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Mike Oldfield - Hergest Ridge CD (album) cover


Mike Oldfield


Crossover Prog

3.95 | 619 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Mike Oldfield - Hargest Ridge (1974)

On his second album multi-instrumentalist and composer Mike Oldfield continued the course set on his famous debut 'Tubular Bells'. This time both sides are worthwhile, whilst I have to admit I though the second side of Tubular Bells was much weaker then it's first side. Harvest Ridge has a less dominant sound and more continuity in it's composition. Oldfield still plays a lot of instruments, but this time there are also contributions of other musicians.

Now the thing is, Hargest Ridge has many strong melodies and atmospheres, but it doesn't seem to lead to anything. The opening section of side one is strong and the compositions evolves into many different themes, but I can't say I'm really that much interested in all Oldfield's ideas. The sound is a bit blurry and the impact of all the different instruments played is much less fascination then on the debut. Still this is good follow-up that shows Mike Oldfield wasn't a one-hit wonder. The way he combines instruments like the flutes on the opening section and the symphonic arrangements are always original. His sound and the way the music is put together is very unique. I guess it would have helped for me if he would have given some meaning to the sub-parts of the compositions by giving them interesting titles, or by telling a musical story in general.

Conclusion. Another strong instrumental effort by Mike Oldfield that is attractive for those who liked the debut. Whilst having more continuity, Hergest Ridge is less challenging then Tubular Bell's and the album sounds a bit too descent. The composition is however strong and unique and this peaceful, gentle album might be suited to lift your spirits any time. Three and a halve stars.

friso | 3/5 |


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