Album Review of
Escape The Mind Volume Four

Written by Robert Silverstein
June 19, 2024 - 5:35pm EDT
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New Jersey based Bongo Boy Records is making inroads with the 2024 installment in their ongoing series of New Age instrumental music called Escape The Mind. Escape The Mind: Volume Four continues in a similar spirit as earlier titles with a choice selection of artists on the contemporary new age music scene. Included here are American instrumental music mainstays such as Colorado-based fusion guitarist and composer Charles Brown and Boston area experimental guitarist Kevin Kastning to name just a couple.

The track here featuring Charles Brown, “Written In The Sky”, while quite different from the hard rock instrumentals he is well-known for, is a shimmering pastoral drift that clocks in a few seconds over two minutes. Charles Brown is remarkable in the way he often combines acoustic guitars with spine-tingling electric guitar fills.

Speaking about his Volume Four contribution, Charles explains, “Written In The Sky” is reflective of my influence by Pat Metheny. It’s reminiscent of his album New Chautauqua that features acoustic compositions with soaring guitar melodies and textures. I've actually had “Written In The Sky” for almost a couple of years, but there were delays with Bongo Boy in finishing this compilation, so it’s finally coming out now.  It's not on any of my available CDs. Maybe in the future?”

Regarding other impressions about this latest release, Charles adds, “Escape The Mind Vol. Four has a nice diversity of styles. Everything from Native American flute textures to classical guitar. I'm partial to Classical guitar, and one track really caught my ear: "La Danza Del Ritmi" by Simonne Draper. It almost sounds like a modern, contemporary classical guitar piece. Nice melodies and great composition. There's so many great independent artists out there, it's really great to be part of that community.”

European artist Simonne Draper is here with two of her guitar pieces, while Escape The Mind Four is also notable for featuring new sounds by Grayhawk, Tony Angelo, Anaya Music, Gypsy Carns among other esteemed artists. The album closing Grayhawk track is also worth hearing as it features contributions from the late, great cello virtuoso David Darling.

Overall, the mood of Escape The Mind Four is dark and deep yet equally enjoyable. For those New Age fans that like to interact with calm, contemporary instrumental sounds, look no further than the 10-track, 53 minutes of music on Escape The Mind Four.