Future World Music’s eleventh volume, called Millennium, was released in March 2012. It features two discs; the first one contains the main tracks, while the second one offers the no choir and alternate mixes.
With Millennium, Armen Hambar, the composer of the album, took a rather different and new path. Needless to say that album was highly anticipated by fans – as well as the industry, I guess.
Millennium turns out to be different from the previous volumes, and far from being disappointing. On the contrary!
The main characteristic of Millennium is that it offers many tracks with very uplifting tunes, tracks that build up in an incredible way, leading to intense climaxes, conveying and delivering a full range of emotions, tracks that will offer you a great listening experience, and will probably leave you… speechless. An excellent example of it is “Leap of Faith”, a beautiful cue that, as its title suggests, conveys hope, faith, achievement. In the same category, you may also like a lot “Victory of Life”, with an amazing build up and a truly epic ending; “The Big Reveal”, which reminds a bit of “Ascension” from Volume 7 – Evolution; “Spiritual Awakening”, the most contemplative track of the album, featuring beautiful female vocals… and “Millennium”, which, on the other hand, is a darker track, carried by a beautiful and haunting cello.
The second characteristic of Millennium is the presence of solo female vocals in most of the tracks. The best solos can be found in “Spiritual Awakening” and “Journey to Pandora”. These female vocals give a beautiful and ethereal touch to the tracks, and they are great addition to the orchestra, as they definitely highly contribute to the emotional impact of the music.
Millennium also contains more traditional tracks, with the old Future World Music style that we already know – and love! For example, adventure-packed tracks such as “Glorious Adventure”, that will probably remind you of the successful “Dream Chasers” from Vol. 10 – Immortal Empire. You will also find very epic tracks – Millennium opens with three epic pieces, among which the outstanding “Passion of Victory”. A few tracks later, there is the catchy “Anthem of the World”; then, “Attack of the Titans”, a mix of “some Hard Rock, Classical, Armenian roots and a touch of insanity” according to Armen Hambar. It is undoubtedly an original track, and the result is surprising.
You will even find a hybrid track, mixing orchestral and industrial sounds -“Rise of the Machines” – and a nice musical chaos – “Epic Chaos”.
Millennium ends on a very emotional touch, through “Beautiful”, featuring moving female vocals, and Cara C. on violin – she does an excellent performance.
You might tell me that Millennium doesn’t contain as many “blasting” tracks as the previous Future World Music volumes do. It is true that there is an important proportion of uplifting and emotional tracks in comparison with other albums. These tracks may be a bit less “blasting” and epic – like “Leap of Faith” – but they have an incredible emotional impact. Furthermore, Millennium also offers truly epic tracks, such as “Passion of Victory” and “A Hero Will Rise”, just to name a few.
On a side note, you may notice that the titles perfectly match the cues – or is it the other way round – the cues perfectly matching their titles?
To conclude, Millennium is different from its predecessors, and went beyond my expectations. The strength and originality of this album certainly come from the fact that Armen Hambar managed to easily convey a whole range of emotions through his compositions. Millennium brings a fresh style of music to the Future World Music catalog, and doesn’t simply line up with the other albums. It stands out, with more intense and emotional tracks. Millennium is a wonderful listening experience, and, on the overall, a very good album.