Whispers of Arias Volume One2012
Sound collages, songs as stories, songs as films…from the opening doorbell on the first track of Stephen Mead’s “Whispers of Arias” , Volume One, the listener is invited to enter no ordinary musical experience. Instead, drawing on classical, folk, and alternative traditions, these songs owe more to the works of John Adams, Phillip Glass, & their librettists, for defying contemporary verse/chorus composition. Even the rhyme schemes are not typical moon/June/spoon, but more that of soliloquies set to music. Including voices from myths (Ariel, Isis), and voices of history (Nefertiti, Helen), through characters set in 21st Century scenarios, (a welfare mother on-the run), the song cycle of this CD weaves a thematically comprehensive whole, while the musical backdrops provided by Kevin MacLeod makes each piece a journey unto itself. To be human is to know how valuable life is, these songs seem to say, and will hopefully leave the listener emotionally transported by that message. In addition to instruments played around the house, Kevin MacLeod of Incompetech.com provided glorious royalty free music to sample/tweak/enjoy.