WHAT THE INDUSTRY IS SAYING

 

New Age Music Reviews

Phil Strickland is a Phoenix-based recording artist who records under the pseudonym, Anaamaly.  In the video provided, the artist introduces his new album Urban Metta Vol. 1He came from a different genre as indicated by the title however what he does is take all of his knowledge and influences from a different world and creates another.

His desire to make music that was beautiful and a backdrop to his wife’s yoga classes became a reality once Urban Metta Vol. 1 was completed.

I was watching a documentary on musical artist Sheryl Crow and she said that music changes the molecules in your body. I believe this to be true, otherwise how else could you explain the waves of good feelings and emotions a person can have when music is played? It also can change your brain waves, and most certainly the music of Anaamaly does that. Another point of interest is the fact that you do not have to be familiar with the sounds to have a reaction. It works that way for me, particularly with any kind of instrumental music created to connect you to a higher level of consciousness. In addition, it surely can bring you there if you are in an unbalanced state of being.

I do not think there are a lot of us on this plane of existence walking around on higher level of consciousness. There is too much noise and interference to allow that to happen on a large scale. If I ever figure out a way to change that I will be sure to share it readily with my brothers and sisters that enjoy this kind of music. Something prolific must happen on a global scale spiritually for things to change. Music can help or literally lead the cause.

Urban Metta Vol. 1 is recorded by what you would call a non-traditional musician and Anaamaly is the first person to tell you that in the provided video. He comes from a world that is high tech, utilizing beats and electronic sounds that are computer generated. This is very common however for one person to take many sounds created in a digital world and to make it all a work of art is another mountain to climb. This process takes a lot of talent and artistry and cannot be underestimated.

I appreciate the value and presentation of this recording. All the mystical sounds and whirling and whooshing of the synths that take you away, it is like being swept off the ground and floating away on a cloud of relaxation. There is simplicity in the purpose yet the music is a complex combination of emotions and textures packaged into one bundle for you to unfold and absorb.

Every listener has a different vibration and aura thus the music will take on colors that only that individual can see and feel. That is the beauty and gift of instrumental music meant for meditation or for the background for a yoga class.  When a group of people must concentrate, and go inward to attain a level of the spirit to achieve a physical and mental balance that yoga requires, music can be a great tool.

Regardless of what you want to do with the music it does offer a healing process that is either conscious or on a subconscious level and for this listener that is wonderful thing.
4/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 26, 2017
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Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:


01. I Stand in My Own Power
02. I Walk Through the Fire
03. I Live in the Current Moment
04. I Embrace All Wisdom
05. I Love Unconditionally
06. I Am Grateful For...
07. I Am Lighthearted
08. I Am Perfect Either Way
09. I Am Awakened
10. I Am Surrounded by Abundance
11. I Am Healed on All Levels

Improvijazzation Nation

Everything you need in order to listen to samples and read about Anaamaly (Phil Strickland) and his wonderfully calming music is right at your fingertips at Phil’s website… it’s less hip-hop than chill, and in fact I would consider it to lean more towards what we used to call ambient back in the late ’80’s and early ’90’s… as you listen to the grand washes that abound on “I Live in the Current Moment“, you’ll realize that he is living the dream his own way, and that alone makes his music welcome here!  I can tell you, though, that you must find a quiet space before you sit down to listen to compositions like the marvelous closer, “I Am Healed on All Levels“… it’s ultimately important that you absorb what Anaamaly is projecting here… the string washes are simple, yet total beauty!  There are eleven long tunes, and the album clocks in at just over an hour… my personal favorite is a perfect illustration of this high-talent artist, and certainly takes him ever closer to his goal of healing and enlightening… “I Walk Through the Fire” is pure pleasure to listen to and will bring joy to your spirit.  I give this one a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.98.  Get more information on the Anaamaly website.         Rotcod Zzaj



New Age CD

 

"A Masterpiece of Zen"

At first glance or listen, one might perceive the album,Urban Metta, Volume 1,” by Anaamaly (otherwise known as Phoenix based recording artist, Phil Strickland), as “just another New Age relaxation album.” Far from it. Reminiscent of Steven Halpern’s sound healing work, here in “Urban Metta, Volume 1,” we have this same kind of multi-dimensional healing music, carried up a few notches, and evocative of a contemporary, innovative, 21st century Zen. In fact, the whole album is so Zen, it may even redefine the word “Zen.”

Sophisticated in its amplitude and brilliantly produced, the best experience of this album is through headphones or earbuds. This allows you to pick up on and take in all of the intricately woven beats, subtleties, and nuances that are essential to this experience. A journey through dimensions, each song is an “I am” kind of affirmation, a mantra; a multi-dimensional mantra that awakens a vivid soundscape in the listener.

