Call of the Canyons
(iMusician, 2010)

Using a Native American flute, resonant drums and an occasional guitar and piano, Wolfsheart produces 12 tracks, for more than an hour of music, that is very relaxing, soothing and uplifting. But is it good?

The instrumentals are clearly the main focus in this music. The Native American flute gives a breathy, wistful feeling to the music, and the great drum-work gives many of the pieces power and resonance. When the piano and guitar kick in, for some pieces, they are a startling contrast, and sometimes seem out of place to me.

There are very few vocals in this music, and they are more hints of vocals mimicking the instrumentals. There are "nature sounds," like a stream, rain, frogs singing and eagles calling. These are more background than foreground, and do not always sound all that natural, especially the eagles.

Strengths: This music is very mellow and relaxing. It would be perfect for listening while driving home from work, giving the listeners a chance to wind down. It might also be good background music for a date or eating dinner. With its relaxing, soothing sound, it might make good falling-asleep music. It definitely would be good meditation music or something to play while doing yoga or t'ai chi.

Weaknesses: With no pieces that would be familiar to most listeners, the music lacks a sense of being distinct pieces. The tracks seemed to blend together and be almost interchangeable to me. At 60:37, that's a lot of music that sounds too similar, creating the sensation of deja vu, and it became somewhat repetitive to me.

Still, I enjoyed listening to this CD and relaxing to it. I doubt that I'd listen to it many times, or buy the whole CD. However, buying and downloading individual tracks would more sense. But, if you are a fan of the Native American flute, this CD is a must-listen, in my opinion.

book review by
Chris McCallister

12 February 2011

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