Instrumental New Age Review: Stephen Wallack-Colors

Release Date: November 12, 2021

Label:  ‎Gale Road Records


Before I hear the music and it touches me somehow, I must find out a bit about the artist. In addition to that, knowing how the artist found the energy and inspiration to create the music is a crucial component before I go on my audio journey.

I was moved when I read about the process of Stephen Wallack on his recent release titled, simply and appropriately, Colors. This beautiful solo piano music is about an artist's journey through these trying times of ours. Also, his nephew Marlon, who suffered a brain injury as a baby, cannot move or communicate. This great spirit used his fingers to create the album art. Just speaking those words and hearing the music gave me a chill. The feeling is when an angel touches you. Marlon, then Stephen, two angels communicate through his contemporary instrumental piano solo music with a new age foundation. Listen to "Marlon," and you will understand what this music means.

Most importantly is understanding the new age foundation. It is something that has developed over time through my own listening experiences. This singularly beautiful picture taken via the keys of a piano will bring many realizations to light. Knowing intuitively that the premise of the music comes from the heart and soul of an individual with a higher purpose, allows for that strong foundation for the story to be built upon.

For my senses, the sound of one piano is perfection. Stephen recorded this stunning and picturesque music on a Steinway S Grand Piano. It does create images in one's consciousness; some are flowing and rhythmic, while others have those intrinsic elements weaved in with moments of sadness and joy. In other words, the feelings and emotions of the artist are translated through his very talented fingers.

"Brave" was one of my favorites. The title says it all, and I think he may be referring to his sister and nephew and how they have handled what life gave them. There is gratefulness and peace in moments of the track and then some high points and energetic bursts filled with the "Hope" (another moving track) and faith of another day. These are the moments in life to be cherished and never forgotten and what "Dreams" are all about.

Everyone has a purpose on this planet, and if you are fortunate enough to realize it in your lifetime, you are blessed. The prerequisite to reaching that goal is time, patience, faith, and a lot of energy. At times we find our purpose through another person's misfortune or a life-changing event. Stephen Wallack found his way to creating this music with the help of his sister and nephew. And with the many thoughts this music kindles within, we all should find gratefulness for what we have and not a yearning for what we don't have.

I can say with conviction that Colors will be enjoyed and give you many different feelings. And, above all, a spiritual connection to an artist you just met. Now that is the universal power of music.

Take some time out of your day today, with no strings attached or expectations, and listen to the Colors of one person's life. It will be like opening a present you never expected.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
December 1, 2021

01. Birch Lake - 7:08
02. Josh - 4:00
03. Colors - 5:41
04. Stunning - 4:36
05. Brave - 4:49
06. Dreams - 5:29
07. Earth - 3:44
08. Hope - 4:39
09. Marlon - 4:28
10. Midnight- 3:33

Acoustic New Age Review: Trevor Gordon Hall-This Beautiful Chaos

Release Date: September 14, 2021

Label:  ‎Independent


I am familiar with Trevor Gordon Hall and his work from previous albums Mind Heart Fingers (2014) and Late Night With Headphones (2016). Here we are five years later, and now I am listening to his latest release from this September, This Beautiful Chaos.

A title like that deserves some thought before listening to see if it matches well with the presented music. Straight away, I thought this was going to be some complex picking and strumming, which can be chaotic to one person yet beautiful in every way to another, or both. But that is my thought process, and each listener will find their way to explain what they hear and what it means. Trevor said that life can be crazy and chaotic but beautiful at the same time. I read into that as an indication of a complete life with many experiences.

The album features six different guitars, including a Standard Acoustic, Baritone Acoustic, Nylon String, High Strung Guitar, Electric Guitar, and a Portuguese instrument named Viola Amarantina. Guitar enthusiasts and those who appreciate various acoustic guitars will find this album well stocked with all flavors of ear candy for audible consumption.

Based on past experiences, I awaited a gratifying experience again, which I received. Trevor’s style of playing is a thing of beauty. What I have found to be exceptional is the ability to take one instrument, in this case, several types of acoustic guitars, and make so much music without any accompaniment. His abilities reach far and wide into his area of expertise. What people may find interesting is that This Beautiful Chaos is a culmination of experiences the artist has had over the years with concerts he has played, the people met along the way, lessons learned, and all the foods enjoyed. The beauty of a fast-moving life becomes a reality for a successful musician grateful for everything he has experienced within the music. Now you can hear all of that interpreted through the tracks on this recording.

“Know Thyself” is an excellent title with many layers of playing, including precise notes plucked with a nice flowing strumming rhythm beneath for those the notes to float over. It is life expressed fully through one composition. You can feel the joy, emotion, and movement of life within that song. I felt some good energy, and it made my heart smile. Such honesty on an internal level can be expressed externally by a person then amplified by the music. That is what Trevor accomplishes with the track and throughout the entire recording.

Some of the track titles are prolific, like “The Presence of Absence” and “Resolution in Tension” is a slow burner, systematic, and for a good reason. Now that is something everyone can use! Just saying the title is an affirmation or confirmation of that state of emotion you could be in and how to resolve it. I like to take in a breath and count to 4, then release it counting to 8. That helps; however, music always opens doors for me into different states of consciousness. With this album, I felt gratitude knowing what the artist has shared, its importance, and how communicating with listeners can help lead the way to change in a positive direction.

This Beautiful Chaos is relaxation, meditative, reflective, friendly, and easy going, like a sunny day with nothing but blue skies. Life is fast and complex, and it certainly can be chaotic, but we have artisans like Trevor Gordon Hall and his music to slow things down and show us a different way. I found myself once again amazed at this man’s talent and ability to mesmerize me with one instrument.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
November 23, 2021

01. Chase the Chills (2:49)
02. This Beautiful Chaos (6:02)
03. Momentum and Meaning (5:18)
04. Know Thyself (3:54)
05. The Presence of Absence (4:30)
06. A Daddy and his Daughter (3:57)
07. Saudade (5:02)
08. Resolution in Tension (4:31)
09. Ontic Blues (5:25)
10. At Peace with the Struggle (4:03)