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  • Bloom
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on September 9, 2004
Josh Gabriel and Dave Dresden - better known as Gabriel & Dresden - boast one of the most impressive résumés in contemporary dance music, with over half a dozen #1 Billboard Dance chart hits to their credit, including remixes for Annie Lennox, Jewel, Sarah McLachlan, and Britney Spears. They have released on Nettwerk a 2-disc set duly titled "Bloom". Their highly-anticipated debut album is finally here.

The set was made using songs that the duo felt passionate about, as well as key hits from their own catalog. They rounded out the album with new composed material.

Great progressive album that is surely unique in contrast to the popular hits of now. Instead of doing an album full of just top hits, they went and did another route typical of their definitive G&D style.

Original songs by the duo: "Arcadia", "Serendipity" (dub version of G&D's Gotta Thank Mix of Coldplay's "Clocks" without the vocals or piano melody), Lament, Dub Horizon, and their collaboration with Elevation "Athena".

There is the new beautiful, yet ominous, Andain's cover of Depeche Mode's "Here is the House" (another track with sounds provided by the duo), Michael Burn's poundin' "Forwards" (very, very nice track), Junkie XL's awesome mix of Sarah McLachlan's "World On Fire" complete with signature Junkie XL acoustics (Original mix is available on Sarah McLachlan's "Stupid" single CD), Audioholic's "External Key" with a capella from Andain's "Beautiful Things", Voyager's "Someone Else" with a capella from Motorcycle's "As The Rush Comes".

The hard-hitting sounds of G&D's mix of Lili Haydn's "Anything" is heard on the second album (G&D's E-String Mix is highly recommended; Lili's vocals are superb though the dub is equally as great), new great mix of Dido's "Don't Leave Home" (song arrangment is great and Dido's vocals really shine in this mix with a interesting filter), as well as G&D's mix of Above and Beyond's "No One On Earth" featuring Zoë Johnston of Faithless (one of the best tracks so far in 2004), some tracks from Josh Gabriel, Push's "Electric Eclipse", and finishs off very nicely with Motorcycle's next upcoming single, "Imagination", with just acoustics and Jes' lovely voice.

With time, this album becomes a delight to your ears... A fantastic compilation of tracks, balanced in vocal and instrumental tracks, resulting in an album that will remain for a long time. Highly recommended for any fans of G&D or people who just want to listen to something other than Trance Party volumes or another DJ Tiesto album...

DISC ONE:
1. Gabriel & Dresden - Arcadia
2. Gabriel & Dresden - Serendipity
3. Gabriel & Dresden - Lament
4. Andain - Here Is The House
5. Michael Burns - Forwards
6. Sarah McLachlan - World On Fire (Junkie XL Club Mix)
7. Audioholics - External Key
8. Voyager - Someone Else
9. Gabriel & Dresden - Dub Horizon
10. Ferenc - Cronch
11. Guy Gerber - Stoppage Time

DISC TWO:
1. Pass Into Silence - Voices
2. Elevation + Gabriel & Dresden - Athena
3. Lili Haydn - Anything (Gabriel & Dresden Code 313 Dub)
4. (RND) - Nova Santori (Josh Gabriel Mix)
5. Dido - Don't Leave Home (Gabriel & Dresden Mix)
6. Bigtop - Sub
7. Above & Beyond - No One On Earth (Gabriel & Dresden Club Mix)
8. Josh Gabriel - Alive
9. Josh Gabriel - Switch
10. Push - Electric Eclipse
11. Motorcycle - Imagination (Acoustic Version)
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VINE VOICEon September 8, 2004
These guys are two of the hardest working producers in the DJ biz and with some sort of help from Kristy Gabriel (I'm assuming this is Josh's wife) and Pete Tong (as the liner notes suggest), they have finally come out with an awesome 2 DISC trance mix. The duo behind Motorcycle and Andain have released their first album, which is a thrilling continuous mix, combining their own progressive style tracks and projects with current trance music. While 2 of the biggest trance anthems in years, Beautiful Things and As The Rush Comes, are technically not on the tracklistings, they do make an appearance (read on)!

The reviewer from Australia who gives no write up about the actual musical content, obviously does not even have this CD, because if he did, he would realize it is a 2 disc set, and certainly not 1 as he so incorrectly complained about. This is a 2 disc set with 22 tracks, 11 on each disc.

Disc 1 starts off with 3 new G&D tracks, which are all a very fresh and new sounding trance style, which G&D and their close sounding progressive trance remix/producer cousins Above & Beyond seem to be thrusting the trance world into. I guess I would describe it as futuristic, funky, and a few BPM's above chill. Track 2, Serendipity, starts off with beats sounding similar to their remix of No One On Earth. Track 4 is a new one from Andain, Here is the House, which starts off with a sort of dark, driving intro, reminding me of As the Rush Comes, and quickly gets into Andain's silky smooth vocals, which start off light, then pick up with the track. Make no mistake about it, this track will be exploding in late 2004! The lyrics are only so-so and border on cheese, but the beat is incredible. A new dancefloor anthem for sure. This track blends well into Michael Burns' dance floor shaking track, Forwards, and then it's on to the excellent new Sarah McLachlan song World On Fire, which I first heard in Above and Beyond's Essential Mix back in June. Aside from the 12" vinyl release, this is currently not available on CD anywhere but here.

Next is the Audioholics' External Key, a very slick, upbeat track, which slows down beautifully for some acapella of Beautiful Things to be snuck in, then picks right back up again. Then comes Voyager's Someone Else, which sort of pulsates to a different (but oh so familiar beat early on), before gliding into it's own, but not finishing until we faintly hear the sounds of an angelic sounding JES (As the Rush Comes) materializing in the background. A thumping and 4th original G&D track, Dub Horizon, is up next, and the CD finishes off with 2 more bouncy, progressive dance floor rhythms.

We slip into a few ambient tracks to set the stage for CD 2, then things really get pumped up with track 3: Lili Haydn's Anything (Gabriel and Dresden Code 313 Dub) which is an incredible trance instrumental that touches on all sorts of current trance vibes, and just when you thought you've heard all the melody levels in this track, it seems to unfold again. I haven't heard the original of this track, but I am assuming G&D played a big role in putting the "rush" into this one. I actually had to replay this track 3 times in a row before continuing with the rest of the disc, as it's simply amazing.

Dido's Don't Leave Home gets a 10 minute Gabriel and Dresden overhaul on disc 2 and it sounds great. Her vocals flow well with the trance melodies. An interesting funky track called Sub by Bigtop takes us into one of the best Trance tracks of '04, No One On Earth. This is the G&D mix, and the track sounds so great with their spin on it, I can't choose between this or the just as superb original Above & Beyond mix. The vocals are so great, both tracks take on their own vibe and no one on earth should be without either of them!

We also get two new tracks by Josh Gabriel solo, with the first, Alive, offering some creative sounding, electronically enhanced male vocals. Good male vocals are extremely rare in trance, and this track combined with some heavy progressive trance, works well. His other track Switch has a pulsating, funky sound, and you could almost call this track Alive too, as it's so flavorful and pumping.

The CD ends off with Imagination, the hugely anticipated Mototcyle follow-up to As the Rush Comes, which is an acoustic version with just JES and a guitar. Her voice is sweet and it's very slow but moving. It will be interesting to hear an original version with what background sounds they decide to couple with her lyrics. It would be extremely difficult to come back with a 2nd slammin track after As the Rush Comes, but I don't think it's trying to follow the same path. It's well worth a listen.

Overall, this futuristic, funky, progressive style trance from G&D is here to stay, and reflects all the right paths that trance should be taking right now. Oakenfold and Armin should take some notes, as this easily surpasses their two trance 2 disc sets released this year. This is in my top 3 trance mix CD's of '04, with ATB's DJ in the Mix (oh BTW vol.2 is due out by the end of '04), and Ronski Speed's Positive Ways 3. Now all we need is an Above & Beyond 2 disc set or at least an Oceanlab album!!!
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on September 23, 2005
Yes, it's different. Especially if you are wandering over from some vocal trance styles like Armin or if you in love with Tiesto. But I assure you, no matter what your taste in this field of music, you will like this CD. I drive friends crazy when I listen to what they call "techno", but we all know better. But for some reason, everybody seems to enjoy when I pop in Bloom. The CD keeps you into it for the most part. Besides the first track on CD1 Arcadia, the beginning gets boring, even I will admit that, but come end of track 3, the rest of the CD is a journey waiting to be explored.

The CD will make you nod your head endlessly, and will get you bouncing even at some points. The bass is CONSTANTLY moving, and the hits on each beat never stop. This CD is relentless, it won't let you miss a beat.

The compilation definitely isn't a fast one either, as somebody else pointed out. The CD has a slower tempo, but it manages to utilize that to its advantage. The downbeats hit extremely hard, to the point where you don't even care how fast it is...you just can't stop moving!

I dance to this CD...yes, dance...like alone in my room. But I wouldn't say this is the kind of stuff that you'd be hearing in the club. This is THE ABSOLUTELY PERFECT CD FOR YOUR CAR. If not for any other reason, get this so you can enjoy driving with the music blaring...assuming you have decent speakers.

You need some good bass handling if you really wanna appreciate this CD. But...I promise it's a FANTASTIC VOYAGE into a progressive work of art!
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on June 24, 2013
lots of great songs on here. gave me exposure to many great artists. there's an acoustic jes track on here that's worth the whole album alone. i think this was originally a promo set, not supposed to be for sale/purchase, but with that said i suspect it's a limited edition and now a collector's item. worth owning though, get it get it get it!
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on April 24, 2005
Though I was not expecting a 'greatest hits' from these guys, I was expecting something...different. But then, before I knew it, I found myself replaying the CD (the 2nd one) over and over. It's G&D and they have still never failed or let me down. Not all tracks on here are vocal trance (like many of their fans are used to) but that actually works for the album, not against it. Vocal trance (like their godly remix of Andain's Beautiful Things) may be good for gettin the club on its feet but a CD full of tracks like this would've lessened their effect. Instead you get the amazing vocals on tracks like Dido's "Don't Leave Home" and Above&Beyond's "No One on Earth" but also are treated to lovely and moving (in more ways than one) electronic tracks sans vocals.

I have not yet listened to the first CD but if it's even half as good as the second then i won't be dissapointed. If you like Gabriel and Dresden (and who wouldn't) buy this album, now!
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on February 22, 2005
Let me start off by saying that I think Gabriel and Dresden have put forth some of the best remixes and originals of the past couple years. I fell in love with Josh Gabriel's "Wave 3" and have been blown away by ever since. Their remixes or Mindcircus, Southern Sun, Travelling On, On a High, Anything, Like No One On Earth, etc. are fantastic. Their original work, whether together (Lament, As the Rush Comes In) or apart as Josh Gabriel or Attention Deficit, or anything they're related to, is great!

However, I thought this CD was a big dissappointment for a couple reasons:

1. Each track is mixed in such a way as to include too much of the intros and outros of the songs. This is something a DJ would call a "late" mix, and it makes the transitions in between the songs very boring.

2. Many of the included songs just aren't very good, whether they're cheesy (Dido remix, Alive), dated (last two tunes on CD1), or just...mediocre (several). The older (2002 or so) version of "Josh Gabriel - Alive" is one of the most emotional, blindingly great tunes I've ever heard, but the version on Bloom is a mockery of the original. Also, I understand the last two songs on the first CD are probably intentionally retro-sounding, but I just wasn't feeling the early 90's psy-trance thing yet.

3. They don't get dirty. If you've ever had a chance to see G&D live, you probably know they not only play melodic, beautiful music, but also, edgy, sometimes techy, harder tunes. These songs give some diversity to their sets, and make the softer tunes all that much more euphoric. That being said, it's a shame they didn't reserve one CD for the gentle stuff and one for the rougher stuff.

It's not all bad though. There are some great songs on this CD. "Here is the House", "Michael Burns - Forward", and "Like No One On Earth" are all scorching tunes. The first three songs on CD1 are all good too, and go well together.

Maybe I expected too much, but I didn't enjoy Bloom as much as I thought I would. No problem though, I'll still buy their singles when they come out (keep releasing on CDs guys, I appreciate it) and I'll still see them live whenever I get a chance.
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on October 15, 2005
i've wanted this cd for a long time but when ever i went to a buy it they didnt have it on stock..... so here i was a growing fan of G&D and without this cd, finally i got it and all i can say is wow. i think their originals are quite good and their remixes are some of the best in electronic music. so i find great their songs here (individual, together or colaborations) where i feel a bit let down is with the songs from other people. a few of them dont really seem rigth to me but thats only a very minor problem. i'd give it a 4.5 . hopefully i'll be able to see them live soon.
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on July 3, 2006
TO BLOOM:

1 - To produce or yield flowers

2 - To mature into achievement of one's potential

Does it fulfill the first meaning?

----------------------------------

YES; This is solid uplifting Pro-House with Trance dips all over it.

Does it achieve it's full potential?

------------------------------------

Not quite; I know for a fact Gabriel & Dresden can do better than this. That's why I gave it only four stars

Anyhow, suffice it to say this is good stuff and certainly worth listening to.
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on April 20, 2005
When you think about Gabriel and Dresden, you think of all those remixes they have done and how spectacular they are. Well if you are looking for a greatest hits cd, with all your favorite remixes one two smahing discs. Stop. This is not that. The duo has produced some amazing hits, but this CD is not about those. So while I was initially dissapointed it wasn't those things, I took a liking to what is on the cd. Gabriel and Dresden showcase their artistic talent, along with some new and old remixes... all with a funky twist. Even the familiar remixes are different. Is different bad? At first it was. But now? I actually like them. In fact I quite like them.

Once I got over that initial dissapointment that this wasn't what what I was expecting and listened... Gabriel & Dresden didn't fail to deliver the goods... I highly recommend this cd... that is, if you can get over the fact that it's not what you are expecting.

11 out of 22 tracks are artistically created by Gabriel & Dresden (Andain, Motorcycle, Bigtop, Josh Gabriel) and the rest are mixed in funky fashion, all tied together in two satisfying cd's for almost 3 hours of sonic pleasure. Granted, there are maybe one or two weaker songs, but nothing terrible... something I can't say for the last PvD CD I bought.
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on November 27, 2006
This disk was my introduction to Gabriel & Dresden, and it's a solid piece with some catchy tracks. G&D's dark, throbbing style is very apparent on all songs in this two disk album, and

My heart really belongs to melodic trance, and so this was more an extracurricular purchase for me, to round out the music collection a bit more. Despite some trance-like undertones, this is more of a progressive house outing. Generally, the heavier mixing limits my listening to shorter stints, or encourages me to mix one of the two disks with a variety of other music. This isn't to suggest any shortcoming of G&D, it's just more of a reflection on my preference in electronic music. I prefer a more varied texture and mood from one track to the next.

This is, overall, a solid addition to the collection of anyone fond of electronic music.
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