Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Rick Wakeman, L.S.O., English...|
Return To The Centre Of The Earth
Genres: New Age, Pop, Rock, Classical
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of his bestselling 1974 album Journey to the Centre of the Earth, keyboard maestro Rick Wakeman has created a conceptual opus that serves as both impressive sequel and ambitious revisitati... more »
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To celebrate the 25th anniversary of his bestselling 1974 album Journey to the Centre of the Earth, keyboard maestro Rick Wakeman has created a conceptual opus that serves as both impressive sequel and ambitious revisitation to his original premise. Wakeman himself has continued the Jules Verne narrative, delivered here with flawless thespian diction by Patrick Stewart, and his music draws together a seamless cohesion of the London Symphony Orchestra, the English Chamber Choir, and guest vocalists including Ozzy Osbourne, Bonnie Tyler, Justin Hayward, Trevor Rabin, Katrina Leskanich, and Tony Mitchell. Wakeman can be accused of overindulgence in both arrangement and production, and, frankly, his talent as a lyricist leaves much to be desired. But even when this bravura effort slips into heavy-handed pretension (which fortunately isn't often), it's great to hear Journey reconceived with the state-of-the-art recording technology. Whether it's heard in its entirety or with music and narration tracks isolated, this is a dynamic recording that grows richer with each listening. Sure, it's likely to appeal primarily to Wakeman's fans and receptive converts, but overall this is a journey well worth taking. --Jeff Shannon
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The maestro is back
michael t mccomas | Phoenix, AZ United States | 02/20/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"once again we are treated to some of the finest talent available today. Having been a fan of Rick's for 27 years, and with solid memories of a televized performance of the original 'Journey...' back in 1974, I heartily endorse this wonderful return to a time when musical talent was the cornerstone of an album, when the artists transport us into a world of vision and aural stimulation far removed from the present. In that true Wakeman ability to mix the worlds of rock and classical, 'Return...' is so much more than a remix or sequel; rather a whole new set of songs, with Patrick Stewart's superb narrative painting crisp pictures in our minds. The varied vocalists do an awesome job of bringing a variety of styles. Who would have believed Ozzy Osbourne doing such a fine job in a Wakeman piece? My favorite is probably Bonnie Tyler in 'Is Anybody There', a piece we can all relate to in the quiet hours of the morning. I recommend this album to all Wakeman fans and any others tired of the computerized drivel forced upon us today. A big "good job!" to Rick and crew on this refreshing work."
If you only plan to buy one CD this year BUY THIS!
michael t mccomas | 11/19/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Easily the most incredible album I've heard so far this year. Rick Wakeman combines the best aspects of both Rock and Classical Music styles and in the process has given the term 'Symphonic Rock' a new meaning with this CD. The Rock aspect of the album is definitely Classic in every sense of the word, and the Classical aspect most definitely Rocks!While Rick Wakeman more than merits Five Stars for this album, so do the guest singers on this CD, although Ozzy Osbourne and Trevor Rabin stand head and shoulders above the rest and as for Patrick Stewart ... well, this album would not be the same were it not for him."
An absolute must
Valentin Albillo | Spain | 08/22/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having never heard of it, I saw this album at a large department store and picked it up thinking it was simply a new re-recording of "Journey To The Centre Of the Earth", (which as always been a favourite of mine) only this time using the digital technologies of nowadays. But to my utter amazement it turned out to be a completely new work, based on the former title, but featuring entirely new music and lyrics. And, as I listened to it that night, lights off, I just couldn't believe how good it was, I am not exaggerating at all when I say I thought it couldn't be real, I was just dreaming. From the very first track I remained there, in total disbelief of finding each track as good or better than the former one, from the narrator's very first words to the final choral climax. It hasn't even a single bad track, all of them are either very good or extraordinary, and there are plenty of them because this CD is some 77 min. long. The sound quality is absolutely superb, among my top 5 CDs (and I've got some 1,500+), in breathtaking Dolby Surround, boistering both the deepest bass and the cleanest high frequencies you can imagine. The styles are also incredibly varied, both vocal and instrumental, as are the featured singers and even the production is also beyond belief, with some awesome graphics and booklet. On top of that, the narrator is no other than Patrick Stewart, i.e: Star Trek TNG's Captain Picard himself. His voice talent adds a new dimension to this already wonderful masterpiece with all kinds of subtleties and nuances, as well as perfect tempo and intonation that lead you straight into the story, as if you were there. His performance is on a par to Richard Burton's classic one in "The War of the Worlds". The arrangements, the orchestra, the chorus, even the incidental music which serves as background to the narrative, all are of the utmost quality, which you can appreciate in every minor detail such as the fact that the track numbering has been indexed in such a way that you can easily program your CD reader to either listen to just the narrative or just the music if you so desire, and the booklet doesn't forget to tell you about it! Briefly, this is an absolute masterpiece which will let you wondering in awe as you go discovering layer after layer of complex harmonies. It's difficult to single out a "best track", but then "The Dance of a Thousand Lights" and "The Kill" will no doubt leave a deep impression in your musical soul. A must."