Key of Dreams
2011 / Galya
Review by Kathy Parsons
Key of Dreams is the exciting follow-up to Galya’s debut, If Only, one of my favorite albums of 2010. Ukrainian by birth, conservatory-trained and the winner of international piano competitions, Galya has made her home in France for the past several years. Her stunning mastery of the piano gives her the freedom to express anything she wants with effortless grace and an elegant touch. The twelve piano solos on the album convey a wide range of emotions and experiences that are easy to relate to despite the complexity of the music. This music is definitely not intended for creating an atmospheric background - it needs and deserves to be listened to, savored, and gotten lost in. I have no doubt that this will be one of my favorite albums of 2012.
Key of Dreams begins with the title track, a beautifully-flowing piece that feels like a wistful day-dream. Sometimes full of longing, sometimes warm and contented, this piece will draw you in and capture your imagination. “Sakura” is delicate and fragile like the cherry blossom it is named for. The gentle rhythm suggests blossoms swaying and fluttering in a gentle breeze. “Lightness” has a fresh, carefree feeling as Galya’s fingers joyfully dance around the piano keyboard. “Paper Doll” is a bit darker and sadder, as many classical pieces about dolls are. The peaceful flow of the first section of “Ocean Song” contrasts with a stormier and more dramatic middle section. Several themes describe various moods of the ocean as they weave a hypnotic tapestry of sound. Love it! “After the Rain” is almost too beautiful for words. Graceful and very fluid, the mood is leisurely and peaceful. “April Snow” swirls and soars with a quiet, breathless energy. I like all of the pieces on this album, but I think “Doubt” is my favorite. The melody itself is spare and simple, but the underlying agitation really feels like doubt and questioning. It’s a remarkable and very emotional piece that comes from deep within. “Fairy Tale” has a bright, fluttering energy that brings images of tiny beings darting around with wings that sparkle. The middle section becomes much darker, as fairy tales often do, and then returns to the lighter original theme - another favorite. “Winter Love” brings this incredible album to a close with passion and grace.
If you love If Only as much as I do, you will also love Key of Dreams. If you haven’t yet heard Galya’s music, now it the time! Key of Dreams is available for download from Amazon, iTunes, and CD Baby. I give it my highest recommendation.
April 27, 2012