Traveling on water, or simply gazing at it, gives us a profound feeling of peace. Todd Mosby’s new album “Open Waters” embodies this sensation. It is an homage to the beautiful and dangerous ocean and its contradictions and mysteries. Wherever you are, this album will give you a feeling of being far out to sea. Mosby has delivered one of 2019’s finest New Age music releases, which for sure will win him a reward or two – and many news fans.
Todd Mosby has created a new musical syntax integrating Indian classical music and Western music. His 13-year study of traditional North Indian music with his neighbor and guru-ji Ustadt Imrat Khan led to the development of acoustic and electric versions of the Imratguitar, a hybrid sitar-guitar. His previous releases are “On Eagle Mountain” (2016) and “West East” (2004 – Reissue). Mosby has been nominated for numerous ZMR, Global Peace Song and One World Music Awards. He is also a part of Four Guitars, with Will Ackerman, Vin Downes, and Trevor Gordon Hall.
“Drifting” is the album’s gentle opening. To drift is not only about being carried by a current, but it is also a state of mind. Your imagination is free to roam wherever it wants. The song incorporates both these aspects beautifully. It has a sweet Eastern sound, reminding us of how versatile this guitarist is. Todd can take us anywhere with his guitar.
After that relaxing drift, “Atlantica” feels like wakening up. And wow, what a place this is! As soon as the fog clears, you’ll see that this place of your dreams – it’s paradise! “Atlantica” has a relaxed vibe, saxophone, light percussion, and chilled guitars. I very much enjoy how Mosby combines jazz, New Age music, and easy listening. “Atlantica” was a place worth searching for.
This episode of Dream Mixtape is dedicated to “Open Waters”:
Next out is the title track. I love the song’s welcoming sound. Finally we are underway, the sun is shining, and the wind is just right. This is precisely what a sailor feels after weeks or months of preparations. It is a brilliant piece with a nice rhythm, gentle female vocalization, and Mosby’s usual guitar wizardry. Notice the many twists and turns; there’s no doubt that we are listening to one of the best artist currently active on the New Age music scene.
This album is all about movement. The feeling of being underway, and enjoying each part of the voyage equally, is this release in a nutshell. Travel is not merely about getting from A to B, it is a process. “Coming About” continue where “Open Waters” left off. The violin and trumpet give the song a playful atmosphere. The mix of genres and expressions is delightful.
A New Land
Now is the time to make landfall. I love the gentle opening; it is as if “A New Land,” which is the title of the next piece, comes into view as a small dot in the horizon. Then it manifests itself more and more as we get closer, bringing with it a sense of adventure. Then the guitar is joined by piano, bass, and percussion. We now see the new land and all its possibilities; It truly is a magical place. But it is impossible to stay at one place for long. “Western Sky” takes us out to sea again, in search of a long lost love. The song has a beautiful build-up and more of that lovely feeling of movement. The western sky carries the promise of everything good life has to offer.
Of all the living creatures in the ocean, dolphins are among the most beautiful and remarkable. Just seeing them glide through the sea and do an occasional jump, is extraordinary. Mosby’s “Dolphin Song” is a tribute to this wondrous mammal. As a New Age music enthusiast, I found myself almost wishing for some dolphin squeaks and whistles – but I guess that would have been a bit over the top… The song is excellent as it is.
This is an album about movement, and “Water Dancer” takes it one step further. It moves like waves, up and down, round and round. Mosby’s playful approach makes it into a very enjoyable listen. I played it for my children, and they instantly started dancing! It is a song that makes you feel alive.
At this stage the album shifts gear. It is slower and more contemplative. We make another relaxing landfall on “Island Song,” ponder about distances and time gone by on “So Far Away” and enjoy a warm breeze on “Windward”. “Sea of Joni” concludes the album in a triumphant way. It has the atmosphere of a homecoming. We are, at last, reunited with the people we love. I also enjoy the somewhat abrupt ending; the voyage is over, now let’s move on; new adventures awaits somewhere else!
In conclusion: It is easy to understand why Todd Mosby is being called a guitarist’s guitarist. He gives the word perfection a new meaning. That said, it does not affect how accessible his music is. “Open Waters” takes the listener on a remarkable journey. It is positive, playful and chilled. In short; a fantastic release!
Whenever you feel the lure of the sea, Mosby’s “Open Waters” is there for you.
Score: 96/100 – See our scoring policy
For more information and music samples, visit toddmosby.band