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Al Jewer & Andy Mitran | Perihelion

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by Al Jewer & Andy Mitran

Blending New Age, World, Ambient and Mindful Music, Perihelion creates a fresh beginning for the listener.
Genre: New Age: Contemporary Instrumental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Gathering Heart (feat. Erik Scott)
5:32 $0.99
2. First Step (feat. Biff Blumfumgagnge & Bob Lizik)
5:27 $0.99
3. Eternal (feat. Miriam Stockley & Richard Gannaway)
4:39 $0.99
4. Reflection (feat. Michelle Qureshi & Bob Lizik)
5:04 $0.99
5. Awakening (feat. Peter Phippen)
4:39 $0.99
6. The Space Between (feat. Sherry Finzer & Biff Blumfumgagnge)
6:33 $0.99
7. Ascendance (feat. Peter Phippen)
5:17 $0.99
8. Perihelion (feat. Biff Blumfumgagnge & Bob Lizik)
4:46 $0.99
9. Renewal (feat. Michelle Qureshi)
5:20 $0.99
10. Welcoming Light (feat. Sherry Finzer & Bob Lizik)
5:02 $0.99
11. Redshift
4:40 $0.99
12. Journey with the Moon (feat. Lisa Downing)
5:30 $0.99
13. Sacred Space (feat. Michelle Qureshi & Ian Maksin)
5:17 $0.99
14. Full Circle (feat. Biff Blumfumgagnge)
3:45 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
We are very excited to share our new CD, Perihelion, with you.

This CD features the narrative of a journey of rebirth and enlightenment. As we travel the path of our lives, every experience can provide an enlightenment or awakening. This boundless opportunity for renewal is truly a blessing.

The wonderful energy and creativity of our friends who chose to contribute to this album is a treasured gift. We sincerely thank each and every one of them.

Perihelion represents Al and Andy’s ninth CD and continues our tradition of working with incredibly talented collaborators and friends. We have welcomed back many previous guests and are excited to share the talents of new ones. Featuring 10 collaborators on 14 new tunes, this music represents a renewal of our connection with our fellow musicians. Blending New Age, World, Ambient and Mindful Music, Perihelion creates a fresh beginning for the listener.



to write a review

Candice Michelle

Earthy and grounded yet dreamlike and transcendental!
Al Jewer and Andy Mitran are a supremely talented multi-instrumental duo who’ve released a handful albums over the past several years. Having first heard their incredible music via their 2011 landmark album Music of the Earth, I’ve not only followed their work ever since, but have enjoyed witnessing both the musical evolution and stylistic progression over the course of their artistic careers. Likewise, I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Jewer and Mitran, as they shared deeper insight into their work and specifically their latest album entitled Perihelion, which is named after an astronomical point when our earth is closest to the sun during its yearly orbit. For the duo, perihelion also signifies the “burning off of artifice and unconsciousness”, noting its metaphorical parallel to a process of enlightenment.

Blending ambient-world and contemporary instrumental motifs, the duo variably showcase numerous instruments throughout, with Jewer performing on several woodwind and brass instruments while Mitran plays an array of keyboards and global percussion. Guest musicians include Miriam Stockley (vocals), Erik Scott (bass), Michelle Qureshi (acoustic, electric and slide guitar), Sherry Finzer (alto and bass flute), Peter Phippen (shakuhachi), Bob Lizik (bass), Richard Gannaway (bouzouki), Biff Blumfumgagnge (violin), Lisa Downing (piano) and Ian Maksin (cello).

Resulting in a congruous melding of the traditional and old-world with the contemporary and technological, the overall sound feels both earthy and grounded yet dreamlike and transcendental.

