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Delerium
Bill Leeb and Rhys Fulber

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Delerium - Bill & Rhys"Delerium is the most prolific side-project of Front Line Assembly's Bill Leeb and Rhys Fulber. Their first album was released in 1987, a debut which was followed by seven similar sounding records. The best way to describe Delerium music of this era is to compare it to background music of scary movies: dark ambient electronic sounds, with occasional distorted male vocals. It sure shows the more refined side of the industrial labeled FLA, and provides interesting material for horror and thriller movie scores. Fans of 'In The Nursery' should check out early Delerium material.
In 1994, Delerium introduced female vocals to their multi-layered keyboard arrangements, by hiring Kristy Thirsk (Rose Chronicles) to provide the angelic voices. This new approach introduced Delerium to a new audience, as they became the skilled artists mixing electronic dance with heavenly ethereal voices, bearing comparisons to Enigma.
Capitalising on the success of Semantic Spaces, the duo embarked on a much more ambitious project, their 1997 release Karma, where they worked with Kristy Thirsk, Sarah McLachlan, Jacqui Hunt, and sampled extracts from Dead Can Dance and Lisa Gerrard songs. Karma was the last joined effort between Leeb and Fulber, as the latter decided to leave the formation and concentrate on his own work.
Bill Leeb continued with the same formula, by releasing Poem in 2000."
-- DJ Avalanche, musicfolio.com, 9/01

 Delerium Discography - Album / CD Reviews


1987: Faces, Forms and Illusions

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***¼ 1988: Morpheus audio
From the pre-Semantic Spaces era, 'Morpheus' stands as the best display of dark-ambient music that Leeb and Fulber produced. Menacing samples with hauting soundscapes, perfect for creepy horror movie soundtracks.
-- musicfolio.com

1989: Syrophenikan audio
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1990: Stone Tower audio
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Delerium - Spiritual Archive*** 1991: Spiritual Archives audio

"The menace generated by this music is quite palpable - a mix of the grotesque and the beautiful, a gothic horror film of white lace and multiple ketchup-spattered disembowellings.
(...) Almost all the tracks are variations on a single stylistic theme (although all are quite distinct). Dark, brooding synths lurk over an intricate soundscape of effects with the occasional choral effect, scream or growl popping up occasionally for punctuation. There's a definite medieval feel (Gregorian chant bounces in and out in a couple of places, as do clanging bells) and just the slightest hint of a Middle Eastern influence at times. The whole thing is atmospheric as hell and really demands listening to with headphones on.
-- Al Crawford, archive.awrc.com, 92

1992: Euphoric (EP) audio
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1994: Spheres Iaudio
"Spheres represents a definite change in direction for the duo. Gone is the pseudo-occult feel, the chanting monks are no more, and in their place we find...space, the final frontier. Bill and Rhys seem to have tired of metaphorically lurking in dungeons and have instead decided to go boldly where only several dozen German space-rock groups and a significant proportion of the techno fraternity have gone before."
-- Al Crawford, archive.awrc.com, 94

1994: Speres IIaudio
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Delerium - Semantic Spaces ***½ 1994: Semantic Spaces audio
"This is a drastic departure from all the previous works of Bill Leeb & Rhys Fulber, although it has some references to older material, like older Delerium and some Intermix, though it has very little to do with their main project Front Line Assembly. This is ambient-pop in the vein of Enigma or Deep Forest, with a twist of their own. Yes, Leeb and Fulber are making pop music! This album even entered the Canadian top-40 and received quite a bit of radio airplay for the two pop songs 'Flowers Become Screens'and 'Incantation', making it the most successful project these two Vancouverians has ever released. A bit ironic perhaps, but hardly surprising if you consider the apparent lack of commercial potential in their other work. "
-- www.ludd.luth.se/~h-son/cd/d/semantic_spaces.html

*** 1995: Reflections I audio
"Collection of songs from 1988-'93 from Bill Leeb, Rhys Fulber side project (Frontline Assembly). Best of covers the first four albums with remastered tracks. Two bonus tracks per volume with 'Embryo' and 'Brainwaves' on volume one. "
-- amazon.com reviews

*** 1995: Reflections II audio

Best of - Vol 2 - from the pre-Semantic Spaces era.

Delerium- Karma ****½ 1997: Karmaaudio
"a powerful manifestation of ideas culled from Leeb's and Fulber's musical decade together. The duo set about sampling sounds from around the world, and did exactly that - among the sampled instruments listener's will find Middle Eastern percussion, wooden and bamboo flutes, Indian instruments and calls to prayer from many different countries.

The pinnacle of Karma's power, however, lies within its rich array of contributing vocalists. Nettwerk artists Sarah McLachlan, Kristy Thirsk, Single Gun Theory's Jacqui Hunt, and Camille Henderson each bring their unique styles to this project. As well, Dead Can Dance frontwoman Lisa Gerrard approved the use of her sampled vocals for the ethereal Forgotten Worlds. And, as for Delerium's trademark inclusion of monastic chants, the duo preferred this time to find a choir and recreate the Gregorian melodies in a Vancouver church. "
-- radiomoi.com

Delerium - Poem*** 2000: Poem audio
"The sound on this album is exactly as one would expect from the more recent Delerium releases, with the sort of happy electronics and very breezy instrumentals over a backdrop of world influenced rhythms and Gregorian chants. This time with one crucial difference, vocals. This time we see that only 2 songs are instrumental, where as the rest are songs featuring various songstresses as Aude, Leigh Nash of Sixpence None the Richer, Mediaeval Baebes, and in a strange variation off of the ethereal theme that has defined Delerium, Matthew Sweet, marking the first time male vocals have been used."
-- Jed Hartgrove, Last Sigh.com

Delerium - Chimera*** 2003: Chimera audio
Tracklisting: 1.Love featuring Zoe Johnson. 2.After All featuring Jael (of Lunik). 3.Just A Dream featuring Margaret Far. 4.Run For It featuring Leigh Nash. 5.Trulyfeaturing Nerina Pallot. 6.Serenity. 7.Touched featuring Rachel Fuller. 8.Forever After featuring Sultana. 9.Fallenfeaturing Rani. 10.Orbit Of Me featuring Leigh Nash. 11.Magic featuring Julee Cruise. 12.Eternal Odyssey 13.Returning featuring Kirsty Thirsk.
"Ever since 1994’s superb ‘Semantic Spaces’, swiftly followed by the mesmerising ‘Karma’ in 1997, Delerium have been edging closer and closer to pure pop, rather than alternative ethereal music. ‘Poem’, released 3 years ago was the first sign that co-writer Bill Leeb wanted more than one solitary dance floor smash hit than Silence, and has been watering down the Delerium sound ever since with a succession of dance remixes that have failed to ignite mass interest. Now, with the danger of alienating the very people who originally found ‘Semantic Spaces’ and ‘Karma’ so tremendously appealing, ‘Chimera’ has delved further into pop chart territory than ever before. Having said that, the album is still reasonably enjoyable, if you can get your head around the fact that Bill Leeb and his trusty sidekick Rhys Fulber have actually re-united to produce such a poppy album in the first place. It’s certainly true to say that both the positives and negatives of ‘Chimera’ are scrambling to come out on top of each other. For every brisk, inventive dance floor smash hit, such as After All, there is the sickly sweet dirge of Run For It. And for all the diversity of the estranged Indian-style chants of Forever After, or the excellent hip-hop trance of Orbit Of Me, there is the dumbed-down pop nonsense of Truly, Touched or the cheesy Eternal Odyssey, complete with Adagio For Strings samples, I feel a yawn coming on. Elsewhere, its more balanced out between ethereal and pop, with all the ups and downs you would expect from an album of it’s kind. However, with a bonus disc than contains 3 extra tracks and CD ROM video’s of previous classics, such as Silence, Flowers Become Screens and the new single Aria, you won’t be grumbling about value for money. (...) Yet I feel this is likely to both estrange their most avid of followers whilst fall short of appealing to the teenage dance market that this it is unquestionably aimed at. "
-- barcodezine.com

Delerium - Best of Delerium***¾ 2004: Best of audio
Tracklisting: 01. Flowers Become Screens feat. Kristy Thirsk 02. Silence feat. Sarah McLachlan 03. Paris feat. Aude * 04. Truly feat. Nerina Pallot ( Wise Buddah Radio Edit ) 05. Terra Firma feat. Aude 06. Incantation feat. Kristy Thirsk 07. After All feat. Jael 08. Underwater feat. Rani ( Above and Beyond 21st Century Mix ) 09. Run For It feat. Leigh Nash 10. Remembrance ( Instrumental ) 11. You And I feat. Zoe Johnston * 12. Innocente ( Falling In Love ) feat. Leigh Nash 13. Euphoria ( Firefly ) feat. Jacqui Hunt 14. Silence feat. Sarah McLachlan ( Above and Beyond 21st Century Remix ) * indicates new track
"Vancouver based duo Bill Leeb and Rhys Fulber signed their electronic project Delerium to Nettwerk Productions in 1994 and to date the group have released four full length albums on the label - 'Semantic Spaces' (1995), 'Karma' (1997), 'Poem' (2001) and 'Chimera' (2003).Collaborators to date have included Canadian superstar Sarah McLachlan, Julee Cruise, Leigh Nash (of Sixpence None The Richer), Kirsty Hawkshaw, Zoe Johnston and The Mediaeval Babes. This essential ''Best Of'' collection features selected highlights from a full decade of Delerium recordings for the Nettwerk label, with tracks taken from all four studio albums, including the original versions of several singles. Also included are two brand new songs (marked * on the tracklisting above) plus the exclusive 'Above And Beyond' remix from the forthcoming Silence single reissue. 'The Best Of' collection offers an astounding collection of songs for all fans and newcommers to the essential and indispensable world of Delerium."
-- press release

Delerium - Nuages du Monde***½ 2006: Nuages du Monde
Tracklisting: 01. Angelicus (feat. Isabel Bayrakdarian) 02. Extollere (feat. Katharine Blake & Mediæval Bæbes) 03. The way you want it to be (feat. Zoë Johnston) 04. Indoctrination (feat. Kiran Ahluwalia) 05. Self-saboteur (feat. Kristy Thirsk) 06. Tectonic shift 07. Lumenis (feat. Isabel Bayrakdarian) 08. Fleeting instant (feat. Kirsty Hawkshaw) 09. Sister sojourn ghost (feat. Katharine Blake & Mediæval Bæbes) 10. Lost and found (feat. Jaël) 11. Apparition
"... 'Nuages Du Monde' (Clouds of the World) continues the evolution of Delerium from creators of predominantly instrumental filmic sounds capes to a fully-fledged vocal group. Featuring an array of renowned singers, 'Nuages Du Monde' neatly combines the more overtly commercial pop of previous album 'Chimera' (2003) with the lush sensual ambience and cloistered harmonies of 1997s 'Karma', a meld that bridges the gap between world music, new age electronics and modern classical. The album features a number of collaborators new to Delerium, including the accomplished Juno award-winning Punjabi singer Koran Ahluwalia, who dominates one of the more dancefloor friendly album cuts, the heady Bollywood meets 4/4 beats of Indoctrination. Meanwhile, Isabel Bayrakdarian is a highly esteemed Armenian-Canadian soprano with a wonderfully expressive voice, who recently opened gala night at the New York Metropolitan Opera opposite Bryn Terfel in Mozarts 'Marriage Of Figaro' and proved a huge hit in the same role at Londons Royal Opera House. (...) The album also features contribution from a host of Delerium regulars; Faithless vocalist Zoe Johnston, Kristy Thirsk (a stalwart since their 1995 Nettwerk debut 'Semantic Spaces'), and sessions virtuoso Kristy Hawkshaw, whose CV is a veritable whos who of electronic music, including Orbital, BT and Tiesto. However, fans of Deleriums more cinematic moments will not be disappointed by the grandiose Tectonic Shift, a slow-building storm cloud of an instrumental, augmented by sweeping John Barry-esque strings courtesy of arranger Chris Elliott , whilst the haunted Apparition provides 'Nuages Du Monde' with a suitably elegiac conclusion."
-- nettwerk.com
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Recommended Links:

Delerium /FLA / ConjureOne site
Delerium.ca: fan site
 
Similar/Related Artists:

Conjure One | Enigma | Intermix | In The Nursery | Deep Forest | Dead Can Dance | Sarah McLachlan | Love is Colder than Death | Front Line Assembly | Sleepthief

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