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ECM New Series ECM 1525
180g audiophile high quality pressing, made in Germany. Gatefold cover.
Grading cover: MINT/SS | Grading vinyl: MINT/SS
"Recorded in an Austrian monastery, it brilliantly combined two of the more respectable of the era’s chill-out genres – Gregorian chants and Scandinavian jazz – and broke new ground. The sound of Garbarek’s glacial saxophone weaving in and out of the Hilliards’ ethereal hymns was a unique marriage of the modern and the medieval and it sold millions. It is still a classic." (Sunday Express)
"Fearlessly searching for new conceptions of sound and not caring where he found them, Garbarek joined hands with the classical early-music movement, improvising around the four male voices of the Hilliard Ensemble. Now here was a radical idea guaranteed to infuriate both hardcore jazz buffs and the even more pristine more-authentic-than-thou folk in early music circles. Yet this unlikely fusion works stunningly well ... Recorded in a heavily reverberant Austrian monastery, the voices sometimes develop in overwhelming waves, and Garbarek rides their crest, his soprano sax soaring in the monastery acoustic, or he underscores the voices almost unobtrusively, echoing the voices, finding ample room to move around the modal harmonies yet applying his sound sparingly." (AllMusic)
"Officium has aged beautifully and remains a pinnacle of nostalgia in my life as a listener, for it provided some of the most delectable nourishment imaginable at a time when my budding mind was ravenously hungry for new sounds." (ECM; Between space and sound)