Showing posts with label Contemporary Instrumental New Age Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Contemporary Instrumental New Age Reviews. Show all posts

Contemporary Instrumental New Age Review: Various Artist - Fall Flight (myndstream)

Release Date: November 19, 2021

Label:  ‎myndstream


With the change of seasons and Fall ushered in, the myndstream label features six tracks from various artists. The compilation is appropriately titled Fall Flight.

“Autumn” with Roger Kellaway and his piano is the perfect gateway to a new season arriving and starting this compilation. His nimble fingers bring us to the change of season gently with a greeting only an acoustic piano can create—a perfect way to begin your audio journey.

 “The Golden Hour” features the acoustic guitar of Karlijn Langendijk. This one is with acoustic guitar taking a singular approach. While building the track with different strokes of the strings, it shines the light on the purity and clarity an acoustic guitar can have. The track is an example of the absolute beauty portrayed on a musical canvas.

“Insects” is from the well-known artistry of one Mr. Larrry Fast and Synergy. He has played with many great musicians during his long and successful tenor and created a bevy of solo material. Keeping with the legendary progressive sound he is known for, the music is powerful and cinematic, changing the entire mood of your listen. Perhaps the boldness and directness which contrast the previous tracks show us how the changing of seasons can be abrupt and rapid, especially for those living a more petite reality as an insect. Think of the winds blowing and the leaves creating their little cyclones on the ground and in the roads as the insects scramble to preserve their very existence.

“End of One Thing” from David Baron brings you synth sounds. The various layers are more progressive with a distinct universal and futuristic tone. It is ambient and ever-changing, showing how eclectic the synthesizer can be within one track.

“Favor from the Wind” features the acoustic guitar of Janet Noguera is another sublime track. The music creates a path to enlightenment through the vibrating strings of a guitar. The composition is acoustic divinity coming from the fingers of this talented woman. She brings you peace and joy from her soul.

“An Old Fairy Tale” by Bernward Koch features gentle piano and textures that invite you to partake in the new season ever so gently. The piano whispers like the wind that blows the leaves off the trees as they prepare for the winter. I found it to be an excellent way to close the curtain on this fantastic group of tracks while comparing and contrasting with everything that I heard preceding it.

Fall Flight
is right on time to take you through the next season with many different colors, textures, and moods, which is what every new season us about, particularly with the changing colors of the leaves. It all falls into place nicely with a good flow and constant change, which the four seasons always bring with each passing year.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
November 19, 2021

1.Autumn – Roger Kellaway
2. The Golden Hour – Karlijn Langendijk
3. Insects – Larry Fast/Synergy
4. End of One Thing – David Baron
5. Favor from the Wind – Janet Noguera
6. An Old Fairy Tale – Bernward Koch

Contemporary Instrumental New Age Review: Derek Wille-An Approaching Storm

Release Date: October 15, 2021

Label:  ‎myndstream


We all need music; it's an intrinsic part of the human condition, not by coincidence. It is a direct reflection and influence on that. With that one thought alone, it encapsulates what it means to me, and it is all-inclusive. I seek sounds that move me, settle me down, enrich my spirit like nothing else on the planet. That is a tall order for sure.

Fortunately, being connected to so much of this great music is a regular event. Much of what I hear is piano-based. That may sound one-dimensional; however, that could not be further from the truth.

Derek Wille is a prolific composer and musician presenting his latest project, An Approaching Storm. The recording entails ten tracks ranging from 3:17 to 4:41 minutes in length. As you will discover upon your initial listen, the time frames are perfect for each arrangement. From my viewpoint, with music like this, I never anticipate a certain amount of time to elapse; that is irrelevant. What is important is it allows me to relax and focus on my inner spirit and put me in a better space than what I was in before I started.

All music was composed and performed by the artist with mixing by Michael Whalen and the mastering by Tom Eaton.

What I continue to have a fascination with is the versatility of the piano. Along with the complexities of each composition, it is a true mystery to me how someone can create such perfect beauty. What we hear as the listener are flowing rhythms and changing tones and colors within each track. As Derek says, "Solo piano is personal, intimate, and real..." I think that is a significant statement, and it does apply to my world and how I accept and interpret each audio work of art. Therein lies the key to the satisfaction I found in this entire recording.

