“A press release that Delvian Records sent out with Whispers described this 2005 release as "a film score awaiting a film." All too often, labels get so caught up in their own hype that they make statements in press releases that are far removed from reality. But in the case of Whispers, the phrase "a film score awaiting a film" does have some validity; there are times when this 54-minute CD -- like a lot of new age releases -- really does sound like it could be used as a soundtrack for some type of European art film. But Whispers isn't new age in the strict sense; actually, the music that acoustic pianist/composer Wendy Loomis and flutist Monica Williams (who comprise the Bay Area duo Phoenix Rising) provide on this disc is essentially acoustic post-bop jazz that has been influenced by European classical and chamber music as well as some of the more substantial new age recordings.”
All Music Guide
“The title track for Phoenix Rising’s “Ascension” begins with an emotionally dense composition that plays heavily in a classical style, but does not have any of the stuffiness or must associated with the classical style. Rather, what Phoenix Rising does during this track is weave a rich narrative through the entirety of the track’s 7 minute runtime.
For the act, there does not need to be anything vocal present; the intrepid and talented arrangements that act as guideposts for listeners here ensure that a vocal side to Phoenix Rising is not needed at this juncture. For individuals that may have been educated on the virtues of vocal music, purchasing a copy of “Ascension” is vital to increase the appreciation that one can have for music.”
““One of the more interesting releases so far this year, Ascension from Phoenix Rising (pianist Wendy Loomis and flutist Monica Williams) musically “interprets” the seven charkas using an assortment of acoustic instruments played by both the duo and six different guest artists. Despite this “mixed bag” approach, the CD’s musical theme is manifested by the presence of Loomis (who composed the tracks) and Williams (who arranged them).You can tell by these diverse global instruments that the album bears some world music influences, but overall this is better described as contemporary acoustic music. Or you could simply say these eight women craft music of warmth and beauty that touches the heart and soul with gentleness and grace. Either way, Ascension is a musical delight to be cherished.” ~Bill Binkelman
New Age Retailer