Healing Music, Volume 2
2017 / Valrock Music
Review by Kathy Parsons
Healing Music, Volume 2 is a two-disc collection of “STILL” and “CHILL” music by Valerie Romanoff. A musician who excels in a variety of genres of music, Romanoff generally categorizes her music as “STILL, CHILL, THRILL” with the latter referring to her favorite genre, FUNK. Yes, really! The co-founder and CEO of Starlight Orchestras in New York City, (an organization that performs for high-end events all over the country), Romanoff is known for her bright onstage presence, her skill in crafting a range of musical experiences, and her talent for bringing together world class performers. Romanoff’s primary instrument is the electric guitar, but on this album, she also performs on piano, acoustic guitars and synthesizers. Romanoff is joined by Tom Rossi (flute, kora [a 21-string instrument from West Africa] and percussion) and Stevin McNamara (sitar). The music incorporates influences from world beat, new age, jazz, rock and chill genres and can have a very soothing and/or refreshing effect on the listener. In the liner notes of the CD, Romanoff says, “By tapping into the transformative nature of sound, I believe we can help create a more harmonious world…. Whether in the contemplation of stillness, the activation of ideas, or the joyful rise of energy, music plays a significant role in our evolution…. This music is dedicated to our joyous journey and the spirit of LOVE.”
Disc 1 contains the eight original pieces, which range from just under seven minutes to almost eighteen, sustaining an uplifting and positive mood throughout. Infectious rhythms and outstanding musicianship send much of this music skyward. I especially like “Dawn of Tao,” which feels much like a welcome break sitting in a patch of warm sunshine, listening to the birds and other nature sounds around you - calming, refreshing, and energizing all at the same time. I also really like “Om Shanti Shalom - Beatmix Instrumental,” with its powerful pulse and leisurely tempo. There are occasional wordless vocals on this one, too, but it’s mostly an easy groove that just feels good!
Disc 2 has ten tracks that are radio edits and a bonus track that is the full “Pink Skies Suite.” In this group, the radio edits range from just over three minutes to six - still long enough to sustain a mood, but more radio-friendly. “The Bend” is not on Disc 1, but is included on Disc 2. In addition to “Dawn of Tao,” and “Om Shanti Shalom,” I really like like slow groove and soulful guitar of “Moving Glass” on this disc.
If you are a looking for a bargain, you get a LOT of music for your money with this album - well over two hours! It is music with a purpose, but it is also a pleasure to listen to just for the music’s sake. Healing Music, Volume 2 is available from Amazon, iTune and CD Baby. Check it out!
March 21, 2018