12 Songs, 50 Minutes

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Ratings and Reviews

5.0 out of 5
8 Ratings

8 Ratings

Peter Calandra ,

Beautiful songs, playing and superb recording

Joseph Akins' album Castle Moon is a 12 song album of solo piano music beautifully recorded and played on the fantastic Kawai Shigeru Piano. Each song is soulfully performed with a wonderful feeling of being both structured and improvised. The title track and Moonrise Romance are two of my favorites and both have memorable melodies that could be used in a cinematic production. Highly recommended.

Music Lover 731 ,

As the full harvest moon rises. . .

As the full harvest moon rises over the mountains beyond the castle, the guests assemble for a lovely dinner party.
From the lovely grand piano in the sumptuous living room, mellifluous tones spill forth from the skilled hands of the talented pianist and composer,
Joseph Akins. Linger here and relax into the soothing tapestry of sound.

MDiamond ,

Review excerpt from Music and Media Focus

Sporting one of my favorite album covers that I’ve seen in a while, “Castle Moon,” the new release by pianist and composer Joseph Akins offers an interesting yin/yang contrast with his previous album “A Southern Sun,” which I also had the pleasure of writing about. That album, as the title implies had a sun theme and a brighter ambiance in comparison to the new album’s moon theme and corresponding musical direction. According to Joseph: “This album has a nightly theme. Overall, it has a darker, mysterious sound. This was accomplished by the use of more minor keys and exotic scales.”

So lets explore the nocturnal mysteries waiting for us within the tracks of “Castle Moon.” The album begins with the title track, and a very brief intro that reminded me of Simon and Garfunkel’s classic “Sounds Of Silence.” From there the music has quite a cinematic feel to it, and although there are no words, it seems to tell a grand story through its emotionally evocative melody. A composition called “Gypsy Dreams” is a perfect example of the “minor keys and exotic scales” that Joseph referred to earlier, and which transport the listener to a far away time and place. One of my favorite songs was “A Starry Night.” I particularly liked Joseph’s driving left hand arpeggio’s that provided a propulsive momentum, which his more delicate right hand melodies danced lightly over. Another favorite for me was “Moonlight Romance,” with its slightly jazzy feel that showed another facet of Joseph’s diverse playing.

I genuinely enjoyed every song on “Castle Moon,” and while the album definitely stands on its own as an exceptional musical body of work, I also appreciate it as the contrast it was intended to be with Joseph’s previous release, A Southern Sun. Each aspect of the solar/lunar dichotomy is beautifully expressed in their respective albums. Joseph Akins is a stellar pianist whose imaginative compositions are illuminated by his technical expertise and emotional sensitivity. “Castle Moon” shines a light on the night and reveals a deeply reflective listening experience that will appeal to piano music fans as well as a wider audience.

To read a full-length feature article on this album, as well as others, please visit: MichaelDiamondMusic.com

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