Top positive review
16 people found this helpful
on 10 February 2011
I know that typical Steve Wonder fans migth not like this too much and I also know it more or less bombed commercially but I think it's a masterpiece. It's from Stevie's most prolific period in which he often hit the nail on the head. I like his more commercial material most when he goes totally "funky Clavinet", like in "Sir Duke" & "Happy Birthday" , let's say in the style on which Jamiroquay have based their whole imitative career.
This however is a whole other cup of tea. Being more anchored in the european music tradition this is my choice as Stevie Wonder's masterpiece. It's a melange of very differing tracks that somehow still fit together perfectly. Especially Stevie's keyboard playing on the Yamaha GX-1 synthesizer is unsurpassed. Nowadays one uses samples to emulate orchestral sounds but they very often sound bland and unexpressive. Stevie's mastery of this analog monstersynth however almost breathes as much life in the material as a real orchestra. Fantastic!
Some highlights are: "Earth's Creation" , "The First Garden" , "Voyage to India" (that intro proves the above point if anything does!), "Venus Flytrap and the Bug", "Race Babbling", "A Seed's a Star", "Tree medley", "Tree", "Finale". But also more typical Wonderous quality material is to be found here, like "Power Flower", "Send One your Love", etc..
I even like the Flower Powery messages. But then I am old enough to epreciate such arcane thoughts.
I'd like to see the film for which this is supposed to be the soundtrack but this can stand on it's own any time. So maybe the film would only be a disappointment.
It almost makes you forget later Wonder dribble like "I just called to say....". Almost!