Soul Whispers


Shoshana Michel

Written by 

Steven Sheppard

One World Music Radio

“Shoshana Michel’s album Soul Whispers is a story of the Jews in Russia, an album which opens with a piece that has a sense of deep desire within, but with a mournful hunger, like an aching to be connected with the one. This will capture your feelings and it’s called Ani Z’miros.

Ki Hinei Kachomer is next, the light notes and subtleties on this incredibly performed track are so delicate at times, and in a way quite submissive in its arrangement.

The story of Shamil is told in this next piece with the same title, it’s the story of a leader who led his people with a deep sense of loyalty and honour, but his captures were not so honourable. This lament finds Shamil gazing out of his prison cell into the vastness of the mountain ranges beyond. Michel’s piano is his longing and desire to be free once more, but she also illustrates perfectly his hope in the comfort that knowing one day; he will fly as free as an eagle across those white peaks.

Rostover Nigun is a composition where you can find both a combination of power and grace, and a deep meaningful expression of significance. Once again we can hear and feel that penetrating perception of exploring ones soul to the deepest level; this is an extremely profound and moving piece.

Ya’ale Tachanuneinu is next, a deep passionate piece, you can almost feel a plea to be heard from the performance here, but there is also an underpinned sense of wisdom to be found in this arrangement, this is indeed a cleverly composed track.

Nigun L’Shabbos V’Yom Tov I is a soothing melody, that has a real, life force energy about it, the intricate performance cleverly plays with dark and light, but portrays with the ease of a master artist, an essence of softness and openness about the composition.

V’Nislach is one very sombre but deeply respectful song and has a melody that floats with ease around the mind. There is a real sense of honesty and openness about this piece. Michel has also added a feeling of grandeur here and there is a definite and heartfelt interplay of narrative in this quite stunning composition.

Nigun Hachono has a feeling of blissful ambience about it, Shoshana Michel has created a really wide open composition with a delightful slow tempo, a meditative slice of heaven.

Nigun L’Shabbos V’Yom Tov II could almost be described as the second part of a great movement, of which a third will round off the album, you have a second chance for more reflection within this quite stunning opus.

Shabbos Nigun, this is a moving and deeply respectful performance, the melody gives a feeling of experience and an energy of the ages. The negative refrains here paint a picture of a deep yearning of the soul. This three part movement is a pleasurable moment of musical heritage.

Ani Ma’amin is a deeply emotional tale about the death or murder of one Reb Fastag, and his journey to the death camps, at the hands of the Nazi’s. Within this music, Michel performs a song that perhaps Fastag would have taken great solace in and may even have taken this with him on his journey of despair and then reunification with the universal oneness that unites us all.

Nigun L’Shabbos V’Yom Tov III is the completion of this three part work, it’s supremely lifting and a delight to listen to, just what’s needed after the emotive pain of the last arrangement and I know you will revel in its power and purpose as well, this is so confidently played.

Soul Whispers must be one of the most moving albums I have listened to for some time and Shoshana Michel has not only honoured her ancestors, but created a wonderful art gallery of music for us to wonder through at our leisure, through this music we can gain an understanding of culture, of respect, of a spiritual love and of oneness, do you really need any further motivation to buy this album?”