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TERRY RILEY

Prog Related • United States


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Terry Riley biography
Terry Riley was born on June 6 1935 in Colfax California. He attended various California universities and finally earned a masters in composition from UC Berkeley. One of the earliest electronic composers, Riley was one of the initial participants in the renowned San Francisco Tape Music Center. He also studied classical Indian music under Pandit Pran Nath and became professor of Indian music studies at Mills College in 1971. During the 1960s, Riley performed all-night solo concerts by playing a harmonium and saxophone through tape loop echo devices. When he needed a break he would play back the tape loops by themselves. His composition 'In C', composed in 1964, is often given credit for pioneering the musical style that became known as minimalism.

Although Riley started his musical career in the company of fellow future minimalist composers such as Steve Reich and Pauline Oliveras, over the years his musical career often veered towards a more rock or jazz like setting in which he was more an improvising performer than composer. His 1969 electronic composition, 'A Rainbow in Curved Air', had a massive effect on the then still developing world of progressive psychedelic and avant-garde rock music. While most early electronic music centered around bizarre sound constructions and totally serialized twelve tone music, Riley's Raibow on the other hand was beautifully tonal in Indian influenced mixolydian keys and featured a rock like pulsing rhythm that caught on with the young avant-psychedelic crowd that was also digging Soft Machine, Pink Floyd, Amon Duul and Can. Soon the sound of pulsing electronic synthesizers and organs became a standard part of many young adventurous performers culminating in the German experimental collective known as Tangerine Dream.

