Mike Oldfield - The Songs Of Distant Earth

Limited 180 Gram Vinyl LP Record Reissue

Imported by Captain Stomp

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The Songs Of Distant Earth is the sixteenth studio album by English musician and composer Mike Oldfield, originally released in November 1994 by Warner Bros. Records.

Beginning his professional career at the age of 14, forming The Sallyangie, composer Mike Oldfield released his debut LP Children of the Sun at the age of 15, and by the age of 16, he was playing bass with Soft Machine founder Kevin Ayers' group The Whole World alongside experimental classical arranger David Bedford and avant-garde jazz saxophonist Lol Coxhill; quickly becoming the band's lead guitarist, and featuring on the 1971 LP Shooting at the Moon. However Oldfield's rise to fame came with the success of Tubular Bells: An atmospheric, intricate composition that fused rock and folk motifs with the structures of minimalist composition, the 49-minute instrumental piece (performed on close to 30 different instruments, virtually all of them played by Oldfield himself) spent months in the number one spot on the U.K. charts, and eventually sold over 16 million copies worldwide. In addition to its employment as the theme for The Exorcist, as the debut release for Virgin Records (the album was created using studio time gifted by Richard Branson), Tubular Bells almost single-handedly established Virgin as one of the most important labels in the record industry, and created a market for new age music, winning the Grammy for Best Instrumental Composition in 1974.

Without a doubt Oldfield's most under valued album. 

As is implied by the title, Songs Of Distant Earth has a space theme to it, although this does not by any means dominate the album. The structure will be familiar to all who know Tubular Bells, but the music is somewhat different. It is softer and more melodic, flowing easily from theme to theme. 

While referred to as new age, that is a highly misleading appellation. While there is indeed a relaxing quality to the music, it is far more complex, dynamic, and varied than the type of music implied by the New Age connotation. Repetition is kept to a minimum as the albums moves from theme to theme. These themes blend effortlessly together to the extent that they form a complete piece, one is unlikely to only play a single track from this album.

Oldfield's guitar work never sounded better than it does here, one listen to the closing sections will convince you of that. Indeed the closing section is one of the most striking pieces of music Oldfield has even created, the tension building gracefully to a climactic conclusion. 

While guitar is prevalent throughout the album, there is the usual diversity of sounds, including some superb female vocal harmonies. Apart from piano sounds, the keyboards are generally used to provide layers of sound, rather that as the lead instrument. 

"The Captain" can’t recommend this album highly enough.

Check out the tracks: “Hibernaculum” and “Let There Be Light”. 

This Limited Edition LP reissue with reproduced artwork is pressed in Europe on 180 gram heavyweight vinyl.

(825646233212)

Tracklisting:

 

No.

Title

Time

A1

In The Beginning

1:24

A2

Let There Be Light

4:52

A3

Supernova

3:29

A4

Magellan

4:41

A5

First Landing

1:16

A6

Oceania

3:27

A7

Only Time Will Tell

4:19

A8

Prayer For The Earth

2:10

A9

Lament For Atlantis

2:44

B1

The Chamber

1:49

B2

Hibernaculum

3:32

B3

Tubular World

3:23

B4

The Shining Ones

2:59

B5

Crystal Clear

5:42

B6

The Sunken Forest

2:39

B7

Ascension

5:48

B8

A New Beginning

1:33

SKU 825646233212
Record Label Warner Music UK
Label / Model # Warner
Catalogue Number 2564623321
Country EU - Europe
Release Date (Year) 27 April 2015
Original Release Date (Year) 21 November 1994
Barcode # 825646233212
Shipping Weight 0.2900kg
Shipping Width 0.005m
Shipping Height 0.314m
Shipping Length 0.314m
Shipping Cubic 0.000493000m3
Type New
Format Limited Edition LP Record, 180 Gram Vinyl, Reissue
Vinyl Colour Black
Genre Progressive Rock
Format VINYL LP

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