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New Age CD Reviews By Diane Garris
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Other reviews from New Age CD Reviews By Diane Garris:
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Sacred Spaces
By Michael Whalen
Released 3/6/2020
Sacred Spaces tracks
1. A Metaphysical Morning
2. Sacred Spaces
3. Ordinary Miracles
4. 1000 Paper Cranes
5. The Pure and the Calm
6. An Ocean of Calm
7. The Inbetween
8. Devotion
9. In the Footsteps of the Blessed
10. The Afterlife
Sacred Spaces by Michael Whalen
“Sacred Spaces” is an ultra-hypnotic gateway to another time and place, and a fantastic escape from the ordinary world. – Dyan Garris

Grammy® nominated producer and a two-time Emmy® Award winning composer, Michael Whalen is also a music supervisor with 8 nominations. Michael has also scored hundreds of film and television soundtracks, as well as thousands of commercials. He has worked in advertising, television, film, and video games for over 30 years. That said, he is also undeniably a true master of his craft.

His newest album, “Sacred Spaces,” is 10 wonderful tracks of scintillating, percolating electronica; a treasure trove of intricate sounds, layers, and textures. “Sacred Spaces” is an ultra-hypnotic gateway to another time and place, and a fantastic escape from the ordinary world.

The album opens with “Metaphysical Morning.” This features a sensational build followed by exciting electronica, all perfectly capturing the feeling of a metaphysical morning in a special, sacred space. Brilliant.

This is followed by the title track, which is dazzling and reverent at the same time. Here we are effortlessly transported to ancient places. Through perfectly crafted melody and ethereal sound, we are right there, soaking up the majestic magnificence of all that came before us, yet that which is still etched into our souls for eternity.

“Ordinary Miracles” comes next. Now, what is ordinary about a miracle, you may ask? Well, if you’re awake and aware, everything, really. This is extraordinarily beautiful. This is spacious and light, as one might expect a miracle to be. Here, we can feel an energy shift that is quite palatable. Voices of the ancients echo ethereally through our spirit. Whether intentional or not, there are certain notes used here that correspond perfectly to the chakra system. So, we can literally feel our chakras opening and undulating in harmony. This is a favorite on the album, and one to play again and again.

I believe that “1000 Paper Cranes” is inspired by the Japanese legend that one who created a thousand origami cranes would be granted a wish, and also then on the story of Sadako Sasaki, who was diagnosed with leukemia from radiation caused by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. In her remaining lifetime, it was her goal to create 1000 paper cranes. There is an upcoming movie that began production in 2019, “One Thousand Paper Cranes.” Will be sure to catch this when it comes out. Perhaps this song will be in the movie. It’s exquisite. An excellent standout on “Sacred Spaces.”

“The Pure and the Calm” reminds me of being inside an ancient temple or other dwelling where one might purify oneself in order to gain calmness, serenity, or enlightenment. Kind of spooky and “transportive,” in a way, but in a very good way. This easily awakens something ancient, deep, and sacred within our soul. Love it.

My favorite on the album is “An Ocean of Candlelight.” This is soft, romantic, cinematic, and lovely. Here, we are peacefully floating on a bed of tranquility and at the same time bathed in a golden sea of calming, flowing light. Really beautiful.

Somewhere, in places we can’t see from where we are, there are dimensional spaces existing between this earthly world and the other worlds. This “in between” is perfectly captured here in “The Inbetween.” This is again cinematic, as well as wonderfully spacious and flowing. This is masterful electronica.

“Devotion” features a cornucopia of exciting sounds, electronic voices, and percolating electronica. Very engaging. It’s another one to love on this album.

If you’ve ever visited a sacred space, you are aware of that special, unmistakable feeling of walking exactly where many have walked before you. You know, it’s that feeling that gives you chills. This reverence, along with the distinct feeling of walking, is perfectly conveyed here in “In the Footsteps of the Blessed.” How does he do that? Ah, yes. A true master of his craft.

The album closes out with “The After Life.” This is such an interesting song. It feels like we have a very rich and busy life after this one.

In this life, I would say Michael Whalen has done it again with this superb album which takes us upon an invigorating, yet peaceful and restorative journey. But you will be able to say that as well when you hear it for yourself. “Sacred Spaces” is a must have album.
Rating: Excellent   Excellent
- reviewed by Dyan Garris on 3/6/2020
 
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