Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Instrumental New Age/Classical Review: Terry Lee Nichols-At Peace Beneath the Shade of My Father’s Tree

Release Date: August 19, 2016
Label: Heart Dance Records

Terry Lee Nichols first release has a very long and descriptive title. At Peace Beneath the Shade of My Father’s Tree is a great title actually, and if you look at that title and the cover of the CD, you can see a story. So without ever hearing the music there is something happening. I would have to say that is a very good start.

Terry said: “I tried to create a soundscape/film score backdrop that reflected specific events throughout my life.” That statement tends to put it all into proper perspective for the listener.

There are 17 tracks that move along at a brisk pace. It seemed like before I knew it I was on track 6. This is because I was really enjoying what I was hearing. Being swept away by the music and hearing the story narrated by all the instruments is a beautiful thing.

The title track opens the door to the great outdoors pictured on the cover of the album. The music ushers in the atmosphere and sets the tone like any good opener should. First impressions are everything when you are listening to an album. I have always believed when you open that curtain to your audience, you better make an impact real soon or you will lose them…Terry Lee gets the job done. He captivates you and captures your spirit and imagination. Personal experiences of joy and emotional pain bring about many things and music can be the universal translator.

“Timekeeper” clocks in, no pun intended, at 3:07 and the pace is like that of a watch keeping good time. The piano rolls along but ever so delicately while bringing the listener to the end of the line in the most intentionally gentle way. The ride goes by much too fast but you are so appreciative. Short and sweet, this track makes a good impression from start to finish much like all of its predecessors.

The musicianship is outstanding on this recording and it definitely is the kind of quality music you would hear on a grade A film. It also provides deep relaxation and a thought process that is more clear and precise than you could have during a busy day at work. It is not easy to empty out what is between your ears, and music such as this gives you carte blanche to do so.

I have heard such gorgeous instrumental music this year, it moves me, makes me reflective, grateful, happy, sad, reminiscent, basically the entire range of human emotion is prompted to rise within me and the music is my escort. That to me is the key to success with any recording.

“On My Way To See The Dancing Sisters Figg” is an upbeat track with Celtic World flavor with a nod to the classical genre however it ends up an amalgamation of them all and then becomes an instrumental new age masterpiece. It is a short jaunt coming in at 2:57 but I felt an injection of joy with a hint of the past smiling at me as it faded away. This was one of my favorites for its sparkling movements and how it changed my melancholy mood into joy in an instant. Once again the power of the music took me away and had a strong influence on my senses and reaction to the vibrations. 

“Sailing” is wonderful melody like a bright sunny day with a clear blue sky and I did just sail away with it. It also gave me the gift of freedom and spirituality. I always loved sailing on the lake with my father, god rest his soul. Joy with a hint of sadness is what I felt but the thoughts of freedom of the wind and waves gave me chills. It was all good so thank you Terry Lee.

At Peace Beneath the Shade of My Father’s Tree is real triumph for the maiden voyage of artist Terry Lee Nichols. Putting out something so inspired and precise for a first album is an amazing accomplishment. The future certainly looks bright for this gentleman.

4.5/5 Stars

Key Tracks: At Peace Beneath the Shade of My Father’s Tree, Timekeeper, On My Way To See The Dancing Sisters Figg


Tracks:
 

01. At Peace Beneath the Shade of My Father's Tree
02. Only You
03. Follow Me
04. Reflections
05. Appassionato
06. Timekeeper
07. Train to Dachau
08. Pamela's Time
09. On My Way To See The Dancing Sisters Figg
10. A Winter's Tale
11. Sailing
12. Crossroads
13. A Curious Life
14. Last Train Home
15. Autumn
16. Lullaby
17. Requiescat

 
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
August 23, 2016
Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

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