Constantly testing his powers John Luther Adams leans into the raw energy of a decades old recording of Aeolian Harp. The sound emanating from this dawn spacemusic instrument and its wind animated strings seems a perfect soundtrack to unsettled realms. His Houses of the Wind (52'46") - an album in five parts, each about ten minutes, each perceived so elementaly - makes it easy to imagine our planet before it was inhabited, or at such time it is returned to that state. Transformed into a migrating, subtly colored timbral field, the basic recording of this instrument gains depth, acquires radiance, and further comes to life through untold audio manipulations. Requiring multiple facets of listening, thinking and feeling Houses of the Wind may seem the result of a strange new art. Lacking familiar reference points, it should lead us to consider unseen things around us.
The fluvial action of wind on strings produces a gradual purring drone, which is reimagined by Adams' action on the recording - which provides even further transformations between mood, tone color and hue. Further in, darkness descends in rumbling drones and primitive spaces. The shifting shapes and shades of sound hum in a tremor of floating textures - emanating from the simple vibrating overtones of taut susurrating strands activated by random currents of air.
With Houses of the Wind Adams adds to an impressive oeuvre and proves himself a far more adventurous composer than previously suspected. His relentless curiosity and receptiveness to all things audible and a fascination with the effect of sound tells us about his values - that his work is as equally about music as it is about attitude. Whether an unnavigable experiment in indefinite pitch, or a quiescent tone zone, the haunting nature of these five realizations will be felt long after the recording has completed its play. In a world that cannot be made sense of Adams offers the listener music for dreaming bigger than one's own self - of something bigger than what we know in this world.
Please tune in to the 06.26.22 broadcast of STAR'S END Ambient Radio for music from the recent release by John Luther Adams entitled Houses of the Wind
John Luther Adams - Conversations with Composers (2018)
Mobile Musician Magazine - May 2022
While perhaps best known to listeners of the long-livedPublic RadioSpacemusic programSTAR'S END, host Chuck van Zyl also is a noted Electronic Musician, and founder of The Gatherings (Philadelphia's premiere concert series of innovative music). The May 2022 edition of Mobile Musician Magazine features a substantial cover story on Chuck van Zyl. This extensive piece provides insights into his decades long roles as late-nightradio host,local concert promoter, recording artist,live performer and more.
To download a free copy of the May 2022 issue of Mobile Musician Magazine, please click here
WXPN/STAR'S END Winter 2022 Fundraiser
Every weekend from 1-6AM Saturday night/Sunday morning will find me at WXPN's broadcast studio in West Philadelphia presenting Star's End, - spinning a wealth of Ambient, Ethereal, Innovative Spacemusic out over the airwaves. My playlists attempt to be as diverse as possible, while keeping within the spacey format - and includes music from all over the world, by different generations, from a range of genres, cultures and backgrounds.
With each on-air outing I am pursuing the ideal of producing something larger than the sum of its parts - where all the individual tracks take on greater meaning and effect when mixed together into the five-hour, flowing soundscape of Star's End.
Airing continuously in its time slot on WXPN since 1976 Star's End has been offering a unique and consistent presentation of music for nearly 50 years. The most important person in this endeavor has always been the listener. For you Star's End is a refuge, a space for personal devotion. It's also a place that welcomes an ever-growing worldwide community of emerging musicians - heard right alongside the venerable standards and classics from the earliest days.
In Winter 2022 listeners to Public Radio Station WXPN were again asked to pledge their financial support to Star's End.Public Radio exists through funding from its listeners, and periodic on-air fundraisers are the most sensible method to meet fiscal goals.
Giving to Public Radio continues to be a meaningful gesture. During the broadcast of 20 February 2022Star's End spent the entire night in a fundraising effort, and was counting on your help. Thanks for staying up, tuning in and calling in, or going online to make your donation.
Sincere Thanks to everyone who did their part!
-Chuck van Zyl: Host of STAR'S END (20 February 2022)
Special 2022 Fundraising Thank-You Gift
Please Note: The 02.20.22 broadcast of STAR'S END offered one special Special Thank You Gift: the first ever WXPN produced STAR'S END T-Shirt (Thanks to listener Neil Cippon for his help with the graphic). According to WXPN's Membership Department, this new item resulted in approximately $17,000.00 in donations from an estimated 133 donors throughout the Winter 2022on-airfund drive - which establishes a new fundraising record for STAR'S END. The STAR'S END T-Shirt is currently being sent out to donors by the WXPN Membership Department!
Various Artists - Awakenings 28 May 2022 (Awakenings)
Various Artists - Manikin Records Third Decade (Manikin)
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.
This edition of The Signal includes notes on five releases from the Projekt Records label.
Please listen in as host Chuck van Zyl reviews:
Phase IX by Lorenzo Montana
MantraSequent by Jeffrey Koepper
Following the Ether Sun by Forrest Fang
Different Spaces by Erik Wøllo
Spiral Revelation by Steve Roach
Selected Ezines - Online
STAR'S END - Site Search
Have you ever been looking for something on this website only to become bogged down by the massive size and enormous content? Now you can find what you are seeking somewhat easier. Searching the STAR'S END Website has become much easier. Look for info on artists, albums, track names, labels, etc. via a Google "site search" - now part of the STAR'S END Website.
Have this update emailed to you as a newsletter once a week by joining the STAR'S END Radio Group at Google Groups. Whether it's a review of a new Spacemusic release, an artist interview or news about an upcoming in-studio concert, receiving the newsletter is a convenient way to keep informed of the music featured on STAR'S END Ambient Radio each week.
Please click on the link below and follow the easy registration instructions to sign up. Soon thereafter you will receive the STAR'S END Update every Thursday evening. This is not a discussion group. Email addresses are not made public. There is no fee for this service and you can unsubscribe at any time.