Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Loreena McKennitt - The Visit

9/10

Okay, at this point we've reached the albums that sound like what Loreena McKennitt is famous for. The production is intricate without sounding overdone, the instrumentation is always interesting, and Loreena is in fine voice (but that goes without saying) and makes some interesting choices (both my mom and Allmusic claim that her performance on "Greensleeves" is a Tom Waits homage, while All Soul's Night has some Asian influence). There are also two excellent instrumentals, and even the synthesizers sound good!
The version of "The Lady of Shalott" is one of McKennit's most famous songs, but I have to say that it's one major reason that I'm not giving The Visit a 10. It's not bad by any stretch of the imagination, but in my opinion, there's not nearly enough musical variation to fill out eleven and a half minutes. I understand that the poem was already shortened in this format, but the musical backing is just too repetitive for my tastes. However, the fact that such a minor quibble is my biggest complaint with this album means that it's still great.

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