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3.5 out of 5 stars12
3.5 out of 5 stars
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on 20 July 2009
I have always thought that Clannad is at it's best when engaging in haunting, ethereal celtic-based music and, on the other hand, some new ways of testing the narrow "box-mold" of songs. "Turning Tide", "Skellig" and "White Fool" on this album are among the finest in that tradition. Some of the more popular-styled songs, like "Second Nature", never really grip me the same way. Still, all in all, a good album: definitely worth having!
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on 20 May 2012
I bought the original CD, and contrary to what some reviews say, the production is excellent (can't vouch for the remastered version, but I can't imagine it's worse). The sound is beautifully crisp, not a hint of auto tuning in sight (since it hadn't been invented, and Clannad can actually sing).

The problem that most reviewers have is that "it's just not Clannad". However, if you listen to it for what it is, which is basically Clannad with some soft celtic folk rock thrown in, it's great. There are some standout tracks that are more Clannad-like, such as "Skellig" and "White Fool", but the rest of the album is pretty good too. I have 6 Clannad albums, and this and Macalla are the two I listen to most often.
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on 5 August 2013
I discovered Clannad "by accident" as a 15 year-old (now 40 year old) with Macalla and that is still my favourite album. But I then went on to Sirius and I loved it too. Though I also love the traditional folk songs of the early albums, I was more disappointed by the soupy New Age sound of later ones. For me Sirius had and still has more energy without dreariness and allowed Maire's strong voice to come stongly through, not whisper and wander about... it will all depend on your personality and the mood you're in when you listen - but don't discount this album!
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on 8 September 2001
I have been a fan of Clannad's music for two decades now and would rate most of their albums at 5 stars, even the early Gaelic records. But Angel and the Soldier Boy and this CD, Sirius, although good, are just not as good as much of their other work. Their major charm is the ethereal styling, haunting vocals and abilitly to combine English, Gaelic, Traditional AND synths into one track and make it a stunning song or soundscape. This CD is just TOO American (Sorry USA Fans) and lacks all that most Clannad fans love. There are some bright spots, the title track is well meant as praise for Greenpeace and has some of the usual Clannad trademarks, Stepping Stone and Second Nature are favourite of mine, but the stand out track is White Fool, the only one to feature any Gaelic and the nearest to the Clannad sound. Mixed in L.A. and produced by Americans Russ Kunkel and Greg Ladanyi and featuring American "Guest musicians", it's easy to see why the sound is so jazzy and rocky. I feel they were trying a new sound, which didn't quite work and they were soon back to their familiar ground. A brave attempt, but it doesn't quite gel.
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on 24 October 2014
I bought this originally on vinyl when it came out. It's very much of its time, lots of gloss and unlike the previous albums. The songs more rocky, less ethereal. It's one I've always wanted to revisit but never did...... Until now! Got this on CD and it's great! Love it, it's got so much energy and they're crisp and clear. The songs are all good, not a clunker among them. They are as vibrant as the day they were released.
I have 'Macalla' 'Banba' and 'Anam', 'Sirius' is the best!
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on 29 September 2003
This re-released remastered version of Sirius has comprehensive sleeve notes, which clearly indicate the direction this recording was meant to take - aiming to break the American market, the recording was produced by Greg Ladanyi. The songwriting is good, the production is good but has an obvious USA West Coast feel. Do the two work together? I don't think so. The feel of Clannad is there, the lush layers of vocals, lyrics that visit Irish lore (Skellig) and green politics (Sirius) - guest musicians abound Bruce Horsnby, Mel Collins and J D Souther of the Eagles fame to name but three, but it sometimes gets covered with too much rock.
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on 14 October 2009
Like many people, my first encounter with Clannad came with their soundtrack work on Robin Of Sherwood and Atlantic Realm. In the context of my musical exposure at this point, this sounded like distilled magic, imbued with the presence of the mythic in the landscape, and far removed from anything I'd heard before. A few years later I heard Clannad again via college friends, and that prompted me to eventually seek out their albums for myself. Alas, I didn't know which album to purchase, I really should have asked those friends for recommendations, but didn't and went for Sirius, and I couldn't have made a worse choice. I was heading out to the Peak District for the weekend, and I have distinct memories of saving the album until evening in Castleton, before playing it on my headphones. I walked around Castleton in the rain and gloom in a state of mild confusion, thinking: this isn't the Clannad I remember. I couldn't get into it at all, it was like looking for tiny ledges on a smooth rock-face, something to get a purchase upon, but instead I was being repulsed by this lifeless music that had drowned under a syrupy West Coast US sonic glaze.

I recall reading not long ago that one of the members of Clannad dismissed this album as a failure, saying it was Pol Brennan's idea to go with this (cheesy, in my opinion) windswept US soft-rock feel. I was surprised by that as I think Pol had previously contributed some great songs and his input was integral to what I enjoy in Clannad's music. To me, it sounds like somebody external to the group but in the position to dictate proceedings completely missed the point of what made Clannad great, and added bucketfuls of certain key ingredients to the mix where moderation was needed to create the magic. Some of the synth effects and dramatic flourishes are inexcusable. Elsewhere Maire doesn't sound at ease as she sings, and guest musicians further upset the balance and tip the album closer to disaster.

In those days an album purchase was a big deal for me, and my disappointment was acute, but I persisted with Sirius and more importantly went and bought the excellent Macalla, and Clannad were transformed into one of the key bands in my growing collection as I eagerly sought out their earlier albums. I did warm to some tracks on Sirius, but it was always the odd album out in the Clannad canon for me. Clannad have long since diminished from their once central position in my collection (though I still listen to some of their albums), but Sirius is one I keep away from, and certainly wouldn't play in polite company...
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on 21 July 2014
amazing
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on 7 August 2013
I like this album which is still very listenable, I do actually prefer the album Macalla though, which I also bought!
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on 13 August 2014
many thank you for such speedy response, fantastic cd
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