Five Miles Out

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Five Miles Out is a record album written and mostly performed by Mike Oldfield. It was his seventh album of original material, released in 1982 (see 1982 in music). Of all Oldfield's albums, this one is probably closest to progressive rock and is also one of the very few occasions where he sings, as he is noted for not having any confidence in his voice's qualities. Fans consider this album to be among his finest works.

Album analysis

The first track "Taurus II" is typical for Oldfield with its changing melodies and instrument settings. It features many familiar sounds from his earlier albums such as uilleann pipes and female chorus. After the vocal section (called "The Deep Deep Sound") the music quotes the main riff from "Taurus I" making the link between the two stronger than just a shared name.

"Family Man" is Oldfield's first "real" rock song, Maggie Reilly in vocals. It was released as a single. Hall & Oates covered the song, which became one of the very few songs penned by Oldfield to chart in the United States.

"Orabidoo" is another long and changing tune. It begins with silent duo of acoustic guitar and some glockenspiel-like instrument. Then over five minutes long "song passage" follows with vocals sung by Oldfield and Reilly through vocoder. After that, fast and fiery part follows that features a melody that also appears in the beginning of "Taurus II". At the end of the track, there is a song "Ireland's Eye" sung by Reilly and accompanied by acoustic guitar.

"Mount Teidi" is a shorter instrumental piece that may awake an image of a mountain (Mount Teide is located at Tenerife).

"Five Miles Out" is a song that has a complex structure despite its unusual length. Lyrics are written about Mike's experience of near-tragic flight. Reilly sings with clean voice while Oldfield uses vocoder most of time himself. The song features same guitar riff that appears in the beginning of "Taurus II" and during the intro a keyboard quotes the opening motif to "Tubular Bells" a trick he repeats in later pieces such as "Crises".

Five Miles Out is the beginning of a reversal of the decline Mike Oldfield had in recent years had encountered in the charts throughout Europe. Both the album and the title song charted moderately high in different countries and were an indication of the big success that was to come with the next albums, Crises and Discovery.

The cover of the album features a Beechcraft 18 aircraft, which is referred to in the lyrics of "Five miles out" ; "lost in static 18" and "automatic 18". The airplane has registration GMOVJ, as also referenced in the lyrics.

Track listing

  1. "Taurus II" (Mike Oldfield) – 24:43
  2. "Family Man" (Oldfield/Tim Cross/Rick Fenn/Mike Frye/Maggie Reilly/Morris Pert) – 3:45
  3. "Orabidoo" (Oldfield/Cross/Fenn/Frye/Reilly/Pert) – 13:03
  4. "Mount Teidi" (Oldfield) – 4:10
  5. "Five Miles Out" (Oldfield) – 4:16

Personnel

External links