Customer Reviews for

Portals of Grace

Average Rating 5
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 4 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Discreet Beauty

    How lucky was I when I randomly picked up this CD when I was being urged by my companions out of the store? Ali's unique combinations of Arabic music and traditional european lyrics is enough to keep me listening, but her voice can be both warming and haunting. I enjoy this CD tremendously, and recommend it to any fans of Loreena McKennit as a slight "branch out" from her sultry tunes.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Earthy, elegant, ethereal ¿ exceptional!

    How can something be earthy and ethereal--a complete contradiction in terms--at the same time? I wouldn¿t have considered it likely either until I heard this CD, but these are the qualities of Azam Ali, both as a vocalist and an arranger. Her voice has a bell-clear purity reminiscent of Anonymous 4, but she easily incorporates the microtonal croons and quavers of her Persian and Indian heritage as well. On this release she interprets primarily Sephardic and medieval European songs to the accompaniment of instruments from east and west alike. Her arrangements are alternatingly lush and spare as the selections demand, but resonate always with a surprising depth of sound and feeling. Guest musicians include her partner from Vas, percussionist Greg Ellis; viellist Shira Kammen; Chris Bleth on duduk; Pejman Hadadi on tombak and def; Naser Musa on oud; and others. As an enjoyable contrast to her vocals, Ali allows the instrumentalists free reign on several numbers of their own. ¿I see the human voice as a reflection of the truest self within us,¿ says Ali, ¿through which we can mirror forth, either through prayer or song, the beauty and Grace of God.¿ Well said, and well sung. This is one of my favorite albums to have come out in the year 2002, and another is somewhat of a companion work: the solo album ¿Kala Rupa: Explorations in Rhythm¿ by Greg Ellis. Ellis and Ali form the duo Vas, and as such have three other releases which also stretch the boundaries of vocal and percussive music. If you enjoy Ali¿s vocal work, you might like that of the groups Sarband, Vox, and Anonymous 4 as well.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Ancient Sounds and Moods; A Work of Musical Art

    This album is a mixture of medieval harmonies and haunting Eastern vocals. It's not a piece of modern 'pop', but a revival of ancient sounds and moods that stirs the soul. Light your fireplace and/or candles and prepare for an incredibly seductive evening with a special someone. It¿s a magical work of musical art.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1