Thursday, February 28, 2008

Review: Dream of the Salmon Maiden

"The Dream of the Salmon Maiden" by Ruth MacKenzie.

This music CD uses the Finnish Kalevala as the inspiration for the music. This story is taken the story of Aino, who as a young maiden is promised in marriage to 900 year old Väinämöinen, the hero of the Kalevala. (and the inspiration for Gandalf.) Aino refuses to marry such an old man, and instead goes to the water, drowns herself. She becomes a salmon, and returns to taunt Väinämöinen.

The CD starts out with some very traditional vocals, and quickly gets going with one of my favorite tracks: Kaikk' Miä. It's odd, but I like the tracks in Finnish better than the English ones: I find being able to understand the words distracting.

Did you know there are Swedish bagpipes? I didn't, but I admired "Medley For Swedish Säckpipa". To be honest, a little Celtic music goes a long way for me. I once sat through and entire Irish music concert, and ended up with a headache and nervous tic. This track, though clearly much like Celtic music, was slower in pace, and in a minor key. More like traditional folk music than Celtic music you would hear in a pub. And won't induce nervous tics.

Another track I like is "Soul Bird", which is guitar and vocals, and not at all Celtic sounding. It's a very uplifting and hopeful track.

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