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Topic: I need help appreciating Voyager, What should I look for?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
SunkenForest Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 16:22

Okay, so here's the deal:

    I've had Voyager for several years now.  However, in those several years, I never listened to it very much.  When I first got Voyager, the only other album I actually owned was TSODE, and while I had heard TB several times in other places, the only other MO things I had heard were random tracks/cuts from other (more recent) albums such as MB, FMO, and TBII.  I thought it sounded okay, but as I preferred TSODE, I didn't listen to it very much at all.

    By now, I have completed my discography, and while I have gone back and listened to the album (or single tracks from the album) several times, I would say that it remains one of the least accessible MO albums for me.  I wouldn't say that it is my least favorite album, but I just have trouble getting into the tracks, while I agree they sound nice.

    So I would ask everyone exactly what it is about this album you love (if you love it), or if there's bits that stick out for you, exactly what they are.  Maybe if I hear what you all have to say, I might be able to start hearing the bits you like myself and gain a better understanding of what it is I am hearing.
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Ugo Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 16:45

Well, what Voyager is, that's quite easy to say, I think: it's Mike Oldfield's Celtic album. Celtic/Irish music was happening big time when it was released, and of course Enya was getting bigger than everyone else @ WEA, so I think it would be fair to imagine that someone inside the label pushed Mike O. to release a Celtic-themed album. So, if you like Celtic music, if you have ever been in an Irish pub to hear some traditional music and liked what you heard, then you're bound to like Voyager. If you don't like Celtic music and Ireland, you're bound to hate it. That's all, IMHO. I do like Irish music, I love Enya and Clannad (which are essentially Enya & family), so I love Voyager. It's not terribly original, of course, and it's certainly not groundbreaking in terms of how Mike O. approached Celtic music. But, if you like the genre, it's excellent. :)
Stand-out pieces? Yes, there's one - "Mont St. Michel", his first fully orchestrated composition. But also his reworks of traditional tunes, that are older than my grandmother's grandmother and yet do not sound that old, are also great.


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Ugo C. - a devoted Amarokian
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ex member 419 Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 16:53

Hi Sunken Forest. Don't be too worried if you can't warm to some of Mike's music. I love Voyager but there are many here that don't. I think you either love it or loathe it. You love TSODE for example so that style of music appeals to you more. There is a vast discography for you to listen too. Give yourself time to enjoy the works you really like. Deb
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ex member 419 Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 16:53

Hi Sunken Forest. Don't be too worried if you can't warm to some of Mike's music. I love Voyager but there are many here that don't. I think you either love it or loathe it. You love TSODE for example so that style of music appeals to you more. There is a vast discography for you to listen too. Give yourself time to enjoy the works you really like. Deb
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Bassman Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 17:42

Hey Forest, like Deb says... remain patient.  Just as the old saying goes: when the student is ready the master will appear.  Voyager has already appeared and it'll always be there for you when you want it.
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SunkenForest Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 17:49

Right - it's not that I <i>dislike</i> the album, but I don't quite love it yet.  I would say I appreciate celtic-type music...

I'll give it a few more listens and see what develops.  Maybe I'll dig up some of my traditional irish music that I have around here somewhere and compare the two.
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ex member 419 Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 18:56

Hey Forest sounds like the best thing to do. If you are familiar with Irish / Celtic folk music then Voyager will remind you of those classical well loved tunes. Wild Goose Flaps Its Wings is to me a beautiful easy to listen to track, as are most of the tracks. Its hard to pick favourite tracks on Voyager! I like to meditate to Voyager. But different strokes for different folks. It may be nauseating to you, but its ok! I can't get into Light and Shade or Tres Lunas for example. Happy listening! At least you will feel mellow afterwards! Deb
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ex member 419 Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 18:56

Hey Forest sounds like the best thing to do. If you are familiar with Irish / Celtic folk music then Voyager will remind you of those classical well loved tunes. Wild Goose Flaps Its Wings is to me a beautiful easy to listen to track, as are most of the tracks. Its hard to pick favourite tracks on Voyager! I like to meditate to Voyager. But different strokes for different folks. It may be nauseating to you, but its ok! I can't get into Light and Shade or Tres Lunas for example. Happy listening! At least you will feel mellow afterwards! Deb
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nightspore Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 19:42

Quote (Ugo @ Jan. 22 2010, 16:45)
. But also his reworks of traditional tunes, that are older than my grandmother's grandmother and yet do not sound that old, are also great.

