"From my guess, Michael Cretu stated that Enigma's third album is like a combination of the dark and Gothic feel of MCMXC, and of the brighter feel of Enigma 2: The Cross Of Changes. While yes, I can see a point in his description of this album, it has the Gregorian chanting that was present on the first album and the brighter, earthier sounds of The Cross Of Changes, but from my perspective, this third album from Enigma has a more of an aquatic atmosphere and in my opinion, sounds totally different from the previous two albums. I especially love the album cover and it's transparent album jacket. The first track entitled "Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi" starts off the album with the trademark chord structure that made the musical backbone of the intros of the previous two albums except unlike the eeriness of the first albums intro or the more Mayan sounds of the second albums intro, the third albums intro has a more of a futuristic and aquatic feel to it. The track gets more intense until a recording snippet of a NASA space shuttle launch blasts in the next track "Morphing Through Time". Morphing starts off with a voice effect of someone ranting about a biosphere and a life supporting system before it mellows down and a very mellow yet strange minor note melody begins and the Gregorian Chants come in(How we missed those so much on Cross Of Changes). Some bizarre Middle Eastern instruments and Cretus vocals are also present too. The song is a very ambient, slow-paced, daytime-Gothic sounding track with echoing "ya-ya-ya-ya" voices for a blissful aural experience. As the song fades out, the echoing voices continue into the third `track', "Third Of It's Kind" which is just an 18 second interlude with a narrating voice about the first as the father, the second as the mother, and the third is the child. After the 18 second break, we head into the fourth track, "Beyond The Invisible". This song is a bit more upbeat and more on the sensual side with the breathing effects combined with strange flutes and the sultry narrating voice plus the echoing voices make this one a steamy New Age classic. This one also has some of Cretu himself singing too and he has a great voice. The song ends with the echoing voices fading into the background and a new beat comes in ushering us into the bitterness of "WHY!". Cretu sings with incredible passion on this voice and the song is probably the coldest and most urgent song that Enigma has done at this point in their career. The beats are addictive, the melody is bitter, the lyrics are great and the mood is spellbinding, plus there are occasional Gregorian Chants too. The song ends with Cretu singing "I'M ASKING WHY!" and the vocal line of that echoes away into much calmer territory of the next track. The next track entitled "Shadows In Silence" is a much calmer track brings up images of swimming in a clear ocean with the rays of sunlight shining through. The guitars are beautiful. The song gradually winds down until bizarre bleeping sounds end the track with an ambient crescendo before the siren like sounds lower in pitch and begins what I consider one of the best songs that Enigma have ever recorded in their career, "The Child In Us". Similar in mood to "Return To Innocence", this track brings in Sanskrit vocals and a Sitar from India and combines Gregorian chanting with a very bright daytime mood which from my perspective, results what I consider the best song on Enigma 3. I would even call it the `bright daytime' equivalent of the dark "Sadeness". By far my favorite song on this CD. After the daytime major note of "Child", a darker minor note atmosphere returns with the steamy "TNT For The Brain". This track is more `erotic' in mood and more intense and has some cool pizzicato strings in the background and a cool Asian beat to it. There is a much superior version out there called "The Midnight Man Mix" which is darker and more ambient and far sexier. After the intensity of TNT comes the much mellower "Almost Full Moon". This song has a distant cry that was present on "Callas Went Away" and makes it appearance. The guitars from Shadows In Silence are heard on here too. The drum loop is borrowed from Peter Gabriel's "Washing Of The Water". A shooting star effect ushers in the next track "The Roundabout". Roundabout is a far more intense track with Cretu singing like he did in "Why!" . This almost became a single but was pulled back unfortunately. The last true song on the album "Prism Of Life" is a much more joyous track with low-pitched African chanting, Gregorian Chants, strange echoing beats and a joyous atmosphere. The echoing voice of Cretu ends the track and ties it into the last track "Odyssey of The Mind" which is the intro being played backwards giving a feel of the journey of Enigma 3 coming full circle. I just can't even say how amazing this CD really is. One thing though that I urge you to do before it's too late: Buy the clear jacket edition of this album while it's still available because I'm already starting to see regular paper sleeve editions being released to CD stores and it's harder and harder to find the clear jacket sleeve editions of Enigma 3. the transparency of the clear album jacket magnifies the albums appeal, far more so than the opaque paper jackets. And for those who hate Cretu singing, well, that's their problem as Cretu sounds great on vocals especially on "Why!". Even if you end up buying the regular paper sleeve version, you still have spent your money well. Buy this amazing CD now! Grade: A+"
