Saturday, October 9, 2010

Sally Oldfield - Water Bearer (1978)

Armed with a gorgeous voice and an array of instruments, Sally Oldfield is the spicy & talented younger sister of Mike Oldfield, a fairly innovative bloke in the worlds of prog. rock, ambient music and electronic noodling who is responsible for giving an obscure little movie *laugh* called The Exorcist it's infamous opening theme, which in turn is an excerpt from his bewilderingly popular and very pretentious Tubular Bells album from 1973.

What does any of this have to do with his sister's very awesome folk masterpiece debut Water Bearer from 1978? Nothing much really, other than the fact some of the better aspects of Mike's kum-bah-ya soundscaping has rubbed off on his sister's songwriting sensibilities...much to her benefit I dare say.

These nine songs will invoke in thy minds strange forests, rivers dreaming through valley mists at evening, ancient lands untouched by man's diluting hand that are bathed in unending golden sunlight. Put another way, it's as if Fairport Convention got a better frontwoman and took a few production tips from Phil Spector on how to harmonize and make things crystalline and layered.

Words do not do justice to the sheer beauty of this unfortunately obscure LP. Much like the hills of Tuscany or the Grand Canyon or other such remnants of the natural world, this is something that simply must be experienced in order to be appreciated.

Dream on, dear comrades...dream on.

Listen Here - "Weaver"

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