CD Review of FLOW By Fiona Joy, Lawrence Blatt, Jeff Oster, and Will Ackerman

Very rarely you come across an album that carries a major contribution from multiple artists fused together so beautifully that you start wondering which artist you are listening to. In Fluid Dynamics, this is the true property of a ‘laminar flow’. –When different layers of a flow move together without any disruption or turbulence from each other. Once you start listening to this album, you feel like moving slowly without any bumps or shocks, and enjoy the ride for almost an hour.

FLOW is an anagram of the names of the leading artists–Fiona, Lawrence, Jeff (Oster), and Will. Well, you might have known them or listened to them individually in many of their individual albums, but not the way they have worked on this album. It feels like they cast aside the individuality, and let their talent flow out like a stream merging with each other. The virtuosity of each artist is discernable yet there is an undercurrent that makes you forget which instrument is which. The ‘sound’ is the winner here.

The album is born out of the mutual understanding, respect, and appreciation of each other’s art–no artist stands out. Such kind of amalgamation happens only when you share a feasible chemistry and comfort level that allows you to bare your soul in front of someone, and invite the other to do the same. They have done a commendable job in creating these tracks. In the lighter vein, it feels like they were enjoying a potluck of their music when they created this album!

Album Name: FLOW

Artist Name: FLOW The Group (Fiona Joy, Lawrence Blatt, Jeff Oster, Will Ackerman)

Total Time: 50:33

True to its name, the album literally flows. However, it is a slow flow–there is no hurry or haste because you don’t have to reach somewhere. The album brings you back to your roots from where you start. The only turbulence associated with this album is the thought it generates in your mind–the thought that seeks ‘the calm’. You feel agitated why you are agitated. Why not spare some time and spend it on listening to something like this? Why not let your soul flow with it?

Some of the track names will give you an idea what you can expect from this album, and true to their names, they deliver the essence of their titles: ‘Arrival,’ ‘Free Ascent,’ ‘Waiting For Sunshine,’ and ‘Rest Now My Friend.’

The percussion support provided by Jeff Haynes is amazing as it appears to be blending into the sound of other instruments. The cello sounds in the track ‘Waters Gather’ played by Eugene Friesen makes you visualize the thick and dense flow of chocolate lava. The sliding sound of the fingers on the acoustic guitar strings in the track ‘And The Sky Was’ is so relaxing.

Consider the piano as your body; the guitars as your mind; and the flugelhorn as your soul–tune to this album and let your being just ‘flow’ with it.

Track Name Duration
Arrival 05:19
Whisper Me This 05:08
Flow 05:26
Free Ascent 04:24
Waiting for Sunshine 04:56
Waters Gather 03:29
And the Sky Was 06:18
A Night in Nocelle 03:13
Tenth Life 04:23
Rest Now My Friend 03:39
For Rosita & Giovanni 04:18

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