Album Review of
Behind the Veil

Written by Robert Silverstein
January 20, 2023 - 4:52pm EST
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Well regarded for his 1980s works on Narada Records, California music icon Spencer Brewer released his 15th album Behind The Veil in early January 2023. Behind The Veil is actually the first Spencer Brewer album since his 2008 double CD set Cinematic. Behind the Veil is very much Americana in the best sense of the word, blending a highly refined composite of sonic components. The lead off track “Parasols In Paris” sets the tone remarkably well with its effective Continental European character. A number of musicians appear, including Nancy Rumble (English horn and Oboe), Paul McCandless (soprano sax) and strings from the Quartet San Francisco. Overall, Behind The Veil is a noteworthy instrumental solo piano New Age experience.

Clocking in with 12-tracks, the 48 minutes Behind The Veil works on so many different musical levels that it never fails to impress the listener with its myriad of piano soundscapes. Americana, American folklore, echoes of 1980s New Age coming of age, Neoclassical and contemporary pop instrumental all merge together in one sonic composite.

Although much of Behind The Veil is solo acoustic piano, the soundstage is rich and filled with many thought-provoking tracks and the addition of the key New Age artists mentioned above gives further credence to Spencer Brewer’s legacy as an innovative instrumentalist. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, music fans can go back in time and gain a new appraisal of Spencer’s early works on the now defunct Narada Records label, which was a key source of New Age music throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s.

While most of the tracks on Behind The Veil debut as new tracksSpencer revives three of his most well-known tracks including a fresh remake of his classic “Portraits” from his 1987 album of the same name. Start to finish, the 2023 CD / DL release of Behind The Veil is a welcome return from one of the most important artists from the dawn of the modern-day instrumental New Age music scene.