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Journeyscapes by Candice Michelle
Other reviews from Journeyscapes by Candice Michelle:
  Serenity II: More Peaceful Music on the Chapman Stick by Michael Kollwitz, reviewed by Candice Michelle on 7/12/2018
  Terra Incognito: The Space Between by Richard Dillon, reviewed by Candice Michelle on 7/12/2018
  Auriga to Orion by Majestica, reviewed by Candice Michelle on 7/12/2018
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Ring Around the Moon
By Richard Dillon
Label: Self Released
Released 10/15/2014
Ring Around the Moon tracks
1. Groundhog Saw His Shadow
2. Ring Around the Moon
3. December Sunset
4. Dying of the Light
5. Midnight Sleigh Ride
6. First Snow
7. Dreaming of Hawaii
8. January Moon
9. February
10. Walking through the Woods on a Snowy Evening
11. Scattering of Stars
12. Whiteout
13. Hot Cocoa by the Fire
Solo piano music inspired by the winter season!
Richard Dillon is a Seattle-based pianist and composer who began writing solo piano music about four years ago. Citing fellow pianist-composers David Nevue, Joe Bongiorno and Neil Patton as some of his greatest musical career influences, Dillon’s own style ranges from neo-impressionist to Celtic. Originally released in 2014, Ring Around the Moon is comprised of 13 original solo piano compositions inspired by the winter season.

The first three tracks on the album are pensive and minor-key, beginning with “Groundhog Saw His Shadow”. A lovely opener gently played in the higher register, it calls to mind a new moon night in the deep of winter. The subsequent title piece, “Ring Around the Moon”, is carried by a lightly twirling melody throughout that lends it a touch of nocturnal mystique.

One of my favorite pieces on the album is “Midnight Sleigh Ride”, which boasts sparkling, resonating piano chords that seemingly conjure images of snow flurries on a magical winter’s night. The ensuing “First Snow” is another highlight that brings-to-mind an early morning snowfall upon a wooded landscape.

The second-to-last track on the album, entitled “Whiteout”, is a lightly cheerful and upbeat tune that follows another set of more contemplative, slowly-drifting compositions. And finally, “Hot Cocoa by the Fire” provides a tender conclusion to the album, effectively bringing-to-mind that of cozying up by a fireplace to keep warm while reminiscing upon winter seasons past.

Overall reflective and peaceful, Richard Dillon mostly plays these pieces with a gently hesitant touch while lending a bit of jovial playfulness to a few of the compositions. Effectively taking the listener on a thoughtful journey amid the colder months of the year, Ring Around the Moon makes for great listening all winter long!
Rating: Very Good +   Very Good +
- reviewed by Candice Michelle on 12/22/2017
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