There is so much great music in the Stillstream library and elsewhere that suggests film scenes, real or imagined. Today’s episode features some of that music. Turn it up, close your eyes and paint the scenes in your mind with these soundtrack works.
Today’s set starts with a unique track from Saul Stokes, produced with hand-made synths.
Vast is Stokes’ Foundry debut, and his eighth album. Past releases include 2003’s critically acclaimed Fields, the live recording Radiate, and a number of other titles on the Hypnos, Databloem, and Greenhouse Music labels. Stokes has appeared previously on several Foundry projects, including SUB.TERRA, Bibimbap, and Jonathan Hughes’ Fluidities.
mindSpiral is one of several brainchildren (brainchilds?) of Mike Metlay, who has been a fixture in the electronic music world for over two decades. From his humble beginnings at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music (don’t look for him in the student rolls – he was at the College of Arts & Sciences across the street, and got into the electronic music studios mostly by picking the locks) and at the University of Pittsburgh (where he got a legitimate start with the help of electronic music pioneer A. Wayne Slawson) to releases on his Atomic City imprint to the creation of the Different Skies experimental music festival, he has always believed in being in the thick of things, meeting people, making friends and making music.
“Filmusic in the Ears” – Microfeel – Microfeel (2010)
Microfeel is the musical project of Sebastian Seifert. His live set music combines electronic sounds with influences from minimalist, organic and cinematic music in a style comprising feelings and textures that mixes electronic sounds with acoustic and electric instruments.
“Cinema Dawn Scope” – Tone Ghost Ether – The Hundredth Mantra (2009)
To celebrate the milestone of 100 releases, the Earth Mantra netlabel decided early on that this album should be a compilation of the artists who made up the previous ninety-nine releases. It was a huge undertaking.
Inspiration struck without warning and an ensemble was born. Tone Ghost Ether was realized through a natural interaction between three musicians searching for a common form of expression. Legendary progressive rock and ambient artist Kit Watkins, together with brilliant instrumentalists John Tlusty and Brad Allen, combined their talents to produce this amazing, genre-spanning music. By means of a series of informal improvisational gatherings, recorded on Sunday afternoons in early 2001, Tone Ghost Ether produced what were to become their pioneering CD releases — elegant and tonally rich musical excursions into the future.
All of the music by Tone Ghost Ether was improvised and played in real-time without overdubs. The use of live looping devices contributed to the often densely textured sound. Minimal editing was sometimes performed after recording, but the nature of the immediacy of this music remains intact.
The style of Tone Ghost Ether falls naturally into a number of familiar pigeonholes: ambient, acid jazz, world fusion, and electronica, but explores hybrid genres where mind-trips and alien worlds might only exist within the imagination, later to materialize beyond the realm of possibility. Earth Mantra is proud to bring you the music of these phenomenal artists.
“Film Music, Kaplin-Shapero (Sequencers, Tripartite Piece, Scherzo)” – Altocumulus – unreleased (1968)
To indulge our love of analog sounds, we reached into the Wayback machine for this track from Altocumulus, which is a long-form exploration of sequencer sounds that were available (or discoverable) in 1968. It’s a fascinating work, and certainly evocative of sci-fi films of the era.
“The Arrival”, “From Tears to Paradise” – Brian Vassallo – The Film Music of Brian Vassallo (2007)
(ASCAP) artist – Brian Vassallo, born on the island of Malta, is a self-taught musician, a combination of many genres from ambient, chill-out, new age and electronic to Film & TV Music.
Vassallo began using computers at a very early age. He wrote a program which lets the user learn about the planets in our solar system. A short while later he became more involved into creativity, from computer graphics, ( having been painting extensively since childhood ) , and sound experimentation.
At around the age of 16, and after numerous influences, Vassallo started building his own personal studio and in 1998, released his first album of electronic synthesizer works called Beyond, written as a soundtrack for his science fiction/space fascination, with him since childhood.
Ambient loop guitarist Dave Stafford performed on stage with Robert Fripp and the Orchestra of Crafty Guitarists in early 2009, and has worked with ambient music and looping for over twenty years. Stafford has a rich back catalogue of ambient and loop music, and occasionally, rock, prog or acoustic crafty guitar music which can be located on his website at www.pureambient.com
The music of Altus is an obvious choice for a program around film, as so much of his music is so very cinematic in nature. Altus is Mike Carss, based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. A prolific and generous composer, he makes nearly all of his music available via Creative Commons.
“Study 4” – Pawel Grabowski – Personal Archives Vol. 2 ~ A Study for a Horror Movie (2006)
Born in Poland and now based in Ireland, Pawel Grabowski is a graphic designer by day, and a perfectionist composer in his free time. He is also the founder of the “Silence is Not Empty” netlabel.
Personal note from the composer:
“Those of you who got to know me even a little know how mad I am for anything horror. From literature to movies I absorb everything. BUt those who know me a bit better know that it is my life-long dream to write music for horror movies. And since I haven’t been given a chance et, inbetween 2005 and 2006 I recorded few small etudes, or studies for a horror movie. Some of this music after slight rework made it’s way onto my “Notes from the house of Dead” e.p., some other was never published.”
“If This Were A Movie” – Trip Wamsley – It’s Better This Way (2004)
Trip Wamsley lives in Texas. He credits the fateful day early in 1982 when he heard “Silly Love Songs” by Wings as the day he decided that music was for him. He would often accompany his band-director father to area music stores where he would see bass guitars.
Trip studied with Michael Manring in 1991 and 1992, which was an experience Trip says that consisted of scathing invective and brutal honesty. Trip credits Michael with the phrase “…be deep wide awake and slow…”.
Trip’s playing takes on both the rhythmic bass and melodic lead roles, harmonics and overtones are flung about effortlessly. Right hand, left hand, all ten fingers, tuning keys and every ounce of potential is used to bring forth music from his finely crafted instruments. Musicians will appreciate his creative use of both fretted and fretless basses, special effects and detuners. Trip is the introduction to the bass guitar as a complete orchestra.
“One Life As A Movie Act II” – WOFan – unreleased (2006)
WOFan is Dimitri Schkoda, a Belgian electronic artist working with “WoF” synthesizers. His music can be found on soundclick.com or on hgf-synthesizer.com
His music has recently been used as a soundtrack in a videoclip of the Belgian highway police, which can be found on the Tispol website.
“Cinema” – Northern – Drawn (2007)