Friday, August 7, 2020
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Artist: Steve Roach (@)
Title: Bloom Ascension
Format: CD
Label: Projekt (@)
Rated: *****
Steve Roach is one of the few artists that I have followed for almost 30 years. In that time he's definitely evolved as a musician, which one would expect in such a wide ranging career. So let’s get something out of the way right off the bat. If you're expecting more of the traditional ethno-ambient that he has created in the past, you may be a little surprised. In some ways, this has more in common with techno-era Cabaret Voltaire than it does with some of his earlier stuff. On “The Beauty Relentless,” Roach is in fine form. Arpeggiated synth mixed with slow, shimmering synth washes to create a hypnotic sense of being. When the percussion comes in you almost don't even recognize it. The track slowly changes and evolves over time. “Motivating Factor” is an exercise in repetition as the main theme remains unchanged, but the underlying textures constantly shift.“Synesthete” reminds me of a sci-fi suspense movie soundtrack. You're floating in the void and your spaceship is inching away from you. The question is whether you'll ever return to Earth again. Bloom Ascension is another hypnotic, repetitive track, but with a more frantic feel than the other tracks until it all dissolves into lush drone. Overall this is a great album. There's a lot of complexity to the compositions that keeps it interesting. This album weighs in at around 41 minutes.


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