“In the Midst of Stars” is the collaborative effort of Arizona-based flutist Sherry Finzer and multi-instrumentalist Cass Anawaty, both award-winning composers who’ve released their joint debut under the name ‘Majestica’. Incorporating elements from various musical genres, the duo create an eclectic blend of acoustic and electronic instrumental compositions on this essentially chill-style album.

“From the Depths” is the follow-up recording to “The Landing” by composer and multi-instrumentalist David Clavijo, who was born in Andalusia, Spain. Inspired by a trip to the nearby Balaeric island of Ibiza, which is renowned for its distinctive brand of chillout and electronic music, David’s influences also include artists such as Mike Oldfield, Enigma, Vangelis, Brian Eno and Jean Michel Jarre.

Lena Natalia is a Chicago-based pianist and composer whose album, “Rendezvous in Paris”, is the follow-up to her debut release, “Sundays in Paris”. Classically trained since the age of four, she has stayed true to her classical roots, crafting original piano compositions within a more minimalist framework, also explored by the likes of Ludovico Einaudi, Nils Frahm and Philip Glass. Inspired by her time living in Paris before returning to the United States, the twelve compositions on “Rendezvous in Paris” are energetically imbued with a French mystique.

“Follow the River Home” is the highly anticipated follow-up to the award-winning album “With Evening Above” by Indiana-based ambient guitarist, Jeff Pearce. Mastered by Tom Eaton for Imaginary Road studios, the album is comprised entirely of electric guitars that often resemble a surround-sound of both guitars and synthesizers resonating throughout a cathedral.

“Legends” is the seventh album from Sequential Dreams, an electronic musical project by Kuutana who has also released more ambient solo works, as well as a chillout musical project titled Sundown Café. Also contributing to this album is ex-Tangerine Dream guitarist Bernhard Beibl on guitar and violin, as well as Ryo Utasato on synthesizer-arrangements, with piano contributions by Kori Linae Carothers on a couple of tracks. Comprised of eleven compositions spanning nearly eighty minutes total, “Legends” takes the listener on a thematic musical excursion inspired by individual tales.

“After a Pause” is the second solo release from Bear, a talented keyboardist and electronic percussionist, as well as the brother of guitar virtuoso Bob Kilgore. Comprised of fifteen instrumental tracks of varying styles, “After a Pause” offers nearly an hour of contemplative enjoyment and spirited fun.

May 2016 playlists for our weekly one-hour programs

“Secret Garden” is the debut album from Monica Logani, a pianist, composer and amazing photographer. She classically trained in piano as a child but didn’t return to the instrument until well into adulthood. Initially inspired by a gardener who passed away, “Secret Garden” is comprised of twelve compositions spanning thirty-five minutes total. Monica is joined on various tracks by Gregg Zubowicz on vintage acoustic and electric guitar, Maria Grigg on violin and Lyudmila Kadybaeva on cello.

Having previously reviewed as well as being completely awestruck by Keith Richie’s album “Ambient Highways”, I received “The Maestoso Interstellar Suite” with great enthusiasm. The two-hour remastered edition of this album, originally released ten years prior, has been cleaned-up, enhanced and extended onto a second disc of completely new material for a whole new listening experience! Weaving symphonic electronic, ambient and space music elements together, notable comparisons can be drawn to Tangerine Dream, Christopher Franke, John Carpenter, Vangelis and Carbon Based Lifeforms, all of whom Keith cites as musical influences.

“A New Dream” is the third album from Idaho-based pianist and composer Lynn Tredeau. Having received her first piano at the age of six and subsequently mastering classical music, Lynn eventually found her calling in the realm of new age piano music when she later discovered the music of fellow pianist-composer Michele McLaughlin. Following in the musical footsteps of her two previously award-nominated albums, “A New Dream” is comprised of thirteen solo piano compositions that are largely inspired by dreams, musings and memories.

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