Life does not happen, exist, continue, grow and multiply on its own. You and I are here on this earth and continue to live due to reasons that we understand only partly, but tend to miss out on the major part. The mighty ELEMENTS of NATURE facilitate all these processes. In supporting, sustaining, and nurturing lives, these elements inherit the POWER of GOD, and therefore, they are to be adored and thanked for succoring us. Precisely, this is the theme of the music album ‘ELEMENTS’, composed, performed, and produced by Lis Addison and published by All Aglow Music.
To me, “Elements” sounded like an elegant rendition, one of the rarest compositions of its kind for many reasons. Writing to you about the distinguishing elements of this musical art, I would cull out the most efficient use of electronic soundscapes, jazz and classical piano, Indian vocals, and chill beats, gracefully blending into a meticulously conceived painting of melodies. Lil has charmingly sung the mantras in Sanskrit and English in paying tribute to the elements, light, herbs, and the happiness at the heart of every one of us.
To do some justice to reviewing “Elements“, I must pen a few words about the skillful deployment of the vocals in the album. The composer’s expertise and knowledge in Sanskrit and English mantras are evident in the meaningful pairing of the mantras as per their context and purport. The strategy of pairing the mantras of both these languages further drives the message in a stronger and more engaging way.
In addition, quoting what some reputed persons have to tell about the album can further add to our understanding of the highly serious kind of rendition that has gone into Elements. In registering his views on Elements, Bill Binkelman writes, “It’s hard to know which to praise more on Lis Addison’s album, Elements – her (as always) amazing voice, the flowing melodies, the catchy chilled rhythms, the intermixed world beat influences, or the overwhelming positivity of the lyrics.”
He adds, “In the fantastic end result, but it’s Addison’s siren-esque voice which swings from sultry to playful to comforting that takes Elements to the heights it achieves. During these trying times, we all need more hugs. Consider listening to Elements as a virtual hug from not just an amazingly talented artist, but a wonderful person as well.”
Lis Addison is today a well-known name in the domain of electro-acoustic vocal music. During her budding stages, she had training in classical piano and then had a good amount of exposure to the Indian ragas. She started composing music at the age of eleven. Her melodies range from meditative pieces to ecstatic musical treats. One of her unique specialties is the ability to conjure a profound kind of journey into stillness and make the listener travel within into untapped vistas of the widening consciousness.
Lis has secured a few notable awards from some reputed organizations like the Pacific Composer’s Forum, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Global Music Awards, and the New Age Reporter. Three of her latest releases charted among the top 10 of the International Charts. During the beginning of 2020, Lis toured around 30 cities in the regions of Pacific NW, Australia, and New Zealand.
There are eight tracks in Elements with the entire album playing for nearly an hour. There is a string of uniformity connecting all the tracks in the bottom line, though the treatment of different elements has invariably demanded the artist to adopt slightly different rendition techniques.
The Light of You: 6:32
This opening track sets the mood, tone, and phase for the entire musical treat to be grasped and absorbed easily. In listening to the track, I felt an element of solemnity, giving a feel of meditative contemplation all through and lingering even beyond.
Breathing Green: 7:01
‘Green’ is the symbol of life. The basic form of life namely, the plants, are the heroes venerated in this opus. The track flows giving a feel of little gallops in meadows enjoying the beautiful scenery around, feeling it as the gift of five elements.
Rhythm of Earth: 5:54
Themed on the fifth element namely the ‘earth’, this opus has received a unique treatment from the artist. Earth is the most concrete of the five elements that can be experienced with all the five senses. The music in this opus is brisk and lets you dance softly as you journey within from the concrete to the abstract, aptly suiting the title ‘Rhythm of Earth”.
Mother Waters: 6:46
Water is the life-sustaining element and the fourth among the five principal elements of nature. Smooth flow and wavy movement are the characteristic features of water and the artist has made you feel like wading through silent waves in a boat and the entire experience of this track was something splendid you have to feel yourself. Close your eyes, and you are bound to feel a voyage in silent waters.
Sister Wind: 4:50
The second of the five elements, Wind is the hero of the fifth track. The wind has different tempos and you can feel many of them in this track. The breezy tempo and a gusto tempo are predominantly evident in the opus justifying the theme dealt with.
Fire In The Heart: 5:30
Hotness and light are the two major characteristics of fire and the sixth track dealing with fire has the comforting warmth and also the blissful hopes of light. A kind of cheerfulness permeates the entire track suggesting a happy journey to see the light in you.
Horizon Line: 5:49
With the journey with the album nearing its close, the horizons appear and the listener has to now become more conscious of the whole purpose of the journey. Right from the start of the seventh track, there is a bubbling joy of discovering the destiny that is within the reach and a sense of achievement towards the end.
Choose Happiness: 5:52
Now that the artist has succeeded in journeying the listener to the inner realms of Supreme Happiness, all that is left is rejoicing the victory and plunging into the depths of that solemn stillness and the assuring kind of confidence resulting from the realization. A sense of celebration and satisfaction permeates the track leaving the listener spellbound with the power of music contained in the whole album.
“Elements” transcend the boundaries of cultures, languages, and geographies in giving a universal treat to the listeners. If you have been waiting for a novel kind of experience to celebrate the powers within, then ELEMENTS is a never-to-miss album.