Silver Ship has won the Indie Award for 2006 for Best New Age Album. Ciani fans have waited 5 years for this all-new release. 10 original compositions to enchant and move you.
A synthesis of both Ciani's classical acoustic and electronic roots, Silver Ship represents her ultimate maturity as an artist.
Performers include members of Ciani's group, The Wave, as seen on PBS: Paul McCandless (of Oregon and Bela Fleck) on reeds, flautist Matt Eakle (of the Dave Grisman Quintet), Teja Bell on guitars, and fretless bassist extraordinaire, Michael Manring.
Come aboard Ciani's Silver Ship and let Suzanne take you to the mystical places of her imagination, where emotions run as high and deep as the seas.
Enjoy the virtuosity of Paul McCandless on the rhythmic "Wine Dark Sea," the exhilarating "Open Seas," the deep sadness of "Sargasso Seas," the grandeur of "Eclipse," the poignancy of "For Lise," the joy of "Capri, "the Italian passion of "Stromboli," the sonic charm of "Snow Crystals" and the ultimate serenity of the "Silver Ship" lullaby.
An audiophile CD, recorded at 192Khz/24bit resolution - the highest possible quality.
Dr. Jazz Improvizzation
“ This gets a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, without another moments' thought! ..she’s back in full force, folks!”
Midwest Record Recap -Chris Spector
“Ciani comes in with some of her most inspired composing… Hot stuff
Wind and Wire- Bill Binkelman
“Silver Ship earns my highest recommendation and is unquestionably one of the best recordings that will be released this year.”
All Music Guide - Johnny Loftus
“Ciani's been at the top of her craft since Velocity of Love in 1984. The crystalline Silver Ship floats there, too.”
Smooth Jazz Vibes
“The queen of new age piano music returns with another masterpiece…”
“A special magical release.”
“Inspired and delicious, ..it will sit with pride in …my collection.”
New Age Reporter.com
“…..comes from …a passionate discovery that still entertains millions …allows us to take a new course to …a destination of beauty and passion
***** “…the most mature work of her career.”
“…an album to uplift the soul and calm the nerves…”
“Ciani was one of the founders of new age music, and this album shows just how far that genre has grown.”
“…a showcase of 10 wonders… from one of the world’s leading new age composers and performers.””
“…the music reaches deep inside…”
Reviewed by RJ Lannan - The Sounding Board
Legendary Music and it just came out
After quite a hiatus, renowned five-time Grammy nominated pianist and composer Suzanne Ciani makes her return with a sterling new album called Silver Ship. Ciani is a key player in the foundation of New Age and contemporary music that emerged in the early eighties. She has eleven winning albums to her credit, her talent knows no bounds and her new offering shows how her music has changed, matured and expanded and yet, remains as satisfying as always.
Veteran musicians and friends abound on Silver Ship. Ebow-bassist Michael Manring adds his special touch to many of the cuts, along with flutist Matt Eakle, guitarist Teja Bell and well-known reed player Paul McCandless. There is no mistaking the harmonious ensemble quality to the audiophile recording. Every note is in its place and every one is pure pleasure for the spirit.
We embark on the journey with Suzanne in the first cut, For Lise. Light, tinkling piano and gentle strings entertain in a delightful waltz. Perhaps it is part of the celebration before the ship sets sail. It is time for sad goodbyes and the promise of a quick return. We pray for the wind to be at our backs.
Heading west to a one corner of the Mediterranean we come to a Wine Dark Sea. McCandless' Eastern clarinet rhythms and Ciani's rolling piano score invite us to visit ports of mystery and wonder at the people and customs. Every thing is new to us. This track quickly became a favorite.
Sometime around our arrival at the equator we saw an Eclipse. We trembled in fear as, in the middle of the day we witnessed the marriage of the sun and the moon. As something akin to darkness fell, we were overtaken by a great feeling of beauty, and then sadness as the lovers parted for another eternity. And once again, the light of day was ours. This, the music records for us.
