Blackmore's Night — Shadow of the Moon
(SPV 085-7240A CD, 1998, CD)
by Dane Carlson, Published 1999-01-01Well, if this album doesn't make you want to run barefoot through the heather I don't know what will. Former axeman for Rainbow and Deep Purple has joined with his Lady to create an utterly enchanting album. I guess while his body was smashing guitars onstage, his soul was strumming a 12-string under the moon. I am a sucker for mandolin and folk chordings in general, both of which you get plenty of on Shadow of the Moon. The album consists of mostly original music (the one trad. song is "Greensleeves" of course) and the melodies are all instantly likable. The real treat here is Ritchie's fiancée/wife, the singer Candace Night. Her voice is just plain beautiful. The vocals on Renaissance's "Ocean Gypsy" are right on the mark. She's not a multi-octave belter, but she really sounds great here. Ritchie still gets in a solo or two; this isn't a complete acoustic project. The band is Ritchie on all things stringed, Candace sings and Pat Regan plays keyboards. The group is supplemented by the Minstrel Hall Consort; Gerald Flashman (recorders, trumpet and french horns), Tom Brown (cello) and Lady Green (viola and violins). Also joining on one song is Mr. Flute himself, Ian Anderson. The music on Shadow of the Night is mostly of a folk nature, but the band has updated the sound and added other music to the mix. Shades of Elizabethan and Baroque styles blend with the good-natured pop/folk. The only complaint I have is the album is a wee bit too long, while the music is really good, there is a lot of it. A great release by an old war-horse.
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more
Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more