Mychael Danna – Skys

This is a set of minimal tone poems that feature instruments combined with electronic arrangements. The pieces depict the skys of the composer’s northern home.

Mychael Danna is extremely prolific. His work includes dozens of film scores, including The Antwone Fisher Story, Monsoon Wedding, and many other art-house flicks.

Each of the movement is made up of small melodic or harmonic fragments that repeat in various combinations. In some respects, this reflects Brian Eno’s early ambient works, but with a more orchestral arrangement. On top of the minimal background, Danna adds solo instruments, resulting in an evocative orchestral feel.

This music could fall into the category of New Age, but it is new age without any of the cloying cheesiness that detracts from most of it. The ten movements work together to create a sustained mood that supports active listening or background ambience.

The mood on this album is largely dark and reflective. These pieces won’t leave you humming memorable melodies, but if you like new age minimalism, you’ll find yourself playing this often.

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