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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A genius at work
I only possess two Daniel Lanois albums at the moment - the obvious one (Acadie) and now this one. Because I love Lanois's hauntingly stripped back instrumental tracks, I knew I was bound to love Belladonna, and I do. One of the great things about this artist is that he doesn't feel the need to fill up every conceivable silence between musical phrases. On the contrary, he...
Published on 14 Dec. 2009 by R. R. Adams

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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not enough creative tension
With ambient music, there's a fine line between inspired chillout and pointless noodling. Sad to say, because I respect the man greatly, but I think Daniel Lanois is just on the wrong side of the line with this album.

The style of the music reminds me of the wonderful Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks album Lanois made with Eno in the early Eighties. Think...
Published on 7 Feb. 2007 by Nelkin


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A genius at work, 14 Dec. 2009
By 
R. R. Adams "Raffles" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
I only possess two Daniel Lanois albums at the moment - the obvious one (Acadie) and now this one. Because I love Lanois's hauntingly stripped back instrumental tracks, I knew I was bound to love Belladonna, and I do. One of the great things about this artist is that he doesn't feel the need to fill up every conceivable silence between musical phrases. On the contrary, he deploys the spaces usefully to magnify the air of melancholy or mystery that his music endengers. Most of the tracks on Belladonna are only 2 to 3 minutes long so the album is quite short. With almost every track, Lanois is seemingly giving the listener a 'taste' of the essence of the whole while seemingly ending the listening pleasure prematurely to embark on the next track. It is ambient music but there are some 'melodies', though by no means too many to be able to describe the album as an album composed of 'tunes'. For the mood Lanois is trying to conjure, I think he's got it just right, but while I find it a super album to chill out to and while it continues to grow on me with every listen, I can't help feeling that it somehow fails to linger in the memory after playing it as long as it should. But maybe that's what Lanois wanted us to experience... enjoy the journey for the sake of it without concern for the destination. Mesmersising stuff. Recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars His best album, 19 April 2009
By 
M. Bentley (Eastbourne, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
This album has an intimacy and uniqueness that, for me, makes it easier to love than any of Lanois' other fine albums. Each of the (mostly short) instrumentals is so evocative, it doesn't need the human voice. It's landscape music, very suggestive of the wide open spaces of Mexico and the southern United States, a bit like Harold Budd's 'The Serpent (in Quicksilver)' from 1983. But it manages to be quietly intimate at the same time, with exquisite pedal steel (his 'church in a suitcase', as Lanois calls it), often sparse but never dull textures, and subtle use of percussion on some tracks.

Out of thirteen varied pieces, my favourites are 'Carla', which (for me, at any rate) aches with love and loss, and 'Frozen', with its wonderfully crisp and exciting drum patterns. But it's all beautiful. Unique, really. I wish his most recent album 'Here Is What Is' - which is pretty good too - had been as concise and consistent as this.

I suspect this may be Lanois' most personal work. If you're curious about his solo albums and don't need lyrics to hook you in, then buy this one!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Hidden Gem, 12 Dec. 2006
By 
This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
Can't recommend it enough. Very rewarding and reliable, improves with every play. Full of quiet magic. It's one of those albums that soon feels like you've known it all your life. Everyone i play it to loves it.

All instrumentals, finely crafted and performed. Ambient in atmosphere, but full of beautiful melodies; some warming, some sad.

A tasteful and gracious interweaving of guitars, keyboards, effects, percussion, horns even. Evocative and thought provoking, yet also perfect to fall asleep to in the late night arms of your loved one.

Each track is it's own world yet the album as a whole has a distinct and subtle character. A small masterpiece. One of my most played albums, and my favourite album of 2005.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not enough creative tension, 7 Feb. 2007
By 
Nelkin (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
With ambient music, there's a fine line between inspired chillout and pointless noodling. Sad to say, because I respect the man greatly, but I think Daniel Lanois is just on the wrong side of the line with this album.

The style of the music reminds me of the wonderful Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks album Lanois made with Eno in the early Eighties. Think spacious prairie soundscapes complete with twangy pedal-steel guitar and swirling keyboard effects. But where on the earlier album the pedal steel was one of a number of interesting sound textures in a varied palette, here it dominates to the point where the riffs quickly begin to sound repetitive and cliched. And where the Apollo album had a creative tension between the synthetic and the naturalistic elements, the music here sounds just a little bit too relaxed -- I might even say complacent -- to be of lasting interest.

Actually, it doesn't sound all that far removed from a normal country music album, just without any lyrics or irritating 2/4 drumbeats. I'm sure such a distinguished and distinctive artist as Lanois could have delivered more than this.
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7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, 30 Aug. 2006
By 
Tara Saunders (Derry, NI) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
I'm a big Daniel Lanois fan and have his other three albums. I loved Acadie, liked Wynona and was totally blown away by Shine, so it made sense to add this one to my collection.

Imagine my disappointment when I got it in my hot little hands and discovered that it was an entirely instrumental album. All twelve tracks are pretty, but essentially background music.

If that's what you like then you're going to love this one, but if you listen to Lanois for "Jolie Louise", "The Collection of Marie Claire" and "Shine" then you're in for a massive disappointment.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The condition of the disc is excellent, as good as new, 15 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
The condition of the disc is excellent, as good as new. It arrived here well packaged and very quickly. I'm rather ambivalent about the musical content as it's all instrumental. Some pleasant tunes crying out for Daniel Lanois own special magic words sung as only he can.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Work of Genius, 8 May 2008
This review is from: Belladonna (Audio CD)
The Hidden gem review on here hits the mark, this grows on you, very subtle melodys, that become life affirming, this man is a musical maestro, the other reviewers on here need to go back and listen again
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Belladonna
Belladonna by Daniel Lanois (Audio CD - 2005)
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