I took note of the purposefulness of "Green In Blue," and my immediate thought was how the track eases into the pace. If you mix green and blue, you get blue-green, two distinct colors merging to give birth to another color. The track's speed makes you stop and think, and it worked instantly for me; others will indeed find something completely different. That is why music is so important to us all, the freedom of one's creation within the consciousness of your mind.

Speaking of rhythms, "Melody's Melody" is an excellent example of simplicity in an arrangement yet unmistakable impact one track can have. It is piano music and all its charm and ambiance on display all in under four minutes. "Cindy K." comes at a much faster pace with many elegant tinkling of the keys. It was my thought that this person must hold some significance in Derek's life. His playing is excitable yet concise and meaningful.

Those are a few examples of what you can and will experience listening to this immaculately performed and produced music. The cover art says it all, there is An Approaching Storm, and before it arrives, you can prepare the inner calm by listening.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
October 11, 2021

01. An Approaching Storm (3:17)
02. Last Kiss (3:43)
03. Persistence (3:52)
04. Cold Day (4:41)
05. Still Friends (4:21)
06. We Made It (4:06)
07. Song for Linie (4:14)
08. Green In Blue (4:12)
09. Melody’s Melody (3:39)
10. Cindy K. (3:55)

Contemporary Instrumental-New Age Review: Juan Sanchez-Now The Silence

Release Date: September 1, 2021

Label:  ‎Independent


Shhh…Now The Silence has begun. It is time to listen only. This is for a very valid reason, what you are about to hear is the latest album from Juan Sanchez.

Juan believes in his magic that flows through his fingers to the keys. He can create a story without words. The music must be filled with expression, emotion, colors, and all that sustains life on this planet. In a physical sense that would be our environment and the food we ingest however this is more esoteric. Music, the grand healer, sweeps us away to another plane of existence, if we allow it.

In my experience that has done nothing but benefit me spiritually, mentally, and physically. It all connects from my perspective. Juan’s playing is extraordinarily beautiful and flowing. His sense of rhythm is very apparent in the music as he seamlessly moves from one track to another.

I heard nothing that did not fit the category of exceptional on this release. It is mostly all instrumental, except for vocals without words on tracks like “Tolworth.” A beautiful women’s vocalizations are as hypnotic and enchanting as they could be. It is one of my favorite tracks, and there are many. I have to be forthright and say the entire recording was enjoyed thoroughly.

Now The Silence quiets the mind, soothes the soul, and thereby relaxes the physical body. This is the main goal for anyone seeking relief, to de-stress or to just relax and let the worries of the day roll off your back. As the track “Idyllic” played I immediately identified with that word and what it meant to me. That one word encapsulates this recording perfectly.  

If a listener seeks a respite from a hard day’s work, then Now The Silence can be the miracle drug that cures all ills. You can take it without water and it starts with one click off the mouse or pushing a button on your stereo. Now that is a healthy prescription with no side effects that anyone can take.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
September 16, 2021

01.Very Young Old Man 3:29    
02.Luz De Luna     3:38    
03. Now the Silence 4:45    
04. Alma 3:58    
05. Woolgathering 4:32    
06. Tolworth 5:29    
07. Idyllic 3:21    
08. Remembrance 3:20    
09. Siempre     2:35    
10. Blue Nights 5:51

Contemporary Instrumental-New Age Reviews: Omar Akram-The Light Will Come

Release Date: April 23, 2021

Label: Twinbrook Entertainment, Inc.



As my life goes by quicker with each passing day, month, and year, I find the addition of music is a quintessential element of my happiness. It brings forth the best in me and makes my heart smile. If it does not manage to do that I will not listen again. This is where the importance of all instrumental music plays such a definitive role in accomplishing changing my thought process, attitude, and overall mood and perception of the world around me.

So, what does that have to do with the new album release from pianist Omar Akram titled The Light Will Come you may ask? My answer quite simply is everything. This music is beautiful and full of rhythms that are easily assimilated and catchy while remaining different as you go from track to track. In the same instance, all ten tracks have a similar effect on you, the listener. This is piano-based instrumental contemporary music with a new age foundation in regards to the presentation, meaning, and pace.

