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Jon Anderson - Olias of Sunhillow CD (album) cover

OLIAS OF SUNHILLOW

Jon Anderson

 

Prog Related

3.93 | 260 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

lazland
Prog Reviewer
5 stars I am a huge Jon Anderson fan. I have all of his solo albums, have loved Yes since I first heard them some 34 years ago. I've seen Yes without him, hated it, and cannot imagine them without him in any form.

So, when you are a young, spotty, thing, buying this as I did at the time, having marveled at the pace of Relayer and Going For The One, you expect something similar, don't you? Well, think again, because this is, aside from lyrically, as far away from those masterpieces as it is possible to get.

This is New Age writ large. Anderson not only sings all the lyrics, he also played all of the instruments, and, by the way, proves himself very adept at all of them, especially acoustic guitar, and keyboard effects.

It is, of course, a concept, being that of a ship sailing through space on a wondrous journey.

There is only one word to describe what follows - beautiful. This is as spiritual as music gets, and, I have to say, that Anderson thoroughly surprised me at the time, and still does in a way, in spite of the many times I have listened to it, by just how adept he is at creating a sound atmosphere to accompany the lyrics.

So, who would this appeal to, those of you who have come to prog lately, and are looking to expand your collections to where it all started? Well, if you only like Owner of a Lonely Heart, or some such similar thing, this is not for you. If you like your music full of riffs and muscle, probably best to stay away.

If, however, you appreciate music as a spiritual journey, with swirling sounds, a gorgeous, lilting voice, and essentially a personal and unique thing, then you really must get this. I can honestly state that there is nothing else like this, and even Anderson himself could never quite recreate this on subsequent ambient albums such as Angels Embrace.

An album to experience, not merely to listen to, this gets the full five stars. Absolutely essential for those who wish to discover what one of the most important prog figures did outside of his day job.

lazland | 5/5 |

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