There is no mistaking Manring's wowing bass on the track Open Seas. Together with Eakle's flute and Joe Hebert's cello, the easy going tune is on course with sunshine, salty breezes and the sound of ocean's waves as our companion. Good company all around.
The best cut on Silver Ship is something called Snow Crystals. We enter a cold, crystal blue ocean and white fluffy manna falls all around us as we head north to a rendezvous with destiny. Miraculously the feeling of cold ends and the sense of well being increases. We are no longer cold or lost. We are where we want to be.
Sargasso Sea is another remarkable tune. It exemplifies the abject beauty of Ciani's well executed compositions. We hear the haunting violin against the melancholy piano as we sit fixed on a windless sea. Waiting, waiting. Just when we think all hope is lost, a breath of air stirs and once again, our journey takes on an almost imperceptible motion. And we head for home.
We are treated to a bit of fairy music as vocalist Valerie Wilson sings poetically on the title tune, Silver Ship. It is a child's lullaby that puts us at rest as we return from our journey.
"Time to sleep my little one
Time to close your eyes
Time to sail a silver ship
Over the silver skies
Time to sail on a silver ship
Over a silver sea"
As one of the veteran dames of New Age music, Suzanne Ciani has, with her love of electronic music, opened many doors for many fans. Who dreamed that her years at Berkley and her association with Don Buchla, the creator of the Buchla Synthesizer and others creative minds would lead to a passionate discovery that still entertains millions? Fortunately, Silver Ship allows us to take a new course to a familiar and yet, all too elusive destination of beauty and passion. God Speed.
Rating: Excellent -5 star rating
- reviewed by RJ Lannan on 9/29/2005
Silver Ship is Suzanne Cni's first album of all-new material since 1999's Turning LP. And like that album, it's a tasteful, often joyful blend of acoustic and electronic instruments, buoyed throughout by Ciani's innate
The composer and keyboardist also works with some familiar
collaborators, including flutist Matt Eakle, Paul McCandless on reeds, cellist Joe Hébert, guitarist Teja Bell, and bassist Michael Manring. As her earliest releases prove, it's always been Ciani's intention to craft durable
songs. That approach elevates her work above the homogeneity that permeates the contemporary instrumental and new age genres at their lowest ebb, and it's no different with Silver Ship. "Sargasso Sea" is a duet between Ciani's
piano and the sad-eyed and graceful cello of Hébert, while "Eclipse" perfectly balances solitary contemplation with waves of surging emotion. Not surprisingly, "Open Seas" incorporates some artificially generated ocean swells beneath Eakle's airy flute leads, while opener "For Lise" features one of Ciani's classic melodies - plaintive, powerfully hopeful, and softly whispered all at once. Silver Ship also takes a few detours, adding percussion and prominent solos from Bell and Eakle for the East African-flavored "Wine Dark Sea" and nodding into a slight new age-jazz cross for "Capri." Also, like Turning, the title track again features vocals. "Silver Ship" is a heartfelt lullaby emboldened by an interestingly
vintage-sounding synthesizer tone. Ciani's been at the top of her craft since Velocity of Love in 1984. The crystalline Silver Ship floats there, too.
Wind and Wire R E V I E W
Review by Bill Binkelman
Her first new release in five years, Suzanne Ciani's Silver Ship was certainly worth the wait. One of the formative new age music artists, Ciani once again invites some ultra-talented friends to accompany her on this recording: Paul McCandless on assorted wind instruments (oboe, English horn, soprano sax, clarinet), Matt Eakle (flute), Teja Bell (guitar), Michael Manring (bass), Michael Whalen (percussion), as well as Joe Hébert on cello and vocals from Valerie Wilson (on the dreamy closing title song-lullaby). What is almost immediately apparent is how selflessly Ciani retreats into the background and allows her guests to carry the weight on some songs. What a special and rare trait that is for a band leader. Ciani is to be commended for her willingness to share the spotlight, especially when it involves the musical talents of people like McCandless, who shines on six of the tracks. Truthfully, though, everybody plays with warmth, passion, subtlety and obvious virtuosity without ever crossing over into overt showmanship or flashy pyrotechnics. Silver Ship is an ensemble recording in every best sense of the word.
