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Форум » Румынская музыка (Muzica romaneasca) » Исполнители и группы » Enigma ())
Enigma
ArsenieДата: Среда, 05.11.2008, 18:31 | Сообщение # 1
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Enigma is not a band but a project. It was started years back by a man named Michael Creţu. He made himself a philosophy and started to create music from it. “Old rules and habits have to be rejected and dismissed, so that something new can be created", he said, and the results have been millions of records sold on a world wide basis. The word „Enigma” is actually greek and translates into "Riddle”. As an extra twist, Creţu once said it could have been fun if no one knew who actually created the music, which is famous for its unique, mysterious style and sound. This desire was however quickly spoiled by the popularity of the project.

So who is actually the man behind the name of Enigma? Michael Creţu was born on May 18th, 1957 in Bucharest. In his younger days he studied music in Bucharest, but his studies also brought him to Paris and Frankfurt. Michael Creţu came to Germany at the beginning of the 1970s and began a study in classical music in Frankfurt. During that period he played in several groups to earn money for his study. After earning a degree in Germany, he realized that classical music wasn't for him, and he changed his style. As he said it himself, he started making money on music the day he sold his piano.

He got to know Frank Farian an worked in 1979 for Boney M. "Oceans Of Fantasy" and Cherry Laine "I´m hot". In 1980 Creţu won his first gold record for his production work, after associating with more or less famous artists.

After this he concentrated on the euro-dance chanteuse Sandra Lauer, whom he got to know in 1982. In 1988 they married on Ibiza where they are living now and have their own recording studio there. Creţu has also won gold record awards for producing albums for his wife Sandra, and multi-instrumentalist-composer Michael Oldfield. Since 1985 Creţu has produced seven albums for Sandra, including her first international hit single, "Maria Magdalena" which went to Number One in more than 30 countries.

Apart from his works for other acts, Michael Cretu released also some albums under his own name: "Moon, Light & Flowers" (1979), "Legionare" (1983), "Die Chinesische Mauer" (1985) & "The Invisable Man" (1985). However, his solo efforts before taking the name Enigma failed to earn U.S. distribution.


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ArsenieДата: Среда, 05.11.2008, 18:31 | Сообщение # 2
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He then decided to make a philosophy, as stated in the beginning, and create his music from that. Working with a couple of other artists, David Fairstein in particular, he created a music project that no one knew would become the great success it did. It was his first album under the Enigma name,„MCMXC a.D.”, with which he first smelled massive succes. Released in late 1990 in Europe, and in 1991 in the United States, the album suddenly made him one of the most succesful international stars. However, prior to achieving this huge succes, Frank Peterson had some disagreements with Creţu and he left the project in 1991.

Michael Creţu quickly earned a platinum award for the release of „MCMXC a.D.”, that is by many still considered the far best installment in the Enigma series. One of the key songs from the album is ‚Sadeness”, which is intentionally spelled that way. The French lyrics in "Sadeness Part I" are actually a dark homage to the Marquis de Sade, an eighteenth-century erotic novel writer from France from whose name the word sadism comes. If you’re curious to know more about the song’s meaning and huge controversies it created, you can find the whole story here: http://www.enigmamusic.com/reviews/biography.html

A mixture of sixth-century Gregorian chants, bewitching French whispers - provided by Cretu's wife, Sandra - and hypnotic, ethereal music set to intoxicating dance rhythms, "MCMXC a.D." is definitely more a cathartic aural journey, than a collection of individual songs, a gorgeous swirl of images that lift you up somewhere between earth and sky.

A characteristic of the entire Enigma style, no matter how much it changed with each album, is that the whole album has a perfect unity. Talking about his first album, Michael Cretu said: "I conceived the whole album as a single song. The words and sounds are like flashlight beams. They don't show you everything. You have to look at what's between the lines. The great misconception of people who have only heard 'Sadeness' is that the whole album is filled with chanting. This is a complete piece of work with many different levels and sounds. 'Sadeness' is only one piece of the puzzle".

In terms of record sales, the album „MCMXC a.D.”is thought to have sold over 30 million copies worldwide. The album stayed for 282 weeks on the Billboard charts and dropped off shortly before their second album, "The Cross of Changes" was released in 1993. By January of 1991 "Sadeness Part I" had reached Number One in seven European countries: Germany (where it eventually became Germany's biggest-selling single ever), Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, the UK and Greece. The album ultimately became No. 1 in 24 countries, 17 times platinum, 25 times gold and in the USA as well gold.


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ArsenieДата: Среда, 05.11.2008, 18:31 | Сообщение # 3
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Creţu had not yet hit the top, though. On his second album in the Enigma name, ”The Cross of Changes”, you find one of the most popular tracks he ever made. „Return To Innocence” is recognized by most people. Even though there was a lawsuit involved when Creţu used a sample from a taiwanese tribe in the song, it remains a classic hit that opened the door fully for Creţu and his amazing project.

Haunting, evocative, mysterious, and magnificent, Enigma's "Cross of Changes" offers nine musical explorations of sound and sensation that dazzle and amaze. The songs unfold in rolling waves, each more complex and richly layered than the last, yet each fully capable of standing alone as a musically satisfying experience. The standout track on this disc is "Return to Innocence," which combines Native American chanting, Celtic harmonies, and a deceptively simple lyric to devastating effect.

In 1996, we finally got the third installment in the project. The atmosphere remained true to the series, but this time a little more futuristic in its approach. ‚Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi!” contained another massive hit in „Beyond The Invisible”. Enigma’s 4th album was released in 2000 under the name „The Screen Behind The Mirror”. This material featured various samples from Carl Orff's Carmina Burana, and was host to the hit songs „Gravity of Love” and „Push The Limits”. In this album, Creţu gave many subtle answers about his opinions considering the world today. Further on, Creţu took his Enigma project in an entirely new direction with his 5th album, Voyageur”, which was released in 2003.


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ArsenieДата: Среда, 05.11.2008, 18:31 | Сообщение # 4
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Besides a Greatest Hits album for the Enigma project, Creţu has been producing a lot of music for his wife and various other artists. ATB may be one of the artists you want to look into. He has also produced the hymn for the most prestigeous soccer tournament in the world for clubs, The Champions League.

Sixth in a series of never-quite-the-same recordings from Michael Creţu , ”A Posteriori” (released in september 2006) has the capacity to delight one camp of Enigma fans while it perplexes another. Less overtly sensual than earlier recordings and devoid of female singers in lead-vocalist roles (no Ruth-Ann, no Sandra), „A Posteriori” nevertheless stands as a worthwhile recording that at its best moments handsomely displays Creţu's talents for effective songcraft and imaginative sound design. „A Posteriori” ( meaning in latin „what comes after”, probably suggesting „something taken out of own experience”) transports its listener into a magical, mystical world of sound, a unique place which seems to be between sky and earth, body and soul, ration and intuition.


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ArsenieДата: Среда, 05.11.2008, 18:32 | Сообщение # 5
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