Voices from the
Meg Bowles is a remarkable composer and
musician; her albums have literally taken me too many places over the last few
years, I traversed a Shimmering Land in
2013, and listened enthralled to the Evensong:
Canticles for the Earth some 5 years later.
I have but one bit of sound advice before listening to this
album, use headphones, and turn up the volume, the experience is simply
amazing, and as such Voices from the Ethereal
Forest is an utterly extraordinary album.
Meg has manifested a seven track album here that is beyond
beautiful, and to start with the title track was just a blessed thrill, as Voices from the Ethereal Forest, is a
track that comes to you in waves, its tones and synth structures are
astonishing and magnificent, reminding me in parts of artists like Kendle or Serrie, and reminding me
I have a long way to go with my own compositions!
This stunning start is followed by an even more compelling
track entitled Ode to a Fragile Sea;
one of the things I am going to incorporate in my own creations is the use of
ethereal vocalisations, and here Bowles balances perfectly such vocal
explorations, and matches them with such grand and sumptuous synth work
gestures, ones that could easily be akin to great classical works of far
forgotten ages, in a piece that is utterly mesmerizing.
The gentle symbiosis of this next piece is transcendent and
called Grove of Light, combing the
past, present and future paths of this genre, manifesting a peaceful calm realm
for it to reside, and this musical sanctuary is brought to life by Bowles
superior understanding of compositional structure and free flowing abundant
Taking but one tentative step into the second half of the
album, finds us knocking on the door of one of the most ambient pieces off the release,
and probably of the year as a whole, as we lay in the arms of Slow Dance Under a Red Moon. What the
artist does so well here is to take her time and sublimely create layer after
layer of delicious textures upon each other, thereby bringing into reality a
depth of ambience as of yet unheard of.
The mournful title of Woodland
of Sorrows is now upon us, this wonderland of peace and tranquillity
created by Meg Bowles has been
filled with meditative islands of calm and tranquillity, but here we have a
different consistency of tone to enjoy, a reflective pastiche of lament and
sadness, but even here, this is done with such an artistic sense of respect and
love, its ethereal energies lift up the listener in the arms of true hope, in
what is probably one of the most beautiful creations ever manifested by the
The penultimate offering is entitled Winter Fog and of all the compositions I have heard, over decades
of years in the business, I rate this piece to be the most relevant to the
subject matter, perfectly exploring the mystical elements of mist and fog, and
the landscapes with which they come into being. Here the artist crafts an
almost otherworldly creation, manifesting a slow, deep pathway of fog, one that
lifts and falls with the grace of a ghostly veil upon the environment below.
The last and final concluding composition is also the longest
off the album as well, at just short of twelve minutes in duration and called Evening Chorus. Once more Bowles shows
her intelligence by terminating her project with simple, but sublime ambience.
The synths manifest a heavenly realm of serenity, whilst the offering swirls
and drifts around the listener with unreserved musical perfection, what a splendid way indeed
with which to leave the album.
It just has to be said that Voices from the Ethereal Forest by Meg Bowles, is without a shadow of a doubt the best work thus far
in the career of the musician, its artistic flair and intelligent designs, have
all created an album that is simply magnificent, but apart from the plaudits,
she has also created for the listener a sonic sanctuary, a respite of tone and
timbre with which to escape the craziness of the world. Voices from the Ethereal Forest by Meg Bowles has to be one of the best ambient electronic albums
released this year, this album is one that has to be a total must for all those
fans, who constantly seek truly top class music, the good news is, you need to
look no further, it is right here!