Exposé Online banner

Robert Rich — Sunyata
(Hypnos 2026, 1982/2000, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2015-12-24

Sunyata Cover art

McLatchey's Second Tier

Even before the classic Trances and Drones there was the debut cassette by one of the great electronic musicians of the last 30 years. These days a good 20 minutes of this has been moved to share CD space with the Trances/Drones reissues and Sunyata itself is now paired with Inner Landscapes and still available. It's important to remember that this cassette was released in 1982 and recorded the previous year in an era where this kind of electronic music was almost unheard of. I think only Michael Stearns was really mining this kind of territory with any kind of success at the time and I know I had been listening to Robert's music for a few years before I even knew this existed. Its really central piece is the cassette side long "Oak Spirits," which I see as a predecessor to the electronic-organic music of Alio Die years later, a very quiet, slowly mutating drone ambient piece that evolves tonally over its 40-45 minute length. The other pieces are really no less excellent and it was nice when the album came out on CD to hear it divested from the hissy cassette format. It's a real indication of the quality of these early Robert Rich works that they still manage to get a new issue when the previous one disappears.


Filed under: New releases, 2000 releases, 1982 recordings

Related artist(s): Robert Rich

Latest news

2018-01-18
Christian Burchard RIP – Multi-instrumentalist Christian Burchard, who founded the seminal band Embryo in 1969, has died at the age of 71. His January 17 passing was announced on the band's Facebook page. » Read more

2018-01-05
Ray Thomas RIP – On Thursday, 4 January 2017, the world lost Ray Thomas, founding member of the Moody Blues. Thomas sang and played flute, and was responsible for writing a number of the band's most memorable songs. He was 76. » Read more

2017-12-22
Roswell Rudd RIP – Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, one of the distinctive players of his instrument in many strains of music, has died at the age of 82. With a career stretching back to the early 60s and over a hundred recordings featuring his playing, he leaves behind a substantial legacy. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2013. » Read more

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Outer Limits - Misty Moon – Musea continues to unearth the most unknown and rare albums from the annals of obscure progrock history. Outer Limits were a pretty original Japanese band from one of the darkest times in prog...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues