Liquid Mind (Chuck Wild) revisits some of his favorite tracks from previous albums, this time mixing with the cleansing, healing and comforting sounds of the rain and ocean.
Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes
|1. The Joy of Quiet Rain Mix 9:47|
|2. Soft Focus Ocean Mix 8:52|
|3. Velvet Morning Rain Mix 8:52|
|4. In Fields of Peace Ocean Mix 8:58|
|5. Journey To Peace Rain Mix 12:21|
|6. Night Light Ocean Mix 12:38|
The Fluidity of Sound
Liquid Mind’s latest album, Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes is truly therapy on a disc. Liquid Mind is the brainchild of Chuck Wild who has been providing extraordinary music to sooth the savage breast for over twenty years, but his career is much more far reaching. There is clinical evidence that shows Liquid Mind music relaxes, helps reduces stress and calms the spirit. His beatless atmospherics allow the music to flow and envelop the listener as they shape their own healing world. You cannot ask more from music that is also very entertaining.
It is ironic that while I listened to the first cut, “The Joy of Quiet Rain,” it rained on my metal roof and the patter complimented the music quite nicely. The tune has all the nuances of rain puddles on the path, big drops falling on sidewalks and the millions of dimples made on the nearby pond. The thunder is heard in the distance, a sound from an angry God or angels playing games. I am a pluviophile, that is, a lover of rain and this piece certainly brought calmness to my spirit.
Ocean waves crash on the shore as the tune “Soft Focus” gets under way. It displays a leisurely melody almost like inorganic voice. It blends well with the surrealistic soundscape. I must say that the music took me back to my childhood where Mr. Letendre, the church organist at L'eglise Ste. Jean Le Baptiste, played interludes before high mass. The music soared to the rafters and was uplifting in every way. This tune does the same.
The storm awakens you. You look at the clock, hear the thunder and the rain and you get out of bed. Light comes from the window blinds and suddenly the rain is gone and a patch of blue can be seen. It is a good day. Just as quickly the rain returns, but you feel energized, almost electric at the thought of new challenges and new discoveries. Liquid Mind’s tune “Velvet Morning Rain” condenses your positive attitude into music that is refreshing and motivating without being raucous.
Waves make their way to the shore, the ebb and flow representing the breathing of the earth in the song “In Fields of Peace.” The music swells and then levels out to a muted melody. The waves in the background are like a watery pendulum marking time, offering a relaxing pace to our busy lives. Let us take a moment to slow down, and take pleasure in the waves.
Drop by drop, the rain returns in the tune “Journey to Peace.” The song is very measured, but not sluggish. he heavy rain that visited earlier has diminished, but it is not over. There is still the pale gray sky and the mist on the mountain with which to contend. There, I heard more drops. The calming music invites us to count the raindrops.
The final cut on the recording is called “Night Light.” As soon as I heard the first few bars, I could imagine the sky absent of all color, but given over the magical world of starlight. Suns that are a million miles way give gemlike color to the sky. I envision a gentle ocean and the calming atmosphere when you know everything is in balance, at least for the moment.
There is something subliminal, some kind of nearly imperceptible audio frequency in the music that makes you calm. More than once I felt myself breathe easier. My movements more exact and my focus centered. Perhaps Liquid Mind offers us something often touted, but rarely produced by modern man. Let us thank Pythagoras and Liquid Mind, for the Music of the Spheres exists.
I have been listening to Liquid Mind’s (aka Chuck Wild) music for many, many years now and have always found that when I want some music that will help me to relax or drift off to sleep, I am in good hands when it comes to Liquid Mind’s releases. Over the years I have heard many albums that attempted to mix the sound of rain or the sound of a babbling brook or the sound of the ocean’s waves into the music. There were some that were wonderful and hit the perfect balance between the music and the nature sounds that occupied the background, and there were others that did not achieve this balance and they were simply distractions from the music.
This new album is a special release in a couple of different ways. One is that the songs chosen are personal favorites that Chuck has recorded over the years at Real Music. In my opinion this is much better than a greatest hits collection (which are chosen by the artist’s record label), because these are compositions that Chuck considers to be some of his best. Another is that Chuck has taken these songs and remixed them to include the sounds of rain and the ocean because of Chuck’s affinity with the element of water; hence, the name Liquid Mind.
