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CAVERNA MAGICA

Andreas Vollenweider

Crossover Prog


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Andreas Vollenweider Caverna Magica album cover
3.20 | 16 ratings | 2 reviews | 25% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1982

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Caverna Magica 3:52
2. Mandragora 3:03
3. Lunar Pond 2:18
4. Schajah Saretosh 3:17
5. Sena Stanj?na? 2:28
6. Belladonna 5:21
7. Ang?h! 2:45
8. Huiziopochtli 5:06
9. Con Chiglia 2:49
10. Geastrum Coronatum 1:43
11. La Paix Verde 0:48

Total Time: 33:30

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

Andreas Vollenweider - Vocals, Harp, Keyboards, Guzheng, Flute
Erdal Kızıl?ay - Keyboards, Oud
Walter Keiser - Drums
Andi Pupato - Percussion
Roger Bonnot- Sound effects
Corin Curschellas - Voices
Darryl Pitt - Photography
David Alan Kogut - Art Direction

Releases information

CBS

Cd reissue 2005

EDEL RECORDS: Western-, Eastern- and Southern-Europe, South Africa, Scandinavia

KIN-KOU MUSIC: USA and Canada


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ANDREAS VOLLENWEIDER Caverna Magica ratings distribution


3.20
(16 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(25%)
25%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(25%)
25%
Good, but non-essential (44%)
44%
Collectors/fans only (6%)
6%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

ANDREAS VOLLENWEIDER Caverna Magica reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl & Neo Teams
3 stars Caverna Magica(Magical Cave) is an ideal follow-up to the previous "Behind The Gardens, Behind The Walls, Under The Tree...) as is made evident by the words between brackets on the album's cover. This is effectively the second part of an instrumental trilogy.

Apparently this album is made of short tracks, but they fade one into the other with continuity, so we may speak of two side-long instrumental suites, interrupted only by the fact that it was a vinyl recording.

It starts with some noises like a sort of "Alan's Psychedelic Picnic in a Cave" with a drop of water that after a couple of minutes is transformed into Vollenweider's harp. "Caverna Magica", the title track, fades into "Mandragora" that's almost the same track. It's with "Lunar Pond" and its oriental (Chinese) flavor that the suite starts to develop differently. This track, a little darker, fades into "Sharjah Saretosh" that is a typical Vollenweider's track even if it's based on just two chords. It fades into "Sena Stanjena" that's just the prosecution of the previous track with a modified main theme. Then the A side is gone.

The B-side is opened by "Belladonna". Together with "Mandragora"(Mandrake) it's the second reference to a plant with hallucinogen power (Belladonna is the source of Atropine). However the music is everything but lisergic. This track has vocals and a samba flavor even if the female vocalist reminds me a bit to Sally Oldfield. The samba fades out leaving just the guzhang, a mandoline and the vocalist which lead smoothly to "Angoh!" that's a quite unusual track. Proceeding, "Huiziopochtli" is a mixture of a lot of things: there's sitar and tablas but it's not indian or even oriental it's the only track which fades out breaking the continuity.

"Con Chiglia" is a strange title. Literally it means "With keel", but read as a single word with no space in the middle it means "Shell". It's one of the most melodic tracks, but we can't pretend that music based on harp is less than melodic. I can understand why Vollenweider is sometimes considered a newage artist, but again, even in tracks of this kind there's more than just "good feelings from the Aquarius". As I have written reviewing the previous Vollenweider's album, I think that his as newage as Pat Metheny. "Gaestrum Coronatum" that I think is a shell makes me think that "Con Chiglia" is just a mistyping as we seem to be in a biological environment. This track is the reprise of the initial theme (as usually happens in a concept album) and finishes into some natural sounds of which "La Paix Verde"(Green Peace) consists.

This is an excellent album if you look for relaxing instrumental music, prog enough to deserve to be listened with more attention than just background ambient.

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars With his unique pedal driven modified harp, Andreas Vollenweider has carved his own unique niche in the new age genre, while managing to avoid the bland and plastic soulless dreck usually associated with that tag. By also beautifully fusing elements of progressive rock, classical, ambient, electronic and even jazz, he creates a highly original and very dramatic vision all his own.

On their second album `Caverna Magica', Vollenweider and his band present a collection of understated shorter pieces that form two continuous pieces of music. In amongst the predominantly instrumental and infrequent (wordless) vocal sections, he merges his tasteful blend of ethnic and worldly elements with some distinct Santana band styled moments -Think along the lines of the quieter and spiritual parts of their albums like `Caravanserai'.

As the album title track begins, we hear a gentle water-drop dripping throughout a cave, and before long it forms into a looped beat, backed by marching drums to add some drama. Vollenweider's harp and gentle synths enter, creating a haunting and mysterious, yet upbeat ambience. Wordless and restrained tribal vocals dance through the music, joined by warm Latin style percussion. There's that slight Santana band influence here, with a restrained and clean electric guitar solo. A darker Oriental flavour comes in, with a very catchy harp melody enhanced by the low-key presence of a female singer and live drums, backed to gentle winds and eventually lovely synth and melodic guitar solos before a fade out. `Caverna Magica's side A is a truly wonderful piece of music. Side B `Belladonna' opens with the album's softest and most romantic theme, the sort that has become a trademark on every album by Vollenweider. It soon kicks into a samba influenced wordless male/female piece, with some almost groovy playing by the artist! After a mandolin driven ambient section, we get a very bizarre yet strangely effective steel drum percussion piece, backed by the harp and synths. It's almost psychedelic, sounding like nothing else on the rest of the album, taking it in an off-beat and oddly darker direction! This drama continues into the sitar, tabla and chant driven `Con Chiglia', with an oppressive classical theme showing up near the end. It's thankfully relieved by the uplifting harp and synth piece `Geastrum Coronatum', perhaps the most melodic and tasteful moment on the album. There's an incredible energy and passion to this piece, that finishes the album in a suitably grand manner.

Take notice of deceptively simple album cover, which is actually rich with hidden secrets and striking details. Check out a vinyl copy to truly appreciate how clever and effective it is!

If you've enjoyed any of Vollenwieder's other albums, you'll be more than comfortable with the music on this one. His music seems to exist completely out of time, and he truly has created an intricate and spiritual musical world all his own that we're privileged enough to be able to visit. Relaxing and vibrant, with some appreciated drama in the second half, `Caverna Magica' will likely work it's magic on you if you take the time to listen and appreciate.

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