“Peace of Heaven” is pianist/composer Solomon Keal’s fourth release to date, and consists of fifteen original solo piano tracks of a very peaceful, spiritual nature. There are no hard edges and no minor key darkness on this CD, but it isn’t sugary-sweet, either. In the liner notes, Keal reflects on the inspiration for his music, allowing us into his thoughts and giving us insight into how religion and spirituality have affected and guided his life.
“Peace of Heaven” begins with the title track, a gentle piece of musical contentment about the calm that comes in the rare times when we feel “a sense of heavenly peacefulness,” knowing that everything will work out for the best and there is no need to worry. Serenity flows from this lovely work, setting the tone for the album. I also really like “Thoughtfulness,” a quiet and gentle piece about doing things for others from the heart rather than out of obligation. Warmth and kindness fill this piece with a special kind of love. “Memories” is an improvisational piece that is built around four chords. Deeply introspective, it deals with the idea of facing memories from the past, happy and sad, that have shaped our lives. A kind of internal peace comes from dealing with all of that. “Surrender” is a beautiful piece that tells of letting God into our lives and allowing his will to be done through us - a difficult thing to do. Some of the music gives a sense of inner conflict and struggle, but is not turbulent or agitated. “Life After Death” deals with the bittersweet emotions we experience when someone dies, but also the hope of an eternal life in a better place. “Hymn of Gratitude” is a hymn without words, and a song of gratitude that should be in our hearts all the time. “Angel’s Birth” was composed as the processional for Keal’s wedding. Keal believes that when two spouses are in heaven, they are called one angel, so a wedding here on earth is the date of birth for an angel in heaven. Light, tender, and loving, it’s a beautiful piece.
If you’re in the mood for some spiritually uplifting music, “Peace of Heaven” is a good choice. It is available from www.solomonkeal.com and cdbaby.com.
Kathy Parsons - MainlyPiano.com (Dec 24, 2006)