The Belgian musician Frank Van Boggaert devised a novel way of deciding what tracks should go on this excellently-presented 'Best Of' collection. He simply allowed his fans to vote for them, making this probably the most democratic album you'll ever hear!
As the title suggests, this brings together tracks from the five albums that FVB had released up until that point (a sixth, Nomads, has seen the light of day since) &, as such, acts as a good guide to his career to date. Frank's music has been compared to Vangelis countless times (something which Frank alludes to with a kind of humourous resignation on the detailed inner sleeve notes) & not without good reason as his music is easily able to equal that of the Greek maestro in terms of grandiose romanticism, spirit-lifting majesty & sheer, heart-melting beauty, as proven by the opening 'Human' where the expertly-executed melodics are embellished by tympanic flourishes while the voice samples (that are not totally dissimilar to Jarre's Zoolook) add the human element alluded to by the title & which hint at the strong ethnic presence that played such a prominent role on the album of the same name. This is expanded on by 'Rorogwela' which is based on a traditional song from The Soloman Islands (& was originally known as Sweet Lullaby by Deep Forest), where the initially serene & romantic mood is heightened as the music gains power, culminating in a rousing climax that will make your heart soar! The more melancolic 'Falling Leaves' provides something of an emotional contrast which might make this one to listen to while ruminating on a love lost! That each track is able to evoke such vivid feelings speaks volumes for FVB's compositional skills, so much so that tracks such as 'Ballet' with its lovely main theme & 'Home By The Sea', where the strong rhythms add real emotion to the initially restful mood, could easily have been the theme to some Hollywood blockbuster (or even a good film, arf!) Likewise the piano work that makes the more up-tempo 'Closer' one of the album's highlights simply has to be heard to be believed, working in unison with the infectious chordal work which graces the chorus & which takes the piece to new dynamic heights & even if those tracks taken from his debut album Colours, namely 'Violet' & 'Blue' (titles that provided little indication of the grandiose music to be found therein!) don't quite match the expertise of the later pieces a good many electronic musicians would still give their right arms to produce something as good.
The album comes to a close via the Vangelis-like bassline heralds "Earth" & some effective piano work too in there too that takes the lead on this fine closing piece, good melodics again showing his skills to fine effect & proving once again that the music of this talented musician is a force to be reckoned with if you like expertly-crafted music that touches your heart with its sheer exhuberance & joyful majesty.
Artist Link: http://www.groove.nl