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Larkenlyre | Music of the Extraordinary Voyages

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Music of the Extraordinary Voyages

by Larkenlyre

Cinematic multi-layered sonic sketches inspired by the stories and novels of Jules Verne, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, and Edgar Rice Burroughs. Larkenlyre is composer Matthew Labarge, guest appearances by Chris Bocast, Eden Macadam-Somer, and Jimi Taft.
Genre: Classical: Film Music
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. I Will Create a Machine...
3:13 $0.99
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2. Mistral Wind
2:56 $0.99
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3. Rainforest Omens
3:07 $0.99
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4. Island Trance
4:45 $0.99
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5. Northern Lights
3:59 $0.99
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6. Typhoon
3:38 $0.99
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7. Poppy Fields
4:36 $0.99
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8. Dark Yangtzee
3:19 $0.99
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9. Kanchenjunga
3:38 $0.99
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10. Desert Gathering
6:07 $0.99
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11. Kaarta Market
3:37 $0.99
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12. The Orphan Returns Home
4:50 $0.99
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13. One Day I Will Go to the Stars...
1:34 $0.99
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14. Songbird in the Morning
4:43 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Cinematic multi-layered sonic sketches inspired by the short stories and novels of Jules Verne, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, and Edgar Rice Burroughs. Larkenlyre is composer Matthew Labarge, with guest appearances by Chris Bocast, Eden Macadam-Somer, and Jimi Taft.
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It is easy remember how deeply I was absorbed when I discovered, at the age of ten, the tales of adventure set in faraway lands. Here I've tried to capture the exotic sense of place conveyed by some of these stories.

Each of the fourteen tracks is very different. Hundreds of instruments, real and electronic, were used, as well as dozens of objects, instruments, and environments I recorded and sampled. Each track is an attempt to create a unique sonic landscape unto itself, much like a great story.

I hope some of these pull you in, as they did me.

~Matthew Labarge

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Reviews


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Michael Diamond (www.michaeldiamondmusic.com)

Review excerpt from Music and Media Focus
Ah, the lure of exotic adventures and far away lands… For Matthew Labarge, this calling has echoed throughout his life from his earliest years – first in books, and now in music. His latest album, Music of the Extraordinary Voyages, is in his words: “a collection of cinematic multi-layered sonic sketches inspired by the short stories and novels of Jules Verne, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, and Edgar Rice Burroughs. A track called “i will create a machine,” opens the album and begins with metallic industrial sounds creating a percussive loop that pans across the stereo field, reminiscent of Pink Floyd’s “Money.” The music is densely layered with many instruments and is quite exotic. As mentioned above, the word “cinematic” is used to describe the tracks on the album, and I’ll have to refrain from over-using it, but that would certainly be easy to do given the vivid visual imagery that all of these soundscapes evoke. Switching gears on the next piece entitled “mistral wind,” (all his song titles are in lower case) the mood is more reflective, perhaps even a bit somber, with orchestral and classical music elements and some of the piano work that Matthew is best known for. One of my favorite compositions was “northern lights,” which was built around a descending three-chord progression often found in rock music ballads. Matthew’s electric piano held down the foundation as electric guitar soared over it, adorned with ethereal instrumental accompaniment.

One of the most fascinating things about this incredibly diverse album is hearing it for the first time and having absolutely no idea what the music will sound like from track to track. I have to give Matthew a lot of credit for stepping out from the relative security and safety of his solo piano music to take on a project of this scope, complexity, and vision - which included writing, performing, engineering, and producing most of the material on this ambitious album. Like the tales that intrigued him so much as a child, Matthew has created a musical adventure that is sure to spark the imagination and send the listener on extraordinary voyages of their own in their mind’s eye.

To read a full-length feature article on this CD, as well as others, please visit: www.michaeldiamondmusic.com
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Raj Manoharan (www.rajmanreviews.blogspot.com)

The RajMan Review
Jules Verne, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, and Edgar Rice Burroughs. These are the authors whose shorts stories and novels of adventures in faraway but real lands have inspired the musically cinematic musings of this “new” recording artist.

The debut release by Larkenlyre, aka Matthew Labarge (who normally records solo piano albums under his own name), is an eclectic collection of sonically rich sounds and motifs that engender the sense of embarking on excitingly unconventional excursions.

The core of the music consists of Labarge's piano and synthesizers, complemented with guitars by Chris Boscast and Jim Taft and fiddle by Eden MacAdam-Somer, in addition to hundreds of other instruments, objects, and environments courtesy of Labarge.

The result is an extraordinary voyage unlike any other.
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Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Music of the Extraordinary Voyages" is the debut recording by Larkenlyre, a name created by Matthew Labarge to avoid confusing fans of the three solo piano recordings released under his own name. There is piano in some of this music, but there are also hundreds of other instruments - real and electronic - as well as dozens of objects and environments Labarge recorded and sampled. The music was inspired by Labarge’s boyhood passion for books that involve fantastic adventures in exotic places, especially those by Rudyard Kipling, Jules Verne and Jack London. A while back, Labarge was asked to write a short soundtrack for a video a friend was making to promote originally-designed playing cards based on Jules Verne’s "Extraordinary Voyages" novels. That music became an early version of “I Will Create a Machine.” With stories of travel and adventure on his mind, Labarge found himself writing new pieces with an exotic sensibility and a strong sense of place. Before long, Labarge had enough music for an album, and here it is! The fourteen tracks are very different from each other: some are very dark and turbulent while others are lighter and more playful. Some of the pieces could qualify as progressive rock while others lean closer to new age and classical. Despite the variety, the album holds together well and is an effective and fascinating listening experience.

"Music of the Extraordinary Voyages" begins with the aforementioned “I Will Create a Machine,” a mysterious piece with powerful metallic percussion and a swirling motion that promises adventure. “Mistral Wind” is a favorite. A rhythmic piano motif and layers of other instrumental sounds suggest dense darkness as well as a chilling dankness - love it! “Rainforest Omens” starts with the sounds of exotic birds while drumming gradually builds intensity and eventually takes over, making it difficult to sit still! “Northern Lights” is more ambient and atmospheric. “Typhoon” begins with the sound of a koto or Chinese zheng, but then a heavy rhythm track kicks in along with a very percussive Eastern melody that could easily become a dance track. I really like the element of fun in this one! “Dark Yangtzee” is another favorite, creating the feeling of sailing slowly in total darkness, not knowing what lies ahead - or below. Flutes, oboe, orchestration and atmospheric sounds make this piece really effective and very eerie. “Kanchenjunga” goes even darker and more dire with ambient sounds and pounding drums that suggest we are someplace we really shouldn’t be! “Kaarta Market” is bright, dancelike and joyful - quite a contrast to some of the earlier tracks! “The Orphan Returns Home” opens with a simple piano part played with one hand. Strings enter and then bass guitar, drum and voices, creating a mysterious setting for the electric guitar that becomes the primary focus of parts of the piece - hypnotic and stirring! “Songbird In the Morning” is much lighter and more optimistic, ending the album with a sense of contentment and peace.

"Music of the Extraordinary Voyages" takes the listener on quite an adventure - one that I thoroughly enjoy! Highly recommended!
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