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Album Review

Cirque Du Soleil decided to try something completely new on this album. The experiment worked, but the resulting piece of music is very different from any other album in the renowned company's discography. Instead of hiring one or two lead female singers, the production team went with a male baritone (Richard Price, Craig Jennings) and a child soprano (Amelie Landry). Some songs are duets, some are solo, and some are performed with the backing vocals of an entire choir. On certain tracks, most notably "Atmadja," the piping, sweet voice of the young female soloist is surreal and spooky in classic Cirque fashion. However, overall the vocals do not have the exotic, wild tone of Mystere or Alegria. A pre-pubescent singer could never claim the versatility and range of a Francine Poitras type, and, as a result, composer Benoit Jutras seems to have settled upon a more sweet, ethereal tone for the lead vocals, leaving any dramatic effects up to the male soloist or the backing choir. Interestingly, Jutras also brings some pop sensibilities into play at rather unpredictable times: "Let Me Fall" is closer to a pop ballad than anything Cirque has ever released. When the instruments dominate, there is a markedly more dramatic tone to the music — but eventually they hush and drop to the background, leaving the air uncluttered but for one angelic voice. ~ L. Katz, Rovi

Biography

Formed: Quebec, Canada

Genre: Soundtrack

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Cirque du Soleil revolutionized the circus arts, transcending the traditional big-top approach of the past to spotlight elaborate sets, lavish costume, and original music. Founded in Quebec in 1984 by Guy Laliberté and Daniel Gauthier, the original group comprised local street performers; shunning animal acts to focus exclusively on human spectacles — stilt-walkers, jugglers, fire-eaters, and the like — the troupe quickly earned a following throughout Canada, eventually spreading across...
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