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Now the Silence by Juan Sanchez
- posted by Robin James on 7/9/2021
Now The Silence by Juan Sanchez
Portraits of twilight and sweet melancholy, emotional, precise, tight fitting and elegant. Now the Silence brings images or ideas from the past into the mind, fears and doubts, strings with piano, growing old together, piano and strings, and one track, “Tolworth” (5:29), presents with a haunting, ethereal vocalist. These are entirely instrumental stories or poems about a piano teacher, the way the moon looks, remembrances from a distance, unhurried discovery, the child who feeds one's soul or lifts the spirit, happy peaceful picturesque feelings, keeping a memory that may be effortless or unwilled, and the long light of the evening hours that signal the summer solstice.

“Alma” (3:58) is a duet, strings and piano, each with equal voices overlaying but not rhyming or responding, they each have a perspective and the two together are the portrait of Alma. “Siempre” (2:35) is a Spanish word meaning forever, always, and constant. The poem is expressed using piano and strings, with sublime pauses and rapid flow, sometimes the strings are submerged, sometimes the piano is supported by the strings.

The final track, “Blue Nights” (5:51) is where the strings take the lead and the piano supports them, a story without words, perhaps about the remembrance of times past, things gone, faces you no longer remember, and what is still to be lost.

This entire album is haunting and profound, sometimes the story is difficult, there is a beauty in the hesitant searching for words, and then cascading ideas tumble forth. Now the Silence is a visitation from a blurred face, passions remembered and lost, the warm sunshine and awkward moments meeting new friends for the first time, now the quietude straggles and endures.

Now the Silence is a semi-finalist in the Spanish Independent Music Awards (MIN), and will be entered into the Latin GRAMMY Awards and the GRAMMY Awards this season.

Very Young Old Man
Luz de Luna
Now The Silence
Blue Nights

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“Woolgathering” -
Rating: Excellent
Monet's Garden by Dean & Dudley Evenson
- posted by Robin James on 7/8/2021
Garden of Earthly Delights
Claude Monet's house and garden is located in Giverny, France, and these recordings were inspired there to musically describe and depict the presence of the water lily pond, Japanese bridge, the flower gardens and more. Field recordings of birds were made in and around the home and gardens of Claude Monet, and the music was recorded later in their studio. These recordings combine flutes and birds with autoharp, harp, synthesizer, and meditation bowls. The feeling is of persistent wisdom and appreciation for the wonderment of life outdoors, 'en plein air.'

Dean and Dudley Evenson have been making music together since 1968, generating over 80 albums and videos as well collaborating with outstanding musicians from around the world, to create music and video that heals and uplifts, while also videotaping the emerging consciousness of the era. In 1979, they founded Soundings of the Planet as a way to share a message of healing and nature through their music.

Rising like a dragonfly from the surface of the pond and searching forever, the flute expresses freely-brushed colors that take precedence over fixed lines and contours, and with the harp, the sound emphasizes shapes and forms at the edge of the place where the day meets the world under the water. "Water Lily Nymphs" (6:01) establishes the journey and path of this album, where the artists have sought to express their perceptions of nature, rather than create exact representations.

Weaving a story of magic and sunshine, flute, harp and bowls combine to rapture and mystery on the walkway through the conservatory of botanical delights, "Enchanted Garden Path" (5:22). Harp floats and flute flitters, the iridescent play of sunshine in a "Field of Flowers" (4:57), the sky is lazy, huge with breezes and bouncing papillons with the polychromatic blossoming sentinels of the season. Music can often resemble a snapshot, a part of a larger reality captured as if by chance.

MONET’S GARDEN is a refreshing tribute to the Impressionist Claude Monet and the many creative insights he brought to our lives. The musicians Dudley and Dean Everson, blending music, nature and spirituality as the primary threads with which to weave the fabric of this life, to fulfill their vision of “Peace Through Music,” which remains the Soundings of the Planet company motto. Their beautiful, peaceful music brings together their instrumental gifts, blended with recordings of natural sounds–streams, bird-songs, wind, ocean waves–continuing to define the constantly emerging New Age musical genre.

