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Steve Roach - HelioSphere (Radiant Mind & Steve Roach) CD (album) cover

HELIOSPHERE (RADIANT MIND & STEVE ROACH)

Steve Roach

 

Progressive Electronic

4.00 | 1 ratings

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Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars American electronic/ambient icon Steve Roach drops his first release for 2019 with the stunning `HelioSphere', a collaboration with Radiant Mind, another artist working in similar styles who prefers to remain anonymous. This is the third time that Roach has worked in conjunction with the mysterious Mind, and for this release, the two are perfectly aligned in the hypnotic, meditative and immersive soundworlds they weave together. Much of `HelioSphere' retains a constantly droning ambient backing devoid of rhythmic elements, and an array of exquisitely ethereal touches are constantly introduced throughout to take the disc in some very affecting and surprising directions.

Crystalline synths gently ring throughout languorous opener `Sphere 1', soaring surges tear around `Sphere 2' holding traces of unexpected unease, and `Sphere 3' manages to be equally haunting, lulling and wondrous as it gradually unfurls. There's soundtrack-like elegance to the gently sweeping electronic caresses of `Sphere 4' and `5', churning drones throughout `Sphere 6' begin trickling to life, and `Sphere 7' introduces lightly pulsing beats for a seamless diversion into subdued electronica. `Sphere 8' is then a final shimmering come-down that surprisingly slinks back to shadows and darker contemplative corners.

Those who prefer more compact electronic compositions or ones driven by percussive elements will likely prefer to look elsewhere, but if you have the patience for very abstract and subtle soundscapes (and, still, this one is hardly the most unapproachable or intimidating example of that approach you could find!), a stunning disc is waiting to be discovered here. `HelioSphere' proves to be a truly captivating and evocative work of atmospheric electronic ambiance from two intelligent artists, and hopefully there's even further collaborations between the pair in the near future.

Four stars.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 4/5 |

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