Hey guys, I got my copy of Spiral Rhythm's "Roll of Thunder" CD and boy, am I impressed.
13 energy filled songs..
I Am the Goddess is bound to become a ritual/gathering standard. The woman's voices blend wonderfully in drawing down the feminine into a melodic song, sung a cappelo. What's nice is though each voice works well as one, their individual voices are not lost.
Come and Dance is another sure to be one perfect for calling folks together. Here voices and drums blend into a foot tapping (and body moving and shaking.. okay more than foot tappin) audio romp.
I really like Grandmother. A song that honors what it is to be a Grandmother... not as some old lady we pander to but as someone who has a lot to teach all of us. Again, voices work well together and with the drums.
Maiden, Mother, Crone... one of the only songs that has drums leading in rather than voices, which sets the mood nicely. The voices come in and move both body and spirit. Another song of honor, that of the triple goddess. What's really unique is that the individual voices each raise up a different aspect (as though maiden, mother and crone sing individually yet together)... though apart, they are together and remind me of songs sung in rounds.
Look Within is a lilting song with a wonderful message of looking within ... "look into the mirror, look into the glass, look into the future, look into the past"... yet another song with a great drum driven beat that makes you move, without you even realizing it at times.
Children's Totem Chant is just awesome. It's one of my favorites. It's FUN and silly and everything a kids' song should be. Oh, and when I say kids' song I mean of ALL ages. If you don't have a smile on your face after this face, then perhaps you're too old. ;) What's neat though is that it's not just a silly nonsense song, there's a message without being dogmatic... just a simple reminder that animals are our friends too.
I wasn't sure what to expect out of My Country Tis of Thee/Freedom... I truly listened with a blank mind so as not to judge based on other renditions I've heard. Their take is truly unique... TRULY, with a VERY nice twist to the traditional words. A slow honorable start leads into a buttkickin', energy driven song Freedom. If there's such a thing as Pagan Gospel, then this is it.
The Mother's Heart is a song of the Earth. The heart beating below our feet that drives us all. The voices and drums get increasingly faster throughout the song as a heart would if dancing to the song.
I Am a Leaf is a song of Nature and sure, about a leaf but also about the interconnectedness of all, including us. The beat is slower and more of a swaying to the rhythm sort of song.
Three Witches is a fun ditty, voices intermingled, some carrying the melody and rhythm and one that rises above offering plenty of what some would call, more stereotypical witchiness, shall we say... plenty of cackles without disrespecting. There's so much going on in this song, I'd love to see the lyrics laid out and perhaps after a few more listens I'll have better luck at discerning each bit out.
Dance, My Children, Dance is another call to move and dance with the song. Voices and drums driving a beat that, yet again, does make the body move.
Om Jam is an interesting blend of drums and voices. The drums provide a constant beat, like a heart, while the voices jam through ethereal sounds. Each exploring a different level of either om or some other chant yet all blending perfectly in a very entrancing song. A very mellowing song yet not sleeping mellow but more meditation mellow.
Roll of Thunder rolls in and out with thunder, voices and drums sandwiched in between. I think this is another that may come to be another ritual standard. I have to admit that before the song was done I was joining in with the CD, the chorus being one that even a child could pick up on.
All in all this is a really fantastic Pagan music CD. It's voices and drums... that's it. Nothing overpowers anything, which can be a trick.. and could be part of the mixing process or the performers themselves, I'm not sure, whatever it is it makes for a truly delightful listening experience. I'm VERY glad I got a second one for my friend's b'day next month because I have a feeling that this is a great CD for lifting the spirits and moving the soul. I tend to listen to a lot of heavier music and this one is NOT heavy but isn't wishy washy soft either. It's not easy listening but very tribal in many aspects.
I'll definitely be putting the bug in folks' ears about this CD! I've never written a music review before so I don't know if that's complete enough or not. Let me know if you have any questions concerning my impression of the CD!