percussion is used to great effect and, lyrically, it's a touching tale of addiction and incompatibility (10/10)

          Nightblindness - A very low-tempo number with meaningful lyrics. Anyone but the most financially privileged of listeners can't help being touched by the line "What we gonna do when the money runs out?" (9/10)

          Silver Lining - Another slow song but not half as memorable, in my opinion, as the previous track (5/10)

          White Ladder - A pleasing enough mid-tempo track that is another smooth blend of electronic percussion and acoustic guitar. Nothing outstanding about this song and I've got no idea what the lyrics are about (6/10)

          This Year's Love - A wonderfully heartfelt song about love, loss and regret. The vocals are only accompanied by a piano and this creates an atmosphere of desperate sadness, but also of hope for the future (10/10)

          Sail Away - A tale of escapism with some great lyrics. Very similar musically to the first two tracks, if a little slower (7/10)

          Say Hello, Wave Goodbye - A reasonably good attempt at covering a fantastic song - and the only song on the album that Gray didn't write himself. While I like this version enough to rate it highly, it's a song that only Marc Almond could ever do justice to (8/10)

          In summary, I am not a great fan of David Gray as a performer but White Ladder does him proud for his song-writing ability and versatility.

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            03.07.2009 04:42

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            Not one filler track, simply British song writing at it's best.

            I am going to start this review off by saying what a brilliant album. This was his second release, and he want back to the stripped down route to make it. recorded in hotel rooms over the world this is a fantastic collection of songs that just scream of brilliant, quirky song writing.

            He has an ear for a tune and a good hook, some songs are mixed with light dance beats and it all works very well. I listened to this CD the whole year it was released and hearing any of the songs now take me back to that wonderful summer.

            you have the singles on here that everyone will know Babylon and Please Forgive me. There's also the wonderful Sail Away with Me that is pretty well known along with This Year Love, used in a British film of the same name.

            We're not Right is another quite brilliant song, with some nice, very British writing, the same could be said for every other song on here.

            Not one filler track, simply British song writing at it's best.

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            27.06.2009 01:26
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            A beautiful album, astonishingly a decade old.

            It's hard to believe that 'White Ladder' was released 10 years ago, as it still remains one of my most frequently played albums.

            I can remember seeing David Gray music videos a lot on Irish TV long before the hugely successful single 'Bablylon' made a name for him in the UK charts. This is one of the album's highlights with it's delicate verses which build into the powerful chourus.

            Without a doubt the 2 best tracks here were also released as singles; 'Please Forgive Me' and 'This Year's Love'; both with beautiful lyrics and the latter proving a great soundtrack to the Brit flick 'This Year's Love'.

            A further 2 tracks were released from the album; 'Sail Away' and 'Say Hello Wave Goodbye'.

            Despite only mentioning a few tracks here, every song on the album is worth listening to, and despite it being a bit melancholy at times, it is a must-own album for any music fan.

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            30.05.2009 13:22
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            An excellent album and will be very popular with exisiting David Gray fans!

            White Ladder by David Gray is an excellent album and in my opinion is one of his best. I orginally bought this for £10 from HMV but it is available from Amazon for just over £6. The album was released in 1999 and it has 10 superbly produced tracks.

            This album contains five very good and popular singles which include the great "Babylon", "Please forgive me", "This years love", "Say hello and say goodbye" and "Sail away. This makes up half of the album and the general genre for the album is rock although at times it is softer and more gentle.

            "Babylon" really is a fantatsic very inspirational song by David Gray thatis very easy to listen to and the lyrics are very powerful too. Please forgive me has the very famous intro which has a great piano melody with some very good lyrics also, violins are also added which enhances the melody further. "Sail away" has a slow melody at first and then progressivly builds up, the lyrics are beautiful and it really is very well produced, of course this track is in my opinion David Gray's best.

            I find the whole album to be diverse in terms of lyrcis and melody's which is what I like so much about it. The overall quality of the album and the way it is produced is as good as ever. There are some other very good songs such as "My oh my" which I think was beautifully written just like the rest of the album. If you are a fan of David Gray's distinktive voice then this really is a fantastic album. There is enough hit singles in this album to make you want to get it and for just £6 I would really recommend it. I hope this was useful and thank you very much for reading!

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            26.04.2009 20:49
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            I bought White Ladder for a quid, at times I wondered if it was a too high bid!

            Released in 1999, White Ladder was David Gray's breakthrough effort and finally allowed him the mainstream success he had so eagerly been chasing for years. While he had actually released his debut album in 1993, he was yet to come to the attention of the general public. Sure, he had an active fan base, and those who had listened to Gray had applauded him on his emotive vocals and talented song writing, but he was still unknown to the majority of people.
            After a long two years, White Ladder eventually made it to the number 1 spot in August 2001.

            What sets Gray apart from similar singer-songwriters is that he employs the use of electronic equipment and uses programmed loops, sometimes to great effect. This is first shown on the opening song, Please Forgive Me, which is initiated by an unsteady drum beat and then followed by layers of simple, but pleasant enough piano. In my opinion, Gray's vocals are best summed up as a tuneful Bob Dylan singing along to Simply Red. To some that will sound like hell, to some it will sound like heaven. I'm not silly enough to get into such a heated debate, but what I do know is that Please Forgive Me slowly escalates into a great song, growing in quality with every second that goes by.

            Babylon was a big single for Gray; it was his first release to get into the top 5. It still sounds great on the album, if perhaps a little too long. Gray obviously realised this because when it got a second single release, he dropped the third verse completely. It isn't really a song driven by a great musical arrangement, but more by Gray's narrative about the end of a relationship and all that results emotionally.

            My Oh My and Nightblindness are both average songs. They do nothing revolutionary, in fact they are lacklustre acoustic jams, but David Gray manages to hold your attention with his vocal performance. It is most unfortunate that from this point on things take a turn for the worst. It is no exaggeration when I say that the entire middle section of White Ladder is dull, boring and a most insipid mess.
            It seems that the quality control over at Gray headquarters had taken a beating and the result is that one after the other these awful pieces of music come at you, culminating with the dreadful whine of the title track.

            A great deal of praise seems to have been heaped upon the single This Years Love; many critics stating that it is a superb love song full of emotion. Personally, I find it the dullest single released from the album and the basic and entirely uninspiring piano chords do nothing to change my mind.

            The only thing that elevates this album to the score I have given it is the incredibly well written duo of songs which close the album. Sail Away is an immaculately produced piece of music and is the most genuinely moving moment on the LP. The acoustic guitar is brought high up into the mix and Gray's vocal performance is marvellous. In addition to this, the lyrics are tear-jerking and incredibly well written. The song also moves at a brilliant pace, allowing each verse to slowly sink in before the next begins.

            The cover of Soft Cell's Say Hello, Wave Goodbye is an outstanding way to end an otherwise unoriginal and unexciting album. The song is made 3 minutes longer than the original's already impressive 5 minute running time. Structurally it isn't dissimilar to Sail Away; the same production techniques being replicated to great effect. All in all it is an accomplished rendition of the Soft Cell original and I feel that if the album had a few more moments like this, then it would have been an all round victory for Gray.

            White Ladder is a very inconsistent album at the best of times, but there's enough good material here for an EP. I feel my final score is a fair reflection of how I feel about the album - when White Ladder hits the spot it is brilliant, but when it is bad it is simply a waste of your time. I suggest that you listen for yourself and make of it what you will.

            6.5/10

            Daniel Kemp

            Read more of my reviews at www.danielkempreviews.co.uk

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              20.12.2008 18:18
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              David Gray - White ladder

              David Gray - White Ladder

              1998.

              Final purge on the old CD's now before they go to boot sale heaven, or MusicMagpie.co.uk. So we have David Gray, also to come are reviews for; Moloko, Brand New Heavies, Ian Dury, Donna Lewis, to name but a few.

              When transferring to iTunes I have pretty much left the 'not listened too much' ones until the end, mainly as they are not so good (with a few exceptions such as Ian Dury), but also because they were in a box under the spare bed and I had forgotten them.

              I digress. I remember buying this Cd as I had heard one of the singles on the radio and he reminded me a bit of Bob Dylan (just as nasal), who I used to really like some years back, but got kind of bored with. I suppose I hoped this CD would not only give me an ear for that kind of vocal again, but might also get me back into Bob, who I feel a bit guilty about finding boring nowadays.

              I was quite surprised when I found out that it was his fourth album, having never heard any of his stuff before. I was equally surprised after listening to this that it got to number 1, but there is the power of marketing and airplay for you.

              Before I actually talk about the songs I just want to mention how frustrating it is that the lyrics have been put over two pages in the CD booklet with no clear breaks, no paragraphs, bold type to separate them or anything like that.


              ~~~The Songs~~~

              1. Please Forgive Me
              Nice intro and whilst his voice does bear a resemblance to Dylan, in this opener it is clear enough and pleasant enough. I'm not really sure how to describe this song in terms of genre, easy listening maybe? Inoffensive? Bland? I don't know, but it is not that memorable, that's for sure. 4/10.

              2. Babylon
              I remember this getting a lot of airplay and I have to say I do like the first part of the song, it reminds me a lot of Paul Simon when he first went solo. I also quite like the fact that the song tells a story, and is really nicely matched with the music which is guitar (acoustic) and percussion based. The song builds nicely and has a good structure to it that makes it predictable yet okay. 6/10.

              3. My Oh My
              My oh my this is depressing, boring, bland formulaic angst that just goes on for far too long. 1/10.

              4. We're Not Right
              Ditto last track. 1/10.

              5. Nightblindness
              This is truly awful. I want to slash my wrist listening to this. Bob Dylan meets Leonard Cohen, just terrible. 0/10.

              6. Silver Lining
              Pleasant beat, like the guitar work. His vocal is at least a little more uplifted than the last few songs, though the actual song is interminably slow and could do with 'winding up'. At least we get a slight key change after each verse that also seems to speed things up a little. As the song goes on he seems to slur more words into each other and it just goes downhill. A wasted opportunity of a song after the beginning. 1/10.

              7. White Ladder
              The title track. We get a nice building start but his voice comes in and I have to say, spoils things. It sounds like he is out of tune, he then attempts to hit some high notes, without much success. There is also a horrid crackling on this track (is this being clever? White noise?). 1/10.

              8. This Year's Love
              Another 'chart track'. This has a lovely piano backing on it and I have to confess to having a sneaking liking of this. A ballad by any standard and one that he sings well, with heart and soul, if only he could sing a little more clearly. When strings come in and the song builds it is easy to see why it did well. 7/10.

              9. Sail Away
              Again, a commercial track, again a good song. This is probably the one of his I like best. Good beat, nice dreamy feel about it, uses his voice well. Lyrics are quite good and the structure of the song, the musical fit and use of instruments is really quite good. Has an ability to 'stick' in ones head, that is quite a good mark of a song for me. 8/10.

              10. Say Hello Wave Goodbye
              When I saw this on the album I thought 'oh no' how can anyone cover this Soft Cell classic? He murders it, it is cringe makingly bad, I cannot even now, listen to the whole song, and the truth is, to review it I had to, for the first time. When Marc Almond sings it, it is tortuous but in a good way, we 'get it'. When David Gray sings it, it is just yucky, and the verse that he adds to the end is awful. 0/10.


              ~~~Finally~~~

              Well, I know why this was in the box under the bed....I have absolutely depressed myself on this Saturday afternoon, and now it is raining, and I am 46, and Spurs are near the bottom of the Premiership, and I'm fat, everyone hates me and I hate the World..... and I just want to throw myself off a tall building.......do not get this album......only tracks 8 & 9 are worthy of listening too, if you value your sanity.

