Band: Anthony Phillips
CD Title: Slow Dance
Label: Esoteric Recording (2017)
Rating: Satisfying 3/5
Slow Dance was originally released on vinyl, cassette and CD way back in September of 1990. This new Esoteric Recordings release is a masterful and comprehensive package that brings the whole project together and breathes new life into it. Spread out over three discs we have the original recording, a second disc entitled “vignettes” that brings together bits and pieces of work Phillips was working on and then a third DVD disc offers the two Slow Dance compositions in 5.1 Surround sound. Whew! As I just mentioned Slow Dance features two symphonic styled instrumental compositions each clocking in at around twenty-five minutes. As such this is music that has much in common with early Enid music. It is lush and richly orchestrated featuring a myriad of solo segments from a wide variety of instruments all created in a mellow, pastoral atmosphere. Like any symphonic work the main themes are repeated throughout in different instrumental combinations and while the overall mood may be soft and mellow there are plenty of times where everything builds to grand crescendos. The music incorporates all the right elements of majors and minors and avoids any form of dissonance. This is Anthony Phillips at his finest, making music that is warm, melodic and inviting. Symphonic prog fans would do well to set aside an hour of their time and listen to both part one and two of Slow Dance. It will be a richly rewarding experience. Highly recommended.