Showing posts with label Richard Theisen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Richard Theisen. Show all posts

New Age/Contemporary Instrumental Review: Richard Theisen-Estonia

Release Date: September 1, 2023

Label: Independent


When I saw Richard Theisen's name, it looked familiar. I covered his Mayan Stars album in 2014. My memory for music is exceptional; everything else seems mediocre at best. The reason is that music makes me happy and satisfied; it is my savior.

Music aimed at healing the mind, body, and spirit is essential to us all, whether that realization has arrived for you is apparent or is still waiting to come, which brings me to Estonia.  


On the cusp of fall comes Estonia, a gorgeous instrumental production guaranteed to soothe your soul and invite you to a different plane of consciousness. I speak from my experience and hope it does that for every listener.


Once again, I am ready to listen to contemporary instrumental-based keyboard music with a strong foundation in the new-age genre. That formula is a consistent approach I have witnessed for many years. As the new age genre has expanded, it has opened many doors to artists like Richard, who would be classified differently.


The girl on the cover is Freya, the subject of the opening track "Freyas Tears." Don't be surprised if this music sounds like it could be a soundtrack to a movie. That is one thing Richard has done expertly over the years and winning a Grammy for contributing to the Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack. 


So, it all depends on what kind of listening experience you are looking for. It serves the purpose of intent, getting me to slow down, smell the roses, and recognize the beauty around me. We tend to get self-absorbed in the day's thoughts and lose our spiritual connection. I also realize the value of quality music for different uses, such as soundtracks. That fact does not diminish its importance for my benefit; however, it is vital to recognize the duality some music can provide.


The tracks come in layers of exquisitely used keyboards and sound effects generated by today's highly advanced technologies. Richard uses all those tools to have a significant impact on every track. I saw a distinct change in style and sound on "Lavinia." The track features upbeat music with some Latin-flavored guitar and castanets (sound generated as such, perhaps). These sounds are so authentic these days that it is hard to tell if someone is playing them or if they are generated from a computer or keyboard. It is amazing. If I had the fine-tuned ear of an advanced musician, I might know the difference. So far in this life, I listen and comment on what I hear. I must also mention that the closing track, "Twilight," is exceptional, a slice of heaven, as one would say. The acoustic guitar sets the pace as the other elements melt into the mix. The track is warm and inviting, as the entire album is. 


The cover art of Estonia reminded me of the graphic novels my son read as a teenager. And smartly, the pleasing to-the-eye color of purple with the white font immediately brings attention to the artwork, which is the first step in getting someone to pay attention initially. Everything looks to be in place for Estonia to succeed, and I see no reason the new-age community and listening base would not enjoy this release. It is quality in production and musicianship.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-NAMR Founder

August 13, 2023


1. Freyas Tears

2. Brezien Dream

3. Estonia

4. Goldenwulf

5. Lavinia

6. Rivermyst

7. Nordic Whispers

8. Twilight

Instrumental New Age Review: Richard Theisen-Mayan Stars

Release Date: 2014
Label: Indie

Richard Theisen is a Grammy award winning composer and performer. His new release Mayan Stars was inspired by the lost civilization of the Maya. The tracks presented on this release
are a smooth blend of new age, classical and world. It’s an enticing musical stew of instrumental pleasures.

Each track is like a brush that paints all the notes on a broad musical canvas. Within each song are stories that unfolds and words are not necessary. Theisen knows how to shape the music into a creation that is a reflection of each title.

What I found most impressive is the range of music on display and the number of instruments played by the artist. With the exception of a solo guitar on “Blood Moon” he does it all on Mayan Stars. The title track drops the curtain appropriately ushering in the age of a people long since passed. The wonder we still hold for that highly advanced civilization is present to this day. The track is as majestic as their legacy. When “Jungle Zen” starts you know that it’s going to be an adventure…a musical tapestry that unfolds before your senses and leaves you tingling and excited to explore more. Perhaps it is time to go on your own private adventure and let the music lead the way? This music has the ability to take you there in a matter of minutes.

The music all seems to fall together so nicely and each track has a different feel and overall atmosphere of intrigue and beauty. Whether it’s a simply placed acoustic guitar or building layers of keyboards the music invites a sense of wonder that is within us all. 

“The Red Queen” is so perfectly picturesque I found it easy to see the Maya in their ancient world in my mind’s eye. While all of the music is developing and enveloping my soul I was at peace and one with it all. I can see this entire album being a soundtrack to a special on a History Channel program or used for relaxation and or meditation as well. This music heals and allows the portal of your soul open to the exquisite vibrations that the sounds provide.

Richard Theisen has created an aural masterwork of history, humanity and music all into one beautiful package with Mayan Stars. The goal of any artist is to captivate and engage their audience and I think Richard Theisen answered the call brilliantly on Mayan Stars.

5/5 Stars

Key Tracks: Jungle Zen, Mayan Stars, The Red Queen

01.Mayan Stars
02.Jungle Zen
04.Return of the Jaguar
05.Magia Luna
06.La Premiere Lumiere
07.The Red Queen
08.Blood Moon
10.A Dolphins Dream

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder

October 22, 2014

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews