Geoff Hall | Understanding the Signs

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United States - Colorado

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New Age: Contemporary Instrumental Electronic: Ambient Moods: Instrumental
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Understanding the Signs

by Geoff Hall

Modern instrumental music that blends New Age, electronic, film, ambient, and contemporary classical.
Genre: New Age: Contemporary Instrumental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
clip
1. The Run
4:33 $1.29
clip
2. To Go Alone
3:44 $1.29
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3. Understanding the Signs
2:19 $1.29
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4. Toward a Perfect Moment
4:54 $1.29
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5. Gone But Not Forgotten
7:25 $1.29
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6. Perseverance
3:27 $1.29
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7. Knowing
4:07 $1.29
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8. Something More
6:46 $1.29
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
"Understanding the Signs" is the debut release from artist/composer Geoff Hall. These modern instrumental pieces have been orchestrated to combine elements of electronic, film, New Age, ambient, and contemporary classical music. While the titles are self-evident, the idea was to compose the music in a way that makes it easy to identify and connect with the emotional content of each piece. The release could be considered as a listener's "personal soundtrack" that covers a range of every day stories and experiences. They are for anyone who has ever felt hopeful, exhilarated, lonely, dedicated, confident, or sorrowful.

As a guitarist, it seems odd to have a first release in which the guitar is largely absent. The majority of instruments that were used in this project range from orchestral to electronic and were selected based on what each piece seemed to "need." In many ways, it felt like these pieces wrote themselves, and the instrumentation choices simply fell into place each time. In retrospect, it feels as though the subtle (and sometimes overt) differences in instrumentation serve each piece, individually, better than if a more structured approach had been used to orchestrate them all.

With "Understanding the Signs" completed, Geoff's next release is already underway, and the guitar will be claiming a large portion of the spotlight...






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Reviews


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Gena

MULTI-INSTRUMENTALIST GEOFF HALL FOCUSES HIS SOUND ON A STRING SECTION
Geoff Hall is a multi-instrumentalist (primarily keyboards) who creates a modern world of string-laden sounds that reside somewhere between new age and neo-classical with bits of ambient worked into the mix. Many new age composers use strings in the background, maybe just for color or as a wash, but Hall puts the focus on the strings, usually a mid-sized string section sound (like the strings in a chamber orchestra). However, there also are moments when one or two cellos come to the forefront and are separately identifiable, as well as the occasional violin or viola standing out in the mix. Hall does something not too many other musicians are doing. He fully utilizes the sounds of strings (mostly bowed ones) to mold and develop his own world of sound.

There are some pieces that are fairly rhythmic (“The Run” and “Knowing”), some that are quite ambient (“To Go Alone,” although this does have a bit of rhythm too), and others that are very melodic (“Understanding the Signs”). Even though the strings are in the forefront, occasionally you might hear some tympani drums, a cymbal crescendo, a plucked string instrument, or even some ethnic-sounding beats.

A graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music Professional Program with an emphasis on orchestration and film scoring, Hall obviously really knows his craft. This recording is recommended for anyone who enjoys new age, modern classical or the sounds of a gorgeous string section.
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Steve Sheppard (www.oneworldmusic.co.uk)

an impressive debut album
Today has been a typical Sunday, I always think of Sundays as being pretty ambient, sunlight filters across my studio room and the sweet tones of debut artist Geoff Hall and Understanding the Signs float majestically around the room and the sparkling beams of brightness, dance with the afternoon dust of the day.
Halls opening foray called The Run, inspired my opening gambit, I have listened to this album a few times now and upon each play my love for it grows ever stronger. The Run has passion and colour, it has a wonderful progression which is real film score stuff, and in short it is the perfect beginning to a debut album.
We now move to a piece called, To Go Alone. Hall has created a really deep track here dear reader, it has a real vast and dramatic quality about its arrangement that is unique, there is also an energy of symphonic meets new age electronic here as well, I rate this to be quite a clever composition and one that contains a defined emotive structure within.
Now this is something different, I like the use of strings here on the title track Understanding the Signs, it’s so cleverly layered and that wonderful swirling sense of energy is blissful. This really reminded me of Phillip Glass minus 50% of the minimalism removed, the only criticism is that it was only just over two minutes long, I would have loved to have experienced a long form version of this superb title track.
Our journey continues into the mists of a new tomorrow and a track called Toward a Perfect Moment, once more the artist has the arrangement and progression of the piece absolutely spot on, Hall continues to build wide open soundscapes, but fills them with a passionate and exciting vibe that is quite addictive and extremely exhilarating.
The tempo slows and we enter a whole new realm of ambience called, Gone But Not Forgotten. The gentle refrains hover like the heat haze outside my window, but there is much more to this emotional piece than meets the eye, one could almost feel that a sense of grief is being dealt with here, a final moment to let go perhaps? The keyboards create a real sensitive appreciation of tone and reflection. The longest and most expressive track off the album, the ending segment was like listening to the last fragments of a lost soul disappear.
Perseverance is up next dear reader, the keyboards and strings mix a mellow tune that has a steady and dogged sense of rhythm and purpose built into it. Geoff Hall is showing himself to be quite the musical artist, he paints wonderfully with his musical palette, listen to the up-tempo segue at around a minute and a half that transcends into a really classic soundtrack of a composition, he uses such wonderful percussive beats to highlight what in my opinion, was the best track off the album.
So we now find ourselves at the penultimate piece and it is called Knowing. Once more, please take your time listening to the steady progression of the composition; it is delightful and extremely uplifting. The piano forges a constant narrative, as the track constantly recreates itself; this is one very seriously intelligent and brilliantly performed piece.
Our last stop with the artist Geoff Hall is an arrangement called Something More, I listened to this whilst resting earlier and I actually found this one the most emotional track off the whole album. The symphonic nature of the opening sequence is stunningly beautiful. I was also delighted that I could enjoy this multi layered pattern of moving keyboards, for well over six minutes. One can close the eyes and indulge the senses and feel totally refreshed and deeply moved at the end.
Understanding The Signs from Geoff Hall is a pretty impressive album for a debut artist, he has really placed his heart on his musical sleeve and gone for it and I am both proud and glad to say that he has been extremely successful in doing so, I can see the electronic and new age music fans are going to fall in love with this album very quickly indeed and as such I have no problem at all recommending it to you.
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