Track 6, “I Am Grateful For,” is my favorite track on the album. Here we have soothing strings and elements of electronica, developing into a light, exquisite melody, and ultimately melting into an ultra-gorgeous soundscape to get lost in. And this is right in the middle of the “urban,” the beat which never gets obscured throughout the entire album. We know it’s there. We are aware of it through the subtleties. Yet one can literally feel their own oneness, and at the same time a sense of being connected to all. Yes, very “Zen.”

My second favorite track on “Urban Metta, Volume 1,” is track 7, “I Am Lighthearted.” This is a spatial, otherworldly track that put me in the “zone” straight away. You feel like you’re in space. You’re light and floating free, yet not lost by any means. This sense of “light,” or “being light,” interestingly, is experienced in multi-dimensional ways. For example, while I was listening to this track, I felt as if the room was filled with little particles of light. And you have a sense at the same time that maybe you can see the light or maybe you are one with the light. I like it. Very relaxing.

I actually love the whole album, but another particular favorite is track 10, “I Am Surrounded by Abundance.” This is the Universe breathing; you breathing it, it breathing you, everything everywhere breathing as one. Completely capturing the spirit of “abundance,” this is lush, expansive, multi-layered, effortless, and complex all at the same time. I could feel this soundscape opening right in the center of my heart chakra.

“I Am Healed on All Levels,” track 11, the last track on the album, is expertly mixed with high and low spectrum electronica, tones, and beats. The soothing sound of a soft shower or rainforest coming in right at the opening paints a tranquil diorama in which all is well. All is as it should be. And it is.

“Urban Metta, Volume 1” is so deeply relaxing, I wouldn’t recommend playing it while driving a car. From the opening notes, it invokes a deep, trance like state of well-being. A masterpiece of Zen, it is certainly perfect for relaxation, meditation, yoga, and of course, peaceful slumber. “I am” enthralled.  ~ Review by Dyan Garris for  New Age CD.com

Listen to URBAN METTA, Vol. 1

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One World Music Radio

Today this is my sunset album, as I sit and write the glowing orb that radiates warmth around our planet begins to sink and whilst doing so I listen to the deep tones of Urban Metta, Volume 1 by Anaamaly. The concept of this album is set around self-empowerments, truths we must admit to ourselves as co-creators of our own actions within our own universe. Anaamaly has not only done this justice, he has brought a whole new dimension to our front door, in what could be classed as deep meditative music. 

The opening offering is called I Stand in my Own Power; this is an absolute spiritual truth, a statement of intent that contains a meaningful message. The artist has created a whole new realm of vastness to roam on a musical level and this full flowing starting piece is so rich and full, one cannot deny its energy of musical empowerment through its tones. 

You would do well to allow yourself to dive into this world of new age electronica and sample a whole different galaxy of musical mastery, and on the next arrangement you have just that, this one is called I Walk Through the Fire, and contains a powerful, yet steady approach, a confident, but dreamy opus of sound that can be found right here. 

Our next piece is exactly what I am doing right now, as I write for you, as I create, I Live in the Current Moment. This is a statement of profound importance and the artist has manifested something very grounding to enable us to do so. The waves of a vast ocean lap up to the shore line, but the manner with which they do is rhythmic and calming, he then brings us to this present moment with a subtle but empowering creation of electronic harmony, we can truly feel, watch, be a part of that moment, within the resonance of this quite ambient composition. 

We could draw a few comparisons here with artists like Forrest Smithson and Rick Batyr, both employ that deep and full flowing power to their own releases, but Anaamaly seems to have created his very own realm with this cultured release. Listen to I Embrace All Wisdom and explore the tranquil corners of your own deep well of imagination, in what has to be one of the most beautiful pieces off the album. 

Now as we approach the half way marker, Anaamaly gifts us something special in the piece I Love Unconditionally. The slight percussive beat adds to the composition, giving it further depth and allowing the electronic waves to pulse around us in a tranquil, yet energising way. The concept of unconditional love seems to be such a hard concept for some to understand, but maybe through this composition Anaamaly has made that just a little easier for us to grasp. 

As we drift on the wings of intent into the second half of the album, we come across an almost old school styled new age piece called I am Grateful For…, the rest is for you to fill in the blanks and while you’re thinking on that, allow this angelic creation to aid that process of thought. Here is a composition, that has a real light construction and feel to its overall ambience, and is perfectly placed, at just over the half-way point of the release. 

The next one made me smile, I mean I had to, I have taken life far too seriously from time to time, so the track, I Am Lighthearted resonated with me, and yes, made me smile, partly at myself and partly at the lessons now learnt. This is also profound, as the composition itself does have a playfulness about it that is appealing, but at all times retains its meditative ambience. 