Ciani has always been a romantic at heart, as well as being proud of her Mediterranean roots. Both of these characteristics surface on the CD, although there is a remarkable amount of diversity here as well, including a subtle return to the artist's earlier electronic music style. "For Lise" starts things off with a warm tender piano-led number, flowing gracefully and romantically in smooth waves of soft melody with well-applied string orchestrations. "Wine Dark Sea" shifts gears into world fusion with the emphasis on Teja Bell's acoustic guitar and McCandless' oboe and soprano sax, set off by a sultry Mediterranean beat courtesy of Whalen's percussion. Heck, this almost sounds like a Chris Spheeris tune, which is a big compliment coming from me. Ciani's piano comes into the picture later in the song and her playing adds yet another layer to the exotic number. "Stromboli" offers soothing warm piano, string orchestrations, as well as Eakle's flute and McCandless on oboe/English horn, and here the mood is wistful and nostalgic. "Capri" is a bouncy return to the percolating melodic electronic music that Ciani recorded back on albums such as Neverland. The song is playful and sprightly, and besides the electronic elements, there is a lilting flute line that colors the tune in bright colors.
There are ten songs on Silver Ship and those above are just the beginning. "Open Seas" captures the mood of its title perfectly through rolling piano, bobbing and weaving flute, and Manring's recognizable bass lines. "Snow Crystals," one of my favorites on the CD, opens with twinkling synths set off by a somber plaintive oboe, while later piano dials up the drama a bit so that the tune eventually carries a faint air of optimism within its lovely melody. "Sargasso Sea" has a palpable mournful sad feel to it. This is a cello and piano duet and Hébert's cello cries softly in hushed tones, never straying over into meldodrama, while Ciani is the bedrock of the music's emotional core. Closing out the disc is the simply too lovely-for-words vocal lullaby, "Silver Ship." Teja Bell's guitar plucks delicate soft notes and Ciani's keyboards are like gossamer thin yet velvet soft blankets. Valerie Wilson's voice is so amazing that, I kid you not, I'm listening to this track right now and I have chills running up and down my spine. Talk about ending an album on a high note! If this song doesn't melt your heart and send your spirit gently soaring, you need to hug a loved one and let something crack through your icy veneer.
Silver Ship is a perfect album, literally. Engineering, production, performance, composition, track sequencing, mix, graphics, liner notes...hell, it's all there! I take my hat off to Suzanne Ciani for delivering her best album in years and for doing so with such selflessness, grace, charm and beauty. Kudos also to the guests on the CD too, whether they are members of Cian's group, The Wave, or just "stopping by." Silver Ship earns my highest recommendation and is unquestionably one of the best recordings that will be released this year.
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MIDWEST RECORD RECAP
Silver Ship: the worst thing you can say about a Ciani record is that it's good, and this is way better than good. Re-energized by a trip to Italy, Ciani comes in with some of her most inspired composing since the time she realized she didn't have to do commercials any more to make a living. With the crack crew of her band, The Wave, in tow, this is new age like we haven't heard it in years. And players like McCandless, Bell and Manring, stalwarts as they are, they haven't been this juiced up on record in quite some time either. Sure fire adult listening that might seem deceptively mellow at first but truly knows how to take charge. Hot stuff throughout.
MIDWEST RECORD RECAP
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CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
The voice of the entertainment retailer and broadcaster
(c) 2005 Midwest Record Recap
TheCelebrityCafe.com - September 2005
Silver Ship is a great album to listen to, if you need to relax or find your center. Suzanne Ciani's compositions will ease your mind. This talented musician is able to arrange music so that every note seems to move effortlessly to the next, giving her compositions a smooth, continuous feel.
Silver Ship includes ten tracks that will guide your mind to another place. The soft, soothing "Stromboli" is a peaceful melody, perhaps something you'd hear at a fine Italian restaurant. When you listen to "Open Seas," you can picture yourself sailing on a beautiful afternoon. The last track, "Silver Ship," a lullaby, includes the only vocals on the album. This track will soothe even the most restless sleeper. The voice is soft and comforting, like a gentle hand tucking you in.
