Their last album before the departure of guitarist Stephen Stewart. It's based on a novel by Laurens van der Post, which I'm not familiar with. The music, nearly all instrumental, has a broad cinematic sweep, as if it were the actual soundtrack to a film of the novel. I would have imagined the pulsating rhythms and strong refrain of "Chaldean Crossing" playing over the opening credits. "A Bar of Shadow" and "La Rage" would be incidental music. These are mostly in the romantic orchestral style that the Enid had honed over the hears, with token ethnic colour from a few pan-flutes. It's quite similar to the film music of Vangelis.
The extended track "Longhome" starts with an oddly atmospheric song and synth bleeps, and continues with more filmic orchestral passages. It drags on a bit, but it's fine as background music. "Earthborn" is a creepily Lloyd-Webber style ballad backed with Vangelis-like orchestration. Robert Godfrey has quite a decent gravelly show voice. It's shamelessly overblown - and clearly for the closing credits! The extra track "The Change..." is just to fill up the CD - it actually comes from their previous album "Salome".
December 20, 2003