New Age, 1999
Spirits of Nature 6 contains 16 tracks of new age tunes of a varied nature, which makes for some interesting and diverse musical experience. Of course, anyone who isn’t into this genre will no doubt be fast asleep ten minutes into the CD, but anyone who enjoys the genre may have a pleasant time with this one.
We start off with Avalone’s Morning Prayers in Lhasa, a sweeping epic tune that kicks off the compilation nicely as it is a haunting hymn-like track that swells into a lush crescendo of chilling violins and beautiful arpeggios. I Muvrini offers an ethereal version of Sting’s beautiful Fields of Gold, or Terre D’oru as it is called in Corsican, with Sting showing up to make this one into a bilingual (English and Corsican) duet. Rashni Punjaabi on the other hand would rather get the listener hitting the dancefloor with his most infectious trance-Bollywood fusion track Chant of the Magic Flute. Miriam (whose full name is Miriam Stockley and you may remember her as the lead vocalist on many of Adiemus’s tracks) presents Ruwenzori, a lush and lovely track, while Orinoco takes one for the team with the obligatory “let’s sample Pachelbel’s Canon in D thing” that every such compilation needs to have with the nonetheless too-adorable Ayema (Friendship).
But my favorite track in this collection is easily the hypnotic and soothing L’Ultime Arbre (The Tree) by Oliver Shanti and Friends. This unforgettably mellifluous track features a gorgeous tenor in action and is simply sublime to my ears. A part of me wish that I would love this one less since Oliver Shanti, as far as I know, is still wanted by the law in Germany since 2002 for his alleged involvement in more than a thousand cases of sex crimes involving children (apparently he started some kind of cult and took advantage of the cult members’ children), but I really love this track, so I don’t know. Maybe I should view the music as a separate entity from the artist if Mr Shanti is really guilty of those crimes? That’s a cop-out, I know, but as I’ve said, I don’t know. I’m feeling conflicted here. Brulé’s Faded Glory with the fabulous Kee Chee Jake on vocals is also one of my favorite tracks here.
All in all, Spirits of Nature 6 is a most enjoyable collection of various diverse kinds of grace and beauty that the new age genre has to offer.