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MBR: The Library CD Music Shelf

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Midwest Book Review

Jan 1, 2011, 9:29:10 AM1/1/11
The Library CD Music Shelf

Chocolate Paper Suites
Krista Detor
Tightrope Records
c/o Rock Paper Scissors
511 West 4th Street, Suite 2, Bloomington, IN 47404
B003ZVHZU4 CD, $16.93,

>From her opening lovely Oranges Fall Like Rain to her more pensive
Night Light: Dazzling and the Joni Mitchell-like Madness of Love,
CHOCOLATE PAPER SUITES blends poetry with a unique folksy indie sound
inspired by her big-top life. Her CD is a series of suites on themes,
offering a lovely and colorful collection packed with stunning lyrics
and twists on ideas. If you're looking for something truly different
and original with a touch of Joni's folksy guitar style, this is an
exception to the rule and stands out from the crowd: highly

John & Roy Holmes
John Holmes & Roy Holmes
c/o Warner Music Group
75 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10019

JOHN & ROY HOLMES is an outstanding, pleasant surprise: it opens with
Any Day Now, a song combining folk with African-influenced rhythms,
and makes for a compelling, attention-grabbing presentation right off
the bat. 'Get Myself a Gun' adds harmonica and a folksier beat - it
too is compelling, sans the African influence - and it could easily
serve as a soundtrack addition. Instrumentation ranges from guitar and
violin to accordion and pedal steel. In fact, each song in John & Roy
Holmes' album is satisfyingly diverse and melodic, making this a
highly recommended presentation.

Steel Pan Music and Feelin Good
Panazz Players
Goin Native
Box 617153, Orlando, FL 32861

STEEL PAN MUSIC - JAZZ EDITION is lovely: a nine (and sometimes ten)
piece band with steel pans (a.k.a. steel drums) as their focus sounds
much like a jazz group might be, centered around a saxophone section.
Naturally the "jazz edition" CD is the jazzier of the CDs (its
companion is FEELIN GOOD), but jazz and pop sensibilities are found on
each. Only three musicians do not play the pans: there's a full
trapset (modern drum kit), congas and a percussionist who doubles on
drums. I was surprised to hear a Gypsy Kings medley (four tunes) on
the FEELIN GOOD CD, along with old standards like 'Fly Me to the Moon'
and 'Cheek to Cheek'. Then a new piece: 'Pan of the 21st Century'. A
top pick for any ethnic music collection!

The pickPocket Ensemble
c/o Rock Paper Scissors (publicity)
511 West 4th Street, Suite 2, Bloomington, IN 47404

Memory is an album of "cafe music" by the eclectic pickPocket
Ensemble, a musical group that draws from Balkan boogies, Arabic
ornaments, Middle Eastern melodies, North African blues, and much more
in their original repertoire of musical fusion. Their adventurous
blending of ethnic and cultural musical boundaries makes for a unique
listening experience, characterized by intimacy and revolutionary
redefinition. Memory is a choice pick for library and international
music collections. The tracks are "Home", "3 a.m.", "If", "Sometimes
Never", "Bird in a Web", "For Those Who've Left", "Seriously",
"Memory", "That Dream Again...", and "Nowhere Else".

Leap of Faith
Patricia Shih
Shih Enterprises Inc.
PO Box 1554, Huntington, NY 11743

Patricia Shih has dedicated her music CD album "Leap of Faith" to
"those who dare to dream and leap"; fittingly, the music surges with
inspiration while the lyrics contemplate moments of dilemma that can
forever change one's life. A profound performance reverberating with
love, the drive to better oneself, and the wondrous power of human
creativity, "Leap of Faith" is a transcendental listening experience.
The tracks are "Leap of Faith" (2:36), "Small Blue Marble" (3:51), "Be
the One" (4:17), "Mother-in-Law's Lament" (3:09), "Island" (4:12),
"Children of the Dust" (5:20), "Two Good Legs" (2:57), "The
Choice" (4:57), "Human Catastrophe" (4:14), "My Child's Song" (2:55),
"Living with All Hope" (4:16) and "The Color Song" (2:36). Also by
Patricia Shih and highly recommended is the music CD album "Woman With
One Closed Eye" ($15.00).