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                17.01.2007 14:08
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                Manchester born singer songwriter who claimed an uncanny vocal to Bob Dylan

                Short haired, young unemployed bum in a long dark coat is probably the first visual concept one comes up with when trying to describe the presence of Mr David Gray. Ordinary - no frills or even the hint of lip gloss can be found on this peculiar singer song writer who seems to have sprung up from no where only to slip quietly into the night in the last year or so. Where has he been? No one seems to know. It would appear that when an artist treads over that invisible line from commercial chuck-an-album-out-now-before-they-get-bored attitude to British film soundtrack that gives a musical backing to yet another Hugh Grant scene with puppy dog eyes, they inevitable happens; the singles dry up and Ben Elton forever leaves message on the answer phone, so let’s take a peek at was has been in the world of greyer than grey, Gray…

                From leaping subjectively from North to West to North again, he has certainly spent his youth as a well travelled young man. Ireland took him under it’s green, lush wing and a smallish career fledged. He found a even smaller circle of friends and fans was developing (due to lack of interest in anyone else) and the promise of a future in music was heralded.

                It took him, a staggering 8 years before he reached any recognisable success. (Why is it so easy to get a mediocre voice with no personality to win the X factor in three months?) It was with the extraordinary, White Ladder in 1998 that he found himself a house hold name on the release of the single, ‘Babylon' (reached number 5 in June 2000.) Now on a par with Domestos and Kellogg’s, Gray was thrown into stardom and many awards followed for this sullen album. This, his fourth album ran straight to the hills of the number one slot in the UK album charts and awards followed.

                What probably struck us most about this man who on the surface, appeared to be just another guy with a guitar (we’ve had Bob Dylan, we had seen it all by now) was his gentleness within his capabilities as a songwriter. Yet, strangely, the referrals to Dylan came in thick and fast. His uncanny sound was said to be unmatched since the days of Dylan. An incredible compliment it would seem, but Gray didn’t want to walk in someone else’s shadow. Unassuming and strictly down to Earth, he never once throws caution to the wind and hits us with something controversial, no, not Mr Gray, who will forever be known for the man that gave us serene beauty and poetry within music, and not to mention a theme tune for the first series of ‘Scrubs.’

                There is very little that will surprise you about ‘White Ladder.’ It not just only signifies that ability of this artist but also points out a halt in the music industry at the time of it’s release. August 2001 was a tough time. John Lee Hooker had passed away on a couple of months before and the whole feeling of the British music scene was taking a gentle meander down a small slope. What was been thrown upon us was the swell of dance music that nothing else seemed to have a hope in hell’s chance of keeping afloat. David Gray broke through however and sailed his ‘White Ladder’ rubber rings and all, safely to shore.

                We are presented with some familiar faces, like flicking through a photo album. The album version of ‘Babylon’ is featured, yet stripped bare of it’s commercial successfulness and lays in it’s truest form as the second track. The begging features of ‘Please Forgive Me,’ compliments the final track which is a cover of Soft Cell’s ‘Say Hello, Wave Goodbye.’ It is here in typical Gray form; melodic, simple and effective, yet, somehow more intriguing and powerful as it’s original recording. Gray has the ability, in this example of taking a track, a well known one, and making it his very own.

                Despite his drolling vocal and winding approach to his material, he doesn’t give the impression of mono tones and repetitive tunes too much to make the listener feel bored. He folds his arms, sits back and says ‘there you are..’ You want to know what goes on in his head? Then listen; an artist doesn’t come straighter than this album. We even find ourselves pining for a boat and a sublime wave to ‘Sail Away,’ there is great amounts of room for escapism and dreams here. Fear not, dive in and let your mind carry you off.

