Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Sarah McLachlan-Mirrorball (1999)


Mirror mirror on the ball, who's the most enchanting of them all? The answer to that riddle could be any number of unique individuals, but if it was the Canadian alternative rock singer gazing into the magical orb, her own reflection would reply that it is her who is so. Well I myself sure was enchanted by her more than a decade ago when I first heard her magical live performance of her Grammy Award-winning hit, "I Will Remember You", on the soft rock radio airwaves. There was like no other folk song in the universe quite like it, being captured by her alluring, silky voice and its distinctive yodel whenever her voice rose to sing a higher note, the melancholy chords coupled with her touching words of ' I'm so tired, but I can't sleep, standing on the edge of something much too deep ' (that continues to be my favorite line from the verses) and 'I will remember you; will you remember me?' from the chorus gripping me as the slow, lonely rhythm of the guitar filled my ears. I would always get so happy whenever I heard the familiar cheers of the live crowd at the beginning, knowing that this beauty of a song was about to start. Interesting thing is, I had believed, for the longest time, that it was only this live version that she recorded—and the sole reason why "Mirrorball" ended up in my music collection—until I realized that Sarah recorded her original version for the soundtrack to a movie I'd never seen nor heard of before: "The Brothers McMullen". Now I have a vested interest in that said soundtrack, and perhaps even the movie itself. Not only in those, but also in a couple of other Sarah McLachlan albums I've never owned—"Fumbling Towards Ecstasy" and "Surfacing", which this "Mirrorball" live compilation has much of its recordings derived from. On one of the pair is another beauty of a song I'd heard via the soft rock radio airwaves numerous times as well: "Adia". I've always loved the sweet, graceful flow to this one, particularly during the chorus when the memorable words of 'we are born innocent' float over the music and her lofty voice rises until its almost barely audible. It's that angelic loftiness that I really love about Sarah, and why I'm further captivated by "The Path Of Thorns (Terms)", plus the piano ballads "Do What You Have To Do" (her second-to-last delivery of ' don't know how ' is a truly almighty moment!) and "Angel" (yes, we have one more 'Angel' song that is elegant and heavenly on the ears) and one that I've become totally entranced by: "Fear". The latter one of that list had already gripped me because of the suspenseful, moody ambiance from the very beginning, but it was when those hauntingly high-soaring words of ' but I feel ' suddenly broke through that suspenseful ambiance and that upbeat rock rhythm swept in that I found myself completely electrified! Then there's something equally haunting by the way she sings 'nothing to gain so much to lose' before the final beat drop at the end. The one right after is almost just as haunting, but in a fun kind of way—"Possession"; aside from the upbeat alternative rock edge, though, the only real suspense lies with Sarah and her determination to get the man and all of the sexy things she's gonna do to him once she gets him. Then there's a trio that I simply adore simply because of the caressing glow that they cast upon me: "Hold On" (I like her lasting breathless ' it's gonna hurt like hell ' at the end), "Fumbling Towards Ecstasy" (her constant ' I won't fear love ' amidst the breezy music grows and grows on me) and "I Love You" (there's those three magic words again; how coincidental that three of last four full albums I've featured have had this exact title for a song). Indeed, the "Mirrorballl" doesn't tell a lie; Sarah McLachlan is the most enchanting of them all:

1. Building A Mystery
2. Hold On
3. Good Enough
4. I Will Remember You
5. Adia
6. I Love You
7. Do What You Have To Do
8. The Path Of Thorns (Terms)
9. Fear
10. Possession
11. Sweet Surrender
12. Ice Cream
13. Fumbling Towards Ecstasy
14. Angel

*****BONUS TRACKS*****

15. Mary
16. Into The Fire
17. Wait

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