Review: Ayla Nereo – “BeHeld” CD 2012

I first came about knowing of Ayla’s music when I was checking out, a website that helps people raise money for their cause, whether it be an artsy project (film, music, art, etc), business endeavors, or medical issues; Ayla campaign funding was for this album and I decided to donate because of two songs I found on her YouTube Page (AylaNereo), “It’s Okay” and “Asalam Shalom.” Both songs, as well as the rest of her music, bring a beautiful airiness rich with uplifting lyrics and down-to-earth resonance that gives meaning in life.

There’s certain imagery that comes to mind when I hear certain styles of music, for Ayla newest release, BeHeld, I always seem to be watching a scene from an Indie movie that reels with coming of age, innocence of life and love, and the quirkiness of growing up and exploring the world around. Movies like (500) Days of Summer, Whip It, Juno, Youth in Revolt, Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist all come to mind when I hear her music. It’s in the joy and excitement of discovery in what life has in store for you, which all too often, we lose, or better yet, forget to continue to experience.

Musically, we can label this under Indie Folk. Ayla’s beautiful, strong and melancholic voice, accompanied by acoustic guitar, piano and child-like instruments, weaves together for a gentle sound experience. Lyrically what popped out to me, as mentioned prior, was in the song, “Asalam Shalom”, which, I assume after doing some Googling, feel it’s a greetings, an honoring, an invocation of peace to one another, t all. Another track, “Sacred Mountain” is playful in beats and the lyrics suggest we all wake up and work together in fixing what we have wronged on planet Earth. Love the lyrics – “For though it is caused by the whole world’s undertaking, the responsibility is ours to do what we’re able.” Beautiful.

A great album to have playing in the background of your life. Uplifting, harmonious and downright playful.
YouTube Channel.

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