ly-ra-li | Birmingham, AL USA | 01/23/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I found this cd an absolute joy to listen to when I first bought it, and it never left my CD player for a good 3 months. Enigma retained much of the contemplative ambiance that made it's music famous with it's 1990 release MCMXC A.D., yet still managed to further vary it's influences from Gregorian chants to Mideastern and even Asian influences. It's a comfortable departure from MCMXC A.D. and Cross of Changes, but not such a drastic change as to warrant a totally new audience.To merely classify this as good background music for easy listeners doesn't really give the album ,or Enigma, for that matter, justice. Such a statement amounts to stating Beethoven's 5th symphony would make a good theme for a sit- com.The tone and mood of the songs ranges from the seductive yet fast paced "T.N.T. for the Brain" to the slow flowing, contemplative "Morphing through Time", to the nostalgic, almost eulogic and beutifully performed "Child Within Us." "Child Within Us." is my personal favorite and makes me shed a tear with it's nostalgic style. It can best be described as a eulogy for the lost innocence of childhood. That song alone is worth the entire cost of the album.There is no song on this album that I dislike. Each one is expertly performed and mixed, and there are a great many gems on this album.But then, what else can one expect from the man who thrust New Age into the spotlight with a commentary about the Marquis de Sade sung entirely in French which he sold to an American audience?"
T.N.T. For The Brain
Clarissa | Ontario, California | 12/11/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Aside from hearing someone else's copy of 'The Screen Behind The Mirror', 'Love Sensuality Devotion' was my first album by Enigma. My actual introduction, however, was through the "Sadness" single. At the time I had never heard anything quite like it and I was simply blown-away with the Gregorian chanting amidst some infectious dance beats. By no means is Enigma considered mainstream but I have heard them on the radio before. Just like Delerium, they'll never receive top 40 airplay but they're more well-known than, say, B-Tribe or Sacred Spirit because of club-friendly remixes and the successful Pure Moods series, which caught the attention of some unlikely listeners. Their greatest hits compilation came out just as I was trying to decide which record of theirs to start with, and it turned out to be the perfect preface before launching my intent to gather their entire catalogue of works. Since I had a good feeling about it, I finally made up my mind and bought their third release, 'Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi!' first and do not regret having done so. The eight new tracks (to me) that weren't included on 'LSD' are absolutely breathtaking and I'm astounded by how well the CD holds up as a whole. It must have been a difficult process to hand select their so-called 'best' songs because they're all amazing! I thought I had the best of the best already but now I'm more determined than ever to someday own everything Enigma's produced. This album flows at a beautiful pace and while the songs are hardly subtle, they're not quite as upbeat as some of their previous material. "Why! ..." is probably my favorite cut as Michael Cretu screams, but in a non-abrasive way, "I'm asking why!" amidst a lush, moody soundscape. I also love "The Roundabout", which is very Deep Forest-esque, as well as some old favorites, "Beyond The Invisible" and "T.N.T. For The Brain". They're truly all gems, though, and this is definitely worth your time and money so don't just settle with their singles."
Act quickly! Buy it now!
invincible2000 | Phoenix, Arizona | 02/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi is latin for "The King is Dead, Long Live the King!"Shortly after the album was released, Virgin Records announced that the first 3 million copies of the album in the US would have the unique transparent plastic cover sleeve. New editions with regular paper sleeves are already being released, so act quickly and buy the original while it's still available!About the album; Le Roi...continues the different turns that Enigma takes with each new album. This third album takes samples of music from the Gregorian Chants as usual, but in the song "The Child in Us" adds a female vocalist singing in Sanskrit. The result is a beautiful harmony I've never heard before!And unlike the previous two albums, the lyrics are more thought provoking. In the song "Why?," Curly M.C. sings with unusual passion. And listen to the lyrics. They're incredibly deep! Whoa!"