|Produced by Vangelis|
|Released on December 1977|
|no chart information|
|Find it at GEMM|
I f you’re going to build a solid Vangelis collection, there’s no getting around Spiral. It may be the most accessible entrypoint into what otherwise is a troublesome period that found Vangelis exploring difficult themes (Heaven and Hell, Beaubourg). Mixing space themes with brisk melodies, this album is bound to delight Jean-Michel Jarre fans, though Vangelis’ more serious fans might have difficulty making a meal from Spiral. As with Opera Sauvage, Spiral stands up as a good sampler of Vangelis’ various styles: the space cathedral imagery of “Spiral,” the contagious energy of “Dervish D,” the graceful gait of “To The Unknown Man,” the haunting soulfulness of “Ballad” and “3 + 3” are traits that reappear throughout his career. The knock on Spiral (usually levelled by classical-leaning leftists) is that it doesn’t present the composer in a serious light. The grand mythology of Heaven and Hell, the intractable Beaubourg, the pioneering Albedo 0.39 all felt more substantial than Spiral. As the liner notes suggest, perhaps Vangelis was interested in bringing electronic music into the mainstream, though ironically the album proved less popular than previous efforts. Over the years, many of these tracks have been featured on compilations, which speaks more to the self-standing portability of these cuts than intrinsic merit. Seen as a vacation from his heavier concepts, Spiral does feel like a breath of fresh air or a long gaze at a starry night sky. The bubbly patterns and bright sounds are perhaps best left to Jarre, but why can’t Vangelis have some fun too? As much a spacewalk as a cakewalk, Spiral courts commercial success on familiar territory. It’s not a pillar in his musical Parthenon, but rather a pretty fresco that distracts the eye warmly.
|AFL1-2627 back cover|
VANGELIS -- all instruments
Keith Spencer-Allen -- engineer
|REGION||RELEASE DATE||LABEL||MEDIA||ID NUMBER||FEATURES|
|December 1977||RCA Victor||LP/CS||PL-25116||gatefold cover w. picture sleeve|
|UK||RCA||LP||3022||gatefold cover, picture sleeve|
|EUR||October 1989?||RCA||3CDBOX||88059||box set w. HEAVEN AND HELL
+ ALBEDO 0.39
|US||April 29, 1997||Windham Hill||CD||11230|
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