Listeners familiar with Erik Scott’s work will immediately recognize his signature bass licks on the opening “Gathering Heart”, a rhythmic and lively piece which effectively signals the starting point of an exciting journey ahead. Of notable highlight is “Eternal”, which showcases the unmistakable vocals of South African singer Miriam Stockley (of Adiemus and AO Music fame). Miriam also sang on the opening track to Jewer and Mitran’s previous album, Transmigration, and she once again shines brilliantly here with her layered tribal-esque vocals, which are accompanied by other harmoniously blended voices woven into the composition's exhilarating arrangement. My absolute favorite piece herein is the more ethno-ambient styled “Awakening”, which employs beautifully hypnotic poly-rhythms consisting of bells, hang, djembes and talking drum. Further topping it off is Peter Phippen on Shakuhachi, a Japanese flute accompanied here by other woodwind instruments. A warmly shimmering piece that I simply never tire of, this one always makes me think of being on an exotic safari and watching the sun set through the trees. The aptly-named “Full Circle” serves as a mesmerizing closure to the album, and also symbolically marks the earth’s completion of its journey around the sun. Intentionally meditative, both Native-style and silver flutes gently lead the piece in tandem with soothing violin amid beautiful bell-tones and electro-atmospherics of which seemingly convey misty twilight imagery.

Notably echoing aspects of the duo’s previous Transmigration and Two Trees albums, their lush soundscapes often paint mental images of either Southwest American deserts or African jungles and wildlife, depending on the piece. Likewise accompanied by stunning cover and inlay artwork depicting earth-space photographs, the album’s images further help to convey an appreciation of nature, culture and human potential that’s seemingly reflected in these pristine musical environments. Another outstanding effort from Al Jewer and Andy Mitran, Perihelion is guaranteed to find much appeal, especially, among many fans of both ambient and world music!

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Perihelion …The Turning Point" is the ninth album from the award-winning duo, Al Jewer and Andy Mitran. Their last five albums have been nominated for Zone Music Reporter Awards and have won twice. In addition to their recordings, Al and Andy have written hundreds of pieces for the Oprah Winfrey Show that can now be heard across the Oprah Winfrey Network as well as on the Dr. Oz show. The partners have created well over a thousand pieces of music for albums, television, film and commercials. As they have done on previous albums, Al and Andy recruited a very impressive list of guest artists and collaborators that include Miriam Stockley, Erik Scott, Sherry Finzer, Lisa Downing and Richard Gannaway.

The album is a narrative of a journey of rebirth and enlightenment. Quoting the liner notes of the CD, “As the earth travels around the sun we travel the path of our life. …. Every time the earth travels around the sun it reaches its perihelion, the moment when the earth is closest to the sun. …. Spiritual awakening is the perihelion in our life’s orbit. This album is about these moments in human life.” Blending new age, world, ambient and mindful music, the fourteen tracks offer a fresh beginning for the listener.

"Perihelion" opens with “Gathering Heart,” which features Al Jewer on a variety of flutes and triple ocarina, Andy Mitran on percussion and keyboards, and Erik Scott on bass. Exotic and rhythmic, it depicts the preparation time needed before any journey. Both relaxed and energetic, it’s an intriguing start! “First Step” is very spare and open with the rhythm of a graceful slow dance. Violin (Biff Blumfumgagnge), flute, bass, percussion and keyboards create a dreamy atmosphere with feelings of serenity. “Eternal” features the buoyant lead vocals of Miriam Stockley along with a small choir of other voices in addition to bouzouki (Gannaway), flutes, percussion, keyboards and bass (Bob Lizik). “Reflection” has a slow, easy grace that suggests having all the time in the world to look within and without. Michelle Qureshi appears on guitar. “Awakening” is one of my favorites and features Peter Phippen on shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute). Gently rhythmic with a peaceful exotic feeling, it blends several cultural traditions for a unique and very pleasant sonic experience. Sherry Finzer appears on bass flute on “The Space Between” along with violin, Native flute, piano and percussion. More ambient than many of the tracks, the slow, graceful flow and the low pitch of most of the instruments is sooo soothing! The title track marks the “moment of enlightenment, catharsis and transition” and is expressed in a very uplifting style with a variety of instruments. Sherry Finzer returns in “Welcoming Light,” the celebration of starting off in a new direction. Warm and jazzy, Finzer and Jewer play alto flutes - one on the right channel and one on the left. I really like this one, too! “Journey with the Moon” features one of my favorite pianist/composers, Lisa Downing. Slow, open, and very haunting, this lovely piece includes cello, flutes, synth and percussion in addition to the piano - also a favorite track! “Full Circle” savors “sweet satisfaction as we finish one chapter and think forward to the next,” and brings this beautiful album to a peaceful close.

