Portals: A Kosmische Journey through Outer Worlds and Inner Space (77'41") presents 13 tracks by a range of potent artists in electronic sound. With each generating its own hot-wired intensity these works originate at the wall outlet, but play out in the head. Charging the hidden activity of our minds with a dreamy forward motion each musician provides a wonderful jaunt across a kinetic synthetic terrain. Maybe a good place to begin this review is with the extensive inventory of gear, which is listed within the 70s retro album art and graphic design. Flaunting Mellotrons, modern and vintage synths, all manner of modular synthesizer systems (either custom built or store bought), and other powered tools - this inquiry will surely invite endless analysis and debate. So it should suffice to say that the true electricity running this music is flowing fast through the veins and brains of the musicians involved. Portals presents realizations by dreamers and builders like Ian Boddy, James Bernard and Steve Roach, right alongside the beat machine energy of Listening Center, Pleasure Corporation and Nigel Mullaney. When the searching sequencer meditations of Tungsten Mountain, Steve Moore and Lisa Bella Donnamotor up, coiling surges nest inside long unwinding passages - where we can feel the light and heat of the creative current. In drifting moods at cosmic heightsIn the Branches + Bluetech and Polypores feel as immense as the heavens, while d'Voxx and Johnny Woodshold forth in the sonic schoolyard with a grounded questing optimism. Portals will certainly fulfill the audience's appetite for energetic Spacemusic, as we will eagerly be seeking out the next installment in this well-doneanthology series. Yet, let us consider also that a good compilation album will indeed present good music, but can function on a higher level as a statement beyond the genre - proclaiming that the power of this music is greater than that of the individual maker. The subject is connection, both electrical and human - which may mean that even in this dark world of ours there is still salvation to be found in each other.
Please tune in to the 05.31.20 broadcast of STAR'S END Ambient Radio for music from the anthology of various artists Portals: A Kosmische Journey through Outer Worlds and Inner Space
WXPN 2020 Online Auction - STAR'S END Fan Experience - Item #104
Electronic Musician, Concert Organizer and STAR'S END Host Chuck van Zyl has taken part in WXPN's 2020 Online Fundraising Auction with the offer of a unique listener experience. The winning bidder of Auction Item #104 will receive a one-on-one workshop with Chuck van Zyl covering synthesizer basics, followed by a private salon spacemusic concert for the winner and ten friends at WXPN's World Cafe Performance Studio.
WXPN's 2020 Fundraiser Auction ran from 8:00AM on 6 March 2020 to 6:00PM on 26 March 2020. Sincere Thanks to winning bidder Jim Causey for taking part! Your support is sincerely appreciated!
Produced by Public Radio Station WXPN, Chuck van Zyl:Live on Star's End 08.26.18 (63'36") is not a commercial release. It is available only as a "Thank-You" gift to those making a donation to WXPN/STAR'S END.
This album is a conventional silver CD featuring over 60 minutes of the Chuck van Zyl live electronic realizations made in the WXPN performance studio during a private Salon Concert (for Tony Masiello) and live-to-air broadcast of 25/26 August 2018. Its four parts each offer passages of improvised in-the-moment sequencer manipulations, amidst the ethereal yearning of synthesized harmonies and cresting lead lines. The listener is invited inside, to float away as the patterns and textures envelope them - tumbling in circles, spirals and pinwheels, beneath unfurling ribbons of creamy synth melodies and modulated, chirping effects.
Chuck van Zyl:Live on Star's End 08.26.18 may seem more like a spiritual expression than an exploration of a musical form. This work has mysterious power purely on a sonic level. But the miracle of this release is that every time we listen to it, our minds will hear something new - and will so find a different album. Absorbing the full tapestry of the Electronic/Berlin-School experience, and the ideals of live improvisation, we can easily imagine every concert outing serving as a mystic portal for this musician's own spiritual journey.
Whether channeled from the astral plane, or just the transformation of electricity into sound, Live on Star's End 08.26.18 is for those seeking a deeper examination of tone and mood. Anyone in love with Spacemusic and its very specific poetry will want to own this recording. While this musical form may have been established in the 1970s, Live on Star's End 08.26.18 feels made-today fresh. A ceaselessly inventive work, its history begins now.
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