Water Lily Nymphs
Wisteria Foot Bridge
Golden Tones
Splendid Irises
Water Garden
Spring Impressions
Enchanted Garden Path
Field of Flowers
Pond Reflections
Cascading Willows
Play of Light
Evening in Giverny
Rating: Excellent
Auroral Magic by Chakuna Machi Asa
- posted by BT Fasmer on 6/28/2021
Chakuna Machi Asa – Auroral Magic Review
People travel long distances to experience the northern lights – one of nature’s most spectacular wonders. It is not only about witnessing the light itself but also about its effect on the psyche. Listening to Chakuna Machi Asa’s album “Auroral Magic” – which is being released today – I’m happy to report that the album has much of the same effect. It offers a genre-defying mix that is both invigorating and relaxing. Indeed, the soundscape seems electrically charged, filled with well-crafted melodies, stories, and magic.

Chakuna Machi Asa (aka Chakuna) is an artist, composer, singer, and producer of sound healing music, chakra music, new age music, ambient piano music, and relaxation music. Throughout her life, she has used sound vibration to activate the awakened natural state of universal being and to inspire personal transformation. She offers music, chant, video teachings, and high vibe energy healing tools such as crystals, handmade wands, and jewelry to encourage individuals to explore their spiritual energy. Chakuna is a 2021 COVR Visionary Awards FINALIST in two categories for her music and crystal jewelry.

Blood of our Ghost
“Auroral Magic” is a 12 track album. The opener “Blood of our Ghost” is that kind of song that you feel as much as hear. The hauntingly beautiful singing and melody leave no listener untouched. The “Can you hear me” instructs us to listen while life, death, blood, and ghost become one. It is the twilight zone that is “Auroral Magic”. It is also a bold opening since it is very different from the rest of the album.

“Elven Magic” sets the atmosphere for the whole album. The sharp synth, vocalization, and ultra-light percussion take us deep into the realm of mysteries and strange creatures. It is superb musical storytelling, taking your mind on an enjoyable ride into the dark unknown. The somewhat abrupt ending makes us pay attention when “Planet Xeron” comes on. The chants are inviting, creating a room of sound that feels both safe and healing. The slow rhythm and angelic humming further intensify this impression. It is one of the finest pieces on the album, a genuine New Age music jewel!

Dancing Reflections
Next out is “Dancing Reflections”. The sound of water, a deep, rumbling synth pad, and gentle piano make up the foundation for this track. You’ll pick up on its reflective mood right away. “The Wind” continues the narrative effortlessly; It is a breathtakingly beautiful piece with a hint of improvisation. It is impossible to tell where or how it will end, which I guess is the very essence of the wind; A hurricane one week and a gentle breeze the next.

My favorite piece on the album is “Time Womb”. Its dramatic, larger-than-life atmosphere takes the listener into the very core of existence, unraveling the matrix of time and how everything is connected. The neo-classical “Blue Moon” makes the mind wander. It is a highly poetic and meditative melody.

Space Shift
One of the fascinating aspects of “Auroral Magic” is, as the title implies, how the ancient earth and the vast space become one, thanks to the magical northern light. Listen to “Space Shift” and you will experience it on many levels. I like the angelic vocalization and ambient melody. Fans of Christel Veraart will be especially impressed. “Space Shift” is uncompromising, bold, and inspired.

A melancholy hangs in the air as “Our Escape” comes on. Some quite eerie textures and breathing almost block out the sound of the piano – yet it keeps on playing its lonely tune, marching on in the hope of an escape. I’m happy to report that positivity is restored as soon as “The Whale Song” plays. It is a warm piece, and the sounds of water are just right. It is easy to envision these graceful animals gliding through the deep ocean thanks to Chakuna Machi Asa’s brilliant composition. Nearer the end, we meet “John”. The sounds of nature place us on the beach, listening to both gentle waves and crickets. The distant piano is lovely, creating a relaxing atmosphere – before the title track rounds off the album. After pieces like “Time Womb” and “Space Shift”, one would think that “Auroral Magic” would be Vangelis-like and awe-inspiring. Instead, Chakuna focuses on how tranquil and tender the northern lights are. It is something you take with you long after the album is done playing.

In conclusion: It is impossible not to be moved and impressed by Chakuna Machi Asa’s “Auroral Magic”. The album is a treasure chest of ancient mysteries, interesting arrangements, and well-made compositions. If you haven’t experienced northern lights, the album will inspire you to check it out whenever possible. The album is great for meditation, reading, or creative work. It will appeal to all New Age music fans; it is very versatile and balanced.

There is a lesson here. “Auroral Magic” tells us to connect with the earth, feel its energy, and – most importantly – to look up at the winter sky whenever possible. Do that, and you will be rewarded.

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Rating: Excellent
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