In the early days if anyone had said Mike Oldfield would release an album with 8 tracks (7 of which were sub- 5mins) they would have laughed you out of town ...if you had also said they would all have vocals, I suspect the blue van and straight jacket would have been speeding to your home address. However, that is exactly what you get with Discovery and I for one love it. If you did like his earlier album Crises, which included the iconic song Moonlight Shadow sung by Maggie Reilly .... then this albums opens up in exactly the same style with Maggie Reilly once again singing on an equally catchy tune To France which is possibly the stand out track on a really good strong album, she also stars on a far more mellow Talk About Your Life .... her voice is just so perfect for MO's musical style. Barry Palmer also adds some solid vocals to tracks such as Discovery, Poison Arrows and Saved By A Bell.
Anyone wanting to get into Mike Oldfield without having to absorb some of his lengthy, soaring semi-orchestral compositions really just needs to buy this album. I used to own this on cassette and it is really hard to get hold of on CD and at the time of writing is not available as an MP3 download. I ended up getting a 2nd hand copy as a birthday present from my daughter and immediately committed it to my iPod. This is just great easy listening with a tinge of rock added in appropriate places such as the closing 12 minute track The Lake which does hark back to MO's usual style of growing, swirling musical adventures.
Its among his best work and you should try to have a copy in your music collection.
There is a lot of CDs on my shelves, but I count only a handful of albums so incredibly powerful and charged with magic as this one. Mike Oldfield, who really doesn't need to be introduced anymore, took old celtic (Scottish, Irish and Welsh) and popular English rhytmes and completely transformed it, to make one of the most original and powerful modern musics. He used technically advanced instruments (including synthetisers, etc.) but in the same time he managed to keep old magic in his works - there is simply no way to describe the fascinating and unique sound he so achieved.
Although he is mostly famous for the instrumental music, he is also the author of the already legendary song "Moonlight Shadows" (not included here) and on this CD you will find no less than SEVEN songs, interpreted by two greatly talented artists, owners of particularly magnificent voices: Maggie Reilly (who also interpreted "Moonlight Shadows") and Barry Palmer. This album is pure magic and since I discovered it in the 80s, I listened to it may be about one hundred times. And the magic still works! It is worth to give it a try - and if you like it, try the precedent album, "Crises", which includes "Moonlight Shadows".
Although I possess most of Mike Oldfield's album's this still has to be one of my favourite's.Although appearing to be largely unknown(and unappreciated) by the masse's it contains some wonderfully lively tracks such as "Poison Arrows" and these are tempered by quieter tracks such as "Crystal Gazing".The masterpiece,like good wine is left 'til last."The Lake" is as good if not better than anything Mike has written and would compare very favourably to any instrumental piece on any of his album's.Definitely a good buy(I can't say anything else as it's my kid's favourite album!).
Written and recorded while fresh from the Killing Fields project and in the throes of a messy marriage beak up, this is an impressively impassioned if often very angry affair - a long way from the cool experimentation of Tubular Bells or Ommadawn. The heaving, desperate title track stands out, but all eight stand up on their own while making a fine whole, the closing instrumental bringing the strands together while trying to find some final peace. Barry Palmer's vocals stand out for me - he is a seriously overlooked rock singer.