Music Reviews


A Winter Solstice Celebration

Signature Sounds

I must admit that before I got this CD, I had never heard of any of the artists on this compilation; after listening, I am truly glad to have heard it. I am seriously eager for winter to finally show up at my doorstep, because this CD will make a fantastic soundtrack to watching it snow outside the window, and sipping on some coffee, which I always make too strong. I cherish my winter memories of calm and relaxing evenings with friends, often times enjoying Frangelica coffee and tasty treats, courtesy of Nathan Birk’s mom, as we wasted away our teenage years in wintertime antsiness… I look forward to making additional winter memories of this sort, and a CD like Wonderland will provide a perfect backing, against which I will make said memories.

Peter Mulvey sounds somewhat like Bruce Springsteen did on his folkier albums (Nebraska, for example); his song, “River,” is my favorite song, and it appears first on the album. The style on the comp range from Peter Mulvey’s folk to Elvis styled country (see Mark Erelli’s “This Ain’t No Time of Year to be Alone”), to jazz, blues, and light rock & roll. The mood, somber and reflective, remains constant, though. Erica Wheeler offers a song on which she sounds like Jewel could sound, if Jewel could get the yodel out of her throat! Nerissa & Katryna Nields’ “Christmas Carol” is absolutely beautiful; there are really no words to describe how much I liked this song! Maria Sangiolo’s “The Cherry Tree Carol” is very simplistic, her voice (which sounds much like Natalie Merchant’s) and a lightly picked guitar. WOW! Matt Haimovitz offers up the most unique song here, his rendition of “Guige From Bach Suite III,” it being done on cellos and violins (I think).

A fitting and special end to the cd comes in the form of the a cappella angelic voices of Waters, Moore, & Abro performing “Nowell Sing We.” Simply a gorgeous song.

What else can really be said about such a wonderful little piece of music? Most of the songs revolve around Christmas (my favorite time of year), all of the songs are somber and beautifully performed, and it makes me long for winter. This is a truly great CD, and I will definitely be checking out some of this label’s artists’ individual works! A+

Signature Sounds:

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