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November 18, 2017


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Lisa Gerrard
Whale Rider original soundtrack (4AD Records)

By: Scott D. Lewis

In all likelihood, Lisa Gerrard has never swam along with a pod of whales, listening to their "songs." However, one wouldn't know that after listening to her soundtrack for the film Whale Rider. Gerrard, who gained universal acclaim and an adoring cult following as the fairer half of Dead Can Dance for two decades, has since released her own, more lofty albums and done a considerable amount of work for films. Fans of Gerrard's otherworldly, spiritual singing will likely be disappointed with Whale Rider, considering there is very little singing going on, but those who can appreciate her subtle soundscapes will likely find this ethereal body of work to hold lasting charms. Akin to Peter Gabriel's more esoteric music for films such as Birdy, Gerrard pulls notes into long swaths of sound and sprinkles in indigenous beats and gauzy vocalizations to create a special world of sculpted sound. It's very cool, delicate, calm and mesmerizing, exactly like the eerie beauty of the whales' underwater world.
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