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Labyrinth CDs
Artist: Various
Label: Proost 
Length: each cd: 11/64.39x

One of the hallmarks of the more creative side of the alternative worship movement is a desire to find what is best in the traditions of the church and to re-imagine it within the worshippers's own context. That desire is what lies behind the work of a mixture of groups who have taken the medieval concept of using labyrinths as an aid to prayer and recreated it in a modern day cathedral.

The labyrinth is a trail which partakers walk slowly, while a booklet and CD guide them through a process of preparation for worship, contemplative worship and then preparation to return to the world outside. Two CDs are available, one with a spoken commentary leading the listener through the meditations intended for use while travelling the labyrinth, and the other, used in practice for non-English speaking visitors, which is mostly instrumental.

The music is largely meditative in style, usually led by swooping keyboard sounds. It is well produced and draws influences from a diverse range of cultures--some eastern influences become clear as the recording progresses giving a couple of passages a feel reminiscent of artists like Dead Can Dance.

For casual listening or free meditation, the mostly-instrumental version is probably the most sensible choice, but the recording with voice-over is so prepared that with a little imagination the listener can partake from home. The labyrinth can certainly be an interesting way to explore new approaches to meditation and worship, and the team behind this one have brought their musical experience to bear, resulting in an excellent package.

James Stewart  06/17/2000


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