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Various Artists - Radio Rivendell Compilation [Waerloga records - 2007]

Itís always rewarding to encounter a new genre or style of music and this compilation offers a looking glass into the world of  fantasy/ Roll Playing music, which I know brings to mind either awful new ageneses or dated synthesizer music played by people in troll masks. Thankful this is neither of those, instead itís an epic and varied collection of grand scores for films or adventures yet to be had.

Both Radio Rivendell and Waerloga records specialize in the genre and decided to get together to  release an excellent selection from the best the genre has to offer. he tracks more often than not are built and sailed in grand atmospheric fashion by full Orchestras, with a keen ear for timeless melodies and vast sweeping panoramic and dramatic scoring. When not in full orchestra and string form the music is mystical and enchanted  with soothing harps, choirs and even impressive operatics. All the tracks have such a commitment for quality, depth and authenticity of  sound, this  never sounds  tacky or cheesy. Surprisingly too for a compilation itís seems to flow nicely as a whole, clearly real thought has been given to the sequencing of tracks.

A few of my favouritemoments here would be; Erdensternís- Into the Green-a hero returns, which utilizes full orchestration that goes from touching to very big sounding weaving  six wonderful melodic minutes of muisc. It really does bring to mind a heroís return over vast rolling hills and forests expanse to his birth town, where the  towns people dress in their best finery & the streets are laden with banners. Sibelian's Wish Fulfilling Jewel Ė with itís mixís of rich and dramatic cello and string swoon, thats hovered over in downcast and melodic beautiful by fine male operatic soar and strange doomy black monk chants. Tom W Hallís Freackshow soundtrack- with its beautiful often doom cast and dramatic mixe of  building acoustic guitar, piano melodies and dark swooning string. Before it bizarrely side-steps in jarring electronics that bring to mind a huge mechanical spider scuttling across a tin stage.Or the bell dancing stomp of acoustics guitars and drums of Morgan The Bardís- Galdralag. Really I could go on as there are so many high points in its near 70 minutes playing time.

So really if you enjoy soundtracks or well written and dramatic orchestra music, or just fancy something a little different and have adventure in your heart this high quality compilation is a must.

Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5

Roger Batty
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