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Michael Carson emulated the emotional connection of artistic expression with ‘Blades on Ice’

The classical music composer, Michael Carson takes inspiration from everything from the vastness of the universe to the majesty in the contortions of the human form; for one of his most captivatingly seminal scores, Blades on Ice, he took his fans on an audio-visual journey inspired by the grace of Olympian figure skaters.

To the accompaniment of his orchestral arrangement, the artistry and expression of the figure skaters are heightened to the nth degree. By soundtracking their defiance of physics, Carson amplified the tension within the dramatic routines, added to the melancholy of their sombre performances, and made melodic their spirited sequences. While some soundscapes cradle what it means to be human, others demonstrate the definition of extraordinary, Blades on Ice superlatively lies in the latter camp.

The official music video for Blades on Ice is available to stream on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Gary Albert orchestrated an ambient neo-classic respite from discomposure in his piano score, Skies

With melodies moulded into the mellifluous form of drifting clouds and ascending motifs which explore the cosmological atmosphere above, the latest ambient score, Skies, from the composer Gary Albert, is an invitation to lose yourself in the transformative power of music, nature, and art.

The neo-classical piano score was crafted to provide respite from the tumultuous fray of our deeply unsettled world, which can all too easily disquiet the psyche; paired with the mesmerism in the official music video, Skies is a musical and visual journey equipped to mainline the antidote to discomposure.

Instead of using Skies as a testament to his multi-award-winning and critically acclaimed talent, Skies served the far more utilitarian purpose of projecting tranquillity into the soundwaves via pulsating reprises, cathartically cascading melodies, and minimalist movement for fans of ambient soundscapes. Rest assured that you will tune into the same accessibility as offered by Nils Frahm and Hani Rani when you delve into this reflectively accordant piece.

The official music video for Skies premiered on September 4th; stream it on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Michael Carson emanated ephemeral grace in his classical score, The Elusive Ballerina`

For his latest orchestral score and music video, the fan-revered and critically acclaimed composer Michael Carson captured the ephemeral grace of The Elusive Ballerina.

The evocative beauty of the masterpiece wouldn’t leave the score out of place in a performance of Swan Lake. With the pirouetting orchestral melodies which ebb and flow in mellifluous rhythm, your rhythmic pulses will be efficaciously awoken to the tune of Carson’s contemporary classical narrative that will capture your attention and flood catharsis into your senses.

On the basis of The Elusive Ballerina, and all of the pieces that have preceded it, it is only a matter of time before Carson’s name is one of the biggest in the classical realm.

Stream the music video for The Elusive Ballerina which premiered on August 12th via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Michael Carson sang the sun’s sonnet in his orchestral score, Solaris

The revered classical composer Michael Carson frequently looks to interstellar phenomena for inspiration for his compositions. His seminal score, Solaris, which would be more than fitting as a sonic pairing to a Brian Cox documentary, is no exception.

After day breaks via the orchestral melodies in the intro, sinister sci-fi elements start to weave their way into the grandeur of the piece to allude to the insurmountable nature of the sun, which is often forgotten about as we see it synonymous with temperateness.

His score efficaciously captures the explosively ravening nature of the hot ball of hydrogen before the orchestral strings bring you back to earth by sonically visualising the beauty of a sunset. Solaris may leave you feeling small once you contemplate the vast nature of the universe, but that is far from the only emotion evoked by his masterful maestro touch.

Stream the official music video for Solaris on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

JxPrezzo – A New Home: A Scintillating Exploration of Rebirth

With a touch of the more sombre scores found on the Westworld OSTs and lashings of orchestral beguile, JxPrezzo’s latest ethereal piano composition, A New Home, is a scintillating exploration of rebirth and a reconnection to security.

Four years after finding the inspiration to orchestrate his own compositions upon hearing the piano accompaniment to Echoes of Silence by the Weeknd, the solo artist released his debut score, A Year Later, in 2019.

By exploring his emotions through his always visceral minor-key melodies, each of his elevated works carries the cinematic gravitas of a composer who has dedicated their life to the craft. If you told me he graduated with honours from Julliard or The Royal Academy of Music, I wouldn’t think twice. He doesn’t just hold a candle to Nils Frahm and Philip Glass, he’s equally as luminary and eloquent in his melodies.

A New Home was added to JxPrezzo’s discography on the 7th of July; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Michael Carson sonically visualised ‘A Starry Night’ in his classical composition.

If you have ever wondered what Van Gogh’s A Starry Night would sound like reimagined in a classical composition, wonder no more by going interstellar with the immersively seminal score from the world-class composer, Michael Carson.

