Between Shadow And Light
Reviewed By Darla Bower
Between Shadow and Light tells a piano story of a journey to the healing of soul, mind and body. This piano portrait is dedicated to the Healers who lead those on the path of wholeness and healing. A musical journey that will lead the listener to an unexpected place of reflection while acknowledging as Mr. Patton says in his introductory comments: “the world is broken, and so are we.” Surface Tension is one of my favorites on the CD. This composition is the perfect blend of fast tempo coupled with the crescendo of expectation hinting just below the surface and does not disappoint. As the liner note says: “how can healing begin, unless our wounds are exposed and dealt with?” Often times we work hard not to expose our vulnerabilities or weakness but as the song suggests – exposing is a stepping stone towards healing.
My next and absolute favorite is Nocturne (Between Shadow and Light). This piece really appealed to me for its classical elements and sound. Chopin is my favorite composer and Nocturne reminded me of a Chopin style lament in both texture and tone. To me this emotion invoking piece represents the shadow experienced on the journey to healing. The dedication of Nocturne (Between Shadow and Light) to Mr. Patton’s parents made the emotional impact even greater because it speaks of their journey. Sometimes healing is synonymous with loss. Nocturne is a very heartfelt piece that chronicles the mastery of this piano artist and his piano; simply breathtaking! The Long Goodbye is the musical representation of a bittersweet journey through Alzheimer’s disease. Many refer to Alzheimer’s as “the long goodbye.” With every note of this piece, may we not forget the travelers of this path as we accompany them and perhaps continue the journey without them.
Another emotional composition and favorite for me was: To Run Again. This piece was written for a mutual friend’s pet named Riley. We all followed the journey of Riley to his healing. This song and Riley’s journey reminded me that often times healing occurs in an unexpected way, leading to where a journey ends. Riley fought the good fight surrounded with love, hope and prayer. I absolutely LOVE that Mr. Patton wrote this song for Riley reminding us healing isn’t always tranquil and “the goal of our healing is not merely the absence of pain, but the presence of life.” This piece was an unexpected energetic representation of Riley’s life and I adore it!
Hope is another favorite piece that is based on Psalms 121:1-2. This composition brings to mind waiting with gentle expectation. One of Webster’s definition of hope is: trust. We may not associate hope with trust while waiting for healing. This piece is a melodic blend of unexpected tenderness and is the contrasting piece to shadow which is: light. I have always admired Mr. Patton’s bold proclamation of his faith with and through his music. Hope for me is the reminder of where help comes from for the journey–the Lord and others. Well done!
This review was difficult for me to complete because of the absolute parallel this album has to my life and everyday life for many. Between Shadow and Light is a musical masterpiece by one of my favorite artists: Neil Patton. His music speaks note by note in the artistically woven piano poetry that is Between Shadow and Light. So get ready to listen! I very highly recommend this CD! Between Shadow and Light is available on: www.neilpatton.net, CD Baby, Amazon and iTunes.