Steve Sheppard

It simply doesn't get much better than this
There are some artists in this world that guide us through musical halls and alleyways, some that are supreme in the art of melody and some that resound in the avenues of tone and ambience. In my view Al Jewer and Andy Mitran are the great narrators of time and tide, as well as the aforementioned traits above; each step into a new project with them is like embarking on the storyline of a brand new movie, and it is this path we must tread again as we embark on a new voyage of plenty entitled Perihelion … the turning point.
The vast array of new age stars that reside within the album are many and we will come across each and every one of them on this trip of sight and sound. Let’s start with the opening piece Gathering Heart. One can feel through the energy of this song that a brave new journey is about to begin and one heavily influenced by the unique bass sounds of the incredible Erik Scott. Al Jewers style on flutes here is amazing, as the intensity of our voyage takes hold, while Andy Mitran is in what we call the engine room, and at his percussive best.
As we take our First Step, we find a composition that I simply loved, I floated above clouds of delightful tone with a sublime performance by Mitran not only on percussion, but dreamy keyboards too, then Jewers flutes caressed my open musical heart, my mind would revel in the delight of hearing the violin of Biff Blumfumgagnge, then with Bob Lizik’s attentive bass; this has to be one of the most smooth and serene tracks of this genre I have heard for years.
The vast oasis and ambience of Eternal is now upon us, there is a real excitement built into this one from the very off, it is as if we have seen our path ahead and it looks like something we have never experienced before. For us, this trip can be made even more pleasurable, by the addition of the award winning vocalist Miriam Stockley, whose stylish brilliance, pitch and tone, never ceases to amaze me. Mitran shows his multi-instrumental nature by adding bass to his percussive armoury, as does Jewer who brings the English horn into this house of musical plenitude. Infinity in tone is created here and the vocals for me manifested something truly special, we even had an appearance of the other AO music artist in Richard Gannaway on Bouzouki, an instrument we know all too well here in Cyprus.
As we drift into the piece Reflection, we truly have a moment of peace to survey all that we now see before us, as we become part of it all. This piece really highlights the new age styled genius of Jewer and Mitran, while we see a debut for ambient guitarist Michelle Qureshi to create for us a simply angelic offering, one that we can truly appreciate as a moment of reflective brilliance.
That extra edge of the percussive beat by Mitran gives us a sense of onward movement again, in an almost ethnic and rustic style. Here we will find on our journey through this forest of tone, one of the masters of the flute in Peter Phippen, but this time employing his talents on the Shakuhachi. Awakening is a wonderfully colourful offering, it’s almost like going on a journey, within a journey, but the momentum is also endless and incredibly rhythmic.
We now move towards the mist filled realms of this next piece called Space Between. Here we will also meet with another musical friend of ours in flautist Sherry Finzer, whose bass flute resonates us into a whole new musical dimension; it also combines so beautifully with the violin of Blumfumgagnge and Jewer on Native Flute, with a careful and crafted performance on various percussive instrumentation by Mitran we are gifted something truly remarkable and extremely listenable.
We have reached the tip of the album, that beautiful point where we can see our former pathway and gaze upon the walk ways of what’s next, but for now we can relax in the ambience of this absolutely stunning reverie entitled Ascendance. Phippen and his Shakuhachi flute join the duo for a truly memorable offering, and in my view easily the most ambient and peace filled opus on the album, here is one to really get lost within.
As we make our descent on our homeward trail, we first must pay homage to the inspiration to this entire concept, and of course I am referring to the title track Perihelion. Every time the Earth travels around the sun it reaches its Perihelion. This is a fascinating track, the combination of instrumentation is stunning, especially the violin’s symbiotic nature with the bass of Lizik and Jewers clarinet, and the addition of the horn which creates a never ending opportunity to enjoy crescendo after crescendo; what a spectacular title offering indeed.
