Philip Glass: Orion

Philip Glass: Orion

by Philip Glass


5 New & Used Starting at $4.69


When it comes right down to it, the music of Philip Glass is simply one of those love-it-or-hate-it propositions: most people find his signature technique (relentlessly repeating arpeggios with minimal harmonic movement and even less rhythmic variation) to be either frantically, hair-pullingly dull or mystically transcendent. So the idea behind a project like Orion seems a bit curious. Here Glass has written brief pieces designed to showcase a variety of world music traditions, including those of China, the Gambia, Brazil, Canada (in this case the Scottish-derived music of Nova Scotia), and Australia, among others. His collaborators include some fairly big names: fiddler Ashley MacIsaac, legendary sitarist Ravi Shankar, griot and kora player Foday Musa Suso, and so on. Everyone plays enthusiastically and well and the music is unfailingly pleasant, but nothing here is likely to win over those who tend toward the hair-pulling end of the spectrum of responses to Glass's music. These pieces are probably more effective in the live setting for which they were intended than they are on disc, where they generally come across as pleasant and goodheartedly multicultural, but not terribly exciting. As he often does, MacIsaac brings a special energy to the "Canada" track, and Uakti's performance on "Brazil" is also worth noting. Otherwise, this will be of interest primarily to world fusion fanatics and Glass's large cult following.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/12/2005
Label: Orange Mountain
UPC: 0801837002126
catalogNumber: 21

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Philip Glass   Primary Artist,Keyboards
Foday Musa Suso   Kora
Uakti   Ensemble
Wu Man   Pipa
Richard Peck   Tenor Saxophone
Michael Riesman   Keyboards
Andrew Sterman   Flute,Piccolo
Ted Baker   Keyboards
Eleftheria Arvanitaki   Vocals
Ashley MacIsaac   Violin
Mark Atkins   Didjeridu
Gaurav Mazumdar   Sitar
Lisa Bielawa   Vocals
Philip Glass Ensemble   Ensemble
Frank Cassara   Percussion

Technical Credits

Philip Glass   Composer,Liner Notes
Ravi Shankar   Composer
Don Christensen   Producer,Executive Producer
Dan Dryden   Engineer
Kurt Munkasci   Producer,Executive Producer
Michael Riesman   Director,Music Direction
Philip Glass Ensemble   Liner Notes,Executive Producer
Sam Crawford   Intern
Dan Bora   Engineer
Jared Sochinsky   Intern
Cat Celebrezze   Publishing Coordinator

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Philip Glass: Orion 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
KarlPallmeyer More than 1 year ago
The music of Philip Glass usually polarizes listeners -- you either love it or hate it. I am firmly in the "love it" class, and I'd like to reach out to the other side and ask you to give Glass another chance. "Orion" is perhaps the most accessible of Glass's works. There's more melody here than in most of his previous music, and the addition of the different world instruments gives the piece more tonal color than Glass usually uses. It's amazing how well Glass's electronics mix with sitar and the handmade instruments of Brazil's Ukati. And when everything comes together for the finale, "Greece," the music soars. "Orion" is a magnificent musical experience, and you owe it to yourself to give it a listen. Even if you're not a Glass fan, you should be able to enjoy "Orion."