With its evocative depth, hitting play is akin to an astronautical adventure; the gentle melodic flurrying keys and gracefully poised orchestral strings effortlessly glide to the arrestive crescendos and fleeting sinister motifs that allow A Starry Night to unravel as a progressively compelling soundscape that soundtracks the vastness of the universe.

Clearly, Carson’s Bachelors & Masters in Music Composition and doctorate in Musical Arts have served him well, as has his inclination to stay committed to perpetuating the timeless appeal of classical music in his invigorating work.

Explore the cosmos with the official music video for A Starry Night on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Classical strings meet IDM in Momento’s transcendental orchestration, Sindalah

After their intense classical upbringing, the award-winning Canadian musicians, Jonathan Chan and Jan Bislin, combined their virtuosic forces to forge the genre-fluid outfit, Momento, to unleash a brand-new wave of IDM onto the airwaves.

The electric violins against the entrancingly rhythmic loops and synthesisers in their latest single, Sindalah, will indoctrinate you into a brand-new world of aural pleasure which you will want to visit time and time again for the fantasia created between the upbeat percussive flair and the Eastern strings which carve their way through the transcendent atmosphere.

In addition to touring the globe as a violin duo supporting the likes of John Legend, James Blunt, and Tim Minchin, Momento has also shone in the ever-prevalent digital arena; so far in this phase of their career, they have amassed almost one million streams on YouTube, and counting.

Sindalah is now available to stream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Cameron Owen diaphanously covered Les Miserables’ Bring Him Home

After Cameron Owen’s cover of Bridge Over Troubled Water left us insurmountably arrested, we couldn’t wait to feel our emotions swell with the orchestral crescendos in his latest single, Bring Him Home.

The compellingly diaphanous ballad is as graceful, delicate, and powerful as an angel’s wing for the way the theatrical pop cover of the Les Miserables prayer comes to life through the minor piano keys and his unfaltering vocal lines fusing as the ultimate aural redemption story for humanity.

Just as Les Miserables conveyed the resilience of the human spirit and its ability to endure heartbreak while still keeping courage, love and passion at our core, Cameron Owen’s reworking of the number will serve a poignant reminder of our innate inner capacity for beauty.

Bring Him Home was officially released on April 21; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Just Like Honey: Maya’s Radio Orchestra Let the Light in with her jazz blues rendezvous, Suntrap

Maya’s Radio Orchestra brought sun-bleached luminosity by the smorgasbord with her latest baroquely beguiling single, Suntrap. Just as the sun illuminates dust when it hits a room, the radiance in Suntrap through the honeyed vocals and swirling harps suspend the dusty underground jazz bars while the piano arrangement underpins the warm arrangement; contributed to by producer Lauren Gilmour’s scintillating synth lines. With the dreamy and lofty drum fills bringing a lemon slice of Portishead-reminiscent glamour, Suntrap becomes a sonic plateau that you will want to visit time and time again.

Maya says: “When I wrote this song, it was the end of February, and the midst of a very long dark, damp, Glasgow winter, and I was feeling very down. We underestimate how difficult the winter in Scotland can be, all whilst having to continue with our day-to-day lives as if we’re not affected by nature and the lack of sunlight.

Writing this song was my way of processing this uncomfortable realisation that capitalism and the need for productivity are incompatible with our human nature and that it’s having a detrimental effect on our communal mental health.”

Maya is a Glasgow-based British-Nepali singer-songwriter, harpist, pianist and vocalist. She is highly revered for her texturally intricate harmonies, which cathartically coalesce with her classy instrumentation and lyricality that unravels as conceptually philosophical poetry.

The sun will hit the airwaves on May 3rd. Stream Suntrap on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Berlin electro-acoustic originators klanglomerat created a cathartically seductive Jazz IDM amalgam with ‘Fünf’

The Berlin electro-acoustic outfit, klanglomerat, created a beguiling symbiotic relationship between Jazz and IDM in their fifth evocatively ambient single, Fünf. How they succeeded in soaking the instrumentals in so much pensive emotion is just a fraction of the alchemy that will cathartically seduce you; the gentle yet purposeful melodicism knows just what direction to pull your senses in so that you drift with the sweeping bass lines and are cradled within the ardently accordant drum fills.

Artfulness is often associated with inaccessibility but slipping into Fünf is easier than breathing; the progressive single gently rises with the tides from the quiescent intro into the vortex of swirling piano motifs, which ring with a touch of neo-classical flair, while the nuanced electronica synthetics douse the soundscape with a sense of modernism that will aid klanglomerat well as they define the future of ambience in the Berlin scene and beyond.

Immerse yourself in Fünf from April 7 by heading over to YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast