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Suggested Albums: Alan Simon : The Excalibur Trilogy : "Excalibur II, The Celtic Ring" (2007) by Eliseo Mauas Pinto

This ambitious project by Alan Simon comprises a trilogy of album releases:
Excalibur,The Legend of the Celts (1999)
Excalibur II, The Celtic Ring (2007)
Excalibur III - The Origins (unreleased)

Official site of The "Excalibur" CD and DVD albums :

To the delight of fans of the King Arthur's Saga, the mystic developed between the fifth and sixth centuries by the history and deeds of the legendary King Arthur Artus, whom along with his loyal knights resisted the Anglo-Saxon invasions, revives again by the hand of the Breton author, composer, and producer Alan Simon। The Bretons, heirs of the body of legends spread by their Welsh brothers, return to the music scene through a conceptual album full of original compositions and with no precedents.
Excalibur II, The Celtic Ring
On the year 2007 the second part of the trilogy was issued under the title of "Excalibur II, The Celtic Ring" on which took part an outstanding list of musicians such as Musicians: Jon Anderson (Yes), Alan Parsons, John Wetton, Justin Hayward (Moody Blues), Maddy Prior (Steeleye Span), Les Holroyd (Barclay James Harvest), John Helliwell (Supertramp), Jacqui McShee (Pentangle), Martin Barre (Jethro Tull).
We might say this is a well balanced album, where vocal tracks alternate with lively jigs such as "Tuatha De Danann" . A nice highlight is Jon Anderson's (Yes) "Circle Of Life" . Karen Casey and Maddy Prior add a good balance between male and female singers. The presence of Andreas Vollenweider entwines his harp playing with the lovely voice of Jacqui McShee and her Pentangle, "Sacrifice" is other nice track. Moody Blues Justin Hayward outstands on two occasions here, they being "Earth & Sky" and "Celtic Heart." repeated by a full marching band towards the end of the album.

Track List
Track List01. Celtic Ring (Alan Parsons, Alan Simon) 02. Lugh (Alan Simon, John Wetton) 03. Tuatha de Danann (Flook, Alan Simon) 04. Circle of Life (Alan Simon) 05. Girl & The Demon (Karan Casey, Alan Simon)06. Dragon Breath (Fairport Convention, Alan Simon) 07. Secret Garden (Maddy Prior, Alan Simon) 08. Pilgrims (Fairport Convention, Alan Simon) 09. Brennan Mac Finn (Flook, Alan Simon) 10. Sacrifice (Alan Simon, Andreas Vollenweider) 11. Earth & Sky (Justin Hayward, Alan Simon) 12. Shadow and Light (Alan Simon) 13. Call (Barclay James Harvest, Les Holroyd, Alan Simon) 14. Anwynn (Alan Simon, Didier Squiban) 15. Celtic Heart (Kelc'h Unan & Daou) (Justin Hayward, Alan Simon) 16. Celtic Heart (Kelc'h Tri) (Alan Simon)

Excalibur III - Celts Odyssey
The third part was supposed to come out on 2008,still unreleased
Moreover, Alan Simon's new novel "Excalibur, the circle of Dragon" released in March 2008 was well received and will be in pocket release in March 2009 before the release in October 2009 of a volume called "Excalibur 2 prophecy of Merlin", second volume of fantasy trilogy taking the reader on the trail of the young Merlin (Pascal Petiot Editions).

Last Words
It should be noted that King Arthur's legend had already been developed earlier in 1974 by the English keyboardist Rick Wakeman (ex-Yes) in his memorable album "Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table", which also includes narration, choir and orchestra, with own compositions, and part of the legendary trilogy along with the albums 'The six wives of Henry VIII' and ¨ "Journey to the Center of the Earth."
From a Celtic perspective, more spiritual and mystical, is the conception of the album 'The Mist of Avalon' by the outstanding Breton harpist Alan Stivell remarking his desired return for the release of the Celtic nation. Similar conception resembles the lovely "Arthur, The King" by Maddy Prior (click here for review)
All three albums highlight the conceptual figure of King Arthur as a symbol of peace and unity.
It is noteworthy that Simon never made references to 'The Lady of the Lake' as did Stivell and Wakeman, there is also a theme of 'The Call of Galahad' amazingly similar to a theme of English poet and musician Peter Hammill: 'This side of the Looking Glass'.

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