Synergy — Metropolitan Suite
(Voiceprint VP303CD, 1987/2003, CD)
Synergy — Semiconductor, Release 2
(Voiceprint VP302CD, 1984/2003, 2CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 1999-04-01
In 1986, the first era of Synergy releases came to an end with Metropolitan Suite, which in some ways is the culmination of Larry Fast’s original musical vision. That does not make it necessarily the most successful, or even the best, but it does represent the distillation of his musical style. For all his electronic innovation, Fast is at heart a neo-classicist – his compositions owe more to Beethoven or even Gershwin than to Varèse. In the liner notes, Fast describes taking “detailing and orchestration” inspired by the architecture of New York in the early 1900s and interpreting them with modern electronic tools. Echoes of the Jazz Age and Copland’s Americana abound in the grandiose themes. This new version presents all the big sounds with stunning clarity and great dynamic range.
Semiconductor was a collection released in 1984 representing the best of Larry Fast’s Synergy recordings to date, starting with 1975’s Electronic Realizations for Rock Orchestra and ending with The Jupiter Menace soundtrack in 1982. When it came time to remaster the old Synergy releases, Fast wisely decided to expand the collection to include work through Metropolitan Suite, summing up the era nicely. He also added an edit from one of the long ambient pieces from Computer Experiments Vol.1 and arranged the pieces in chronological order. For anyone curious about one of the true pioneers of electronic music, I can think of no better introduction. From the lush textures of Realizations through the rhythmic energy of Cords, all the best is represented here. As with all the Synergy remasters, Fast provides extensive liner notes full of juicy technical details.
Related artist(s): Larry Fast (Synergy)
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