While performing as an improvising soloist, Terry struck a chord with many young rock performers including the Velvet Underground's John Cale. You can hear Riley's influence on Velvet Underground cuts such as 'Sister Ray' where Cale's pulsing organ sounds mix Riley's Rainbow style with the sound of cheap 60s porno soundtracks. Cale and Riley would later record together creating a rock/Indian/fusion masterpiece called 'Church of Anthrax'. All through the late 60s and early 70s Riley's influence is present in progressive rock: from Soft Machine's obvious tributes on their IIIrd album, to The Who's 'Who's Next' album with its arpeggiated Arp figures and a song called 'Baba O' Reilly' that is a ...
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Terry Riley: A Rainbow In Curved Air; Poppy Nogood and the Phantom BandTerry Riley: A Rainbow In Curved Air; Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band
Sony Classical 1988
Audio CD$4.57
$3.99 (used)
Rainbow in Curved AirRainbow in Curved Air
Import · Remastered
Esoteric 2012
Audio CD$8.55
$8.54 (used)
In CIn C
Dacapo Classical 2007
Audio CD$12.04
$10.00 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
EX-/EX- !! Terry Riley & Pierre Marietan/Keyboard Study/1968 LP/French Issue USD $82.96 Buy It Now 1h 8m
TERRY RILEY - IN C (UK, 1971, CBS LP, EX COND) USD $12.56 [0 bids]
3h 4m
Terry Riley CD A Rainbow In Curved Air - Modern Classical Minimalism USD $7.50 Buy It Now 3h 29m
Poppy Nogood & the Phantom... Terry Riley Audio CD USD $29.61 Buy It Now 5h
In C (Rm) Terry Riley Audio CD USD $19.61 Buy It Now 5h 49m
GRAMAVISION COMPILATION LP KITARO TERRY RILEY KRONOS QUARTET YAS KAZ NM SHRINK USD $6.99 Buy It Now 6h 33m
Terry Riley - In C 180gm Vinyl [Vinyl New] USD $36.81 Buy It Now 20h 34m
Terry Riley(Vinyl LP)Songs For The Ten Voices Of The Two Prophets-Kucku-Ex+/NM- USD $43.98 Buy It Now 21h 37m
Terry Riley(2x12" Vinyl LP Gatefold)Persian Surgery Dervishes-Shanti-83-VG-/NM- USD $115.63 Buy It Now 21h 37m
Terry Riley(Vinyl LP)A Rainbow In Curved Air-CBS-64564-UK-1971-Ex/NM- USD $37.70 Buy It Now 21h 37m
Terry Riley(Demo Vinyl LP)Shri Camel-Columbia-M 35164-US-1980-Ex+/NM- USD $43.98 Buy It Now 21h 37m
Terry Riley-Persian Surgery Dervishes (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $20.04 Buy It Now 1 day
Terry Riley: Persian Surgery Dervishes by Terry Riley (Composer) (CD,... USD $35.14 Buy It Now 1 day
Terry Riley: In C (CD, CBS Records) MK 7178 USD $0.99 [0 bids]
USD $4.00 Buy It Now
1 day
Terry Riley Music For The Gift + CD Organ Of Corti 1 Minimalism USD $10.00 [0 bids]
1 day
NEW - Piano Music Of John Adams & Terry Riley by Gloria Cheng-Cochran USD $3.61 Buy It Now 1 day
TERRY RILEY - SHRI CAMEL NEW CD USD $11.92 Buy It Now 1 day
Terry Riley: In C, New Music USD $10.99 Buy It Now 1 day
A Rainbow in Curved Air by Terry Riley. USD $10.77 Buy It Now 1 day
Shri Camel by Terry Riley. USD $10.76 Buy It Now 1 day
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Kronos Quartet And Wu Man - Terry Riley ?- The Cusp Of Magic (2008, Nonesuch) USD $4.18 Buy It Now 1 day
Terry Riley-Riley: In C CD NEW USD $11.47 Buy It Now 1 day
Shri Camel by Terry Riley (Composer), Terry Riley (CD, Mar-1988, Columbia (USA)) USD $5.70 Buy It Now 1 day
KRONOS QUARTET TERRY RILEY REQUIEM FOR ADAM CARDSLEEVE 4TRK PROMO ALBUM CD USD $7.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Four Four Three: Music of Terry Riley New CD USD $21.93 Buy It Now 2 days
FOUR FOUR THREE: MUSIC OF TERRY RILEY [USED CD] USD $19.51 Buy It Now 2 days
Africa Express - Presents...Terry Riley's In C Mali (NEW CD) USD $15.39 Buy It Now 2 days
Terry Riley : Terry Riley-Salome Dances for Peace (2CDs) (1990) USD $5.94 Buy It Now 2 days
Terry Riley - In C (NEW CD) USD $14.13 Buy It Now 3 days
RAGAZZE QUARTET - TERRY RILEY: FOUR FOUR THREE: MUSIC OF TERRY - CD USD $21.94 Buy It Now 3 days
Different Worlds - Rabih Abou-Khalil, Terry Riley, John Zorn etc. Arte Quartett USD $20.66 Buy It Now 3 days
Terry Riley - Reed Streams [CD New] USD $15.72 Buy It Now 3 days
Keyboard Studies Terry Riley Audio CD USD $22.40 Buy It Now 3 days
Last Camel In Paris - Terry Riley (CD Used Very Good) USD $13.84 Buy It Now 3 days
Reed Streams - Terry Riley (CD Used Very Good) USD $13.72 Buy It Now 3 days
JOHN CALE & TERRY RILEY - Church Of Anthrax - VINYL LP STEREO USD $50.27 Buy It Now 3 days
POUL GERNES LP/1969 Denmark/Harmonium/Drone/Musique Concrete/Fluxus/Terry Riley USD $32.98 Buy It Now 3 days
Terry Riley: In C - minimalist landmark classic - Sony Classics - sealed!... USD $14.11 Buy It Now 3 days
JOHN CALE & TERRY RILEY-CHURCH OF ANTHRAX-JAPAN MINI LP CD F56 USD $25.99 Buy It Now 4 days
TERRY RILEY Shri Camel CBS MASTERWORKS LP NM Promo USD $77.77 Buy It Now 4 days
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Terry Riley - In C USD $7.48 [0 bids]
4 days
Terry Riley: Reed Streams by Terry Riley. USD $22.32 Buy It Now 4 days
