Solo piano works well when it's creative. Since this album comes from the mind of a veteran pianist, we get a warm performance that settles down comfortably with ballad thoughts and reflective moments.
While developing his own voice, Cole Broderick felt the influence of Oscar Peterson and Andre Previn. He likes to incorporate jazz and classical music into his performances. The Upstate New York-based pianist leads a fine quartet that has garnered attention with his previous recordings. In a Dream is Broderick's first solo recording.
On his up-tempo numbers, the pianist's two-handed action reflects a shuffling rhythmic cadence. The comfortable action, timeless in its appearance, resolves quickly. Broderick's linear message travels from point A to point B at a leisurely pace, however, and takes no creative detours. The pianist's slower, dreamy numbers rise and fall gently with eddies of harmony. Passion and understanding fall readily into line as he massages each ballad with care.
Say What! interjects a little funk, while "Mai Lei strolls like a timeless spiritual. "Francis Fudge whips up a batch of the blues, while "Jenny drifts gaily over fields of clover and alfalfa. Broderick's songs offer variety and a pleasant outlook. His dreams come packaged with built-in passion and understanding. In a Dream is a reflective album that comes from the heart.