(01 October 2004) Delerium, the masters of electronic ethereal world-moodiness have released their collection of greatest hits entitled The Best of Delerium (Nettwerk Records (USA) 2004). This release features some of Delerium's best-known songs from their Semantic Spaces album through their most recent album Chimera. Additionally, fans are treated to new remixes of "Truly," "Underwater,"
and "Silence." Most welcome, however, are the two previously unreleased tracks: "Paris" featuring french chanteuse, Aude, and "You and I" featuring Zoe Johnston.
The Best of Delerium offers a brilliant perspective of the ensemble's lush and innovative music. It is interesting to listen to early songs like "Flowers Become Screens" and "Incantion," (both from Semantic Spaces and both featuring Kristy Thirsk) when Delerium's music was still rooted in the
industrial/gothic/enigmatic sound and compare them with songs like "After All" and "Truly," which reflect Delerium's recent transition to more pop-oriented sound.
Not that the change has been bad--if anything, it shows that Rhys Fulber and Bill Leeb have honed their songwriting and production skills. And it will be interesting to see what sonic explorations
Delerium will take on their next album.
Although now ubiquitous, "Silence," featuring Sarah McLachlan, remains one of Delerium's best musical moments. Who knew that Sarah's sonorous and heavenly vocals would be so perfectly suited to the electronic whirrs, beats and Gergorian monks that inflitrate the song?
Kristy Thirsk, who became associated with Delerium's "core" female-vocal driven style can be heard on the subperbly gothic/trip-hop song "Flower's become Screens" and the riveting dance track "Incantation." Frontwoman Leigh Nash of folk/rock band Sixpence None the Richer also grabs to lead vocal spots on the eerie "Innocente" and pop-laden "Run for It."
The two new tracks are also magnificent. Aude worked with Delerium on "Terra Firma" from their Poem album--so it can be assumed that the bonus track "Paris" is from that session. Fans of Delerium may be a bit surprised by this one--the melody is
lifted directly from Pachelbel's "Canon" and Aude sings in French. Although the opening of the song borders on the slightly cheesy, that the song ultimately displays its own certain sweet charm! The melody is everso memorable.
Zoe Johnston--who has worked with Brit bands Faithless and Bent--lends her throaty alto vocals on "You and I." The opening saloon-piano and Abba-esque melody are quite innovative for a Delerium song. Think Annie Lennox singing with Erasure. "You and I" is an attractive song that showcases Zoe's ever-intriguing voice.
The Best of Delerium is a perfect starting place for newcomers to the Delerium sound.
Evocative, haunting and propulsive, the album takes the listener on a fantastic exotic aural voyage.--Justin Elswick in Utah and Russ Elliot in New York