It has become apparent to me over the last year in particular, that the presenting artists of this genre all have a commonality and purpose. And that my fellow listeners are to heal you in some way, shape, or form, however you perceive what you are hearing, in the end, we all hope to gain something from this experience. I am selfish in the sense that I have certain expectations and needs at the outset of listening and writing about this music. In all actuality, this is not much different than someone listening for pure enjoyment, but I have a dual purpose, and that is for my overall mental, physical, and spiritual health. I then attempt to convey what I can to potential listeners what they would hope to gain from listening. And the bottom line is it has to be excellent music and hold something extraordinary that clicks something inside me that propels me to write these words.

I do have difficulty at times identifying certain tracks as exceptional when the entire album is. In this case, that is exactly what happened with The Light Will Come. It does happen enough during the course of my listening journeys; however, I will say that the all-important first track has to catch my ear and get me focused as well. And the first and title track did exactly that, launching me into that “zone” where expressiveness becomes the key element in putting it all into words that everyone can understand. Once again, this is not that much different than just giving the music a spin for the enjoyment of it with no commitment attached, with the exception of what you are wishing to gain with one listen. The ultimate purpose for the recording artist is to garner emotion, then getting a reaction from a listener. This music is like a river of feelings the runs right through your heart, soul, and then to the brain for the last process of interpretation.

If I was asked to pick favorite tracks I would have to go with “The Light Will Come,” for starting things with energy, “Pressing On,” whose title alone held a lot of meaning for my life and the drive I have every day to keep learning and moving forward in a positive direction. And finally, the elegance of “Caught Dreaming,” and how it changed so much, and the lovely interludes of the singularity of the tinkling ivory keys that are added within the song.

The flow and rhythm of The Light Will Come is exceptional and the main reason I was able to connect to it so quickly. The fingers of Omar Akram are gifted with translating what his heart and spirit are conveying through the music. I heard that message from beginning to end and it will make you look at each title to see if it all makes sense. It did for me, and I hope it does for everyone that listens, and if you take the time to listen then The Light Will Come shining through, just in different intensity for each listener.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder

April 23, 2021

Track List:
01. The Light Will Come
02. For George
03. Hear My Heart
04. For Merry
05. Waterfall
06. Since I Met You
07. Wish I Could See You
08. Pressing On
09. Caught Dreaming
10. New Morning Sun

Contemporary Instrumental-New Age Review: Michele McLaughlin- Sketches

Release Date: December 4, 2020

Label: Independent


Michele McLaughlin just released her latest studio album Sketches just a few days ago. These are musical sketches created on a blank canvas and improvised on the first take. That sounds like it was quite a challenge however I believe this talented lady would be ready for a challenge. One listen will advise you that she was.

Michele Commented: Several of the songs were completely improvised during the recording process for this album and several were inspired by my “Monday Morning Improvisations.”

I had previously enjoyed the last three releases from Michele and would anticipate nothing but excellence. To anticipate with music at times can end in disappointment but I must stress that has never happened with this artist. Michele is smooth, precise, and she articulates her compositions clearly and crisply which can easily reach a listener.

“One Life” caught me with just the name and then the music was absolutely beautiful and fitting. It filled me with gratitude for the life I have. It also made me ponder the possibilities of having more than one opportunity to have a physical presence here on earth. Possibilities, I love that word and what it means. Michele uses her imagination and digs down deep into her soul to create this spontaneous group of tracks she calls Sketches. Look at the many colors of the piano keys on the cover of the album and it gives you some insight into what she is presenting for her listening audience.

I am taken with the simplicity and clarity of all the tracks on Sketches. The emotion for instance on “The Right Choice,” is remarkably real and touching. Michele is so gifted to be able to release such an amazing recording, and the way it was done makes it that much more incredible. My appreciation for true art runs deep and this is something that moved me for all of the reasons I have mentioned.

I could never properly express in enough words the impact of such a recording as this. It humbles me and reminds me that what I do is my way of giving back to all the artists that share their talents and incredible music with us. I am one voice of hundreds that likely feel the same way about this music.

There is joy, beauty, and sadness that are all tied into this music. The human condition is no stranger to the accompaniment of music, it has gone on for centuries. There has to be something conveyed to a relatable audience. I know that this is more difficult when you are listening to music without words. If the music has enough power and emotion then any barriers will come down and the need for lyrics melts away as you, the listener, melt into every track, becoming one with the artist and the sounds being created.

