June2014MediaLuminousSteven Chesne with The Luminous World Orchestra

Brahmasong Records 

 

Listening to this CD, you feel as if you are ensconced in a film. Musical swells and orchestral instrumentation are layered to create cycles of tension and release.

What strikes me upon my first listen of Moments from the Life Stories of Strangers, Part One by Steven Chesne with The Luminous World Orchestra is its poetic ebb and flow, an experience that defies labeling. Be it the ethereal, hopeful instrumentation of songs like “Invocation,” the grounding, deep tones and sometimes soft qualities of, “When The Love Will Rain Down Upon You,” or the somehow classical-Americana feel of “Yorkietown,” this album takes on the qualities of a soundtrack that seamlessly explores a plethora of musical directions. Additionally, there’s a Native American quality to “Glory Story #2” and some Asian tonal texture to “Change, Your Only Friend.”

When one learns about Steven Chesne’s background, it all makes sense. Chesne has put forth much more musical work than his four critically-acclaimed albums with The Luminous World Orchestra (of which he is the primary conductor/music director). He has also scored multiple films and over 300 episodes of primetime network TV shows, and recorded concertos, orchestral suites, tone poems, and more. That sensibility weaves its way into these recordings, as they offer soothing, picturesque tracks that convey deep emotional qualities, seemingly woven into stillness and spirit.

 

Reviewed by Joe Kara, who loves his double life working in music and teaching Yoga in Hollywood and the Valley. And he plays bass, too. Facebook/ Twitter. @JJKara