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Album Review: Forgotten Waters EP
Matthew Mayer and The Outlaw Ocean Music Project
Cover image of the album Forgotten Waters EP by Matthew Mayer and The Outlaw Ocean Music Project
Forgotten Waters EP
Matthew Mayer and The Outlaw Ocean Music Project
2021 / Synesthesia Media
11 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Forgotten Waters is Matthew Mayer's powerful contribution to the Outlaw Ocean Music Project. A four-piece digital EP, the music was inspired by Ian Urbina's incredible best-selling book, The Outlaw Ocean. Three of the four tracks are solo piano and the fourth has some dramatic keyboard effects added.

Quoting Matthew: "Music provides a way for people to discover and break away from shared misunderstanding. I hope my music creates a sort of sailing vessel into the mystery and the vastness of the unchartered territory called the ocean and helps listeners shed light on the truths exposed by The Outlaw Ocean Project....More than just a large body of salt water, the sea connects us all and this project gives creatives from around the globe a front row view of this watery world. Through our musical exploration, perhaps we will find our common humanity."

Forgotten Waters begins with "Ocean Fog," a piece for piano with keyboard effects adding to the mysterious nature of the music. Fog on the ocean can be so dense that there is no way to visually tell where you are without navigational instruments. Fog can be beautiful, but it can also be very frightening, and this piece captures the feelings of both. "Legal Void" refers to many of the frustrations Ian Urbina experienced with the lack of clear jurisdiction over so much of the world's oceans and how that's taken advantage of in many countries with illegal fishing and other activities. "Forgotten Waters" are areas around the world that are far enough from land that all kinds of illegal activities can go undetected including slavery, illegal fishing, pollution and so much more. The music expresses loneliness, loss and dark drama. "Beautiful Depths" is a much more peaceful piano solo that suggests the slow, graceful movement of the ocean and the profound way it affects all of our lives.

Matthew Mayer has been one of my favorite pianist/composers for a long time and his music always comes from the depths of his heart. Forgotten Waters is no exception. It is available from OutlawOceanMusic.com, Amazon, Apple Music/iTunes and streaming sites like Spotify. The Outlaw Ocean Music site has a full listing of the many albums in this project as well as interviews with artists, and information about the book and author who started it all. Very highly recommended - all of it (site, book, music, etc.)!!!
July 23, 2021
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