Story: Jack Foley
JUST when you thought it was safe to escape the clutches of Mike
Oldfield's Tubular Bells, the musician returns with yet another
makeover - the 2003 version.
Having released the original album 30 years ago, and then releasing
the sequel (Tubular Bells 2), Oldfield will release the 30th anniversary
special edition on May 26, in order to take advantage of the latest
recording techniques and bring his seminal work to a new listener
Say what you will about it, but Tubular Bells is the best-selling
instrumental album of all time, having sold over 16 million copies
Oldfield was only 19 when he recorded it during an intense week
- but it became a musical piece destined to mark many of the musical
styles to come (as well as featuring, to creepy effect, in horror
movie, The Exorcist).
Phenomena like techno, new age or chill out would be inconceivable
without the existence of Tubular Bells.
Three decades on, Oldfield has recorded his masterwork again,
because, in his words, 'I knew that Tubular Bells
was a record perfectly suited to the breathtaking capabilities
of today´s studio technology'.
Tubular Bells 2003 has been completely re-recorded by Mike Oldfield,
who plays all the instruments, and produces the album, as he did
in the original version.
Sally Oldfield contributes vocals and British actor, John Cleese,
acts as a master of ceremonies.
Tubular Bells stands alone in pop music history for its complex,
pastoral arrangements, the symphonic way it glides from lilting,
upbeat moods to dark, threatening passages.
This new version, Tubular Bells 2003, is almost like a whole
new record, enhanced by a magnificent, deep sound.
The 2003 edition includes a DVD featuring three passages of this
piece, mixed using Dolby Digital 5.1 system, as well as the videoclip
of the first single.
Along with the album, Warner Music will launch, for the first
time, a luxury box set, including the whole trilogy The Complete
Tubular Bells Collection; Tubular Bells 2003, Tubular Bells II
and Tubular Bells III.
Tubular Bells 2003 and The Complete Tubular Bells Collection
will be on sale worldwide on May 27.