Music Reviews

Artist: James Ross and Paul Muller (@)
Title: East/West
Format: CD
Label: Ventura Contemporary Music (@)
Rated: *****
I had not heard of these artists, but Paul Muller describes himself thus: 'I am an active Lutheran interested in new church music. I sing in the Sanctuary Choir at Trinity Lutheran Church, Ventura and play in the brass section of the Cal Lutheran Orchestra. I write contemporary choral and instrumental pieces for church services and hope to contribute post-classical music to the wider church.' Ross, according to the liner notes, is a Brooklyn based guitarist and composer. They describe the album as 'a collaboration of east and west coast sounds of ambient new music.' I have to admit that as it started up, it sounded like something off an old Narada sampler. I thought, 'did they really send new age to Chain DLK?' The cover art only reinforced this sentiment. This is split up with Ross taking the first four tracks and Muller taking the next four. Stylistically, Ross brings the minimal guitar work while Muller dissolves into nice, peaceful, droney ambience. Of the two, Muller's works are stronger on this album. Overall this is not really an album that challenges the listener, but sometimes you want something to fade into the background. This would be good music to put on and settle in with a book or perhaps if you wanted to set some kind of a mood ' if you catch my drift ' this may be a good one to throw on. Not amazing, but a pleasant listen. The price is right if you want to download it, as you can do so for free at the artist link above. This album weighs in at around 59 minutes.

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