The majesty of a track like “Lost,” cannot be understated. The piano says come listen to me now! This is how music paints a picture for you with a memorable impact.

The musical Sketches created by the artist then in your mind will come to life in seconds. This is a masterful display of musical virtuosity and undeniable talent. Michele McLaughlin reaches for the stars on this group of tracks and now you can find your star by just listening. She is indeed “Unshakeable” and always has been.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews
December 8, 2020

Contemporary Instrumental New Age Review: Chris Field-Beneath The Sun

Label: Tosca Road
Release Date: September 4, 2020 

Chris Field has a name in the music industry for his cinematic instrumental music in some well know music trailers. Now for his second full-length release Beneath The Sun, he continues to create instrumental music that is energizing, beautiful, and incredibly mesmerizing. I would describe it as contemporary instrumental and new age.

The epic tone of the opening track “Time Will Tell” features the beauty and the impressive rising energy of his compositions. I can tell from the very first track why he has made a name for himself with many well-known movie trailers.

Beneath The Sun
will most certainly show the diversity and all-around talent this artist commands. Chris produced, composed, and performed all the music except for the Ethnic wind instrument that is credited to Sandro Friedrich on the inner CD sleeve. With all of this considered, there is a lot to listen to in each track presented.

“From The Heart” is what I say all music comes from and I like to write about it the same way. The song starts as a true cinematic adventure. I could picture some footage of a beautiful sunset or the peak of a majestic snow-capped mountain top. That is the advantage of music such as this, it allows you to encapsulate your entire being while letting your imagination take over. Watching a movie of your own making prompted by music is a beautiful thing. It is truly a gift.

The combination of instruments and effects utilized gives each track its personality and atmosphere. I certainly appreciate the diversity offered from track to track so it kept my ears glues to the speakers, wondering what was coming next. Take “Summerland” for instance, it is a total step away from the previous tracks with and a modern funky beat, jazzy keyboards, and beautifully layered orchestrations for all that to glide along on like a musical magic carpet. It was one of my favorites and it had a great rhythm and movement to it all. I could picture Times Square in NYC with all the people walking in the streets and traffic buzzing by. If you have been there pre-virus times you would understand what I mean.

Beneath The Sun
is a cinematic new age instrumental recording coming from the basic foundation of classical with elements of jazz and funk peppered in between, depending on what track you are listening to. This music continually builds and evolves, which makes Chris a multitalented artist with a true vision within each track.

“Eucalyptus” is a slower-paced track with a kind of sadness to it. Like watching the story of a child growing up, going to college, getting a job, then starting a family. There is joy in watching that progression but if you are a parent, you long for the days when the children were little again and life revolved around them and all the joy that brought.

These are the ever-changing tides of life in the music. It is altogether exciting, energizing, picturesque, beautiful, and more importantly entertaining. The title track “Beneath The Sun” was effortlessly flowing and it pulled on my heartstrings so much I had to select it for my NAMR Spotify Playlist. I particularly enjoyed the guitar passages and the way the keyboards were layered and how it all moved together effortlessly. It was a ray of sunshine for this listener and very inspiring. “The Prophet” was also very uplifting and positive, it gave me a good injection of high energy and optimism, like knowing you can conquer anything that comes your way in life.

Beneath The Sun
is an absolute joy of sounds, colors, and textures that any music appreciator could enjoy. For music without words, it says a lot about who we are and how creative and wonderful music can be and how it pushes a listener to places that can only be reached with its help. This can be a soundtrack to your life, a movie, or simply an incredible listening experience that you will never forget.

Remember the name Chris Field, and his masterful instrumental collection of songs titled Beneath The Sun!

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-TFOV Founder
July 26, 2020

Track List:
01. Time Will Tell
02. Metamorphosis
03. From The Heart
04. Summerland
05. Eucalyptus
06. Beneath The Sun
07. Interlude
08. The Prophet
09. The Vision
10. The Journey
11. In Motion


Contemporary Instrumental - New Age Review: Kirsten Agresta Copely-Around The Sun

Release Date: January 31, 2020

Label: Valcope Recording Co. 


I have always thought that the harp made music with the divine spirit of heaven behind it. I also believe it is one of the most difficult instruments to master never mind putting out an amazing nine-track studio album of your compositions.

Kirsten Agresta Copely has done just that this year with Around The Sun. She partnered with her husband Marc to arrive with a stunning recording of some of the most gorgeous and engaging harp music one could ever imagine.

The music market is a difficult one to break and to be playing one of the instruments that most people would not think of right away does not position you most advantageously. The shining light at the end of the ever-risky waters of the music industry has found another champion to celebrate and she happens to fit nicely into the category of the contemporary instrumental new age with a classical foundation. This is in effect, covers not just the genre itself but music as a whole. That is a statement that says it all for what Kirsten has accomplished with Around The Sun.

Kirsten takes the listener Around The Sun to experience nature and its seasons most beautifully and profoundly. Her harp echoes the brilliance of her skilled fingers. One track after another you can slide into that comfortable couch in your mind’s eye and get lost in this slice of heaven.

I was struck by the elegance of all the tracks, however it was “The Silver Swan” that created a vision of beauty that was appreciated by this listener instantly. I also added it to my NAMR Spotify Playlist without hesitation because I knew this was the one track that was special for me. Of course, that is my individual choice and that is the freedom every listener has that can never be compromised. Thank god there still are some things left untouched and sacred in this world!

Around The Sun and all moving music like it, always seems to arrive for me at the right moment in time, on the right day, and when I am at the best point of acceptance of allowing it in. This is like a switch that says “Heal Me.” The powers of music go beyond what we understand on this plane of existence and people like Kirsten Agresta Copely carry the messages from another level, a place where spirits thrive, and you can grow and expand your mind, body, and spirit. These talented artists hold the keys to unlock the gates to a better place. After hearing this music, you feel like you already walked in through that gate, and took your seat in the front row to enjoy the music and positive vibes.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
July 29, 2020

Track List:
1. Daybreak
2. Wind Made Moan
3. Persephone Rising
4. Surya
5. The Silver Swan
6. Water Lilies
7. Fall Leaves, Fall
8. Riflessioni (Reflections)
9. Winter’s Bone

Contemporary Instrumental - New Age Review: Harrison Edwards-Into The Unknown

Release Date: September 3, 2019
Label: Harrison Edwards Music

Into The Unknown is the fifth proper album from Harrison Edwards. All the music is written and performed by Harrison and even the photos on the CD sleeve are by him and his son. The Northern Lights on the front are near Tromso, Norway. It is a gorgeous picture befitting the music you will hear on this album.

This is what Harrison has to say about his album on his website:

The music on this CD explores the notion that our spirits have always existed and always will. Each song tells a story about a different phase in their journey, from their initial creation at the beginning of time, throughout their human journey of discovery, revelation, and finding peace, and about their ultimate return to the spirit world as they travel through eternity in search of the Great Mystery.

This comes at a perfect time for me as I just lost my brother a few days ago and I am wondering where he went after he passed. I think we all wish we knew where our loved ones were and had the opportunity to communicate with them somehow once they leave this physical existence. It surely is a journey Into The Unknown.

This is incredibly beautiful music. All the instrumentation blends perfectly making for a soundtrack to find solace in the day, a quiet place in the heart and soul, or a time for regeneration of your energy. It all brings you light, filled with the emotive paintbrush of one talented artist that can be a self-sufficient music multi-tasker.

The opening track grabbed my attention right away and I added it to my New Age Music Reviews Spotify Playlist. While some of the tracks offer the time to chill and reflect others serve as an epic trip to another time and place, perhaps somewhere across the globe from your current location. That came to mind while I was listening to “Revelation.” No surprise there, considering the title of the track. So maybe when we take the spirit form and are still bound to earth before we ascend upwards to the heavens, we can travel from one point to another at the speed of light? If we are in the form of a spirit, I suppose that is possible.

That is what music like this does for me, it pushes me to think and explore the possibilities of the subject matter that is being offered in the music and track titles… if you listen the music will reach out to you and give you this gift.

Thank you, Harrison Edwards, for the timing of hearing this beautiful music and how it gave more meaning to the passing of another loved one. It helped my heart to start healing and gave me hope that there is a better place in the afterlife for all of us.  

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
October 8, 2019
Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews


01. First Light  
02. The Awakening
03. The Dawn Land
04. Into the Unknown
05. Discovery
06. Revelation
07. Finding Peace
08. The Arrows of Time
09. Into the Light
10. Reawakening
11. On Heaven's Shores
12. The Great Mystery