Stegzy's Music Project

A commentary on Stegzy's album collection

Hergest Ridge – Mike Oldfield [#582]

Hergestridgecover.jpgOldfield’s second album takes inspiration from a delightfully picturesque area of Herefordshire where Oldfield was living while attempting to escape the media attention gained from the success of his first album.

Until about 2000, I had only been brave enough to listen to the extract of Hergest Ridge that featured on the Complete Mike Oldfield box set having been advised by an elder sibling that “It isn’t much cop”. Still, as with all things in life, your siblings sagely advice can be similar to the type of sage that sits at the back of one’s parent’s kitchen cupboard in that Sharwoods bottle that dates from the 1970s, out of date and a matter of preferential taste.

To be fair, they were kind of right because even after a delayed listening, Hergest Ridge just doesn’t reach the dizzy heights of Tubular Bells or later works such as Islands or AmarokIt’s a very reflective or poignant work, perhaps one that is for good listening to when reading broadsheet newspapers while ensconced in one’s garret. Sure, it is Oldfield’s “difficult second album” but it shows off the young Oldfield’s developing talent and has some beautiful recurring melodies that also crop up in later works.

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Boxed – Mike Oldfield (#215)

Boxed - Mike OldfieldBoxed – Mike Oldfield

Boxed is a compilation of Oldfield’s early works in their entirety. Featured in this “Box set” compilation are:

Tubular Bells
Hergest Ridge
Ommadawn

And a number of single projects such as Portsmouth and In Dulci Jubilo.

As all the original albums will feature in this project eventually, I’ll not dwell too long or go into too much detail on this album for fear of repeating myself.

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