Steve Reich: Six Pianos; Terry Riley: Keyboard Study #1. USD $19.70 Buy It Now 4 days
TENKU + A NEW VISION FROM KITARO TERRY RILEY YAS KAZ STEVEN HALPERN LOT OF 2 LP USD $9.00 Buy It Now 4 days
Shri Camel Terry Riley Audio CD USD $15.00 Buy It Now 5 days
Terry Riley - In C rare '64 COLUMBIA MS-7178 stereo LP ELECTRONIC MUSIC USD $14.99 [0 bids]
5 days
TERRY RILEY RAINBOW IN CURVED AIR EARLY NM HOLLAND STEREO LP USD $24.99 Buy It Now 5 days
TERRY RILEY RAINBOW IN CURVED AIR UK STEREO LP USD $29.99 Buy It Now 5 days
Terry Riley - Lisbon Concert - Terry Riley CD 4BVG USD $11.98 Buy It Now 5 days
TERRY RILEY-IN C-UK LIMITED G/F-2014 180g VINYL LP-STEVE REICH-NEW USD $31.41 Buy It Now 6 days
TERRY RILEY-RAINBOW IN CURVED AIR-UK 2015 180g VINYL LP-STEVE REICH-NEW USD $31.41 Buy It Now 6 days
Ragazze Quartet - Four Four Three: Music Of Terry Riley [CD New] USD $15.46 Buy It Now 6 days
Four Four Three: Music Of Terry Riley - Ragazze Quartet (CD Used Very Good) USD $13.46 Buy It Now 6 days
Terry Riley A RAINBOW IN CURVED AIR CD USA 074640731525 CBS new USD $13.97 [0 bids]
6 days
Terry Riley-Reed Streams/L'infonie-In C (Mantra) USD $8.80 [0 bids]
6 days
Riley / Zofo - Plays Terry Riley [CD New] USD $21.39 Buy It Now 6 days
Plays Terry Riley - Riley / Zofo 053479218926 (CD Used Very Good) USD $19.39 Buy It Now 6 days
TERRY RILEY-RAINBOW IN COLOGNE-IMPORT 2 CD w/JAPAN OBI H93 USD $34.99 Buy It Now 6 days
CURVED AIR AIRBORNE BTM UK 1976 orig lp sonja kristina terry riley prog psych USD $29.00 Buy It Now 6 days
COLUMBIA MASTERWORKS Promo EP Wild Sounds of New Music Terry Riley Steve Reich USD $11.00 Buy It Now 6 days
Africa Express-Africa Express Presents...Terry Riley's in C (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $13.56 Buy It Now 6 days
TERRY RILEY IN C BY RILEY,TERRY (CD) USD $17.25 Buy It Now 6 days
In C [Terry Riley (Composer)] New CD USD $18.02 Buy It Now 7 days
REICH, Steve/TERRY RILEY - Six Pianos/Keyboard Study #1 - CD USD $16.64 Buy It Now 7 days
PIANO MUSIC OF JOHN ADAMS & TERRY RILEY - Brand New CD USD $12.00 Buy It Now 7 days
CBS 1988 TERRY RILEY: "Rainbow in Curved Air"/"Poppy Nogood & the Phantom Band" USD $3.13 [1 bids]
7 days
TERRY RILEY: PERSIAN SURGERY DERVISHES [USED CD] USD $19.64 Buy It Now 7 days
Terry Riley: Persian Surgery Dervishes [1 disc] New CD USD $20.03 Buy It Now 7 days
Piano Music of John Adams & Terry Riley, New Music USD $21.99 Buy It Now 7 days
JOHN CALE & TERRY RILEY "CHURCH OF ANTHRAX" LP 2ND UK PRESS 1980 NEO CLASSICAL USD $39.99 Buy It Now 7 days
Terry Riley : In C CD (1999) USD $10.00 Buy It Now 7 days
KRONOS QUARTET PLAYS TERRY RILEY SALOME DANCES FOR PEACE JAPAN 2 CD OBI 5263yen USD $59.99 Buy It Now 7 days
Church of Anthrax by John Cale & Terry Riley/John Cale/Terry Riley (Composer)... USD $13.31 Buy It Now 7 days
TERRY RILEY NO MAN'S LAND ALAIN TANNER SOUNDTRACK BHATT SITAR SWISS MEGARARE OOP USD $89.99 Buy It Now 7 days
Church of Anthrax [John Cale & Terry Riley/John Cale/Terry Riley (Composer)] New USD $17.20 Buy It Now 7 days
NEW Terry Riley: In C (Audio CD) USD $16.36 Buy It Now 7 days
Terry Riley: In C (CD, Mar-2009, Sony Music Distribution (USA)) USD $13.98 Buy It Now 8 days
KITARO Terry Riley Kronos Quartet Yas Kas vinyl LP 1985 Gramavision Records EX USD $10.00 Buy It Now 8 days
Terry Riley: In C USD $14.96 Buy It Now 8 days
The 3 Generations Trio Terry Riley Audio CD USD $19.72 Buy It Now 8 days
TERRY RILEY in C sealed 180 Gram Columbia Records Masterworks vinyl LP MS 7178 USD $26.99 Buy It Now 8 days
NEW ZOFO Plays Terry Riley (Audio CD) USD $30.52 Buy It Now 8 days
TERRY RILEY - CUTTINGS COLLECTION (REF X14) USD $10.04 Buy It Now 8 days
THEATRE FOR VOICES LITANY FOR THE WHALE JOHN CAGE PAUL HILLIER WITH TERRY RILEY USD $14.99 Buy It Now 8 days
Terry Riley-Shri Camel CD NEW USD $9.77 Buy It Now 8 days
Mott the Hoople Alice Cooper Jack Bruce Terry Riley ZIGZAG No 22 October 1971 USD $25.11 Buy It Now 9 days
Terry Riley: Chanting the Light of Foresight (CD, May-1994, New Albion) USD $5.60 Buy It Now 9 days
TERRY RILEY: Terry Riley In C LP Sealed (UK, 180 gram reissue) rare Rock USD $40.00 Buy It Now 9 days
Terry Riley Requiem for Adam by Kronos Quartet, Mint Sealed Promo C USD $3.99 Buy It Now 9 days
ZOFO Plays Terry Riley by ZOFO Duet. USD $24.00 Buy It Now 9 days
Sunrise of the Planetary Dream Collector: Music of Terry Riley * by Kronos Quart USD $18.89 Buy It Now 9 days
Terry Riley: Autodreamographical Tales by Terry Riley. USD $16.99 Buy It Now 9 days
Terry Riley: Aleph by Terry Riley. USD $22.99 Buy It Now 9 days
TERRY RILEY a rainbow in curved air 64564 A1/B1 1st uk press cbs 1971 LP EX-/VG USD $19.81 Buy It Now 9 days
Terry Riley: In C by Terry Riley. USD $15.97 Buy It Now 9 days
TERRY RILEY-IN C-JAPAN CD Ltd/Ed B63 USD $12.50 Buy It Now 9 days
Four Four Three: Music of Terry Riley - Ragazze Quartet CD-JEWEL CASE USD $23.96 Buy It Now 10 days
Terry Riley - In C - Sealed LP Record USD $20.99 Buy It Now 10 days

