Various Artists, 1994

The joined forces of Simon Jeffes, Nigel Kennedy, Andy Sheppard, Nana Vasconcelos, Jane Siberry, Alex Gifford and many more come together in an inspiring concentration of diverse talent.

An international album of truly original sounds.


  • A very special disc... "Arcane" is a concentration of diverse musicians brought together in August 1992 at the Real World studios in Wiltshire for a week of spontaneous recordings and collaborations. The Grid's Alex Gifford and the late leader of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Simon Jeffes (whose death in 1997 at the age of 48 robbed the music world of a rare talent) then produced this set of tracks into one of the most exciting releases to emerge from this cross-cultural explosion. Billy Cobham, Andy Sheppard, Jane Siberry, Ayub Ogada, Nigel Kennedy, Nana Vasconcelos all made contributions and this remains one of the finest Real World releases. Picadilly Records (UK)
  • Arcane lives up to its name. It is secret, mysterious and esoteric - it’s also smart, dazzling and brilliant. December 1994/January 1995 Trade Wind (UK)
  • ...the chemistry is so right... ...each song and cinematic ambient instrumentation has its own beauty and harmony. Blues & Soul (1994) (UK)
  • Truly international, but retaining a quirky Englishness. 2-10 November 1994 On (UK)
  • The exceptional... ...with crisply defined sounds and textures, and the performers themselves are of the highest calibre. Canberra Times (1995) (Australia)
  • This album is exceptional... ...a sublime, delicately uplifting, musical mind massage. Straight No Chaser (1994) (UK)
  • ..they converge ambient art songs... ...svelte Brazilian jazz improvisations and serene world music atmospheres Billboard (1995) (USA)
  • No pretension... ...just a finely tuned sense of what music is... The Entertainer (1995) (Australia)