Delerium ‎– Semantic Spaces

Label:
Nettwerk ‎– W2-30092
Format:
CD, Album
Country:
Released:
Genre:
Style:

Tracklist

1 Flowers Become Screens 7:55
2 Metaphor 7:49
3 Resurrection 9:24
4 Incantation 6:21
5 Consensual Worlds 10:04
6 Metamorphosis 8:27
7 Flatlands 7:13
8 Sensorium 12:08
9 Gateway 8:13

Companies, etc.

Credits

Notes

Sonic Realisation - Cryogenic Studio, Vancouver B.C.
Mastering at Bernie Grundmann's, Hollywood, Ca.

℗ and © 1994 Nettwerk Productions. Made in Canada

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Barcode (text): 0 6700-30092-2 5
  • Barcode (scanned): 067003009225
  • Matrix / Runout: DISQUE AMERIC 08YT3<111>W230092

Other Versions (5 of 11) View All

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
none Delerium Semantic Spaces(CD, Album, RE) M&A Group none Russia 2004 Sell This Version
D31197 Delerium Semantic Spaces(CD, Album) Festival Records D31197 Australia & New Zealand 1994 Sell This Version
SPV 084-61732 CD Delerium Semantic Spaces(CD, Album, RP) Synthetic Symphony SPV 084-61732 CD Germany Unknown Sell This Version
OPICD96 Delerium Semantic Spaces(CD, Album, RE) Opción Sónica OPICD96 Mexico 1999 Sell This Version
none Delerium Semantic Spaces(9xFile, AAC, Album, RE, 128) Nettwerk Productions none US 2010

Recommendations

Reviews Show All 5 Reviews

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SYSTEM-J

SYSTEM-J

January 28, 2011
A highly derivative and second-rate ambient dub excursion, filled with your standard early-90s cut 'n paste combination of sampled breakbeat + dub bass + vaguely "ethnic" chanting. What's particularly galling is the fairly blatant sampling of other, far better records from the same period. For example, Consensual Worlds borrows liberally from The Orb's Blue Room and Towers Of Dub, both from UFOrb, and Resurrection features a whole-sale rip of the break from The FSOL's Papua New Guinea. That's exactly how this album sounds: a series of lazy re-hashes of iconic records, content to repeat what had already been done several years earlier.

If you want to hear the same thing done much better, check out early FSOL, Orb, Young American Primitive, William Orbit and Banco De Gaia first. This one's strictly for soundtracking New Age apothecaries and middle aged yoga sessions.
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dghkfhldfdhlfa

December 13, 2010
some time a few years before this, rhys fulber took over for michael balch as bill leeb's main collaborator in front line assembly. leeb appears to have delegated responsibility for delerium to fulber, providing it to him as his main vehicle. where fla was leeb + input from fulber, delerium was fulber + input from leeb.

i picked this up on a recommendation from somebody i had been chatting online with about skinny puppy some time in the mid 90s. the opinion expressed was that leeb records should be avoided in general, but that fulber is a very creative sound design artist and everybody has been waiting for him to tell leeb to buzz off and start his own project for years. i was informed that the closest thing to a fulber-driven project would be delerium, and some of it is actually quite good. i should just avoid the earliest records, before fulber took over the project.

in hindsight, i agree with him. the records immediately preceding this disc are mildly enjoyable, but they simply don't break the territory that this one does; the disc immediately following this one is ok, but it's a commercialized version of the sound present here. most people have heard silence, which had sarah mclachlan on vocals and was a massive hit, at least in canada. perhaps i should use that as a reference to start with...

....because nothing on this disc sounds like that at all. that's a leeb track; all of his trademarks are all over it - the big bass, the triads, the generic sequencer parts, the predictable pads, etc. what can be said of that track is that mclachlan saves it from being yet another mediocre leeb track.

now, go to youtube and listen to the first twenty seconds, specifically that synthesizer wash and that little bit of gregorian chanting, before leeb pushes fulber out of the way. here's a link. that is what this disc sounds like...

kristy thirsk is admittedly a little grating at points, specifically when her mascara starts to blur her vision; i'm talking about a bit of an attempt to be gothier-than-thou that was silly then and ridiculous now. she's heavily reverberated throughout the entire disc, which blends her in with the soundscapes and masks some of her vocal shortcomings; however, she's actually a fairly decent singer, which is unusual within this genre. some of the other stuff i've heard from her bring out a bit of a jarboe swagger, but she's been corralled here into something less expressive than that. she's also counteracted by what i'm assuming are samples of gregorian chanters because nobody is credited on the disc for the male vocal parts and i'm quite certain that leeb can't sing like that. the contrast between these two extremes of ubersexual, estrogen-saturated hyper-femininity and dour, celibate gregorian chanting creates a rather odd level of sexual tension in a sort of weird, ironic way; it's almost as though the monks are playing hard-to-get with kristy, who happens to have the physical characteristics and stylistic tendencies of a vivid girl.

the disc itself is somewhat of a contradiction, being both a highly commercial electronic pop record with a sexual object for a singer and an unmarketable delve into esoteric, new age synthesizer noodling. these weird contrasts and combinations don't just give the disc a strange level of appeal, they elevate it to an ideal in a genre that exists almost exclusively of music with no meaningful value.

as mentioned, the record has drawbacks. in addition to the singer's sometimes grating attitude, it becomes rather cheesy at points as well. it's also the kind of disc that is not split up well as doing so enhances it's flaws; incantation on it's own, for example, would not appeal to me at all but it works as a breather when placed between two ten minute epics.

if, like me, you're deeply frightened of picking up anything with leeb's name on it under the fear that it will be full of low-brow cliches, you can suspend your fear for this disc; leeb is really reduced to a synth bassist on this disc, which is driven very forcefully by fulber's much less formulaic writing. where leeb does jump in, he's drowned out by ethereal synth pads and the heavy reverb on the vocals. i highly recommend this as both an introduction to fulber and as a positive example of what electronic pop music could be.

addendum: i've noticed a number of articles claiming that the record is derivative of the act enigma. first of all, this is an anachronistic view of music history because delerium and front line assembly, not to mention skinny puppy, were releasing music of a similar style before enigma even existed. second, what is really being heard is a common set of influences. both acts draw influences from mike oldfield (particularly the incantations disc), tangerine dream, cocteau twins, dead can dance, spk and philip glass, particularly the record koyaanisqatsi. third, the level of similarity is not particularly high; the most obvious example of dissimilarity is that delerium uses live female vocals whereas enigma only used samples. while they may sound similar to people that are not immersed in electronic music or are unfamiliar with the general style, those that listen to a lot of electronic music will mostly argue that delerium is no more similar to enigma than the rolling stones were to the beatles or mozart was to brahms. the only similarity in the two acts is that they operate in roughly the same genre. the actual dissimilarity of the acts is enough for me to personally enjoy this record and yet have little regard for much of anything produced by enigma, which i see little but plagiarism in. now, leeb and fulber had probably heard the first enigma disc and they may have taken it as a signal to develop a certain aspect of their pre-existing sound to appeal to a larger audience, the relationship being that enigma popularized a specific sound out of the mid 80s that delerium was involved in establishing and then delerium interpreted the success of that sound as a motive to focus in upon it, positioning delerium as more influential on enigma than enigma was influential on delerium.