And all stamped with that unmistakable MO yearning. My favourites are "Dark Island" and "Flowers of the Forest".

I must admit I'm puzzled why Sunkenforest should want to like something. Surely you either like something or you don't, and you leave it there?
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SunkenForest Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 19:55

well, I figured I would see what other people's thoughts were.  For instance, I have always loved ommadawn since the first time I heard it, but after learning more about it on these forums, I see people talking about things I had never noticed before, or I learn new things about how it was recorded, and that makes me appreciate what I hear more.
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Sir Mustapha Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 21:27

There isn't really anything very interesting going on in this album, certainly nothing that deserves dozens of listens to dig out the details. It's one of his most obvious recordings, and if you don't really enjoy it much, it's probably best to leave it aside. There are tons of better choices for Celtic and/or "easy listening" music, and Oldfield sounds way better when he's putting out his own voice, instead of trying to imitate other people following the "recommendation" of some dumb record executive.

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Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
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Dirk Star Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 22:00

I think Sir M has it pretty much spot on here for me.What I will say though is Forest,is that the times I`ve most enjoyed listening to Voyager,or appreciated it more fully I guess.Is when I`ve been listening to it driving through the Highlands or anywhere that`s kind of remote or out of the way I suppose.The music seems to take on a whole different dimension for me then somehow,that kind of feeling of a bond with the landscape etc.It worked for me anyway.I can certainly empathise with your feelings of wanting to enjoy one of Mike`s albums more though.I did the exact same thing with The Milenium Bell which I`m gathering is one of your favourites reading your first few posts here.I played that thing to death for the first few months it came out,in the vain hope that it would somehow just fall into place for me.Sadly that never really happened for me,although I do still like a good deal of the album.And don`t worry Lake Constance is one of the ones I like btw..   :p  ;)

Also I have to agree about reading stuff on here sometimes can often make me hear things in a new light.. @Nightspore I believe this is your quote posted in another thread very recently...

Quote
Incidentally, there's a literary theoretical thing called the 'hermeneutic circle', according to which even the 'same' artistic work doesn't remain the same. For example, if you read a novel twice, the second time round the semiotic network comprising you and the novel will be different, not only because you have changed as a person but also because your view of the novel will have changed, simply because you have read it before.
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nightspore Offline




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Posted: Jan. 22 2010, 23:38

Quote (Sir Mustapha @ Jan. 22 2010, 21:27)
There isn't really anything very interesting going on in this album, certainly nothing that deserves dozens of listens to dig out the details.wing the "recommendation" of some dumb record executive. It's one of his most obvious recordings, and if you don't really enjoy it much, it's probably best to leave it aside.

Reading between the lines here, I think Sir M is taking the Kantian line that there's both a thinking and a feeling dimension to the arts. If so, I agree, and I also agree that there's probably nothing much "going on" - ie nothing much to engage the thinking process - in the album. However, for me, there's a great deal going on feeling-wise - and that's why I like the album (and also The Millennium Bell,which also polarizes listeners).

The other side of the coin is that Ommadawn does nothing for me emotionally, and so I just don't have the inclination to look at in a thinking sort of way.
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Scatterplot Offline




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Posted: Jan. 23 2010, 01:05

I have not listened to it in years. There was the story of the tape of it I took to the Alzhiemer's unit in the long term care facility circa 1997. The patients loved it, the staff kept playing it, then it dissapeared. I found it in a dying man's room playing on a tape player by his bed. I gave the man his morphine and never looked back(for the tape). He took it with him I suppose since he "went on his Voyage" a few hours later. I never made them another copy. Then Titanic came out and I wondered since Voyager came first, were Cameron and Horner influenced by it? Never solved that mystery. It's touch and go since Titanic was a very long time in the making prior to it's realease. But the similarities are noteworthy.
    The cover photos really contrast from the mood of the music and the sex-symbol image they convey. But, musically, it was a fine album. It reminds me(always will) of a time(1997), when I had a choice between 2 women. I played my cards badly, skewed my timeline into a turbulent alternate reality/future. Perhaps Voyager was trying to tell me something. It is relaxed and "non-caustic". Perhaps thats why I don't think about it. It reminds me of "The Consequenses of Decisions". Sorry Jacqueline.....wherever you are.


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We raise our voices in the night
Crying to heaven
And will our voices be heard
Or will they break Like the wind
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wiga Offline




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Posted: Jan. 23 2010, 05:22

Quote (nightspore @ Jan. 22 2010, 23:38)
Reading between the lines here, I think Sir M is taking the Kantian line that there's both a thinking and a feeling dimension to the arts. If so, I agree, and I also agree that there's probably nothing much "going on" - ie nothing much to engage the thinking process - in the album. However, for me, there's a great deal going on feeling-wise - and that's why I like the album (and also The Millennium Bell,which also polarizes listeners).

The other side of the coin is that Ommadawn does nothing for me emotionally, and so I just don't have the inclination to look at in a thinking sort of way.


Voyager - if it was a book it would be a romantic novel and an intense one at that, about romantic attachment, longing and yearning. I don't find it that easy to pick up unless I'm in the mood.

The Millennium Bell is an action-adventure, maybe an Ian Fleming book. It doesn't have attachment as a theme as such, rather it tells an heroic story, and for me it's the most easy to pick up.

Ommadawn is like having a heart to heart with yourself and God. It's like the Bible.


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Barn's burnt down - now I can see the moon.
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Dirk Star Offline




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Posted: Jan. 23 2010, 10:05

Quote (wiga @ Jan. 23 2010, 10:22)

Quote
The Millennium Bell is an action-adventure, maybe an Ian Fleming book.


James Bond will return in The Millennium Bell..Heh heh I like it.Does this mean I`ve got to listen to it now while watching Goldfinger or something and wait for the profoundly amazing parallels? Or maybe it`s more of a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang kind of album?Would The Doge`s Palace work set against Toot Sweets I wonder?Hell I`ll try anything to get into that thing.Mastermind`s quite obviously the child catcher though isn`t it?
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wiga Offline




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Posted: Jan. 23 2010, 13:53

Dirk - come to think of it I'm not sure The Millennium Bell would work on Bond - I'm thinking now swashbuckling - Zorro/ Musketeers or even a Robin Hood  theme- and there would have to be scenes on horseback - heroic racing against time.

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Barn's burnt down - now I can see the moon.
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Dirk Star Offline




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Posted: Jan. 23 2010, 16:31

Yeah I get where you`re coming from Wiga I think.Kind of a light hearted romp that still manages to contain some very touching and exciting moments.Swashbuckling I like Crimson Pirate and early Burt Lancaster I love all that kind of stuff.Plus Burt even did a one once where he was kind of like a Robin Hood type figure with Virginia Mayo and her wonkey eye.And then Virginia`s in that one with Gregory Peck where he keeps nervously coughing all the time,Horatio Hornblower I think.We not only need to go back in time in the movie,we need to go back in time to get the stars for it.It ain`t gonna` work with Matt Damon and some random chick that`s for sure.The funny thing is stylisticaly I can overlook a hell of a lot with those films,but not so much with The Millennium Bell in places.I think it`s an album that will actualy get better with age maybe.
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The Caveman Offline




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Posted: Feb. 12 2010, 07:30

It was actually part of the deal Mike had with WEA that a celtic album be recorded.It's okay.Not one i listen too that much (unless i've been thinking about my late Grandad who was a true Irish man in England and then at times it can bring me close to tears).
 One track i really love is the version of She Moves Through The Fair.I adore this tune anyway.Listen to Fairport Convention's version with the wonderfull Sandy Denny on vocals.I wish Mike had actually used vocals on his version.Sally Oldfield would have been great on it.
 Mount St Michael,while really dramatic,sounds a bit too much like a film score.Would have been marvellous as the soundtrack to The Wind That Shakes The Barley had it been made in 96.


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THE COMING OF THE GREAT WHITE HANDKERCHEIF IS NIGH.
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trcanberra Offline




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Posted: Mar. 17 2010, 03:45

Maybe if you sit in a soggy Welsh forest and sniff the pine cones while listening to the music?

I don't 'love' this as much as many MO albums but seem to listen to it a surprising amount considering.  When I sit down with my favorites (like Amarok) I really need to be listening.  This one works as mood or background music - not wanting to belittle it by saying that; it's great that MO can satisfy so many of my musical moods so well.
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