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Mike Oldfield - Ommadawn CD (album) cover

OMMADAWN

Mike Oldfield

 

Crossover Prog

4.34 | 806 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

zravkapt
Special Collaborator
Post Rock Team
5 stars Simply Brilliant! The first two albums seemed to be a warmup to Ommadawn. Unfortunately none of his later albums can match this. Incantations comes close but not very. The main differences between this album and the first two are: 1)he starts using synths here, 2)he adds percussion which he will use on later albums off-and-on, and 3)he is now recording on 24- track instead of 16-track. 24-track recording is great for the 'one-man-band' concept but he also has more guest musicians here than previously. This album was remixed by Mike himself as well as being remastered and re-released in 2010. I prefer the original mix but the 2010 version SOUNDS great! A perfect example of what a remaster *should* sound like.

I will admit that I never liked Part 2 as much as Part 1. This makes more sense when you realize Oldfield worked on Part 1 for a few months, whereas Part 2 was written and recorded in about a week. Still, the section on Part 2 that starts with the jig and continues till the end is one of my favourite parts of the album. The "On Horseback" song at the end of Part 2(or on some CD versions is a track by itself) does sound like a children's song. But, maaaan, is it ever a kick-ass children's song! It's a terrific way to end this album. This is one of those albums that I can listen to all the way thru and not want to skip anything. Overdubbed guitars are all over the place, but generally there is nothing here comparable to the 'caveman' part of Tubular Bells or the 'storm' section of Hergest Ridge. Less rock-y for the most part.

Part 1 deserves 10 stars alone. It may in fact be one of the greatest pieces of music ever written/recorded. You have a theme that gets repeated throughout it's 19 minutes. First it appears as a moody synth piece(the synth-bass might really be a bass though), then it turns into a haunting Irish folk melody, and then turns into an African chant. Mind-blowing stuff. In between all that you have many different instruments playing on different melodic sections. The climax at the end of Part 1 is just pure awesomeness. Such a great buildup from African percussion and female chanting to an acoustic guitar rhythm with a hypnotic sequencer part underneath. Then Mike plays some simple but extremely emotional electric guitar lines before you hear nothing but percussion till the track fades out. An absolutely essential masterpiece of prog. 5 stars.

zravkapt | 5/5 |

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