                Essentially, ‘White Ladder,’ has allowed us to take a peek into the very spirit of a true singer songwriter. Yes, the likeness between Gray and Dylan is there and it is, somehow, like having Dylan back again when he was inspiring, fresh and new. Gray gives us the opportunity in this album to step further into a man’s psyche. He gives us an open door into his soul so we can feel his music as opposed to just listen to it. It captivates and refreshes us in the knowledge that somewhere, musicians can still be on the same wave length as the rest of us. The monochrome effect and depth of ‘Nightblindness,’ and the sullen words of ‘what are we gonna do when the money runs out,’ gives us the readiness of this artists work to tune into real life. The down side of this album is the depressive effect that it can have on you. There is little in the way of the feel good factor, yet it the element of the day is reflection and thought, then this album will take you gently by the hand and guide you through which ever mood you chose….








                David Gray - vocals/guitar/piano
                Neill MacColl - guitar/mandolin/vocals
                Andy Metcalf - organ
                Simon Edwards and David Nolte - bass
                Roy Dods - drums



                Iht records UK.
                www.davidgray.com
                HMV - £7.99
                Virgin - $13.99
                Amazon - £9.99

                ©sam1942
                Ciao dooyoo and anywhere else..

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                  22.10.2004 17:30

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                  David Gray exploded into our attention. Having struggled for years, his almost totally self-penned album White Ladder, became an instant hit. With the singles Babylon and Please Forgive Me, he came to prominence in 2000. White Ladder is an album at which folk purists may cringe, but this collection of catchy songs on a bed of computer-generated drum beats remains one of the finest releases of 2000. Gray scored a bona-fide radio hit with the single Babylon. Please Forgive Me has an energy to this song that gets me tapping my foot, moving my head, and typing in rhythm to the drum machine beats.

                  This is not a rock album, this is not a pop album, this not a dance album, this not an alternative album or a classical album, it is elements of all the above. There is something on this CD, for everyone. After listening to the eleven tracks, you will want more of this prolific artist.

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                  26.05.2003 02:29

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                  A Great Chill-Out Album - Advantages: Back ground/ambiance music - Disadvantages: None

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                  27.08.2002 22:34
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                  David Gray - White Ladder - the ultimate album of 2000 and two years later, Im still shouting about it. Its fantastic! One thing that really gets me about this album is of the audience it has attracted. No matter what you age is or preference in music this is such an easy listening album. Last Sunday(bank holiday weekend) this was proven to me. I was in my local pub and there had been a few events on that day, so everyone was in high spirits. On came David Grays album - and the crowd went wild! Literally the whole pub was singing along to the album from start to finish. The one song which I will alway always remember from this day is 'Sail away'. You get a crowd singing to this, and its fantastic, overwhelming. My favorite track from the whole album has to be 'Please forgive me' - a great song. First you get the catchy beats and the lyrics just come out from this to produce a remarkable song, with so much meaning ot it. Leaves you feeling amazing. I could and can listen to this track time and time again. Superb. The only track I knew when purchasing this album, and I think the will be the same for most owners of this album, is 'Babylon'. I used to love this song, and am still fond of it. This song had such an impact on David Grays career - a turning point. Everyone in the country must have been talking about this song and David Gray, or singing about it. Fantastic track. Another one of my favorites has to be 'This Years Love'. Im having trouble listening to this song at the moment, after just finishing a long term relationship - it makes me cry! The lyrics to this song are just overwhelming. Cant describe it - will start to cry! Just listen to it if you get the chance and you will know what I mean. Overall this is a fantastic album - and Im proud to be an owner. There is not 1 track on the 10 track album which I skip - apart from at present This Years Love, but thats only because its su
                  ch a good song!

