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The Major Arcana of the Tarot (Mystic Pathways Series 2 of 3)

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Album Review

The Major Arcana of the Tarot is the second album in the prolific Australian new age composer Japetus' Mystic Pathways Series. Meant to be a guide through the 22 cards in the Major Arcana, which are often believed to be an allegory of the journey of the soul, Japetus offers his listeners two approaches in understanding the symbology of the Tarot. On the first disc, Japetus provides what he calls a "guided visualization," introducing each of the cards in the set, explaining their elemental value, and then describing a scene that illustrates the card over a generally calm, synthesized background. Japetus has a smooth, serene voice that fits well with the soothing instrumentation, and his use of the first-person plural is decidedly comforting, reassuring us that we can take this voyage together. For listeners who feel more equipped to take the trip alone, or wish to simply enjoy the soothing music, the second disc contains only the instrumentation from the first. It's 22 short songs, whose brevity can actually be a bit distracting, simply because the tracks often end right as tranquility is setting in. However, Japetus has been using synthesizers for over 20 years now, and he is very capable of producing descriptive soundscapes to both guide and inspire his listeners, and The Major Arcana of the Tarot accomplishes this.


Born: Sydney, Australia

Genre: New Age

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

Although Australian new age composer Japetus never formally studied music, he has been consistently producing it since 1977 and listening to it since he was a child. The pop songs he enjoyed in his youth made him want to be a musician, but after seeing the Beatles break up he decided that he would prefer to stay in the studio. At age 20, Japetus retreated to a small hut in the woods for a year, singing and playing his guitar and preparing himself for his leap into the music business. After his return,...
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The Major Arcana of the Tarot (Mystic Pathways Series 2 of 3), Japetus
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