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also by Mike Oldfield:
Mike Oldfield's first album entirely filled with four-minute pop songs gets a lot of stick, and I have to say that it's mostly deserved. The uncharacteristically flat singing by Adrian Belew on "Holy" sets the tone for some earnest hand-wringing ballads such as "Far Country" and "Earth Moving", and some unremarkable soft-rock like "See the Light" and "Hostage". It's almost like the soundtrack to a straight-to-TV action movie. There's also a feel of happy-clappy, Christian inspirationalness running though it. Apart from the demented "Innocent", which sounds like Bananarama. It's all slickly computer-produced, and these songs aren't really irritating, just overwhelmingly mediocre. Oldfield is certainly capable of writing decent and interesting pop music, such as "Moonlight Shadow" or "Family Man" but he wasted a lot of opportunities on "Earth Moving".
August 3, 2004