Another Place and Time
2010 / Winterhall Records
Review by Michael Debbage
It has been over one year since Heidi Anne Breyer released her debut album Winter Light that featured well known carols sitting alongside some of Heidi’s original compositions. A few of the latter are revisited here on Another Place And Time revised under the technical care of Will Ackerman and the Imaginary Road Studio A Team. Though largely duets with several impressive musicians, Another Place and Time remains unified and focused on the compelling compositions of pianist Heidi Anne Breyer.
The usual suspects from the Ackerman team are present including Eugene Friesen on cello, Jill Haley on English Horn and Noah Wilding on vocals. There is also the world renowned violinist Charlie Bisharat who also appears on the hauntingly beautiful title track with similar result found via “On His Wings”. Breyer also shares the spotlight with Haley’s prominent horn on the opening track “All Souls Lullaby” but it is Heidi’s soft swaying stroke of her keys that slowly drive this song leaving you floating effortlessly in the clouds if you surrender to it. Go ahead close your eyes and float away. Comparably there is Heidi’s duet with Jeff Oster on the trumpet via the impressive “American Gothic”.
Breyer even shares a partial spotlight with Ackerman on “After The Rain”, though the song once again focuses on Breyer’s intoxicating yet subdued piano performance. Ackerman also performs on the slow and purposeful “In A Region Of Clouds”. But once again it is Breyer’s supple touch that will have you lying on a peaceful green hill under an old oak tree watching clouds drift on by in front of a canvas of baby blue. Simple yet mesmerizing! Breyer even takes the time to share a soft vocal performance here and there akin to that of fellow pianist Laura Sullivan supplemented by vocalist Noah Wilding. She is even confident enough with her compositional ability that she places “So It Was” in the entire hands of David Cuellen’s guitar performance.
While Heidi Anne Breyer was very intelligent entrusting Will Ackerman and company with her latest creation, she does not lack the confidence of knowing that it is her compositions and performance efforts that is the most important ingredient of Another Place and Time. If you are seeking an uncluttered and surreal performance then surrender to the soft touch of pianist Breyer’s and drift off to another place and time.
January 1, 2011