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Mike Oldfield: Incantation

 A l b u m   D e t a i l s

Label: Virgin Records
Released: 1978
Category: Pop/Rock
Producer(s): Mike Oldfield
Rating: ********.. (8/10)
Media type: CD
Web address: www.mikeoldfield.org
Appears with:
Purchase date: 1998.12.28
Price in €: 11,99

 S o n g s ,   T r a c k s

[1] Incantation, Part One (Mike Oldfield) - 19:08
[2] Incantation, Part Two (Mike Oldfield) - 19:36
[3] Incantation, Part Three (Mike Oldfield) - 16:58
[4] Incantation, Part Four (Mike Oldfield) - 17:01

 A r t i s t s ,   P e r s o n n e l

MIKE OLDFIELD - Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Keyboards, Multi Instruments

MIKE LAIRD - Trumpet
PIERRE MOERLEN - Drums, Vibraphone, Backing Vocals
JABULA - African drums, Percussion, Drums


 C o m m e n t s ,   N o t e s

2xLP: 1978 UK (Virgin VDT 101)
2xLP: 1978 GE (Virgin 300 193-420: includes poster)
2xLP: 1978 OZ (Virgin/Festival L-70111/2 (VDT101))
2xLP: 1978 JP (Virgin VIP 9905-6)
CS: 1978 GE (Virgin 500 193-422)
CD: 1985 UK (Virgin CDVDT 101)
CD: 1991 UK (Virgin CDVDT 101: reissue)

Recorded at Througham dec 1977 - sept 1978
Extract from Hiawatha by Longfellow
Hymn to Diana by Ben Jonson
Thanks to Carlos
Pierre Moerlin- courtesy Arista Records
Sally Oldfield - courtesy Bronze Records
Maddy Prior - courtesy Chrysalis Records

Out-takes from Incantations plus portions of Tubular Bells and "Portsmouth" were used on the soundtrack of The Space Movie, a television documentary by Tony Palmer which celebrated the tenth anniversary of the July 1969 moon landing by US astronauts.

There are at least two different mixes of this album available on vinyl, with the major differences apparently noticable during the "Song of Hiawatha" sequence.

Early releases of the CD have part three with a length of 13:49, rather than 16:59, cutting off the first three minutes! Current releases contain the uncut version.

"It's got quite a lot of Irish drum - called a bodrhan. It is used for a basic sort of rhythm track - a percussion track. And it's got some choral stuff on it; some of the vocal lines are based on words from the poem "Song of Hiawatha" by Longfellow. There is quite a lot of tuned percussion, such as vibraphones and marimba, and also a lot of guitar - mainly electric solos. There is also acoustic bass guitar and electric bass."

Mike Oldfield about this album

After a two-year pause following the release of Boxed, Oldfield returned with a new epic project, this one spread over four vinyl sides and devoted to Native American themes rather than hewing once more towards the Celtic end of the spectrum. Included was Oldfield's musical adaptation of "The Song of Hiawatha," grandiose but empty; there was a nice sense of the dramatic when it came to dynamic range, but no sense of time -- the piece ran far too long as Oldfield searched for enough musical ideas to prop the whole thing up. After this, Oldfield avoided album-length concepts for quite some time.

Steven McDonald - All Music Guide

Incantations war eine der ersten Platten von Mike Oldfield, ursprünglich erschienen 1978, lange bevor er mit "Moonlight Shadow" die Single-Charts eroberte. Radio-kompatibel ist diese CD sicher nicht. Vier Tracks mit jeweils ca. 18 Minuten Dauer, welches Radio könnte dies schon in sein Format pressen. Aber vielleicht ist es auch besser so. Auf Incantations experimentiert Mike Oldfield mit afrikanischen Instrumenten (Jabula spielt afrikanische Trommeln) und Gesängen (allerdings vom britischen Queens College Girls Choir gesungen). Sonst spielt er selbstverständlich so gut wie alle Instrumente selbst. Diese Platte ist von einer epischen Breite und Tiefe, die Klänge erinnern an frühe Chill-out-Sounds, die sicher Einfluss auch auf die heutige Techno- und Ambient-Szene gehabt haben. Traumhaft zum Relaxen und Chillen.

Peter Grosser - Amazon.de

 L y r i c s



INCANTATIONS PART TWO - Hiawatha's Departure

extract from "Hiawatha" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

By the shores of Gitche Gumee,
By the shining Big-Sea-Water,
At the doorway of the wigwam,
In the early Summer morning,

Hiawatha stood and waited.
All the air was full of freshness,
All the earth was bright and joyous,
And before him, through the sunshine,

Westward toward the neighboring forest
Passed in golden swarms the Ahmo,
Passed the bees, the honey-makers,
Burning, singing in the sunshine.

Bright above him shone the heavens,
Level spread the lake before him;
From its bosom leaped the sturgeon,
Sparkling, flashing in the sunshine;

On its margin the great forest
Stood reflected in the water,
Every tree-top had its shadow,
Motionless beneath the water.

From the brow of Hiawatha
Gone was every trace of sorrow,
As the fog from off the water,
As the mist from off the meadow.

With a smile of joy and gladness,
With a look of exultation,
As of one who in a vision
Sees what is to be, but is not,

Stood and waited Hiawatha.
Toward the sun his hands were lifted,
Both the palms spread out toward it,
And between the parted fingers

Fell the sunshine on his features,
Flecked with light his naked shoulders,
As it falls and flecks an oak-tree
Through the rifted leaves and branches.

O'er the water floating, flying,
Something in the hazy distance,
Something in the mists of morning,
Loomed and lifted from the water,

Now seemed floating, now seemed flying,
Coming nearer, nearer, nearer.
Was it Shingebis the diver?
Or the pelican, the Shada?

Or the heron, the Shuh-shuh-gah?
Or the white goose, Waw-be-wana,
With the water dripping, flashing,
From its glossy neck and feathers?

It was neither goose nor diver,
Neither pelican nor heron,
O'er the water floating, flying,
Through the shining mist of morning,

But a birch canoe with paddles,
Rising, sinking on the water,
Dripping, flashing in the sunshine;
And within it came a people

(The Son of the Evening Star)

Can it be the sun descending
O'er the level plain of water?
Or the Red Swan floating, flying,
Wounded by the magic arrow,

Staining all the waves with crimson,
With the crimson of its life-blood,
Filling all the air with splendor,
Filling all the air with plumage?

Yes; it is the sun descending,
Sinking down into the water;
All the sky is stained with purple,
All the water flushed with crimson!

No; it is the Red Swan floating,
Diving down beneath the water;
To the sky its wings are lifted,
With its blood the waves are reddened!

Over it the Star of Evening
Melts and trembles through the purple,
Hangs suspended in the twilight,
Walks in silence through the heavens.




Queen and huntress, chaste and fair,
Now the sun is laid to sleep,
Seated in thy silver chair,
State in wonted manner keep.

Earth, let not thy envious shade
Dare itself to interpose;
Cynthia's shining orb was made
Heaven to cheer when day did close.

Lay thy bow of pearl apart,
And thy crystal-shining quiver,
Give unto the flying hart
Space to breathe, how short soever.

Hesperus entreats thy light,
Goddess excellently bright.
Bless us then with wished sight
Thou that mak'st a day of night.

 M P 3   S a m p l e s

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