The One I Waited For
2003 / Equity Digital
Review by Kathy Parsons
The One I Waited For is a stunning first-release from new label, Equity Digital. Julliard-trained Michael Dulin shines brightly on solo piano (with occasional synth washes), and promises to bring an exceptional new voice to contemporary instrumental music. A man of many musical hats, Dulin works professionally in styles ranging from classical to gospel. Along with being a phenomenal pianist, Dulin is a studio owner, session musician, producer/arranger, and composer of award-winning music for radio, television, film, and theater. This varied background is apparent in the variety of pieces on the album. All are calming and relatively peaceful, but there is a rich complexity that reveals itself the more you listen. Dulin calls his music “inner music - music that balances and centers and replenishes” and “a haven of sound that one can visit again and again.”
The CD opens with a lovely, piece called “The Way Home.” I feel a sense of searching, and perhaps a bit of nostalgia in the music. The rubato rhythms and jazz elements keep this piece surprising, fresh, and inviting. “First Love” is a sweet and gentle piece with a flowing left hand, and a carefree melody that almost smiles. “Solitude” is more introspective and dark, but isn’t brooding. Thoughtful and intimate, this is one of my favorites. “After the Storm” is a more classical piece that clearly demonstrates Dulin’s incredible playing “chops.” The clarity of the trills and runs is amazing. “Lullabye for Alexa” is a gentle song without words - very loving and warm. “By the Fire” is more rubato again, and feels almost conversational. There seem to be two “voices” exchanging ideas or thoughts, and the feeling is so comfortable and easy. Great stuff!
The One I Waited For is indeed an auspicious beginning, and I can’t wait to see what’s next. Several more albums from Dulin and Equity Digital are scheduled for release in 2003, so I’m excited to hear this new music! This and the other releases from the label are currently available from www.equitydigital.com. Very highly recommended!
February 28, 2003
Review by Michael Debbage