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                    21.07.2002 16:06
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                    White Ladder is one of the best albums without doubt of 2000. It is the album that made David Gray a household name and gave a breath of life to his wavering music career. White Ladder is surprisingly the fourth studio album to be release by David Gray. It follows the earlier unsuccessful Sell, Sell, Sell, A Century Ends and Flesh. All of this previous albums where pretty much unnoticed due to bead marketing and publicity by his record label. The album was actually recorded in his own home and self released due to his previous problems with recording companies. He put everything on the line financial and his whole life and well-being was at the mercy of the success of the album. This is reflected in the sheer emotions and brilliance of the album, which is an absolute gem. The album has a kind of electronic folk pop feel that is immersed with beautiful almost growling vocals and thoughtful lyrics. As a new aspect to my ops I will star my favourite track on the album to help you with downloads, let me know what you think of the idea! The tracks include: 1: Please Forgive Me 4/5 The album kicks of with the second single of the album. The track starts with a skippy beat and some great piano, this remains constant throughout the whole track. The vocals of Gray are so clear and loud on this track, they sound so raw and he hangs on the end of each word, which brings the song to life and ads an air of emotion and feeling. The track also has a bit of an electric beat, which at first is quite hard to get used to. But in time you will be bopping and singing along to what is a very addictive tune. 2: Babylon 5/5 The big hit of the album and the song that is just so perfect in so many ways. The track is acoustic guitar based, and has so much atmosphere. The lyrics on the song are so heartfelt; the vocals just help you drift through the story of love in life and the commitment that it brings with it. The verses and ch
                    orus are so well put together, with simple unique rhymes with very distinctive words. An absolute stunner of a track that you will all has heard and will sing along to. 3: My Oh My 4/5 Another track that has so much feeling and is very folksy. The track has very powerful vocals that tell us of insecurities and not knowing where you are going and not being sure of who you are anymore. Despite this there is a hint that light is at the tunnel and hope will bring you through your hard times. This track is just great to put on and relax to. 4: We're Not Right 3/5 This track has a definite beat to it that is quite electronic and sounds like it is done on the mix of a keyboard. You know the type that I mean right?! I am not a big fan of songs like this but some how Gray managed to rescuer the song with some great lyrics and precious vocals. Not a great track but no need for skipping. Also some annoying samples in the song bring it down. 5: Nightblindess 4/5 Another track that has just the best acoustic guitar on it. I love songs that are like this just very simple with raw vocals and slow in tempo with acoustic guitar. For me they just carry so much emotion and feeling and are so easy to listen to. This song for me is about getting fed up with certain situations and not being that well of in, life and really not having any light at the end of the tunnel. But still having the hope for success and will to live because of the love of your partner. A great heartfelt song, that grows and grows with time. 6: Silver Lining: 4/5 The vocals on this track are trademark David Gray, slow precise and so emotional. He has you hanging of every word and the words just seem to merge in with the music as the track is so well crafted. The song is again about having hope and remaining positive in adversity. Some of the lyrics throughout the album are so breathtaking and this is the case on this track as well. <
                    br><br> 7: White Ladder 4/5 The title track of the album, is an up tempo affair, it also has a slight crackle that is persistent in the background of the track (I think that it is meant to be there and is not just my CD!) The song follows the majority of the album with strong vocals being coupled with guitars. There are also some great backing vocals on the track that give the song a kind of chant feel. Not a highlight but in context with the whole album it is a very strong song. 8: This Year's Love 5/5 * My Favourite song on the album, I am just a sucker for a piano based song! The piano is so sublime, and this combined with the lyrics that are so thought provoking, and the vocals just so tender. You have a great love ballad. The song almost has me in tears every time I hear it, I was lucky enough to catch a live performance of this song on TV and well, what can I say? I was just absolutely knocked of feet! The song is about loving someone but not knowing whether it will be enough as there are certain aspects that are just not right and cannot be worked out. Sometimes I think that it has a positive ending and sometimes not, it depends on what mood I am in I think. What do you think? The lyrics would suggest that is not a positive song. I just know that it is a great track, and my favourite on the album. 9: Sail Away 5/5 This was released as a single on the album and is just a great song. The song sways and drifts and when you see the video you release that it is about drinking and how this act just magnifies your feelings and moods. It is a love song about being in love and wanting to be with hem and go away together. By the sound of the vocals and angst in the lyrics, to me it is a song about reflecting on making a mistake and asking for them to forgive you and take you back. A superb song with some roaring vocals, that makes it so emotional. 10: Say Hello Wave Goodbye 5/5 This is just a br
                    illiant way to end what has been a superb journey thought the album. The track title is just so imaginative, and indicates that Gray has such a way with words, he really is a magician. The song is about leaving some one and moving onto pastures new, because the situation has just not worked out and you are both hurting each other. This has some of the best lyrics I have ever heard. The music is nothing special, but that is the case with all of the songs, the music is there to complement the vocals and lyrics ands not detract from them. Overall this album has given David Gray the limelight he desired for so long. The success of this album ahs also boosted the sales of his previous albums, which have been re-released. I have not had time to check them out but will do in the near future. This album is a must if you are into your modern music; it mixes folk, rock, ballads and pop. This is not easy to do and may sound strange but it just works so well and this is a masterpiece. This album has also been re-released with a an extra take on 'Babylon' called ' Babylon 2', this is available as an a=extra track, unfortunately I do not have it on my version, but I believe that it is the single release of Babylon if that helps! Other info Genre: Adult Contemporary/ Singer Songwriter Released: 24 April 2000 Playtime: Label: East West The album has been re-released and so looks out for the version with an extra track, which is a retake on Babylon. Details of this Released 21 March 2000 Label: Bmg/Rca

