Dulce Joya Leon
2022 / Dulce Joya Leon
Review by Kathy Parsons
Angels is a three-piece EP by award-winning pianist/composer Dulce Joya Leon. This is her fourth album, and she has released quite a few singles as well. Much more symphonic than her previous albums, the music for Angels is very dramatic, emotionally powerful, and beautifully cinematic. The trilogy includes "Archangel Michael," "Archangel Gabriel" and "Archangel Raphael," and was released on September 29th, "Day of the Archangels for the Glory of God and all the angelic Choirs." Dulce's previous albums have been solo piano or piano with orchestration, but I don't hear any piano in this one at all. Not to worry, though, the deep emotional quality of her music shines just as brightly with full symphonic orchestration as it does with the piano.
Angels begins with "Archangel Michael," the darkest and most dramatic of the three tracks. Named for the chief of the angels and archangels, Michael is mentioned in the book of Revelation for going to battle with Satan. His role varies according the various world religions, but most see Michael as a protector and a warrior, and this piece reflects that. It opens with a very dark passage that feels ominous and dangerous. There are gentler and even mournful moments blended with the more powerful themes, telling a vivid and inspiring story without the use of any words!
"Archangel Gabriel" is much calmer and more serene. Bowed and plucked strings give the piece a very ethereal quality that is almost ambient. Horns and choral voices add tonal colors and textures and serve to keep the piece a bit more grounded. It's beautifully done!
"Archangel Raphael" is a moving tribute to the angel whose name translates to "God has healed." Choral voices play a much bigger role in this piece, along with strings, organ and keyboard. It begins very quietly with a touch of mystery and a mix of voices, strings and organ. The music intensifies as the strings and voices sing to the heavens and then gradually darkens and fades out to the end - very colorful and powerful!
Angels is a fascinating musical experience! There are also a couple of YouTube videos available that provide visuals to go with the music. The EP is available from Amazon, Apple Music/iTunes and streaming sites including Spotify. Recommended!
November 15, 2022