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Oystein Ramfjord's project, Amethystium, creates ethereal, mysterious aural impressions on his debut release, Odonata. Although this album officially came out on August 14, 2001, it had already achieved significant popularity and airplay on his website, where it has been extremely well-received in both the new age and electronica genres. As the offerings from this talented Norwegian composer tend to be melodious and relaxing, and have a pleasant variety of timbres and cadences which maintain listeners' interest, their attraction is quite understandable. "Opaque" could be music for submariners, with its echoing sonar tones. "Enchantment" has a Middle Eastern influence, while "Avalon" offers delicate crystalline chimes. "Arcane Voices" includes Gregorian chanting interwoven with percussion. Ethnic influences can also be heard in the Sanskrit vocalizations on "Opaque" and the Buddhist chanting of the opening to "Lhasa." Yet, all these diverse influences are melded together into a harmonious whole that rings delightfully to the ear. In all, this is an elegant album, and its ambient soundscapes will draw many casual listeners into becoming Amethystium fans. Definitely recommended.

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