Reviewer: Gail Hoffer new pop
Reviewer's Rating: 7.5
Johnny Loftus, All Music Guide
Silver Ship is Suzanne Ciani's first album of all-new material since 1999's Turning LP. And like that album, it's a tasteful, often joyful blend of acoustic and electronic instruments, buoyed throughout by Ciani's innate melodic sense. The composer and keyboardist also works with some familiar collaborators, including flutist Matt Eakle, Paul McCandless on reeds, cellist Joe Hébert, guitarist Teja Bell, and bassist Michael Manring. As her earliest releases prove, it's always been Ciani's intention to craft durable songs. That approach elevates her work above the homogeneity that permeates the contemporary instrumental and new age genres at their lowest ebb, and it's no different with Silver Ship. "Sargasso Sea" is a duet between Ciani's piano and the sad-eyed and graceful cello of Hébert, while "Eclipse" perfectly balances solitary contemplation with waves of surging emotion. Not surprisingly, "Open Seas" incorporates some artificially generated ocean swells beneath Eakle's airy flute leads, while opener "For Lise" features one of Ciani's classic melodies -- plaintive, powerfully hopeful, and softly whispered all at once. Silver Ship also takes a few detours, adding percussion and prominent solos from Bell and Eakle for the East African-flavored "Wine Dark Sea" and nodding into a slight new age-jazz cross for "Capri." Also, like Turning, the title track again features vocals. "Silver Ship" is a heartfelt lullaby emboldened by an interestingly vintage-sounding synthesizer tone. Ciani's been at the top of her craft since Velocity of Love in 1984. The crystalline Silver Ship floats there, too.
MusicWatch - www.the-borderland.co.uk.
Suzanne Ciani - Silver Ship (Seventh Wave SWP 7010-2)
When this CD arrived the name of the artist sounded familiar and after a bit of a search through my music collection I found a track by her on a Private Music label compilation album dating back to 1989. The music on that album was electronic, but her new album Silver Ship is acoustic with some electronic backing, but it sounds fairly minimal to me. Apart from one track with vocals the rest of the album is instrumental and again can be categorised as new age or jazz lite - this seems to be a burgeoning area of music, at least from the number of albums received here from review from my USA source. And that is good - I'm at the age where the noise younger artists make has become just that and I am growing to value the art of creating a good tune with atmospheric stylings. Ms Ciani is of Italian stock and the music on this album has been inspired by her travels and her roots in Italy - but I am glad to report that the cliched aspects of what you would call the 'Italianness' of the music is missing. With Ms Ciani playing keyboards and backed by flute, guitar, percussion and cello, the style is intimate and very mellow, and very happy. An album then to uplift the soul and calm the nerves - you can find out more about Suzanne Ciani at www.suzanneciani.com.
Issue # 75, October, 2005
Suzanne Ciani - SILVER SHIP: It's been quite some time since we received a CD for this splendid artist. You can check back issues for reviews we've done of her (issues # 21,& 25, for instance). What you'll find is that we hear her musical talent as occupying a "special" place. Suzanne doesn't restrict her vision to one "genre", or even one "instrument", for instance. While it's true that her main instrument is keyboards, she seems to be equally at home with acoustic or electronic. On "Silver Ship", she's joined by a whole host of players, too long to itemize here. The main thing to point out is that she has integrated their sounds flawlessly, and with great energy coming across to the listener. If you're not fully enchanted after you listen to the beautiful title track (which includes magical vocals), you probably have little vision yourself. You can't "classify" Ms. Ciani's music easily.
There are certainly elements of "new age" here, but she easily transcends the limitations of that classification. What she composes/plays is pure joy for your ears - and your heart! We've missed hearing Suzanne's all original wonders, but I can tell you - she's back in full force, folks! This gets a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, without another moments' thought! Get more information, or purchase at http://www.sevwave.com.
