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Mike Oldfield - Amarok CD (album) cover


Mike Oldfield


Crossover Prog

4.03 | 578 ratings

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5 stars Amarok is probably Oldfield's most serious yet adventurous project from the after 70s era. It is definitely interesting and intriguing, Original and unique.

The general style is na´ve, influenced by folk, flamenco and such. Occasionally the mood is pastoral, but this serenity is interrupted from time to time by various effects as long as Oldfield imagination would let him, like broken glass, tooth brushing, telephone ringing, and the question that goes over and over again: happy? So this is not exactly the record to nap with. Actually even the pastoral environment is not complete, sometimes it sound very distance and pent up, so there is a kind of tension here. The second part (from about 29 minute) is more rhythmic and easy to digest, and it comes very stirring through the end, featured 'Margaret Thatcher speech', confront with tribal section and the happy question.

There are few simple themes that go over the whole composition. Despite the relational simplicity of the themes, this is not a simple composition at all. It feels like a chain, with links, that combined together weakly. Only after numerous listening the connections could be heard and clarified.

Oldfield's guitars take major place here, acoustic, electric, flamenco and more. Other instruments also played very well. Pipes are great and percussion are good, but could be better IMO. Sound and production are great here, as well as the orchestration, which is quite complex and interesting.

Rating: I cannot swear this is a masterpiece but imo it IS essential at any serious prog collection, especially if you don't concentrate just in the 70s period, or things that done exactly at the 70s spirit Oldfield became here more sophisticated, and unexpected. I think not many artists from the 70s can reclaim to progress after their glory days, so I give it 5 stars, and a high recommendation. Happy?

ShW1 | 5/5 |


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