By Chuck Diliberto
The Spiritual path eventually leads the seeker to search within. The external world of distractions and materialism is released, replaced with being here now, in the moment, lucid, aware, and at peace with one’s self. The moment of now is where John Balint has created his musical paradise.
The music is a collaboration of synthesizer sounds, samples, electric piano, percussion, and voice. Balint has created a dreamscape of “New Age” musical fusion, inflecting the richness of his soul into every note. The music reverberated with clarity and purpose, reaching deep to explore a profound sense of feeling, beauty and imagination. Balint has literally laid his soul on the line to express an air of immediacy, moment to moment, extending his Spirit into infinity, only to redefine the moment once again.
It is very interesting that John Balint’s strivance to capture the mystique and essence of Spirit comes at a time when the World needs to re-examine its’ values and priorities. It is obvious that Balint is not distracted by the war lord mentality, and the deluded, deceived frenzy of lies being propagated by national and international media news sources. “Paradise Within” is a bright light of God source inspiration, un-jaded by current events, quietly illuminating music’s role as a universal communicative of the truth beheld innately in all of us. Excellent offering.
For more information, please call 1 (805) 687-3043.
Snows of Kilimanjaro
New World Music
Medwyn Goodall is a familiar icon in “New Age” music circles. His intuitive musicianship bears few restraints when it comes to playing a wide variety of instruments. His open heart and Spirituality is vibrantly displayed throughout all thirty of the compact discs he has released.
In “Snows of Kilimanjaro” Goodall’s soul was touched by the tragic plight of mountain climber Martin Friend. Friend was murdered in Tanzania by political terrorists while preparing for the ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro. In support of Martin Friend, Ron Friend, Martin’s father, organized a climb to fulfill his son’s dream and support the world-wide relief organization “Children In Crisis”. Goodall aided the support effort by releasing the “Snows of Kili-manjaro” with proceeds benefiting the “Children In Crisis” organization.
The music is a splendid mixture of African drums and percussion supporting acoustic guitars, synths, flutes, panpipes, piano and more. Goodall is somewhat of a prodigy, playing all the instruments on this CD. He has an uncanny knack of developing musical themes through the blending of various instruments, creating a composite sound that conveyed visual as well as aural imagery.
Goodall did not waste any notes in telling the story of Martin Friend. Each instrument is delicately played, promoting a sense of integrity, respect, and genuineness. There is an underlying tinge of sadness that is buffeted by an ethereal search for meaning and closure. Goodall musically interpreted the juxtaposition of sadness and joy with an unwavering Spirit. In the end love heals all wounds, and Medwyn Goodall has plenty to share with all who will listen.
For more information, please call 1 (888) 476-8745.
Marston Smith with Dan Radlauer
Smith and Radlauer have decided to make an interesting musical statement. It’s not that the styles of music they played were unfamiliar, it is the format in which they played them. Marston Smith on five-string cello (his own creation), and Dan Radlauer on guitar realized that a techno-pop sound was new territory for their musical explorations. In a moment of odd, almost borderline peculiarity, a musical synthesis has emerged. A synthesis of techno, Jazz, traditional, folk, classical, and rock-n-roll coming together, creating neo musical realms to be explored.
The tone of Marston Smith’s cello radiated with mood and levity. He has a flair for ethereal drama, sprightly bouncing the music in the glow of his aura, creating a passionate sensitivity to feeling. Smith was able to convey a panoramic discourse of emotion. His ability to relate a morose pathos through his music created a sound that was hauntingly other-worldly. Keep in mind this is happening while a techno beat, a vastly creative and multi-instrumental one at that, is framing the sonic depth of Smith’s cello.
Smith showed his versatility of musical styles many times. His strictly classical pieces separated good soundtrack music from bad. He was able to introduce his personality and grace with every style. This is really beautiful music, the music of the spheres, resonating and reverberating with an unseen, yet familiar source of life. A very interesting musical statement indeed.
For more information, please call 1 (800) 521-2263.
Road to Oasis
Missa Johnouchi with Li-Hua Ensemble
Pacific Moon Records
There are many hidden and forgotten moments throughout history and the world that have eluded our senses and awareness. Special moments of visual antiquity, scenes of long ago when musical instruments were first being developed to capture the sound of life’s expression. Stringed instruments such as the Erhu, Pipa, Guzheng, and Yanggin, ancient instruments owing their origins to western and central Asia.
Missa Johnouchi has an intuitive connection to the music made by these instruments. She displays the adeptness of an old soul who long ago encountered this music as an expression of joy, love and Spirituality. Her melodies linger as afterthoughts of stolen moments, tugging at our hearts, beckoning us to look beyond the surface for answers to the mysteries of truth and love. Johnouchi is a mystic traveler, supplanting the past with a moment of the present, awakening a surreal sense of awe and inspiration for all things sacred.
Johnouchi patiently explored the sensuality of the music. She instilled an energy of romanticism, both exotic and erotic themes were furthered. The touch of a lover was expressed aurally, flirting with our senses, searching for hidden desires and their meanings. In her heart she has a query about her own love, probing sonically for the bliss of unconditional love, waiting patiently for the requited response.
Visually, Missa Johnouchi painted with a wider brush. Scenes of caravans, oasis, nomads, deserts and sunsets were synesthesiacally created in our vision. I can’t say enough about how wonderful of a musical journey the “Road to Oasis” is. Keeper!
For more information, please call 1(800) 288-2007 x 2027.
Spirits Walking the Wind
Spirit In Bloom Productions
In life there are many themes through which we are guided. When we choose to walk the Spiritual path, we encounter themes that are ostensibly mystical, stretching our imaginations and reality mechanisms to a point of no return. Nancy Bloom represented the living Spirit, expressing her creativity through lilting vocals and musical expressions that alluded to the depth of her soul. She speaks from her heart, elevating the poignancy of the Native American struggle for autonomy and respect. Her voice whispers with a clarity that bespeaks of the essence of creation in all things, in moments of joy and suffering alike. Bloom chants the tones of revelation, courageously embracing the negative as an equal side of the positive. Her Spirituality is devoid of fear, wrought with optimism and strength, yet fragile and vulnerable when she points out the irresponsible indiscretions of humankind.
The music is sensitive and delicate, purveying a soulful charm that allowed the meanings of the lyrics to permeate our subconsciousness. Flutes, whistles, rattles, bells, and Native American drums created an ambient backdrop for a Spiritual poetry of Nancy Bloom. She has created her own niche through which her devotion to the divine Creator is pondered. Bloom is very up front with her truths, encouraging the listener to release their doubts and face the responsibility and truth of our stay on planet Earth. We are the “Spirits Walking the Wind”, Bloom wants us to stand up and be counted. I know I am on my feet.
For more information, please call 1 (888) 476-8745.
Chuck Diliberto is a resident of New York state. Having written for a hometown publication that covered local and national musicians, reviewing CDs is an extension of that experience. His main interests are spiritual in nature and right living in practice.
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