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China is a 1979 album by the Greek artist Vangelis. Although he had never been to China, he employed Chinese instruments and composing styles on this concept album.

Tracks

  • Chung Kuo (5:31)
  • The Great March (2:01)
  • The Dragon (4:13)
  • The Plum Blossom (2:36)
  • The Tao of Love (2:44)
  • The Little Fete (3:01)
  • Yin & Yang (5:48)
  • Himalaya (10:53)
  • Summit (4:30)

Instruments and style

Vangelis plays synthesizers, drum machines, electric piano ("The Tao of Love"), piano ("The Great March", "The Plum Blossom", "Himalaya"), various Chinese flutes and plucked string instruments. Featured artists are Michel Ripoche (violin on "The Plum Blossom") and Yeung Hak-Fun and Koon Fook Man (narrative on "The Little Fete").

The album was conceived during a very active period in Vangelis' recording career, during which he explored the possibilities of electro-acoustic composing. Vangelis employs his synthesizer arsenal to the fullest, generating sound effects (steam locomotive on "Chung Kuo") and various Chinese-sounding patches on all tracks.

Concepts used range from classical Chinese poetry ("The Little Fete" is a poem by the 8th century Li-Po, translated by J.C. Cooper) to revolutionary history of the People's Republic of China ("The Long March").

Album cover

Album by Vangelis

Released

1979

Recorded

1978

Genre

Electronica

Length

41 min 17 s

Record label

Polydor

Professional reviews

Allmusic.com review

4.5 stars out of 5

link

Vangelis Chronology

Hypothesis
(1978)

China
(1979)

Odes
(1979)

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