On, I Am Perfect Either Way, we have a confident and strong arrangement that seems to literally and musically stand tall and grow through its five plus minutes, a piece of realization perhaps? The light natural sounds through this offering were so well placed and not distracting, if anything they added a layer of grounding, to what is a very sensitive and delicate creation. 

I mentioned earlier that the sun is sinking here fast, and I can now see its golden glow across the ocean, and speaking of that vast water filled dimension, we can enjoy that right here with this composition, as once more the artist creates a piece that is filled with the nurturing element of emotion. On I Am Awakened there is a real deep sense of renewal built into the track, the resonance and swirling keyboards manifest a composition of wisdom and power combined. 

Our last but one, our penultimate piece from Anaamaly, gives is a moment of awareness so profound, that its statement must not be over looked; it’s called I Am Surrounded by Abundance. Once more our master craftsman, our sonic painter of musical delights, has brought us into a reality of a composition that seems to expand whilst listening to it. I enjoyed the experience of this piece, I enjoyed the energy of a track that builds beautifully and sustains its prowess along the way. 

We now drift into the last doorway of the album with a composition called I Am Healed on All Levels. To leave an album with such a subtle and carefully crafted arrangement is simply stunning, here we have a track that almost retains a slight chill-out ethic, which is no real surprise given the back ground of the artists other persona, but a piece that does manifest a level of acceptance through music and a simply blissful way to leave the release. 

Urban Metta, Volume 1 is one of those releases you could easily over look thinking its just another new age music release. I urge you to wipe that thought completely from your mind, this is an album created from truth and unconditional love; here is a release that speaks volumes and manifests vast realms for us the listener to roam at our leisure. Urban Metta, Volume 1 by Anaamaly, may well be the forerunner of the next generation of new age electronica styled releases, and as such you really would be remiss to not add this album to your collection as soon as you can.

Yoga Basics

Composed specifically for yoga, rest and meditation, these instrumental soundscapes have a slow and spacious vibe. All eleven of these wonderfully textured ambient and downtempo compositions encourage deep introspection and stillness.



 

Ambient Music Guide

Amazingly sophisticated electronic new age by a guy who’s never worked in the new age genre before. American Phil Strickland usually makes trip hop and chilled breaks, as well as running a music licensing company for film and multimedia. As Anaamaly, he created his Urban Metta album as “a collection of spiritually moving, instrumental soundscapes for deep sleep, relaxation, yoga, and meditation”. Normally I’d run a mile after reading such a description (relaxation muzak alert!) but then I’d look a fool because the album’s stated purpose never compromises the intrinsic quality of the music. It's droning, tonal and airy but not static; every track has some kind of chord progression, sometimes with a jazz-like complexity. Skillfully woven deep into the mix are subtle suggestions of Tibetan bells, whale calls, chants and sounds of the urban landscape. This is the first album in a planned series and I can’t wait to hear more. 

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Journeyscapes Radio

“Urban Metta, Vol. 1”, is the debut album by Anaamaly (pronounced “uh-nom-uh-lee), the alias of electronic music composer Phil Strickland. Featuring eleven tracks that are titled after different affirmations, it is a deeply relaxing electronic album with many organic elements. Peaceful, subtle melodies drift in and out over a bed of droning bass lines, washes of synths, and many unidentifiable or muted sounds throughout that seem to mimic nature. A notable feature of the compositions is its balanced incorporation of lower musical tones, which lends to an overall more grounded feel, whereas a lot of new age or ‘spa’ music is largely dominated by higher musical tones that can often result in an overly saccharine sound. This pleasing quality may be due to Phil Strickland’s musical background in chillout, downtempo and instrumental hip-hop.

Conveyed throughout the album is a feeling of being submerged in a watery abode, as rays of light peer through obscurity. Lots of subtle, intricate textures move about in a relatively compact space, as opposed to an expanse or open terrain, and the compositions seem to explore inner rather than outer worlds. Favorite tracks include “I Walk Through Fire”, with its slow transitions of contrasting crystalline textures and distorted effects; the lighter, more gossamer “I Embrace All Wisdom”; and “I Love Unconditionally”, with its sparse, gurgled melody and voice-like effects throughout. The closing track, “I Am Healed on All Levels”, is appropriately, also the brightest piece, as if the listener is rising to the surface while being imbued with a sense of hope and lightness.

Although “Urban Metta, Vol 1” is certainly recommended for relaxation and spa therapies, it boasts enough aural intricacies to serve as an equally rewarding listening experience on headphones. I look forward to hearing other outputs from this diverse musical composer, including what will presumably be a second installment of the Urban Metta experience. 

Listen to URBAN METTA, Vol. 1

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