There is much to be felt and enjoyed within this next composition, it’s called Renewal and contains such a delightfully mournful Native flute performance by Jewer. Qureshi joins the dance and pulls off a masterstroke of ambient proportions as she lays down one smooth passage after another on guitar. The energy of this track is one that seems to coalesce all around us, as musical colours of this new dimension seem to do with ease, as they merge past and present together; what a breath taking piece this truly is.
The energy picks up a little more now as we embrace the tones of this next offering called Welcoming Light. There is a really joyful essence about this one that is really addictive, Finzer is back, but this time on Alto flute, joining Jewer on the same instrument, but channelling left and right as they do so in a remarkable performance. The ever abundant talents of Mitran gift us some wonderfully light hearted percussion, especially on Marimba and piano, in a track of supreme quality and style.
Ever reached the top of a hill walk, and as you do so, your eyes are greeted by the most vast of vistas, a view that is simply magnificent, but extremely immense and wide, this is the music for your soundtrack of that moment and it is called Redshift. For the only time on the album the duo of Jewer and Mitran paint a musical picture that is sublime in its depth and gravity, for built into this piece is a little apprehension, that kind of slight doubt that sometimes occurs when you have travelled far and then realise you still have many, many miles to go before you reach your goal, can you make it, do you have the intensity and focus? Jewer on flutes is amazing here, while Mitran contains that percussive intelligence and laces it with a crafted performance on piano.
Sometimes we have to look at things from a different perspective to enable us to carry onward, perhaps that’s what is just about to happen here in the song called Journey with the Moon. That silver feminine light of the moon goddess shines down upon our humanity, and allows us to visualise beauty in a way we have never done before. The exquisiteness of this moment gives us a glimpse perhaps into an entirely different realm and here, through what is one of the most breath taking performances on the album, the artists manifest something beyond beauty itself; this features the emotive talents of pianist Lisa Downing, whose delicate performance draws such a compelling narrative for us to enjoy. A tip of the hat must go to one of the most emotional moments of synth magic too from Andy Mitran, his wizardry created a sublime backdrop of sound for this theatre of magic to play out.
We are now nearing the end of our journey, but before we knock on that door we can enjoy this moment of happiness on the piece called Sacred Space. Yes this is the penultimate offering off the release, when we are in our sacred space, as I am now; we can not only feel safe, but feel a certain oneness of spirit as well, and can then say to oneself perhaps that, all is as it should be. This is a wonderfully connected composition, utilising the skills of Ian Maksin on Cello, oh how I adore that instrument, we can combine that with the guitar of Qureshi, and this manifests a moment of tranquillity that allows Jewers sublime brilliance on Native flute to come to the fore, and what is a smooth yet sparkling performance on keyboards by Mitran to lift your soul into bliss itself, all you need to do is breathe and smile.
So we are here, the end of our musical voyage with Al Jewer and Andy Mitran, this last offering is called Full Circle and shows with great quality and style just what an amazing journey we have been on. One can without doubt feel that sense of completion, we are whole again, joined with all that there is and will be, this halcyon moment is provided by the duo plus the ever moving and totally special talents of Biff Blumfumgagnge on violin; as end of album pieces go, they don’t get much better than this.
Perihelion … the turning point, is one of those albums you will literally find difficult to stop playing, I have poured over it many times myself now and still want more. Al Jewer and Andy Mitran are master story tellers in the genre of contemporary instrumental music, with each and every album released they have created moments of unforgettable musical narration, this album is no exception, simply put, there are 14 pieces of music here and each one of them has been crafted with a precision of an uncut diamond, bathed in love and produced at a level few would find hard to reach. Perihelion … the turning point is an album that contains some of the finest artists in there genres today and one that I completely recommend, it simply doesn’t get much better than this.