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Zanov — Lost in the Future
(Bandcamp Zanov Music 2M023, 2023, CD / DL)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2024-01-15

Lost in the Future Cover art

In the mid-70s, Pierre Salkazanov, a.k.a. Zanov, was a French computer engineer with a strong interest in musical endeavors. In 1975 he discovered synthesizers and got to work creating a home studio where he could realize his compositions. Within a couple years he had released two albums, Green Ray and Moebius 256 301, both on major label Polydor, both outstanding examples of French progressive electronic styles (for reference Jarre’s Oxygène was released only one year earlier); five years followed before another release was forthcoming, though In Course of Time was only released on a small French label, and I suspect that many fans of those Polydor albums weren’t even aware of its existence. For whatever reason, Zanov stopped releasing any new material for close to 30 years until the self-release of his comeback album, Virtual Future, in 2014, an album with compositions that originated from unreleased recordings in 1983. Since that time, with a studio full of modern synthesizers and recording equipment, he has kept a fairly regular schedule of releases every few years, his most recent, Chaos Islands, was reviewed in these pages in 2020. As he approaches his 76th birthday, his latest album will please longtime fans, with seven purely instrumental compositions that reflect a highly emotional approach to his craft, much like those before it, pieces that reflect the convergence of technological advancements in some possible future world. Deep rhythms and crosscurrents flow and ebb while ribbons of melody stretch across cosmic expanses in colorful refinements of captivating beauty. Track titles like “Living with Robots,” “Conscious Machines,” “Brain to Brain,” and “Time Manipulation” offer some ideas as to what Zanov was attempting to score within these grooves, a soundtrack of sorts to being immersed in a world where technology reigns supreme and humanity is reduced to being a mere bystander.

Filed under: New releases, 2023 releases

Related artist(s): Zanov

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