The subtitle of this New Age-ambient CD is “Sonic Transmissions from the Heart of the Divine Mother.” Anima is a duo based in the United Kingdom and features Ali Calderwood and Daniela Broder. This is their seventh CD.

Calderwood and Broder have spent extensive time traveling the globe together since 2005, living with tribal, indigenous cultures to learn ancient ways of ceremony and spirit medicine. The Kogi are an untainted tribe living in Colombia on a five-mile high mountain. They are speaking out because they feel our modern way of life is destroying the earth and “failing to maintain the balance” required by Aluna, mother of the world. A percentage of the profits from this album will be donated to the Tairona Heritage Trust, a group that assists the Kogi, the Arhuaco and Assario tribes to represent their interests in dealing with modern pressures.

The seven tracks on this album are all over 7 minutes long. There is a little singing in Track 5- Peace, but otherwise the voice is a wordless instrument mixed in with a lot of other layers of instruments, sound effects, nature sounds, and synthesizer tracks. Some of it sounds a bit Tangerine Dream-ish in spots, while other tracks are reminiscent of Hearts of Space with a little less in the way of shrill synth instrumentation.

The mixes are gorgeous. Track 2 – Ocean of Heart is absolutely soothing and gives a sensation of floating. Track 4 – Ancient Future features entwined guitar and piano melodies over a carpet of mellow synth orchestral effects.  Track 3 – Aluna introduces tribal men's chanting that gives way to Daniela's vocal track and an elaborate synth mix. At the end of the song, the woman's voice merges with the men's chants with haunting effect.

Track 6 – Inner Light also uses chant mixes and Daniela's voice, and some odd instruments are thrown in for effect. This track is 10 ½ minutes long, so the themes are sustained and interwoven through the time span, with layers of instruments, effects, vocal or synth sounds entering and exiting the mix to carry the sound along.  The final Track 7 – Divine Emanations (11:53) leans toward an orchestral idiom with more string-synth mixes, temple bells, and long, sustained chords.

The overall impact of this CD is totally relaxing, ambient, and spiritual. This is fabulous music for gatherings, rituals, ceremonies, yoga, meditation, relaxation, massage or Reiki, tarot reading or divination sessions, or other pagan uses. Anima creates a musical cloud of spiritual energy that will enhance any activity in the ceremonial realm. Recommended.

~review by Elizabeth Hazel

Artist: Anima
Anima Sound Productions, 2012
7 tracks, 69 minutes