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Jon & Vangelis - Private Collection CD (album) cover


Jon & Vangelis


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3.15 | 104 ratings

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Symphonic Team
1 stars The friends of Mr. Anderson

Because of its title, Private Collection, I did for a long time think that the present album was a compilation rather than an original studio album. But I was wrong, of course, this is the third original album by the unholy alliance of Jon Anderson and Vangelis.

The music of Jon & Vangelis is really not my cup of tea, and I rated both of their previous two albums with one little star. I was hardly impressed by Private Collection either, but it is an improvement over Short Stories and The Friends Of Mr. Cairo to my ears. This one is less Synth Pop and more New-Age. While neither Synth Pop nor New-Age belong to my favourite musical styles (quite the opposite actually!), I do prefer the latter over the former style.

The Prog fan's attention is bound to be directed at the 23 minute Horizons (no relation to the Steve Hackett piece of the same name). While any expectations along the lines of Yes' Close To The Edge or Gates Of Delirium would obviously be out of place, comparisons to Vangelis dramatic Heaven And Hell album (on which Jon also makes an appearance) seem natural. But even compared to that, Horizons fall very flat. It is a pleasant listen for sure, but it never moves beyond mere pleasantness. Almost needless to say, this piece is soothing and very relaxed. On a positive note, this music is based on piano and floating keyboards rather than Vangelis usual electronic tinkering and programmed drum patterns.

The other songs are a bit more conventional Jon & Vangelis fare, but even these are more soothing and relaxed than what we are used to from the other albums. For better or for worse, none of the songs here have the "hit potential" of some earlier songs (some of which actually became hits). But some songs are just a bit dull! But dull is better than cringe-worthy! Still, this is very minimalist music, and it tends to becomes tedious rather quickly.

The vocals are, as always with Jon, very good. But a great voice must have something good to sing to make good music! The lyrics are probably best left without comment, but when Jon tells us what "a woman needs" you wish that this was an instrumental affair like so many others by Vangelis!

Like I said in previous reviews, if you want to discover Jon's work outside Yes, his collaborations with Vangelis is the very last place to look. And Vangelis too has done far better music elsewhere.

Private Collection is better than the previous Jon & Vangelis albums, but it is still one that I don't think I will listen to again.

SouthSideoftheSky | 1/5 |


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