The Mirror Pool

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The Mirror Pool
Studio album by Lisa Gerrard
Released August 21, 1995
Genre World fusion, Baroque orchestral
Length 68:04
Label 4AD Records
Producer Lisa Gerrard
Lisa Gerrard chronology
The Mirror Pool
(1995)
Duality
(1998)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]

The Mirror Pool is Lisa Gerrard's first solo album, released in 1995 (one year before the release of Spiritchaser, the last work Dead Can Dance put out before disbanding in 1998).

Overview[edit]

About the album's title, Gerrard explained: "If you read about African music, they believe that during the process of making this music that you come into contact with spirits from another plane. They say that this place is like a mirror of the world we live in, [...] With the best music, you don't find the composer or the musicians within the work, you find yourself, your own feelings."[2]

The repertoire of this album spans seven years from 1988 to 1995,[3] featuring some of her material not worked into Dead Can Dance albums, as explained by Gerrard: "There is usually a surplus of work that overlaps the continuous nature of a Dead Can Dance record. Some of these pieces, which were not realized for reason of continuity, have been collected together in the form of largely orchestral-based works and pieces written primarily for 'voice' music."[4]

  • "La Bas" refers to French writer Joris-Karl Huysmans's controversial 1891 novel Là-bas (meaning Down There);[3] a main character is the bell-ringer Carhaix from Brittany, obsessed with legends of prophetic bells,[5] echoing the fabled bells of the drowned cathedral of Ys in Brittany.
  • "The Rite" was taken from Gerrard's libretto for a 1991 production of Oedipus Rex.[3]
  • "Persian Love Song" is a traditional piece from Shiraz in southern Iran, arranged by Lisa Gerrard. It was previously performed in concerts by Dead Can Dance and eventually included on their 1994 live album Toward the Within.
  • "Sanvean" was written in September 1993. It too was previously performed in concerts by Dead Can Dance and eventually included on their 1994 live album Toward the Within.
  • "Largo" is the opening aria from Handel's opera Serse (Xerxes), a popular composition titled "Ombra mai fu" but usually nicknamed "Largo" (despite being larghetto).
  • "Laurelei" is a variant spelling of the Lorelei Rhine Maiden, so as not to conflict with a fellow 4AD's Cocteau Twins song.
  • "Celon" was written a few days before Gerrard gave birth to her daughter: " [...] there's this weird thing that takes place, thinking about procreation, sex, and death -- you get very morbid just before you have a baby. ".[3] The River Celon is a fictional river in J. R. R. Tolkien's mythology.

The tracks "La Bas", "Celon" and "Gloradin" were also used for the 1995 Heat soundtrack.

Among this album's musicians was Pieter Bourke, who later co-wrote Gerrard's 1998 album Duality.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Violina (The Last Embrace)" – 5:43
  2. "La Bas (Song of the Drowned)" – 7:41
  3. "Persian Love Song (The Silver Gun)" – 2:33
  4. "Sanvean (I Am Your Shadow)" – 3:48
  5. "The Rite" – 3:22
  6. "Ajhon" – 3:09
  7. "Glorafin" – 4:50
  8. "Majhnavea's Music Box" – 1:34
  9. "Largo" – 2:52
  10. "Werd" – 1:39
  11. "Laurelei" – 5:58
  12. "Celon" – 6:06
  13. "Venteles" – 2:37
  14. "Swans" – 5:47
  15. "Nilleshna" – 6:29
  16. "Gloradin" – 3:56

Music by Lisa Gerrard, except 3 (traditional, arranged by Gerrard), 4 (Gerrard, Andrew Claxton), 9 (Handel, public domain), and 11 (arranged by Gerrard, Bonnar, Kyryakou).

Personnel[edit]

Musical
Technical
  • Lisa Gerrard – producer (all), engineer (5-6, 8-9, 11, 14-16) at Gerrard Studio (Gippsland, Australia)
  • Jacek Tuschewski – engineer (5-6, 8-9, 11, 14-16) at Gerrard Studio (Gippsland, Australia)
  • Robin Gray – engineer (orchestra 1-4, 7) at Eaton Studio (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Garry Havrillay – engineer (woodwind 10, 12-13) at ABC Studios (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Guy Charbonneau – mixing (all)
  • Charlie Bouis – mixing assistance (all)
Graphical
  • Jacek Tuschewski – front cover art
  • Dennis Keeley – sleeve photography (portrait)
  • Chris Bigg – sleeve design
Acknowledgements
  • Ivo Watts-Russell (founder of 4AD), Nanette and John Gerrard, Michael Atkinson - "thank you [...] for their invaluable efforts"
  • Dolby Model 740 Spectral Processor (courtesy Dolby Laboratories) - sonic enhancement (all)

References[edit]

Sourced consulted
Endnotes
  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Ken Bogle, October 19, 1995: "Dancing Alone: Lisa Gerrard talks about her new album", The Daily of the University of Washington, online archive.
  3. ^ a b c d Lanham 1995, op. cit.
  4. ^ Lisa Gerrard about Mirror Pool quoted at fansite Dead-Can-Dance.com
  5. ^ Cf. end of chapter V, beginning of chapter XXII.

External links[edit]