Wednesday, November 10, 2010

CD Review – Gaia, by Dr. Michael Brant DeMaria

Gaia is psychologist, author, lecturer, and musician Dr. Michael Brant DeMaria’s ode to the planet we all call home, and as such, it plays like a sonic travelogue to many of the world’s ancient cultures.

The CD is truly an authentic representation of world music, with each track rooted deeply in the musical traditions of a particular nation, such as Japan, China, and the ancient Americas. As a result, the compositions are as exotic as the lands from which they draw their inspiration.

DeMaria uses his Native American flutes, keyboards, synthesizers, and other modern and ancient instruments to great effect, creating ethereal, nocturnal, and mystical textures of sound. He also performs tribal and primal chants with the use of reverberated vocals that are soothing, spiritual, and psychologically penetrating. This is music to meditate to.

Although DeMaria lives in Pensacola, Florida, the overall feel of the album made me think of the desert sun and the moonlit skies of the Midwest. It just has that New Age aura indicative of that region. And yet it is useful in a variety of settings: as calming and therapeutic music while driving or doing housework or just relaxing and meditating.

If you want to be transported to another time, place, and dimension, this CD is the perfect conduit. It sets the mood for you to become one with the universe, nature, and Earth itself.

--Raj Manoharan

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