Why is Enya’s Watermark on my best 1,000 albums ever list?
Celtic and new age-y, at turns gentle and pleasant or moving and beautiful.
Some stats & info about Enya – Watermark
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? Celtic, New Age, Chill Music
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – not ranked!
- All Music’s rating – 5 out of 5 stars
- When was Watermark released? 1988
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #919 out of 1,000
Enya’s Watermark on Spotify
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective take on what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.
What does Enya’s Watermark mean to me? What does it make me feel? Why is it exciting or compelling?
I will get to Enya’s Watermark, I promise. But first I’m going to talk about a truly hilarious, well written, and mostly misunderstood television show which aired from 2009-2016 called Cougar Town.
The reason why it’s vastly underrated and didn’t become a much bigger hit is simply because of its name – something that creator and showrunner Bill Lawrence fully acknowledges and even poked fun at from time to time using the title card of the show.
Cougar Town was initially slated to focus on the dating life of a divorced mom, played by Courtney Cox (thus the cougar in Cougar Town). Quickly though, Lawrence realized that the magic of the show would come in the form of the friendship and daily lives of its full main cast (Cox, Christa Miller, Busy Philipps, Dan Byrd, Josh Hopkins, and Ian Gomez) – who would go on to become the self-appointed “Cul-de-Sac Crew.”
If Seinfeld excelled by being a show about nothing, Cougar Town excelled by being a show about friends hanging out, drinking wine (lots of wine), and being goofy somewhere in the Florida suburbs.
For me, the goofy genius of the show came together during an early episode that focused on the weirdo activities that people get up to at night when alone and left to their own devices. And, yes!, it features Enya’s “Orinoco Flow,” which a wonderfully transporting and delightful new Celtic, new age-y song that maps brilliantly against the wacko doings of the Crew. This clip chops up the segments a bit from that episode but you’ll get the idea just fine.
And here’s “Orinco Flow” in full.
I’ll admit that in my childhood, “Enya” was something of an eye-rolling cliché amongst my friends, representing lame music that we associated with elevator music or some such. But just as Cougar Town was widely misjudged, I’m here to say that so too was Enya, my friends!
On a serious note, songs like “Storms in Africa” wash over you in the gentlest and pleasant-est kind of way.
And meanwhile, “Exile” is incredibly moving, melancholy, and beautiful.