December 04, 2000 12:00 PM

Enya (Reprise/Warner Bros.)

Album of the week

Although Enya has sold 44 million albums worldwide in her 12-year career, not even some of the reclusive Irish singer’s most devoted fans would recognize her if they bumped into her at the corner pub. But there is no mistaking Enya’s ethereal signature sound on this masterful album, her fifth and her first since 1995’s The Memory of Trees.

While critics have variously categorized Enya’s work as New Age, pop and even classical, there is no doubt that she has created her own genre by lacing traditional Celtic tunes with haunting melodies and enchanting, multilayered vocals that sound like lullabies. Some of the songs on A Day Without Rain may sound familiar. “Only Time” is reminiscent of her hit “Orinoco Flow (Sail Away)” from her 1988 debut album, Watermark. Once again Enya collaborates with her longtime producer Nicky Ryan and his wife, Roma, whose ambiguous lyrics (“Ever stop and listen/ You don’t need a reason/ Let the day go on and on”) help create a soothing mood.

Bottom Line: Perfect for a rainy day

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