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Album Review: Wayfarer
William Linton
Cover image of the album Wayfarer by William Linton
William Linton
2000 / SpaceForMusic.com Records
41 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
I reviewed William Linton’s solo piano album, Piano Sketches, earlier this year, and fell in love with it. Linton is more widely known for his electronic ambient and space music, and I was very curious about what his “other” music was like. Wayfarer is a fascinating “fantasy electronic” musical journey. With a variety of rhythms and melody lines, this album is both incredibly relaxing, and at the same time, stimulating. Most of the tracks have a very serene and peaceful feel to them, and then comes “Strange Tales,” which is very dark and mysterious. I love it! Almost ten minutes in length, “Tales” seems to go more deeply into a frightening place as the piece evolves. The feeling for the first six minutes or so is one of being lost in perhaps a very dark cave. There is no real desperation, but it is very tense - this isn’t a place we want to linger in any longer than necessary! Then there is a bit of a bang and the rhythm changes completely, gradually bringing us back up into the light. I love the way the tonal colors and moods change within this piece. “Crystal Ship” is a shimmering gem. The bell-like tones stay in the upper ranges, and yet this is still a very mysterious piece. “Rain” is another real favorite. This one reminds me a little of Suzanne Ciani’s early electronic work. Light and gentle, this is a spring rain that dances on a pond and makes new blossoms sparkle when the sun returns. Every piece on this album is excellent, and each tells its own story. As a whole, the experience is of a journey to a different world. The music evokes visual imagery, allowing the listener to surrender control and let the mind wander with the music. I first listened to Wayfarer in my wake-up CD player. Ambient music tends to put me back into a deep sleep, but Wayfarer is so interesting, that I wanted to stay awake to fully experience the music in a relaxed state. I listened to it many times that way, and it has become one of my favorite albums. Wayfarer is available from spaceformusic.com and emeraldcastlemusic.com.
January 1, 2000
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Kathy's Favorites: 2002
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