Joined: Jan. 2005
||Posted: Nov. 17 2010, 04:06
I still remember when Heaven's Open came out. It was about two years after I had been re-introduced for Mike's music.
I actually had to find out about it trough a review in a newspaper (these were the days when Norwegian newspapers still bothered to review his albums). I remember being surprised that it came out in such a short time after Amarok, and I went straight down to my local record shop to buy it after reading the review.
At the time I was kind of disappointed. Anything done after Amarok would have been a disappointment really, but I felt the album sounded rushed. I did love Music from the Balcony, though. Always have.
I didn't listen to the album much in the years after it's release. One of the reasons were that I didn't bring my record player (yes, I bought on vinyl) when I did my military service, nor during my years in college.
One day in 2000 I came across it in a cheap CD bin, and I bought it on a whim, looking forward to hearing Balcony again. When I put the earphones on and started the album, I was amazed at what I heard.
I heard the most sophisticated and well written pop songs Mike has done. Seriously. This is not fluff pop, it has substance. It's completely the opposite of what Mike has been doing post 1994 and I'll take Heaven's Open any day over Millionth Bell, TB2003, Light & Shit and Tired Lunas.
And the production is top notch and crystal clear (get it?). I think Heaven's Open is a solid piece of work, even if it is a bit lacking in places. Not my favourite, but head and shoulders above most of the stuff he's done since.