Update: We were right! Enya did release an album in 2015. On 20 November Dark Sky Island was released. See my album review here.
Original Story, published on 14 July 2014:
When will Enya’s new album be released? As of writing we don’t know. The only information we have is that Enya, Roma and Nicky have been to Abbey Road Studios working on some new material. But while we are waiting, let’s do some qualified guessing on how the album might be. If nothing else it will make the waiting go faster. My! My! Time Flies!
Enya’s last full studio album was And Winter Came, and it was released in November 2008. In today’s music business, for an artist who doesn’t do concerts and seldom gives interviews, six years is a LONG time. But Enya is one of those very few A-list artists who can wait until she’s 100 % ready. Every fan knows that her albums are few and far between. Also, when you have sold over 75 million albums, you can afford to take your time.
A Good, Old Enya Album
When she is waiting this long between each album, though, it is less likely that she will do something radically different on the new release. She could, of course – the label cannot stop her, since her albums will sell no matter what – but she tends to be loyal to her fans. So my guess is that she will make an album in her own, unique style. Simply put: A good, old Enya album.
As of writing, this is what we know:
- The album is partly recorded at Abbey Road Studios
- It will be an album with a classical, orchestral feel
- A concert tour may follow
This is based upon this article on Irish Central and the interview with Nicky Ryan. I think the information that it might be an orchestral album is very interesting. As much as I love synth music and Enya’s voice layering, her music always sounds better with a full orchestra. It is also likely that this orchestral music will be the focus on the upcoming tour since it is music composed to be played live (although we hopefully will get to hear some old, synth based hits too).
Based on this, is it possible to say if it will be a themed album, like The Celts and And Winter Came, or an album with less overall structure – like Watermark or Amarantine? My guess is that it will not be a themed album. Both the classical format and Enya’s discography suggest that it will another album with a romantic and elegant title – but without an overall theme (simply put: it will not be another winter album).
What will an orchestral Enya album sound like? Enya is used to sing before a full orchestra, so that is nothing new. But my guess is that the album will be a mix of the orchestral elements, recorded at Abbey Road Studios with a voice & synth layers recorded at Aigle Studio. An example of this is May It Be from The Lord of the Rings soundtrack. Here we hear London Symphony Orchestra, recorded in London, and voice & synth recorded at . In my opinion this is the best of two worlds; Enya’s unique synth style combined with the epic feel of a full orchestra. One consequence of the orchestral format though is that we probably will get no purely instrumental synth songs, like the classics River or Tea-House Moon. Orchestral versions of Enya’s songs can be heard on the albums by Taliesin Orchestra.
The concept of time has always played an important part in Enya’s lyrics and music. She celebrated her 50th birthday not so long ago. Perhaps we will get some reflections on that on the new album? It is also 25 years since the release of Watermark. There’s a lot of good memories to look back at, and a lot more to look forward to.
At this point it is not a lot that we know about the new album. But the little we know is drawing a fascinating sketch of the release that is under production. It will be exciting to follow this album up until its release, as more and more information becomes available. Stay tuned; This is a great time to be an Enya fan!
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