Nagore Sessions
Flipswitch (publicity)
PO Box 2207, Bloomington, IN 47404-2207

Nagore Sessions is the latest album from Earthsync, which supports the
chants of three traditional Sufi dargah singers with Middle Eastern
percussion as well as contemporary Western instruments. Nagore
Sessions draws upon when Earthsync came to Nagore after the terrible
2004 tsunami, as part of the Laya Project in homage to the many
cultures and peoples directly affected by hard times. The Sufi culture
of South India brought a welcome infusion to their spiritual and
rhythmic understanding. In their travels, they drew inspiration from
Nagore holy sites, the philosophies of fellow Sufi singers, and even
Southern Indian "Kollywood" pop music (cousin to better-known
"Bollywood" tunes). A rich and rewarding experience, Nagore Sessions
is highly recommended especially for international music CD shelves.
The tracks are "Baghdad Guru" (7:09), "The Saint" (6:43), "Ya Allah
(Nagore Sessions Version)" (7:31), "Allahu Allah" (4:19), "Ya
Haja" (5:45), "Into Your Eyes" (7:27), and "Mahane Mohabbat" (8:18).

Singing in the Dark
Susan McKeown
Hibernian Music
PO Box 2349, New York, NY 10009
Rock Paper Scissors (publicity)
511 West 4th Street, Suite 2, Bloomington, IN 47404

Irish vocalist Susan McKeown presents Singing in the Dark, a haunting
album inspired by McKeown's meeting with the families and loved ones
of those suffering from mental illness. The endemic problem of
depressions strikes especially close to McKeown's heart, as people of
her native land and those of her musician's profession are more likely
than average to fall prey to depression and even suicide. "Singing in
the Dark" draws upon classical poetry about madness and mental illness
to heart-rending music. The result is an unforgettable album not only
about pain and suffering, but also hope and the resolve to move
forward. The tracks are "In a Dark Time" (3:13), "A Woman Like That
(Her Kind)" (4:08), "The Nameless One" (5:39), "The Crazy
Woman" (4:29), "In Darkness Let Me Dwell" (3:41), "Mad
Sweeney" (5:23), "Anthem" (5:50), "Gracias a la Vida" (3:57), "The
Crack in the Stairs" (3:38), "Good Old World Blues" (4:26), "Angel of
Depression" (2:49), and "So We'll Go No More A-Roving" (3:49).

Into the Shadow Garden
Halytha Music
Flipswitch (publicity)
PO Box 2207, Bloomington, IN 47404-2207

Into the Shadow Garden is the debut album of the five-piece band
Copal, who hearkens to inspiration from music styles around the globe
- including Eastern European, Middle Eastern, Nordic, and more. Violin
strains, vocals, cello, bass, and drums merge into a heady, passionate
performance whispering of hidden treasures and secret nights. A liquid
blend of modern flair and classical elegance, Into the Shadow Garden
is highly recommended. The tracks are "Roots" (8:44), "Ether" (7:46),
"Ungaro" (3:35), "Ceutara" (5:22), "Velvet" (3:54), and
"Shadows" (7:53). 35 min 16 sec.

When May Came
Raina Rose
Trade Root Music Group (publicity)

Recorded live, When May Came is a self-produced music CD of eleven
mellifluous, haunting songs by Raina Rose and her band of Austin
musicians. The songs blend storytelling, heart, and a balanced musical
accompaniment into an unforgettable whole. "When May Came" is a
smoothly flowing album, highly recommended to connoisseurs of
independent and original music. The tracks are "Sun Comes
Back" (3:43), "Your Neighbor's Trampoline" (3:49), "Let Me Down
Easy" (3:37), "If You're Gonna Go" (4:27), "Desdemona" (3:58),
"Nashville" (3:34), "Pretty Good Today" (4:03), "Stone Around My
Neck" (4:33), "What Do You Bury?" (5:17), "Heart Broken Open" (4:18),
and "Bluebonnets" (4:26).

A Hot and Spicy Christmas
Irene Nachreiner with her Latin Jazz Band
Turquoise Water Music
c/o The Creative Service Company
4360 Emerald Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80918

A Hot and Spicy Christmas is a distinctive holiday music CD, featuring
the liquid smooth voice of Irene Nachreiner singing traditional
Christmas carols to unique musical arrangements performed by her
vibrantly exotic Latin Jazz Band. The result is a holiday fusion of
holiday cheer and modern pizzazz, perfect for parties or just getting
into the Christmas spirit. The tracks are "Fum, Fum, Fum" (2:34),
"Patapan/God Rest Ye Merry Gentlement" (3:16), "Sweet Baby
Jesus" (3:49), "Sing We Now of Christmas/Noel Nouvelet" (3:50), "O
Come, O Come Immanuel" (3:44), "Ring Out Bells" (3:21),
"Rocking" (2:50), "Silent Night" (4:28), "Il Est Ne Le Divin
Enfant" (3:46), "Infant Holy, Infant Lowly" (2:39), "What Child Is
This?" (3:35), "The Babe of Bethlehem" (3:07), "Cantique de Noel (O
Holy Night)" (3:46), and "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" (3:59).


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