Ordinarily I might be worried that I’ll find the sound of rain or the ocean being slapped into the existing song without much thought as to how they would most effectively blend together, but that is not the case on Liquid Mind’s Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes. It is apparent from the beginning that Chuck has put a lot of thought into how these two distinct entities (song & effect) would meld in such a way as to make the final composition better than it was without the sound of water, without either element being overshadowed by the other.
One of my favorite tracks is “Journey to Peace Rain Mix.” This song is a masterpiece of music with the sole purpose of moving you to the edge of sleep and then pushing you over the edge with a gentle shove. The piece opens with the sound of rain as the predominate feature to set the mood, and then the synthesizer rises up displacing the rain as the main attraction. The result of this marriage between music and rain is one that is both soothing and comforting which creates an atmosphere that is warm, dreamy and very relaxing. Even the thunder that is interspersed throughout adds to the wonderfully serene feeling that permeates this track. There is something primal about nature sounds when used properly along with music, and Liquid Mind really takes that idea to a whole other level.
Most of the tracks on this release are long form compositions (8 minutes or better) so that the listener is able to enter into each one completely and allow it to work its magic slowly instead of being rushed along to the next song. The album has six songs taken from various Liquid Mind releases and clocks in at 61:28 making it a great album to use just before bed or maybe just after getting home from a stressful day. As always, Chuck’s impressive musicianship is on display in Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes but he also shows us that the lush compositions that form the basis of the mixes, in his expert hands, can become even better than what they were before without sacrificing the quality of the music simply to add the sound of water.
Liquid Mind has always been one of my favorite ambient artists and Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes confirms that nothing has changed. With this album you get not only a favorites collection, but you get to hear those great songs remixed with new breath infused. Most highly recommended by Ambient Visions.
Liquid Mind's Chuck Wild keeps finding more and more ways to increase the serenity of his flowing synthscapes! On Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes he revisits some of his favorite tracks from previous albums, this time mixing with his music the cleansing, healing and comforting sounds of the rain and ocean. Occasionally, you might detect some subtle bird chatter or a distant rumble of thunder. The nature sounds really do add a wonderful new dimension to the mixes. They make the music feel more full and complex, while enhancing the tranquility level by a great deal. Of course, Wild's slowly unfolding synthesizer fantasias are still a large part of the appeal. Immersed in a Liquid Mind album, it becomes easy to block out everything else and simply unwind. Great choice for sleep, too!
“The Joy of Quiet Rain Mix” is an absolutely epic effort, with a number of different movements that elicit different emotions and mindstates. There are several environmental sounds that are interspersed during this effort (rain following thunder) that approximate a storm that washes everything away. One can meditate and create a positive state in this nearly ten-minute offering. The “Soft Focus Ocean Mix” does a stellar job in creating an overall vision for listeners; as one closes their eyes and starts to imagine what is happening during this effort, the sounds of the ocean will bring visions of a beach house and the immenseness of the ocean to mind.
“In Fields of Peace Ocean Mix” is full of resounding arrangements that will stick with listeners long after the title has ceased; while one of the shortest on the title, it possesses an authority of a track twice its length. “Night Light Ocean Mix” is the final composition on Liquid Mind: Relaxing Rain & Ocean Mixes. At 12:38, this track has ample time to craft a number of distinct visions. While the ocean is something that is referred to a number of times during this title, I feel the bird sounds and more smoothed-out composition do a perfect job in capturing the dusky and darkening moments of a night on the beach. Top Tracks: “The Joy of Quiet Rain Mix”,” In Fields of Peace Ocean Mix” Rating: 9.0/10
You don't often see Bernie Grundmann in the credits for a new age record, but you don't often find one made by one of the cats behind "Max Headroom."
Originally composed as an antidote to the 20 hour days network TV can require, the Liquid Mind Series is now in its 20th year and this disc celebrates high spots from the last decade by freshening up the mixes with nature sounds from various forms of water. It worked once before and it works again now. Refreshing stuff for tired ears as generated by a player that's certainly been there, done that, and got the shirt. Newbies wondering how to fight off burn out ought to cock their ears in this direction.