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Mike Oldfield - Discovery CD (album) cover


Mike Oldfield


Crossover Prog

2.83 | 313 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars This album may not be a major landmark in Oldfield's discography, but it's far from poor. There's a sense of narrative linking the vocal tracks, which adds to this album's strength. Taken alone, the songs are strong, but connected together, they form an excellent album.

This album's vocal tracks are voiced by the now familiar Maggie Reilly, whose crytal clear voice graces 'To France', 'Crystal Gazing' and 'Talk About Your Life'. Barry Palmer, who apparently had a sore throat at the time of recording the album. provides the powerful and raw male vocals in 'Poison Arrows', 'Discovery' and 'Saved By A Bell'. 'Tricks Of The Light' is a duet between the two vocalists.

'Discovery' opens with "To France", a song inspired by Mary Queen of Scots' attempted flight from certain death. There's a fatalistic theme to the song; she cannot outrun her destiny. 'Poison Arrows' continues the theme of paranoia and intrigue with its lyrics, "Somebody's out to get you, hiding in shadows..."

There's a distinct occult theme to the next two songs. 'Crystal Gazing' delves into the mysterious 'art' of scrying, and the energetic "Tricks of the Light" discusses the possibility of contacting the Otherworld, but then the narrators dismiss it all with "It's a trick of the light".

"Discovery" is dark and angry, calling out for truth in the midst of lies. It asks for a realistic viewpoint to be taken in what sounds like a desperate situation. Again, there's a sense of confusion and paranoia to this song.

Side 2 (LP / cassette version) begins with "Talk About your Life", another song which searches for meaning in life's chaos. It's about making contact with another human being: "Do we have to be so distant? How can you be so unreal?" This song repeats the musical themes of "To France", making another link between the songs on the album.

"Saved By a Bell" takes us on a lyrical journey around the night sky, with an ethereal feeling to the music, that is until the energetic chorus shocks the listener back to earth!

"The Lake", which i find quite similar to 'Tubular Bells', could be described as a 'sound picture' of Lake Geneva, which was visible from the studio where 'Discovery' was recorded. This piece starts softly, evoking images of light rain on the suface of a lake, then moves through a thunderstorm into flat calms and mists. Close your eyes and engage your imagination whilst listening to this track!

'Discovery' makes an excellent follow-up album to Crises, and with the narrative themes linking the first five songs, this album is worthy of a place in anyone's music collection.

| 3/5 |


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