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Instrumental New Age Review: Masako-Underwater Whisperer

Release Date: June 21, 2019
Label: Masako Music

I found Masako through her Piano Sanctuary release.  And I found a sanctuary through her music. Now two years have passed and Underwater Whisperer is delivered. If you look at the track titles it all lines up with the album title and colorful illustration on the cover.

What I see is a young lady communicating with her surroundings (arms raised to get attention?), the ocean, the polar bear, an iceberg, and sea creatures. Masako communicates with her music but what she is trying to say as well is very important. The thought process here evolves around nature and perhaps a cry for some reasoning around what is happening to the polar ice cap. It is melting away with rising sea temperatures.  Anyone with any sense of reality can see what is going on with our environment. And what is accomplished here is a lot more than a whisper.

You will enjoy 11 tracks of instrumental elegance from the fingers of Masako. The production values are excellent when an artist goes to Will Ackerman’s Imaginary Road Studios and Tom Eaton provides all the meticulous production work. They are two of the busiest men in the music business.

I think the entire album delivers on the promise of tranquility and a meditative or contemplative state of consciousness. Two tracks in particular were my favorites. “Sea Pearls” is 7 minutes and 20 seconds of pure piano bliss.  And “The Deep” is the one I chose to add to my Spotify New Age Music Reviews playlist. It is a step away from the norm, a very different, atmospheric ambient haunting track, as she puts aside the acoustic keys and opts for the electric sound and the perfected vocals of Noah Wilding. I loved it because it is outside of the comfort zone if you will of the rest of the album. Masako takes a chance and comes out the other end triumphantly, offering another side of her musical repertoire that will get long time listeners some ideas of possibly hearing more of that type of approach and sound on the next release.

The piano alone can say a lot but when you add the cello, flute, Chapman Stick, wind synthesizer (an interesting instrument), and percussion it is like a small orchestra adding layers to the one layer of piano. Together as one it can mesmerize and send you to dreamland within one track. It is a thing of beauty that can only be accomplished by a seasoned group of professionals covering every nook and cranny in a song in regards to musicianship and production.
 
It did not take long for Masako to become one of my favorite artists in the new age genre and with Underwater Whisperer my interest and respect for her music continues to grow wings and fly with her every step of the way.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
July 22, 2019

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