-- Doctor Jazz
Solo Piano Publications
" Silver Ship" is the first album of new material from five-time Grammy nominee Suzanne Ciani since 1999's "Turning." Like that album, many of the tracks feature members of her performing group, The Wave, most notably Paul McCandless on a variety of reed instruments, Matt Eakle on flute, Teja Bell on guitar, and Michael Manring on bass. Also very notable is phenomenal cellist Joe Hebert. Most of the music is light and breezy, creating an atmosphere of peace and serenity. Ciani says her muse had been dormant for five years and made an appearance while she was visiting family in Italy, the scene of many of her musical creations over the years. Not as experimental as earlier work, this is the music of a mature artist creating for the love of it. Ciani's classical roots are clear in the orchestrations, but her long history in electronic music is also apparent, as is her deep love of the ocean.
Many of the arrangements are full, lush orchestrations, but the most poignant piece on the album is the simplest. "Sargasso Sea" is an incredibly beautiful duet with Ciani on piano and Joe Hebert on cello. This is one of Ciani's most emotionally compelling pieces ever, and Hebert's soulful cello cuts right to the heart. This piece is worth the price of the CD alone - it's a knockout! I also really like "Snow Crystals," a more electronic piece that sparkles and dances with tiny bell sounds and oboe, as well as bass - this is classic Ciani, mixing acoustic with electronic to great effect. I also really like "Wine Dark Sea," a rhythmic, exotic piece that features Paul McCandless on oboe and Teja Bell on guitar. Dark and mysterious, this piece has a hypnotic flow. "Capri" is a joyful little confection that features Matt Eakle on flute - again classic Ciani. "Eclipse" is a little bit darker, with lots of strings along with the piano - very symphonic, and very deeply felt. The title song is a sweet lullaby sung by Valerie Wilson. The instrumentation is very simple - mostly acoustic guitar with some electronic voices and effects.
Suzanne Ciani has been one of my favorite composers for many years, and I teach her piano solos literally every day. I love her piano work best, but this album is a gentle, soothing collection of beautiful music performed with some of her favorite musicians. I don't think Ciani's many fans will be disappointed with this album, and a couple of the songs are among her very best. Samples are at www.seventhwave.tv, and the album can be purchased at that site or many online and offline record stores. Recommended!
J.Sin - Smother.Net
Her earlier work was almost entirely composed electronically but she's moved into the realm of classical instrumentation and has even released some solo acoustic piano albums. Her fifteen total albums have sold over a million copies worldwide in total and she looks to build on that career with "Silver Ship", a delectable piece that's wrought with emotion. Using the inspiration of the sea she writes adult contemporary and New Age compositions that still are based around electronic music; Suzanne Ciani impresses from start to finish and she shows off her production skills as well.
by John Diliberto
In the late 1980s, the "beautiful music" radio format came to an end when Philadelphia's Easy 101, WEAZ-FM, switched formats and call letters. It's a shame, because Suzanne Ciani's music would have been perfect there. She's a
veteran keyboardist who started out composing avant-garde works on a keyboardless Buchla synthesizer. She went on to fortune as a commercial jingle writer and fame as an early New Age star. But over the years, Ciani has been plying a treacle-laced brand of instrumental music in which she
wears her heart on a keyboard adorned with Hallmark valentine homilies.
Though marketed as New Age, her faux-orchestral music shares more of a lineage with 101 Strings, with compositions full of orchestral sweep and gentle melodies that attain the sentimental but never the serene or the sublime. "Sargasso Sea," a duet with cellist Joe Hébert, suggests that Ciani
can go a little deeper, and oboist Paul McCandless of Oregon almost pulls out "Wine Dark Sea." His beautiful multitracked oboe and English horn lines echo and intertwine with each other before he breaks out into solos.
But tracks like "Dentecane" are swept overboard by Ciani's overwrought melodies and strings. If your idea of romance is candlelit dinners, moonlit walks, and a Mantovani soundtrack, take a trip on her Silver Ship.