Hergest Ridge Import
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Top Customer Reviews
The Hergest Ridge album came out very soon after Tubular Bells so how could it sound like Ommadawn ?
Again how could Mike "plagarise Ommadawn" if he hadn,t even recorded it yet ?
I just wish people, who like to express their opinions on Amazon, would actually bother to read up a records history first.It is not helpful to others when deciding to buy the album but it just makes one seem foolish - sorry if this seems harsh but i have noticed a recent increase in both online and printed "journalist" reviews (especially Classic Rock ) to get facts completely wrong.
i know this is only a minor point in the whole history of the Cosmos but you do need to realise that Hergest Ridge was the follow-up to T.B. and that Ommadawn then came 3rd.
By the way H.R. is somewhat similar to T.B. but has a charm all of its own ,of course Ommadawn then goes onto sound like a natural progression to H.R.- surprise,surprise - thats the way an artist should develop and here Mike does just that. The themes are quite repetitive but thats Mikes style and personally i find the music to be very pleasant and calming - new age before new age had a name ?
Though I appreciate Tubular Bells and what I've heard of Oldfield's other work, there is something special - I would even go so far as to say spiritual - about Hergest Ridge; even the LP cover was a work of art. I am perplexed that Oldfield can have found reason to try improving what was already perfect and the current remastered version loses more in content than it gains in quality.
I won't be throwing out the LP just yet...
For those not used to Mike Oldfield's work this album could best be described as a modern symphony. It is instrumental (apart from some choral and chanting passages) with the music varying from expressive and moody to crescendo. But its strength lies in the melodies within.
I find myself listening to this music as I surf the net, drive in the car or while having a beer and it lifts the spirit and charms at the same time.
When people talk about Mike Oldfield, Hergest Ridge is rarely mentioned. Why this happens I don't know because this album is a gem. If you like melody, atmospheric music and variety you will not be disappointed by this.
If you are not familiar with the original version, you will probably see this as a weak filler album between the two masterpieces: Tubular Bells and Ommadawn which is a terrible shame and does Mike's reputation a dreadful injustice. Hergest Ridge was (and should still be) the second installment in the most brilliant trilogy of rock albums ever recorded and it's about time Virgin realised this.
Oh, and while I'm at it, why are there so many singles, b-sides and other odd tracks of Mikes which are still not available on CD? Mike Oldfield's Single, Wreckorder Wrondo, Guilty 12", Shine, Pictures in the Dark, Moonlight Shadow 12", Don Alphonso etc, etc, etc
VIRGIN, GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER!
That's not to say that "Hergest Ridge" is substandard - far from it! Its beautiful, pastoral melodies are counterbalanced by some rather dazzling, orchestrated and disturbing guitar passages. It's even more hummable than Tubular Bells as it's very memorable and melodic.
On the guitar front, it's Oldfield in his prime. When the music is relaxed, he plays some pleasing acoustic passages, or lays down some quiet, shimmering electrics to get the imagination going. When it demands it, Oldfield can push the boat out and ride the rapids, so to speak - the passage in the middle of Part 2 is a fine example.
In summary, "Hergest Ridge" is best sampled as an album in itself. It's different to the albums surrounding it in both sound and technique, therefore shouldn't be judged in comparison. It's rightfully rated amongst Mike's most well-respected pieces - you could do far worse, believe me!
If you enjoyed this album and seek more of Mike's pastoral works - go for "Ommadawn", "Incantations" (only skip the middle two tracks) and "Voyager".
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Just needed it to make up my collection and makes great background music when I am programming.Published 20 hours ago by Mr. G. J. Sivill
Relaxing chill out music - totally different in tone Tubular Bells and all the better for it. Artists must DO new things and explore - kind of sad people went "meh" (or... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Robert Moore
Been listening to this for 40 years. It doesn't date. Really good for studying and accelerated learning. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Lp1969
I have loved Tubular Bells since forever but I very recently thought I'd give this album a go and I have to say I love it especially the 1976 remix which was made after Mike was... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Mr. M. D. Smart