I am completely mesmerized by the Dead Can Dance album "Into the Labrynth". I recently picked up a copy of "Aion", which has not grown on me the way "Into the Labrynth" has.
Can any DCD fans out there recommend other DCD albums I should listen to that might have the same mesmerizing effect of "Into the Labrynth"?
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Thread: Question for Dead Can Dance fans
2006-10-20, 18:08 #1
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- Dec 2005
Question for Dead Can Dance fans
2006-10-20, 21:32 #2
"Toward The Within" might be something you like.
"Aion" was the first DCD album I had, so that one is special to me, but I agree that "Into The Labyrinth" is excellent.
Their earlier stuff is a mixed bag. I like about half the songs on their 1st 4 albums - some are wonderful, some I never care to hear again.
2006-10-21, 01:17 #3
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- Jul 2005
The music is emotional and they're nice recordings.
I hear rumour that they're kicking around some of the darker alleys of the net as tagged FLAC files too.
Not really the same thing but the recordings of the Portuguese group Madredeus put me in a similar state of mind.
2006-10-21, 13:25 #4
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- Sep 2005
- Coeur d'Alene
May as well get this out now. I'm going to write volumes here. If nothing else, it's a good exercise for me.
DCD are easily in my top 5. I haven't considered the stranded-on-a-remote-island question for some time, but if I did today they may well be my answer, whether for one artist, album, or song. I own and know all of their studio LPs, the 3 disc retrospective, as well as two of the shows (Seattle 09-17 and Montreal 10-02) and the "Selections" from the tour last year. That's 18 discs; 213 tracks according to my SB3. I'm still reeling over the fact (discovered last February) that I've dreamed about a reunion since discovering them in 1996 but somehow missed the news as it was happening in 2005. My only consolations are the recordings (although I'm still bummed that Chicago sold out before I got it, as it's reputed to be one of the best) and the possibility of a new studio album.
Basically, it's all good, but some can take longer to grow on you. You definitely picked one of their best (and most accessible) albums as your starting point. I put in Into The Labyrinth quite often. Their rendition of How Fortunate The Man With None (the studio version) is a favorite of mine. On the other hand, Aion is, with the exception of their self-titled debut, the most hit or miss album to me. But at the very least certain songs will almost certainly grow on you. Listen particularly to The Arrival And The Reunion, The Song Of The Sibyl, and most especially Black Sun.
If my further words here don't convince you to acquire their entire oeuvre, I recommend the following sampling:
1. The 3 disc retrospective 1981-1998, which should also include a DVD of the show at the Mayfair Theatre in Santa Monica in 1994. It is, however, out of print and rather pricey on the used market. Given that, the 2 disc Wake looks like a good distillation at a reasonable price. The single disc Memento is simply too short; it leaves out many gems from their earlier years in its focus on the latter.
2. Toward The Within, noted by Pale Blue Ego. This is from the same show as the DVD I mentioned above, and is excellent. It is something of a retrospective plus some songs only to be found there (particularly good are I Can See Now / American Dreaming). Lisa nailed Cantara that evening, and I enjoy it much more than the studio version on Within The Realm Of A Dying Sun. I could go on about every song though; it's all good.
3. Selections From North America available at http://www.dcddiscs.com/, noted by Harry G. In lieu of collecting all the shows themselves (which not even I have done yet, although I'm still considering), this collection is very good, even if I disagree with some of their choices (They hit on Saffron in an excellent, if raw, way in Seattle on 09-17, but the collection uses the smoother version from Montreal on 10-02). Overall, these recordings are everything the guys at The Show trumpet; I'm glad they're around for discerning artists (only DCD and The Pixies so far unfortunately), as companies like DiscLive and InstantLive are owning this market, whose rhetoric about getting a good mix of a show 5 minutes after it completes is just that. I fear that, having not recorded anything this summer (I was personally hoping for The Flaming Lips), the guys at The Show will get out of the business.
But I digress. If you do decide to delve into all of DCD, I'd recommend the following order of albums. If you go this route, there is little reason to get the 3 Disc retrospective, unless you really want the couple B-Sides and early demos.
- Into The Labyrith. You already have and I've already discussed. Enjoy.
- Toward The Within. Already discussed, get it.
- Spiritchaser. This was my first favorite album. They started down a different road with this album, so it's unique among everything eles, but I enjoy it greatly. Nierika, Song Of The Stars, Indus, and Devorzhum are favorites.
- Selections From North America 2005. Already discussed, wonderful set, excellent mix, I wish I had seen all the shows live. The renditions of old material are great and the new tracks, although surprising at first, give great hope for a future studio album. Nierika, Compassion, The Love That Cannot Be, Crescent, Sanvean, Yulunga, Severance, and Hymn For The Fallen are favorites.
- The Serpent's Egg. The Host Of Seraphim is cathartic. Severance and In The Kingdom Of The Blind The One-Eyed Are Kings are also peaks here.
