Songs Of The Alchemist


Very Music, 2003

REVIEW BY: Duke Egbert


Sounds like a recipe for disaster, as far as I was concerned. An album of electronica about a book I've never heard of is not exactly the sort of thing that fills me with great optimism for its excellence. Good thing I was wrong, huh? Aurah's my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Songs Of The Alchemist is a brilliant, beautiful voyage through music, spirituality and literature, and definitely worth checking out.

Aurah is essentially a duet between Judith Martin and Marc Dold, who may not be household names, but you've probably heard their work. Dold is a record producer whose credits include Enya's "Only Time." Martin is a studio vocalist who has CDs to her own credit as well as having done vocal work on TV shows like "Sex In The City." Together, their alchemy produces Aurah, whose melodic work is head and shoulders above the morass of boring, repetitious electronica.

Aurah took their inspiration from the best-selling work by Brazilian author Paulo Coehlo, The Alchemist. I admit I've never read this book; I also admit, cheerily, that Aurah's musical tribute to it makes me want to, very much. The CD captures the exploratory, spiritual, and brave themes that seem to weave their way through Coehlo's work.

The production and engineering on the CD is exquisite. Unlike many electronica works, there are acoustic instruments used; and instead of being buried in the mix, they're given prominence, so that you can hear the vibrating strings of the acoustic guitar clearly. Vocals are at a perfect level to be heard without being either lost or overemphasized. Dold's production is clear, simple and crystalline, letting the music speak for itself. The musicianship is competent to excellent; nothing disrupts you from the total experience of the music.

Tracks worth noting include the serene "One Night," the CD's opener; the haunting "Crazy"; and the triumphantly joyous "Dreams Come True."

Aurah's Songs Of The Alchemist is a definite must-have for fans of the electronica genre.

Rating: A

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© 2003 Duke Egbert and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Very Music, and is used for informational purposes only.