Top critical review
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Children, Children and more Children...
on 26 June 2005
With Robert Miles' massive reputation in all fields of electronica, you may find it startling that I could find fault with this album - and I can admit that I am judging this with some degree of hindsight.
I bought this album because I loved "Children", as it is certainly one of the defining pieces of early trance music. While some would argue that this CD is worth buying simply for that one track, others may be disappointed to find that it really doesn't offer much else.
It seems like every trance has the same kickdrum, the same off-beat bassline, and the same piano and string combinations. The piano melodies obviously vary - some are better than others - and of course, this is Miles' signature style of the time so one can expect to hear a lot of similarly structured tracks. But it simply becomes too much for me, at some stages.
While "One & One" is a very nice piece of pop, and some of the tracks take a darker, twisting direction such as "In The Dawn", this album still doesn't really offer much variety.
The final track, "Red Zone" is, on the contrary, absolutely sublime - it provides the listener with a darker, slightly tougher and menacing approach to trance, while still remaining fairly dreamy. It is a refreshing break from the formulaic piano pieces that assume the first part of the album, but it is a break that has come too late.
Robert Miles is undoubtedly one of the creators of dream trance and house, and this album gives a very typical display of a 1996 Robert Miles production. However, this man has since moved on and has become more than just an average producer - just listen to his next album, "23am", and you will see the groundbreaking musician that this man has become.
"Dreamland" is an adequate album for those who like their tunes dancier and upbeat, but it doesn't even start to do Miles justice.