- Spleen And Ideal. They clearly found their way here (see notes later about debut). De Profundis, Mesmerism, Enigma Of The Absolute, and Indoctrination are best. The rest is a little rough, but this was only their sophomore effort.
- Within The Realm Of A Dying Sun. Excellent all around, each half focusing on one of the pair. Anywhere Out Of The World, Xavier, Cantara, and Summoning Of The Muse are best.
- Aion. Already discussed and you already have it. It will grow on you, I promise.
- Dead Can Dance. Their debut. Like Spiritchaser, it's mostly different from the rest, but in its own way. They obviously weren't quite sure what they wanted to do here (sounding a bit like early Cure, esp. Pornography), but there are still some great tracks. Frontier and In Power We Trust The Love Advocated are best.
In addition to everything DCD, Lisa Gerrard's solo work is excellent. In particular, check out The Mirror Pool, The Whalerider Soundtrack, her contributions to the soundtracks for both Gladiator and The Insider, and most especially her collaboration with Patrick Cassidy, Immortal Memory. Brendan's solo work is somewhat less inspiring, consisting solely of Eye Of The Hunter, although his contribution to Zoar's Clouds Without Water is interesting, even if that is not my favorite of their albums (which would be their debut, Cassandra).
I know this was a lot to digest, but I hope you found it helpful. If anyone ever wants an excessively long discussion of one of my favorite artists, just mention their name.
2006-10-21, 15:01 #5
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- Dec 2005
Thanks everybody for the suggestions ... I especially enjoyed eq72521's detailed commentary. For the moment, I have ordered a copy of The Serpent's Egg, mainly because some of the musical snippets on Amazon caught my attention ... Toward the Within will probably be next (I am typically not a fan of live concert recordings but too many people have listed this one as being worthwhile for me to ignore).
By the way, it is not that I don't like Aion ... just that Into The Labrynth is one of those CDs that is completely mesmerizing for me, even from the first playing, and I am hoping to uncover another that affects me the same way. If I had to pick a "Desert Island" CD, this would probably be it (with Antony and the Johnsons' "I Am A Bird Now" coming in a close second and Prefab Sprout's "Swoon" rounding out third).
2006-10-23, 14:40 #6
My 2 cents
Into The Labrynth is a great start. May not find anything you like better. Toward the Within, A Passage In Time, and Spiritchaser would be my next recommendations. I have most DCD cds, but those are my faves.
I guess the '05 Seattle show is also a fave. If you must explore the 05 tour recordings, selections from Europe or North America are obvious starting points. Relatively, Toward The Within has more of a polished studio sound.
Older stuff is harder to like. Try working backwards cronologically.
1984: Dead Can Dance
1985: Spleen And Ideal
1987: Within The Realm Of A Dying Sun
1988: The Serpent's Egg
1991: A Passage In Time
1993: Into The Labyrinth
1994: Toward The Within
The 81-98 box is an alternative with most essential tracks. The Toward The Within concert/interview DVD is wonderful and intimatly reveals the artist's connection to their work. Worth it just to see the percussionist dance!
And by the way, Ron Fricke who directed the Toward The Within concert video also directed the movie Baraka. DCD is one of many soundtrack artists contributing to an amazing global/audio/visual/spiritual experience. I'd recommend the Barake DVD first. If DCD touches you, Baraka will MOVE you.
2006-10-31, 08:49 #7
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- Oct 2006
D C D fan
Dear Mrs & Mr
I presume you all already know :
Baraka - a film by Ron Fricke
For the lucky one that have not seen this wonderfull***** movie,
i strongly recommande to see it asap.
PS: Large screen an great stereo required.
One of the most beautifull film ever seen with a superb BO from
dead can dance.
Enjoy , again and again.
And feel free to share your feelings about it
Work Hard, Render Fast, Retire Young :o)
2006-11-01, 19:09 #8
Baraka is an awesome film. Absolutely beautiful.
DCD - I really like the 2 songs on "A Passage In Time" that are unavailable on the other discs ("Bird" and "Spirit"). For me, it was worth it just for those even though I had all the other songs.
2006-11-01, 23:30 #9
Those of you who love DCD should give Azam Ali a try. Especially her VAS albums. Great stuff. Highly recommended.
2006-11-02, 08:31 #10
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- Sep 2006
If you like Dead Can Dance, you probably will agree with me that Lisa Gerrard's voice is the most important element in their music. I recommend listening to Lisa Gerrard's solo album 'the mirror pool'. I find it very beautiful.
If some of you don't know where Lisa got here inspiration for the way she uses her voice, check out traditional mystic kabbalah-music. Their's a nice album out by 'Ruth Wieder Magan', it's called 'songs to the invisible god'. If you listen to this album, you would swear it's Lisa Gerrard