Exposé Online banner

Tom Eaton — How It Happened
(Spotted Peccary SPM-4001, 2019, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2019-06-09

How It Happened Cover art

Tom Eaton is a Massachusetts based composer, multi-instrumentalist, producer, and engineer who has spent most of his career behind the scenes, producing and engineering dozens of releases for other artists since opening his first commercial studio, Universal Noise Storage, in 1993, and following a long association with Windham Hill Records founder William Ackerman as engineer at his Imaginary Road studios. For all those many years of experience, How It Happened is only his third solo album (folowing two independent releases, Indesterren and Abendromen, both 2016) and his first on Spotted Peccary Music. The sounds at hand appear to be inspired by natural beauty, reflective thoughts, and fleeting imagery, all borne of flowing atmospherics and gentle soothing textures. Opener “Ice” is effectively just three complex chords in a slow evolutionary rotation, shifting gears slowly and repeating with some additonal washes and punctuated by prismic piano sprites for coloration and variation; it’s the overall effect that lulls the listener to a new level, ready for all that comes after. “An Unexpected Opening” moves forward with a paced progression, again using piano colorations over a bed of revolving synth textures and occasional deep bass moments and panoramic voice-like harmonic figures. Throughout the eight tracks the feeling imbued is one of inner peace and stark beauty, all within its own introspective realm, delivered with piano, multiple layers of atmospheric and melodic synths, touches of ambient electric guitar, and curious sounds seemingly sampled, all heavily processed for maximum effect. “Later, at Night, by the Lake” seriously delivers on its title, floating in on a dreamlike palette of dark and curious colors, punctuated by occasional bass pulses; throughout these eight tracks very little seems repetitive or sequenced, every sound drifting effortlessly, floating into the next through a natural process. Eaton has captured a very special feeling within these eight compositions, and his articulate arrangements have truly brought them to full bloom.


Filed under: New releases, 2019 releases

Related artist(s): Tom Eaton

More info
http://ambientelectronic.bandcamp.com/album/how-it-happened

Latest news

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more

2020-01-10
Neil Peart RIP – One of rock music's defining drummers has died at the age of 67. Neil Peart's work with Rush provided one of the templates for percussion in rock, and he certainly ranks in the top ten most influential drummers of the 20th Century. Peart retired from playing in 2015 due to health issues, and succumbed to brain cancer on January 7, 2020. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ozric Tentacles - Arborescence – The Ozrics are masters of the hypnotic groove, finding that seemingly endless psychedelic guitar and synth riff, a repetitive - nearly trance-like structure, and then exploring all of its...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues