Thursday, 12 November 2009

The Black Opal

Heed the words of the bard: Lisa Gearrard's newborn is about to grow on you.
The Black Opal is out.

The ambient material Lisa released in 2008-2009 was liquid and elusive. The Black Opal is substantial and tactile. A gem which weighs like a rock. It reflects light and casts shadows. It penetrates the imagination with colours and flavours which are saturated and intense.

The Black Opal makes one realise that Lisa's very own otherworldly language is not just a series of arbitrary sounds. Her non-words are non-referential yet meaningful and her narratives are carefully constructed.
The Messenger has one of the most intricate examples of this otherworldliness. The random profusion of elusive sonic bubbles, succulently bulging and bursting in Lisa's mouth, conveys a deeply intriguing story.
The Crossing is a cute rhythmical invasion, reminiscent of early Dead –°an Dance.

Then comes Redemption. The track with the highest intensity charge. Lisa Gerrard's evidence of Providence. Its structure is intuitive and loose. Its narrative is solemn and epiphanic. Weaving through infernal depths and angelic heights. Healing the wounds of sacrifice along the long and winding road of redemption. Emotions happen. The elixir contained inside the opal's core is released and spreads through the veins. Lisa is breastfeeding us the Milk of Life.

The overtly proverbial English-sung pieces add diversity to the album. Yet the words and their ideology take away from the vocal expression of the singer and clash with the hermetic strength of the abstract pieces.
The only exception to this being the intimately heroic Sleep. It is a hymn and a lullaby at the same time. Sung by a mother.

I feel privileged to be able to relate to the inner world of the artist Lisa Gerrard. Throughout the years, I have been doing this with consistency and devotion. She's been responding with quality and greater devotion. To her music. Providing evidence of Providence. Allowing for her newborns to grow on us. Breastfeeding us the Milk of Life.

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