Elaine Silver,
(Silverstream, 2004)

AH-Leluia and praise Elaine Silver; her album may well be the 60-minute prescription for world peace.

Silver herself never claims to have the answer to the world's strife. In fact, AH-Leluia claims to be nothing more than "music for massage, meditation, yoga, tai chi and spiritual practice set to Pachelbel's Canon in D." But few albums could be worse for such practices. Massage, yoga, and tai chi generally require people to be moving; and from the time Elaine's supernaturally clear voice joins the chorus in "First Vocal," movement of any sort is unthinkable. Forget driving or operating heavy machinery; if you're going to hear out the strange percussion of "Hang Enters," you'd better give up thoughts of chewing food.

Meditation and spiritual practice, though, are right on the mark. This is music to lift you out of your body, music that makes little concerns of daily life, like bills or petty grievances or whether you still have feet, fade to unimportance. Pachelbel's "Canon in D" is always enchanting; under Silver's new arrangements, it becomes transcendental. And if you're still feeling anxious by the end of the elegant "Mandolin Solo," you'd better check to see if someone is actively electrocuting you.

World peace may be an overambitious goal for AH-Leluia. If nothing else, sharing this CD on a worldwide basis would probably require the construction of some sort of giant sound system, and that level of effort becomes impossible after 10 minutes of Silver's musical therapy. But if she can't bring peace to the nations of the world, there's still a good chance that Elaine Silver and AH-Leluia can bring peace to your day.

by Sarah Meador
28 October 2006

Buy it from Amazon.com.