Review Summary: His album, "Dare to Dream", says Yanni, "comes from a realization that not only don't people go after their dreams, they are often afraid to dream at all. If we don't dare to dream, we can't shape our future"
I myself would never consider my tastes align with those of an elitist when it comes to classifying my gratification in music. I have several guilty pleasures spread across the board ranging all the way from Senses Fail
to Katy Perry
. Though the spaces reserved for my pinnacle of musical expositions remains a little more direct and simplistic in terms of variety. Out of the six hundred something albums I have gotten around to rating at the moment only 0.02% occupy the classical compartment, which says a lot, when considering the music I admit to enjoying. There is of course a story behind each and every one of those “5” and with Yanni’s Dare To Dream
it is no less different.
This record is filled with enough aesthetically pleasing sounds to satisfy those with even the savviest of musical thirst quenching desires. Musical composer and artist extraordinaire Yanni, isn’t afraid to pull any punches on this truly timeless release.
Listening to this disc is like taking a trip to the most magical place on Earth – ala Disneyland. There are just so many different aspects to be discovered that it demands
subsequent visits; a trait I believe must exude from any said “classic.” Upon your first experience, you’ll be guided through a beautiful journey with the piano, Yanni’s true weapon of choice, as each track sees its instruments dancing off the crisp and elegant pavement provided by the stroke of each key. This is best exemplified in In the Mirror
as the track begins, descending us gracefully into the tune with the intro of a horn. We are then immediately spun round and round by the seeming illusive piano; while the noises of chimes and cymbals collide in the background creating one beautiful wreck of a song.
Another huge benefactor is the ability to transport the listener through a story being told on each track. The magnificent part though? Aside from Aria
there are no words to explicitly guide the listener, as Yanni lets his marksmanship over all the instruments do the talking. Songs like A Night To Remember
employ the use of their length to barrage through a sea of highs and lows. We instantaneously start piecing together fragments of our own memory to fill the void of lyrics. Shifting in and out of classical melody and classical chaos, every frame of each song is constructed perfectly so as to conjure the listener to summon distinct emotions that flow incandescently with each note of every instrument. It’s as if Yanni knows the history behind every single ear taking the journey with him, as he seamlessly constructs a universal soundtrack to life.
Nice To Meet You
plays like a conversation between two separate entities, with the use of beautiful strings to accompany the astounding strength in each note, once again set forth by the keys. Like the two we’re destined for each other. You can’t help but feel the breath of a memory for a loved one, as the wind section acts like a screen to replay said moments in ones head. Of course, like our memory for the loved one, these two instruments have met before, but never have they so effortlessly mirrored each other.
Face In the Photograph
sounds like it was written for the likes of Celine Dion, though thankfully there is no use of over-singing to slay the track. Instead we are supplemented with a gorgeous arrangement of strings to soar over the steady drum beat, and ambient nature that is the piano. Album standout, So Long My Friend
is the moodiest song of the bunch, sticking out like Elle Woods did at Harvard School of Law. Its gloomy intro sets the depressing mood as you can feel the strings agonize over the loss of a loved one, and never before have the violins sounded so beautiful.
sets in with its jungle attitude, sounding like it should have been included with the Tarzan soundtrack. The win factor here comes with the under utilized chorus feature; pulsating its way into our ears cautiously before stampeding into an ascending staircase of heavenly proportions. The intertwining ability of the wind section and the strings, which emanate spider-like qualities crawling all throughout the song, make this the strongest track to be heard. Sure, the centered instrument here is the piano as it is with all songs to be heard, but what really shines here is the beauty of combining all his weapons at hand. The sound and texture of each instruments is matched superbly as it races through its five minute length.
Though as stated before, this cd is void of lyrics, save for Aria
which is no more than a Greek opera tune, it does not hinder the experience in any way. It feels like the instruments are speaking enough in their own right that you can understand the nature intended for each song any way. Any artist that is able to convey this type of message is surely a winner, as music that can stand alone by itself and still rest as a classic surely has reached a remarkable feat. You can’t help but be overcome with sensation as You Only Live Once
sets into your ears and begins prancing about joyously. Sure, all we’re handed is a song title and a cello, but take it as a paint brush and empty canvas; now you’ve got all the information you need. This is exactly how it feels when listening to this cd. Things may appear to have a incomplete nature, but on further investigation you’ll notice that you’ve been staring at this glass half empty, instead of half full.
Yanni is special to me because of the one thing it seems music has forgotten it’s able to do today. This is a perfect example of universal language, as there’s no shortage of instruments to fall in love with. He utilizes the qualities in so many different sounds its hard not to become truly infatuated with one song or another. Its music like this, that’s able to open doors to vast new world of genres and artists, mostly forgotten due to the necessity of ridiculous mainstream stipulations. If you’re looking for music that showcases bikinis and bank accounts then you’re surely going to need to look elsewhere, as the pedestal here is not on “What Can You Do For Me?” but rather, “What Have You Got For Me To Find?” and with all the intricate treasures to be found, why would you look elsewhere? You wouldn’t, because when you’re here you’re at the “Happiest place on Earth”.