Robert Rich — Propagation
(Hearts of Space HS11040-2, 1994, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 1994-10-01Rich is one of the more interesting of the "electronic" artists, his music is as much organic as it is synthesized. With a very wide array of flutes of different origins, and the occasional use of the pedal steel guitar, Rich has come up with his own rich and lush version of trance music, a very unique world that evokes different textures for every album and is unclassifiable. After the tropical wetness of Rainforest, the mystical structures of Gaudi, and the misty odor of Soma, Rich's new one attempts to weave a new tale from our "primordial" memories. In fact, its Rich's collaboration with Steve Roach that has influenced this album the most; Propagation is much like Strata or Soma. The atmospheres are thick and luxuriant, with a tribal/shamanic tone that remains an underlying theme throughout Rich's Hearts of Space career. The swirling synths, many of them created on Proteus/EMU modules, remind one of much of the early analog stuff, and with the environmental sounds, long drones on bamboo flutes, and an appearance by fellow sonic artist Forrest Fang, the overall sound is deep and extremely layered. After a while (several years now) the tribal drums are now getting to be a bit of an overused factor in new electronic music; I have yet to see "Dreamtime Return" by Roach topped in this area, and in my opinion, Rich's music works better on the long ambient drones like "Guilin" that have none or few drums. In summary, this is a deep and sonorous release by a musician of singular intent and vision, and another solid album. Is anybody ready to turn the next page?
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more