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                      25.03.2002 22:02
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                      About six months ago I was burgled. My CD collection, amongst other things, was stolen. I had about 100 CDs but David Gray/White Ladder was by far my favourite. I was absolutely gutted. So what did I do? I went and bought another copy immediately of course! When I first got the album I had only heard a couple of tracks (Babylon and Please Forgive Me) and at first it was far from my favourite album. But as i listened to it time and time again, mostly through perseverance for the money I'd spent, it started to grow on me. As I started to learn the words, I started to sing along and it made me feel like I was the best thing in the world! I started listening to the words aswell, which I think developed my interest. I think the reason I grew to like this album so much is because the album is a collection of his personal feelings in a way that can be interpreted quite easily by the listener. I quickly found myself relating to the songs. Whenever I had any problems in my life, like with my ex-girlfriend, I would listen to the album and it would help me forget my troubles, which was strange as a lot of the songs are about trouble in relationships. I found it gave me inspiration in times of trouble. It gave me the kick up the backside that nothing else seemed to be able to deliver. I find it very hard to choose a favourite song on this album because as you listen to it every track becomes your favourite as you listen to them. If I put it on again I find that the first track is my favourite again until I listen to the next track. I would have to say though that I think my favourite song has got to be track 10 - Say Hello Wave Goodbye. This track reminds me of my ex-girlfriend, so is very personal to me. It is all about a relationship that was never destined to be and no matter how hard you tried nothing was ever going to change. For me it helped me to accept the fact that it was never going to work. Every word in the song mean
                      s something to me which is very strange for a song. Another reason why this is my favourite album of all time is that he is so individual. His voice is amazing, and his lyrics are sublime. The actual music is also excellent. He makes a brilliant sound by keeping the songs simple. A lot of albums these days tend to try and be quite intricate, but I think David Gray achieves more intricacy than most by keeping it simple. For those of you who think that you have heard every track on this wonderful album, there may be a lot of you that haven't. For there is a secret track which is cunningly hidden. It is not contained at the end of the album like on most albums, but at the beginning, before the first track. To access this particular track you must put it on the first track and rewind. It is a bit awkward because if you rewind too far it resets to the start of track 1 so you have to be careful. Enjoy!

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                    • Product Details

                      Disc #1 Tracklisting
                      1 Please forgive me
                      2 Babylon
                      3 My oh my
                      4 We're not right
                      5 Nightblindness
                      6 Silver lining
                      7 White ladder
                      8 This years love
                      9 Sail away
                      10 Say hello wave goodbye