Apparently the only mood that matters is one of pensive melancholy. Nearly every track on this addition to the series is set in a minor key. Some are played solo, like George Winston's new age relic "Sea." Some are crammed with odd instrumentation, as in the briefly startling last section of Yann Tiersen's "La Valse d'Amélie." Some have entire orchestras sawing away. There are ambitious works like Moby's "God Moving Over the Face of the Waters," whose attempts to marry grandeur and minimalism are somewhat undercut by the monotony of a cymbal sample repeated too predictably. There are vocals, the best being the late Eva Cassidy's breathtaking treatment of Sting's "Fields of Gold." And there are yawners, such as Yanni's "One Man's Dream," which he may, in fact, have recorded while asleep, or "This Love," sung by Elizabeth Fraser of the Cocteau Twins over a groove that suggests the tread of a drugged somnambulist, and Govi's "Garden of Eden," which sounds way too much like "Chim Chim Cheree" to take seriously. And yet, all of it creates the same gray impression -- which, of course, is the point, in which case credit must be paid to those who selected and sequenced these performances. Will upcoming installments offer some variety -- a hap-hap-happy compilation, for instance, set in major keys, with handclap rhythms and smiley vocals?
|Label:||Virgin Records Us|