Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi! (Review 3)

[Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi! Cover]

by Angelo Pietrobon
In*Press December 11 1996

For those who have been in suspended animation for six years Enigma is the ground-breaking act that set the scene for the ambient new age music movement. Enigma helped to popularise Deep Forest, Enya and other similar artists. Selling millions of copies of the first two albums and their singles Sadness, The Return to Innocence and Carly's Song, Enigma is the brain child of Spanish artist Michael Cretu.

His brilliant use of Gregorian chants on the first album and samples of rural chants on the second created songs with sounds and music unheard of until then.

So it was interesting to see what he came up with on Enigma 3. The title means in Latin "The king is dead, long live the king". His use of now quite common and acceptable new age themes such as Beyond The Invisible and The Child In Us are usually the basis of his sparse lyrics.

Beginning with some interesting samples of space program transmissions and including the Rasa Ensemble Riga from Mongolia the album continues his slow meditative theme. Keeping with the 'concept' some of the melodies repeat from the previous two albums. Throughout the work there are no song breaks with all the songs musically linked.

The CD slick is innovative using see-through plastic with prints of medical diagrams of the body covered with Victorian age machinery.

Overall this album is not as ground breaking as the first two, although it is a good listen. If you haven't got the first two I'd recommend getting those first before trying this one out.

Reproduced without permission from In*Press Magazine (Issue 434) for private and research purposes only.

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