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Brand New and in Factory packaging. Might have price sticker from my retail store. Order confirmation E-mail with tracking information sent on shipment.
Why David Arkenstone isn't a top line film composer is a mystery. His music has a cinematic orchestral sweep that seems destined for Hollywood epics. Yet, except for some small films, the silver screen has eluded Arkenstone, so he works out his cinematic ambitions on his albums. A gifted multi-instrumentalist with a wide orbit of influences, Arkenstone has a fondness for the grandiose statement and the sentimental mood. They are present in abundance on Atlantis, his paean to the mythical lost continent. His touchstones range from Coplandesque exuberance to Cecil B. DeMille biblical epics, complete with faux Middle Eastern melodies and rhythms. There are some nice touches, including some Adiemus-like chorales courtesy of Adiemus singer, Miriam Stockley. But Arkenstone's romantic arrangements swamp his compositions like the Red Sea closing on the Egyptians. Most Hollywood soundtracks are full of tried and true emotional strategies. Arkenstone utilizes them all on Atlantis--the only problem is, he doesn't have a film. --John Diliberto
Top Customer Reviews
The Dream Of The Gods- This starts slowly with beautiful keyboard and choral effects with a few "hits" on piano. The feeling is one of mystery and beauty. Later, a grand string melody kicks in with heavy percussion to give you the impression that you are off on a sweeping adventure to take you to a place you could only visit in your dreams
Tower Of Light- This has a little bit of the same flavor as track one, but to me it feels much different. It's a bit slower for one thing, and the woodwinds and strings give it a feeling that is a very little bit less "epic", but one that is every bit as exotic and lovely. Very nice vocals by Miriam Stockley (Adiemus) contribute to that. I love the percussion in this too.
In The Garden Of The Citadel- To me, this piece carries a distinct Middle Eastern flavor in its percussive style and in the instrumentation of it as well. The flute and harp are featured beautifully with other winds and what sounds like a guitar or other Middle Eastern instruments. It's the slowest piece up to now on the CD and it sounds almost noble. It felt to me like taking a lonk trek through a desert locale.
The Temple Of Poseidon- Starting off with soft horns, this is given a calm sense of regality. The harp, flute and string melodies are lovely, and they depict a loacation of great beauty and wonder.
The Jewel Of The Sea- This, to me, is the most beautiful piece up to the middle of the album. It begins with absolutely exquisite slow piano work, which carries along a lovely slow dance of strings and flute. There sounds like there is a faint bed of choral singing in parts of it too. This really is pretty and gave me the feeling of looking out over the ocean to a beautiful horizon bathed in the light of the rising or setting sun.
Festival Of The Goddess- This reminds me a little bit of In The Garden Of The Citadel, but that is NOT a bad thing here. This is the jauntiest piece on the CD and feels like a festive dance number.
The Painted Sails- This is, to me, a very nice cut of music with a very adventurous feel. It begins slowly with a solitary flute calling into the distance. Quick paced strings soon come in and combine with horns and percussion to let an epic feeling come over me. It sounds like there's some bells or a xylophone in here too, but it's very, very nice. It made me feel like I was the captain of my own ship sailing out somewhere exotic and awe-inspiring.
Across The Great Oceans- This track is, to me, every bit as beautiful as The Painted Sails was grandiose. It has very pretty slow and sweeping string melodies in it and combines them with some very lovely chorus and piano work to give me the feeling that I am sailing home after a long journey abroad. There is some very nice percussion in parts of this number as well.
Fire And Water- This is among my favorite cuts on this disk. The opening is ominous, with soft heyboards or horns that combine with drums and strings and choral work that gets progressively louder and faster. Soon, the percussion and strings dominatethe first half of this great piece of music, combined with what sounds like tiny bits of Middle Eastern singing and very heavy use of guitars or lutes. Halfway through this piece of music, the harp comes in and the strings turn soft and get sweeping and soaring and wistful. Beautiful guitar and choir work close out this piece.
Below The Ocean- The Spirit Of Atlantis- This closer is, to me, a fitting one and the most beautiful song on the entire disk. Ethereal keyboard and choir combine with lovely winds and strings as well in the first half, to produce a very wistful and sad feeling of longing that tugs ever so poignantly on the strings of the heart. Great vocals by Miriam Stockley help convey this to the listener, too. There is a bit of nice guitar in the first half too, to carry it along slowly. Halfway through the piece, there are some horns come into it, and there is some very stately percussion also. It feels for a little while like a noble march, until the percussion and strings get faster. Beautiful choir comes in also, to give the end of this piece the same grand epic feel as the beginning of the disk, bringing the journey to its full circle of completion.
All in all, I will end as I began. I think this is David Arkenstone's best work yet, and I love every single note of it. It brought me from awe to smiles to tears to joy and back again all the way through. If you love grand, emotional music that touches the heart and spirit on many levels, you can't go wrong with this CD. Pick it up, and be prepared, because you just might grow to love it. I certainly did. Peace, God bless you, and thanks for reading my thoughts on this CD. Happy listening.
I write to this music; sometimes I put it on just before I go to bed so I'll have neat dreams. If you allow it to, this music can conjure up white-stone palaces, people in flowing white robes, and a myriad of ancient seascapes. It takes me to an exotic bazaar where they sell goods nobody knows about today; the streets are thick with people from every corner, the air full of dead languages.
This is my favourite of David Arkenstone's efforts, so evocative of a time and place that he must have been there once. Highly recommended.
I actually did this CD as a free-flow, let-yourself-go experience, a combination of automatic writing and open-eye meditiation. I just journeyed all over Atlantis to wonderful experiences. I will share it with you now. (And, no, I am not ON anything.) But I want you to know that with this music, it IS possible.
With my eyes closed and the music playing, what can I imagine? (yes-I did open my eyes to type in between--DUH!)
1) The Dream of the Gods (4:44 minutes--interesting number)
In this movement, I can see myself looking across the sea. The mist slowly begins to clear as a magnificent city of gold and crystal appears in the distance. As I travel closer and closer, across the water, I see a complete civilization. They are an advanced group and are welcoming me into their city, to teach me the ancient secrets of so many years ago.
2) Tower of Light (6:08)
I am on the beach, walking toward a cylindrical tower of light. I look to my left and I see dolphins playing in thye sea. They are jumping unbelievable high, as though they are performing for someone. I look back at the column of light. It is right on the sand. I walk over and place my hand in it, then through it. It feels warm, tingly, highly energetic. Finally, I immerse my entire body into the light and I come out the other side of the column and into beautiful gardens.
3) The Gardens of the Citadel (4:08)
In these gardens are beautiful exotic plants and white unicorns are dancing and playing. There is one black unicorn. I believe he is their father. He is pure black with a shiny blue-black appearance. His horn is of pure gold. Young girls with long flowing curls are dancing barefoot among the unicorns and giggling.
4) The Temple of Poseidon (4:19)
A majestic palace lies ahead, with Poseidon at the throne. His long white beard touches the ground and his scepter points to the heavens. He has a kind and loving face as he welcomes me in, to learn whatever I can in his palatial home. Many bow before him, as I pass by them and walk toward His Majesty, the Lord of the Seas.
5) Jewel of the Sea (3:33--hmmm, I am starting to think Arkenstone is doing this on purpose)
I have been given the opportunity now to explore Atlantis under-the-sea. I was escorted into a realm of beautiful colors and sea life. I first came upon a large shell. It opened to expose a sweet child, so delicate and so pretty, a child of the sea, a merchild. She bade me to continue forward. I walked into a beauty such as my eyes have never seen. The colors, the sea creatures and the multicolored fish were indescribable.
6) Festival of the Goddess (4:09)
Back at Poseidon's palace is a festival, with food that would put King Arthur's Court at Camelot to shame. Everyone is gathering for this festival. The whole island is there. All are welcoming me in as their guest. Everyone is dancing. Feet are flying through the air faster than my eyes can watch. It's something like watching a fairy flit around. The food and wine flows freely. The joy and celebration of life is awesome.
7) The Painted Sails (5:47)
Now, I am on a sailboat, with the sails flapping in the wind. The morning is cool and crisp. There is almost a chill, but the warmth of the sun tames the air. The sailboat is flying forward, almost dancing across the top of the water. I see the dolphins again, but this time they are speeding alongside the ship, doing that dolphin chatter thing that dolphins do when they are happy. It's as if they are talking to me and thanking me for coming.
8) Across the Great Oceans (5:37)
Another powerful song. The breeze has almost stopped now. As I look across the great waters, I see peace and beauty. The sun is almost at the horizon. It appears as a huge bright orange ball. The hues around it are the most beautiful peach-gold coloration, against a turquoise blue sky with only a smear of clouds, as if they were painted on the sky. Anticipation of the night, as well as the days ahead, is in the air.
9) Fire and Water (5:30)
As my ship returns to the beach, I see a fire in the distance. It is a ceremonial fire. People in costumes are dancing around it, cooking foods and giving thanks for the bounty. I have been invited to sit, eat, and speak with the elders. There is some sort of group meditation going on, with chanting. As I stare into the sea, a giant power crystal rises from the waters. Actually, it is a Lemurian Seed Crystal. You can see the "stairs to Heaven" tracks running up the side of it.
10) Below the Ocean--The Spirit of Atlantis (6:57)
I am leaving now. I don't really want to go, but am told that once I have been here, I can always return. Those beneath the sea, as well as those above the sea, have come to say goodbye. There is so much love, it makes my heart hurt. What a wonderful experience this has been. Even Poseidon himself has come to see me off. I have no ship; I am just walking toward the sea and somehow know that I will appear back in my own time and place. They are waving frantically now, as I get to the water's edge and turn back to wave one last time.
No, as I said before, I am NOT on anything. This music is so special. I thought that a free-flow thought meditation would be the only way to express it to you. If you purchase it, let your own visions come to you through these majestic symphonic movements, or feel free to share in mine. Poseidon said that any fiend of mine is a friend of his too. This CD could easily be the soundtrack for an awesome movie. This was a fast-flowing visual experience. I did not stop to think about anything, but just typed quickly to describe the visuals as they came to me through the music. I think the feelings and visions invoked by this music says it all--don't you?
Update July 2009: I received an email last month from another lady who loves this music, listens to it frequently, and has cool visual experiences with it.