Sora | Heartwood

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World: Celtic Folk: Modern Folk Moods: Type: Lyrical
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Heartwood

by Sora

With a lush clear voice that entices us into a richly sonic world of ancient myths and mystic memories, Canadian mezzo-soprano, Sora, offers songs that embrace ancient lore and modern sensibilities.
Genre: World: Celtic
Release Date: 

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1. Heartwood
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4:22 $0.99
2. Drift
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3:21 $0.99
3. Eurydice
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4:42 $0.99
4. Winter
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3:08 $0.99
5. Hurricane
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6:53 $0.99
6. Light
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2:53 $0.99
7. Twilight
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5:07 $0.99
8. Children of Lir
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4:35 $0.99
9. The Juniper
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2:46 $0.99
10. The Birch\'s Lament
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4:07 $0.99
11. Madron Well
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
With a lush clear voice that entices us into a richly sonic world of ancient myths and mystic memories, Canadian mezzo-soprano, Sora, offers songs that embrace ancient lore and modern sensibilities. Although Sora’s songs pay homage to a vast heritage of Celtic performers, and the clarity of her voice is reminiscent of Loreena McKennitt, she is unmistakably defined by her own vision. Heartwood is an album comprised solely of original works, and, through these original offerings, Sora delineates her own musical path. It is a satisfyingly mature album that truly showcases the talents of this singer, composer, pianist, and violinist, and brings to fruition her visions of a musical world that straddles the old and the new.

"Heartwood is a moment, an experience. Delightful in one`s own space or with an amour. Heartwood is mature, mystical, marvelous. "
Doc Hidden for CalgarySongwriter.com

"This is not just a woman with a piano. The songs on Heartwood are complex and deeply emotive, and the large cast of musicians who appear on the album provide more than mere background accompaniment; their instruments are other voices, interwoven with Sora’s own."
Alexandra Pope for Leduc Representative

"As soon as you begin listening to this album, its beauty and expressiveness will capture your heart and spirit."
John Iverson for Stylus Magazine

"OK to start this review I’ll just say if you love amazing voices and great music you should abandon reading this right now and instead simply go out and buy Heartwood by Sora. It took all of 35 seconds of the opening cut of this CD, which also happens to be the title cut, to totally fall in love with this lady’s voice. To term it anything less than stunning, or amazing, would be to do Sora a disservice."
Calvin Daniels for Yorkton This Week



Reviews


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Ariel Hyatt

Sora - Heartwood
Lovers of New Age music will fall head over heels for Sora. Her haunting vocals will remind the listener of Loreena McKennitt or Sarah Brightman. Soya has a voice that soars with the angels. Her songs have a touch of magic and mystic to them that will have you fantasizing about fairies and unicorns or at least your local renaissance festival.

Once you hear Sora’s voice, you’ll be converted. She’s got the kind of voice that you can’t help but listen to. There really isn’t a word that sufficiently does it justice; beautiful, stunning, remarkable, none of those seem to fit the bill.

Four of the songs on Heartwood appeared on her previous EP, Light. They are joined by seven other songs, that defy description. All of the songs on the album are composed by Sora, who is Andrea Hunt when she’s not performing. Once you give the album a thorough listen, you’ll know that she’s doubly talented. She has a voice that one would think came from some celestial being and she is a more than capable songwriter. The eleven tracks on Heartwood are pure poetry.

Heartwood opens with the title track, a song that was written for Sora’s husband Bryan. The first words of the song truly expresses her love. “I thread the forests of your eye. Wild paths within. Dappled sunlight moves us in circles. Gravity of a sigh.”

What sets these songs apart from those of her contemporaries is that they aren’t simply Celtic or New Wave or even World, though they can all fall into one of these areas, its that they are true works of art. When Sora adds her voice to the songs their beauty is magnified one hundred times over. Her voice has a purity that can’t be found often in music. It is the kind of voice that you long to hear in concert.

The inspiration for the songs come from many places. “The Birch’s Lament” was inspired by a children’s story Sora’s husband wrote called Liselle and the Birch Prince. “Children Of Lir” was inspired by the Celtic myth of the same name.

The track that stands out above all others on Heartwood is “Twilight.” This is a song that was written for her brother and his wife as a wedding gift, and what a beautiful gift it is. The words “And I can see in your eyes eternal sunrise. Full of hope, full of love for all of our days. As we stand hand in hand to face the winds of time. I can trust your love for me.” couldn’t be more perfect for two people about to take their vows.

Few albums can be described as perfect, but this is one that definitely deserves that distinction. Sora takes her listeners to a magical place when she sings, one that few if any will want to leave. Her voice is a joy to listen to. In fact, when the last song has finished, you’ll want to thank her for sharing her talents with the world. Yes, this album is that good. Thank you for Heartwood, Sora! It is a beautiful gift of music!

From Mossip

Sara Hunt


Sora’s first album saw her cover many traditional folk/Celtic songs. Her second album features eleven songs/pieces all written by Sora. This is an album rich in magic and atmosphere. Sora has tried to bring the outside in with this fresh new body of work. This album is not just an album of songs or music it is an album of self discovery for the listener. Four of the songs on this new album – The Birch’s Lament, The Juniper (a charming piece that will captivate any listener), Light and Twilight were previously featured on Sora’s fantastic 2008 EP release entitled LIGHT. The album starts off with the title piece Heartwood. The music is haunting and evocative and Sora’s voice is angelic. Sora effortlessly blends folk with classical music to create a delightful combination. Artists like Enya and Clannad spring to mind whilst listening to Sora’s mesmerising voice. This album features a whole range of instrumentation including the piano, mandolin, cello, violin, drums, accordion, harp and viola. Heartwood is magical, beautiful and delicate all rolled into one. It takes the listener on a journey; you are left feeling like you are soaring high in the sky looking down on the green fields below. Drift is a charismatic song punctuated with Sora’s goddess like voice. With Sora’s vocals and the gentle music you do get the impression that you are drifting along on the wind. Eurydice certainly has a haunting sound. This is a more dramatic piece that speaks of love and death. Sora’s voice is more severe on this piece. Winter sees the mood lighten. Sora’s voice is more upbeat on this piece and the music is vibrant and engaging. Listening to this album is like reading a book with each song forming a chapter. Hurricane has a strong folk feel to it. This is another dramatic piece that describes a person as a hurricane. Children of Lir is a lighter breezier piece with a classical style. The chorus is uplifting and quite refreshing on the ear. The music is gentle and has a slight Arabian sound. Sora’s voice is stunning and outstanding on this piece, which really brings the album to life. Madron Well, the final piece on the album, is a dreamy delicate classical sounding number. Sora’s voice is just perfect once again. It is a huge shame when the album ends as this is such a wonderful masterpiece. Amazing!