Dreams

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
On Dreams, Brian Culbertson attempts to dig further into the vein he opened on 2010's XII, where he seamlessly married adult-oriented R&B to contemporary jazz. In fact, Dreams feels like a bookend of sorts. He employs an alternating cast of studio aces who include Alex Al, John "Jubu" Smith, Eric Marienthal, Michael Stever, Ray Parker, Jr., Rex Rideout, and Rob "Fonksta" Bacon, as well as a trio of vocalists: Stokley Williams Mint Condition, Vivian Green, and Noel Gourdin. There are some stellar numbers here, including the Williams vehicle, "No Limits," a midtempo babymaker. Culbertson's acoustic piano, Smith's guitar, and some pronounced loops ride atop the bassline to ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
On Dreams, Brian Culbertson attempts to dig further into the vein he opened on 2010's XII, where he seamlessly married adult-oriented R&B to contemporary jazz. In fact, Dreams feels like a bookend of sorts. He employs an alternating cast of studio aces who include Alex Al, John "Jubu" Smith, Eric Marienthal, Michael Stever, Ray Parker, Jr., Rex Rideout, and Rob "Fonksta" Bacon, as well as a trio of vocalists: Stokley Williams Mint Condition, Vivian Green, and Noel Gourdin. There are some stellar numbers here, including the Williams vehicle, "No Limits," a midtempo babymaker. Culbertson's acoustic piano, Smith's guitar, and some pronounced loops ride atop the bassline to frame the singer's mellifluous tenor. This cut is the sweet spot where neo-soul, adult R&B, and contemporary jazz create a classy pop sound. Green's moment, "Still Here," juxtaposes her taut vocal against acoustic piano and Rideout's fat synth bass with an insistent loop. The result is dramatic. Opening instrumental "Later Tonight" features some nice horn work from Marienthal, Stever -- and Culbertson on trombone -- and very fine guitar from Bacon. Its melody is instantly recognizable with the horns being used sparely but effectively in the mix. "In the City" may be the strongest of the instrumentals, with a deep bass groove and chugging, almost dubwise, rhythm. Here too, the horns fill the backdrop as Smith's guitar accents the bassline. All of these cuts are in the first half of the album. "You're My Music," sung by Gourdin, is a nice soul-pop bubbler and the title track, with its infectious melody and contrasting acoustic and electric guitars, offers a wonderful palette of textures. The three closing instrumentals, however, are less distinguishable. They seem to blunt the impact of the set's previous cuts rather than provide the kind of balance -- one suspects -- Culbertson was looking to create. As "Chapter Two" of XII, this works well, but as an album, Dreams doesn't reach its predecessor's heights.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/12/2012
  • Label: Verve
  • UPC: 602537024223
  • Catalog Number: 001684202
  • Sales rank: 4,434

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Later Tonight (4:55)
  2. 2 No Limits - Stokley Williams (4:53)
  3. 3 Your Smile (4:41)
  4. 4 Still Here - Vivian Green (4:19)
  5. 5 In the City (5:22)
  6. 6 You're My Music - Noel Gourdin (4:46)
  7. 7 Dreams (3:42)
  8. 8 Madelena (4:37)
  9. 9 Lights Off (7:08)
  10. 10 The Journey (6:09)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Brian Culbertson Primary Artist, Bass, Percussion, Piano, Trombone, Keyboards, Synthesizer Bass, Finger Snapping, Hammond B3
Michael Thompson Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, E-bow
Alex Al Bass
Vivian Green Vocals
Bob Horn Horn Engineer
Eric Marienthal Bass Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Ray Parker Jr. Rhythm Guitar
Rex Rideout Keyboards, Synthesizer Bass
John Jubu Smith Guitar
Stokley Williams Drums
Taj Jackson Background Vocals
Rob "Fonksta" Bacon Guitar
Michael Stever Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Noel Gourdin Vocals
Marc Antoine Acoustic Guitar
Technical Credits
Michael Thompson Engineer
Brian Culbertson Arranger, Composer, Producer, Engineer, Executive Producer, drum programming
Vivian Green Composer
Garry Kief Management
Rex Rideout Arranger, Composer, Engineer, drum programming
Taj Jackson Composer, Vocal Producer
Scott Steiner Engineer
Vartan Art Direction
Gene Grimaldi Mastering
Michelle Culbertson Executive Producer
Lloyd Johnson Photo Assistance
Michael Stever Horn Arrangements
Dahlia Ambach-Caplin Executive Producer
Marc Antoine Engineer
David Britz Management
Larry Shields Booking
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