Sarah Brightman: Eden

Sarah Brightman: Eden
Genre: Classical, New Age
CREDITS: 1998 Nemo Studios, 1999 Angel Records
Track Listing:

  1. In Paradisum
  2. Eden
  3. So Many Things
  4. Anytime, Anywhere
  5. Bailero
  6. Dust In The Wind
  7. Il Mio Cuore Va
  8. Deliver Me
  9. Un Jour Il Viendra
  10. Nella Fantasia
  11. Tu
  12. Lascia Ch’io Pianga
  13. Only An Ocean Away
  14. Scéne D’Amour
  15. Nessun Dorma
  16. The Last Words You Said

Let me tell you about a story of how I chanced upon this glorious creature known as Sarah Brightman. Name rings a bell? Well, folks, to musicals fanatics, she is better known as Phantom of the Opera’s Christine.

I was hanging out at Tower Records, as usual, looking for new CDs to purchase when the DJ suddenly played this hauntingly soulful rendition of Dust in The Wind. This song is actually my all-time favorite. I have been in love with it ever since I was a little girl. Hearing an angel’s version of it on a nice sunny day, however, just totally blew me away. I immediately ran to the DJ’s booth and asked him frantically who the artist was. He showed me the CD cover and I asked him where I could find it. “Basement,” he said, smiling at my obvious enthusiasm, “Classicals or New Age section.”

I practically ran to the basement and, without testing the other contents of the CD first, grabbed the first copy I could get hold of and promptly purchased it. It wasn’t a disappointment.

Dust in the Wind wasn’t the only noteworthy song in the list. Much as I got tired of hearing Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On back in the height of Titanic, I was still swept off my feet by Il Mio Cuore Va. It’s not just the language difference that spelled my preference; it’s the delivery. Eden, the title track, combines Ms. Brightman’s vocals with Gregorian chants (probably one of the first projects she has done with the Masters of Chant). This is accompanied by an atmospheric background that just relaxes you.

The soft and enchanting Bailero registered my recognition of her voice. This was when I thought, “I knew her voice from somewhere. I just couldn’t place where…” It wasn’t until a friend of mine mentioned knowing her as Christine did I realize that she was the goddess who sang Angel of Music and All I Ask of You. Shame on me! I owned a Phantom of the Opera double cassette back when I was in high school but it still took me a while to place the voice!

The overall feel of the album is dreamy, soulful and relaxing. There are minor differences among tracks, but I just can’t help but feel like I’m lounging about in a fairy’s flowerbed every time I listen to this record. Sarah Brightman went beyond what we regularly know as classical music. She took it to the next level by exhibiting such incredible versatility and seamlessly merging her classical background to that of New Age.

My other recommendations: Only An Ocean Away, The Last Words You Said, So Many Things, and just about all the non-English songs in the album especially Nessun Dorma, Lascia Ch’io Pianga and Un Jour Il Viendra.

Rating: 10/10

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