Offering - Review
This band continues to remain active and have taken time out of their busy collaboration schedule to bring us this latest work.
This album is everything that Rajna
stands for, beautiful ethnic ethereal music. We're presented with ten beautiful tracks that take the listener on an enchanted journey.
We enter this spell-binding world through the introductory track "The Arrival" which starts it all off with various ethnic instruments and chants that build up and give way to "Ephesus". This and many other tracks throughout the album show us how the more acoustic approach to their music seems to lend a subtle, authentic ambience to it all. There are still multiple layers of synths and a myriad of instruments providing a nice backdrop to the excellent ethereal vocals. There are many favorites on here that fans of Dead Can Dance
and similar contemporary artists Arcana
will really enjoy. These range from the aforementioned pieces with the heavy acoustic elements to the more prominent and dominating tracks, always graced by the haunting female vocals.
Listeners to our radio show will already be well familiar with favorites from this album. "Cycleades" features some great percussion and dulcimer to provide the backdrop to the soft vocals, while the following track "Offering" features almost entirely synthesized strings for a neo-classical beauty stepping away slightly from the ethnic instruments and styles of the rest of the album. The variety on this album seems to stand out a little more than similar works as shown be these various tracks, along with pieces like "Illa Salde" with it's accapella arrangement, or later with "Quiet Hour" including somber male vocals from guest vocalist Aret Madilian from Deleyaman
All of these elements combined across the ten stellar pieces on this album make this another great work in their history of so many albums. This is worthy for any fan's collection and we look forward to more just like this one.
Black Tears - Review
After five excellent album in just six years, this duo has an excellent career that any artist can look up to. For their new album they've taken several selections from their first five works along with some additional exclusive tracks for this release.
The disc contains 17 excellent tracks in perfect Rajna
style and packaged in a beautiful tri-fold digipack. It should also be noted that the royalties from this release will go towards building a school for children in Tibet, so it's not only great music but it's for a good cause.
As a fan of this band but not having all of their albums, I was especially excited for this release covering so many tracks from their back catalog as well as the new exclusive pieces. A short edit of "Black Tears" is one of these new pieces which serves as an intro to the disc and gives way to the dulcimer of "Traoma". These hypnotic pieces wisk the listener away to a dreamy exotic place somewhere in Asia. Drawing upon some the world-music influences and local Asian customs and musical styles the album is packed with this beautiful music from the slow dreamy droan of "Sanctuary" to the sassy rare piece "Shushai".
Favorite pieces on this disc are definitely the more emotional-fused pieces with solid music backing up the heavenly vocals, such as the new exclusive track "Black Tears" with it's haunting touch, or the rare piece "Sien" where the vocals are as much an instrument as the backing synths or any other instruments used.nbps; The lovely, mesmerizing piece "Pearl of Ashes" is simply unforgettable and something you just can't get enough of, and the best solution is the repeat button. The rare use of percussion coupled with the exotic instruments and haunting vocals are a nice touch and a great accent to the piece. While the entire album is awesome, other stand-out tracks include electronic remix of "Buried Philae" and the awesome cover of "Cantara" from the legendary band Dead Can Dance
With 17 tracks on this disc it's a great way for anyone to get to know this band, or for fans to pick up some rare pieces and support a good cause. This is an excellent album and highly recommended!