Tag Archives: Steve Roach

The Ambient Series: Steve Roach’s Spiral Revelation Up For Grammy Award

Sometimes, the music you love, even the most obscure, are classics that get recognized for their brilliance. Back in January of 2017, I posted a review of an album – something I rarely do these days. The artist is Steve Roach, an ambient magician of note that has created 125 albums thus far! The album, Spiral Revelation, has just been announced for a Grammy Award nomination. Stunning!

Spiral Revelation is nominated for Best New Age Album alongside of Reflection (Brian Eno), Songversation: Medicine (India Arie), Dancing On Water (Peter Kater), and Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai (Kitaro). Not only is this heady company and competition, it also speaks to the fact that Steve Roach is a world-class talent, something that is not lost on MusicTAP readers and fans of ambien music worldwide.

MusicTAP wishes Steve Roach (and by association, Projekt Records, and Spotted Peccary, both which released Spiral Revelation) all the best in this magnificent honor.

You can read my 2017 review of Spiral Revelation here.

Review: Spiral Revelation – Steve Roach

It’s sometimes hard to find the words that accurately bring justice to an ambient work. With a band like Tangerine Dream, you almost only have to mention their name for fans to understand the potential for a good to great album of music. Ambient artist, Steve Roach, should be at that level for many fans of the genre. With more than 60 creations within his catalogue, not to mention his many collaborations, Steve Roach is (or should be) an instantly recognizable name within the ambient world of sound. His latest album, Spiral Revelation, is a classic album in the making. And I do not say this lightly.

Spiral Revelation is a newly released set with six lengthy tracks (yes, you want these tracks lengthy). Beginning with the eleven minute first track, “We Continue”, there is a beautiful and repetitive piece that is bathed in a wash of sound. Occasionally filled in with other sounds, this opening track easily sets the quality of music tone for the rest of Spiral Revelation. As the first track glides into the second, you barely notice a transition has occurred, it’s that well orchestrated. Your mind is completely in tune it simply does not recognize a change.

There are two tracks over the ten minute mark, and deservedly so. The rest ease between six and ten minutes with two of them quite near ten minutes in length. All in all, this ambient work is an otherworldly masterpiece, beautifully composed by one of our ambient masters. With just over a full hour of transitional tunes, Spiral Revelation should be heard by all fans of ambient music.

The album itself is noted as being “The Sound of Life, Interconnected and Unfurling”. Under the disc, within the plastic well that holds the CD, the four (North, East, South West) corners have -appropriately – the words ‘Feeling’, Sensation’, ‘Thought’, ‘Intuition’.

I’m infatuated with Spiral Revelation. And I wanted you to know about it. As a note for hi-resolution fans, Spotted Peccary Music will be releasing Spiral Revelation in 96kHz/24-bit downloadable files (here). Projekt Records handles the CD and standard digital downloads via Bandcamp. You can hear streams at both locations.

 

3CD 30th Anniversary Edition Of The Steve Roach Ambient Classic, Structure From Silence In April

When you think ambient music, it’s easy to recognize a name like Steve Roach. Steve Roach has been involved in so many variations of the art of ambient, and with so many artists of note, that it could be said that he may be the single most practiced ambient master in the genre.  Certainly he is the genre’s most prolific with more than 45 solo efforts since 1982, and a massive array of collaborative works amounting to more than 40 albums.

RoachStructuresFromSilenceCDOne of his first albums, the 1984 ambient classic, Structures From Silence, has risen in the ranks of all-time bests that now make it one of the most influential albums ever created in the ambient genre, fourth only to Brian Eno’s legendary Music For Airports, his own classic, Dreamtime Return (2003), and Sonic Seasonings, the 1972 celebration of the seasons  by Wendy Carlos.

Celebrating its 30th Anniversary, Steve Roach has gone back to the master tapes and have remastered the set for a 24-bit/96k audio enhancement.  The original album was released by Fortuna Records, an early ambient label.  Since, Projekt Records, who has provided Steve Roach with a label home for several decades, re-released the classic in 2001, also with a new remaster. But what sets this one apart is its higher resolution, opening up the original to perhaps newer heights in sound than ever thought possible.

For this release, Steve Roach has included two bonus CDs of music from 2013 that contain tracks with hints of the music of Structures From Silence.  Good music never dies; it just keeps evolving. And you’ll hear those evolutionary paths on the bonus CDs.

Structures From Silence is scheduled for April 15 from Projekt Records.  It will present in both the anticipated 3CD set, as well as a single CD with just the original three tracks. Both albums will provide the original artwork from the Fortuna Records set.

TAPSheet: Release Notes – 03/10/2014 (US Report)

Real Gone Music have White Rock, the 1977 album from Rick Wakeman, scheduled for April 29.

WakemanWhiteRock

Nonesuch Records have Upside Down Mountain from Conor Oberst, his latest solo album coming on May 20 in CD, 2LP (with bonus CD inclusion), and DD.

Nonesuch Records also have scheduled the new self-titled solo effort from Natalie Merchant (10,000 Maniacs) for May 6.

Rhino Records have scheduled the extraordinary 2013 remaster, remix of the live Deep Purple 1972 classic, Made In Japan for US purchase on May 20, just a day later from the UK release.  Plan on the remastered single CD reissue, the 4CD/1DVD w/7″ vinyl single of the Limited Deluxe Edition, and the 2CD Deluxe Edition (no word on vinyl) on that date. How sweet, huh?

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Frontiers Records have High Road coming from Night Ranger on June 10 in both CD, and a CD/DVD Deluxe Edition.

Projekt Records have a 3CD 30th Anniversary Edition (Remastered) of the Steve Roach classic ambient album, Structures From Silence planned for April 15. There will also be a single CD set of the title as well.  Watch for a more complete write-up of this classic album in the next few days.

RoachStructuresFromSilenceCD

Fantasy Records have Greatest Hits featuring Creedence Clearwater Revival on the slate for April 29.

UMe have a Powerman 5000 album scheduled for May 27. The album is called Builders Of The Future.

Candlelight Records have a 20th Anniversary Edition of In the Nightside Eclipse by Emperor, scheduled for June 10.

Warner Brothers have 7 Skies H3 from The Flaming Lips scheduled for May 20 on CD.

01013 - The Flaming Lips - 7 Skies H3 - 01 - 12 Jacket (3mm Spin

Atlantic Records/Parlophone have new Coldplay on the way with the release of their next album, Ghost Stories, planned for May 19.

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Savoy Records will release new Echo & The Bunnymen music with the arrival of Meteorites, scheduled for June 3.

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Roadrunner Records have Magic Mountain from Black Stone Cherry planned for May 6.

Finally, Legacy and Epic have a 15CD Box featuring The Complete Studio Recordings for Joe Satriani. It’s scheduled for April 22.

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And Happy Birthday to Mrs TAP!