also by David Sylvian:
A practically perfect album of quiet, introspective pop. Sylvian's poetic lyrics are set to some fine tunes and a brilliant variety of subtle, colourful arrangements. The instrumental textures sound fresh on every track, many featuring piano and string arrangements from Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto. The wistful piano-backed opening number "September" is a perfect use of one and a bit minutes. "The Boy with the Gun" and "Orpheus" are the most upbeat tracks here - two laid back but strong and inventive songs. These contrast nicely with the darker atmospheres of "Maria", with some bare, softly bubbling electronics, and the stately piano chords of "Devil's Own".
The second half begins with some intricate Spanish guitar interplay on "When Poets Dreamed of Angels". "Mother and Child" is a brief interlude with more spooky tape effects. The final three tracks are all gems. "Let the Happiness In" is a fine song with an admirably restrained arrangement - its quietly swelling brass and organ never become intrusive. "Waterfront" is an evocative ballad, again with a lush but subtle orchestral arrangement. This CD ends with "Forbidden Colours", the catchy theme from the Vietnam film "Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence". Not all versions have this song on, as it was released a couple of years earlier, but it fits in perfectly. Sakamoto's exotic piano, strings and electronics blend finely with Sylvian's mellow baritone.
Easily my first recommendation to anyone wanting to get into Sylvian's music.
October 28, 2003