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TERRY RILEY discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

TERRY RILEY top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 5 ratings
Reed Streams
1965
3.97 | 26 ratings
In C
1968
4.26 | 49 ratings
A Rainbow In Curved Air
1969
4.71 | 9 ratings
Happy Ending
1972
4.38 | 13 ratings
Persian Surgery Dervishes
1972
4.00 | 6 ratings
Le Secret De La Vie
1975
4.00 | 10 ratings
Shri Camel
1980
4.40 | 5 ratings
No Man's Land
1984
3.80 | 5 ratings
The Harp Of New Albion
1986
5.00 | 1 ratings
In C (with Shanghai Film Orchestra)
1989
4.09 | 3 ratings
Kronos Quartet Plays Terry Riley - Salome Dances For Peace
1989
4.00 | 3 ratings
Intuitive Leaps
1994
5.00 | 1 ratings
Chanting The Light Of Foresight - Imbas Forasna ( with Rova)
1994
5.00 | 1 ratings
In C / Djembé (with Eddy De Fanti)
1995
4.50 | 2 ratings
Olson III
1999
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Book Of Abbeyozzud
1999
4.67 | 3 ratings
Music For The Gift
2000
4.00 | 2 ratings
You're Nogood
2000
4.09 | 4 ratings
Terry Riley and the Kronos Quartet - Requiem For Adam
2001
5.00 | 3 ratings
Atlantis Nath
2002
5.00 | 1 ratings
In C
2002
5.00 | 1 ratings
Keyboard Studies
2002
5.00 | 1 ratings
I Like Your Eyes Liberty (with Michael McClure)
2004
4.75 | 4 ratings
Les Yeux Fermés & Lifespan
2007
5.00 | 1 ratings
Autodreamographical Tales
2010
4.50 | 2 ratings
Aleph
2012

TERRY RILEY Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.28 | 6 ratings
Descending Moonshine Dervishes
1982
4.67 | 3 ratings
Songs For The Ten Voices Of The Two Prophets
1983
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Padova Concert
1992
4.67 | 3 ratings
In C - 25th Anniversary Concert
1995
5.00 | 3 ratings
Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band All Night Flight Vol.1
1996
4.33 | 3 ratings
Lisbon Concert
1996
5.00 | 2 ratings
Olson III
1999
5.00 | 1 ratings
In C
2000
4.05 | 2 ratings
In C (with Bang On A Can)
2001
4.00 | 1 ratings
In C / In DO(M) / In Moscow
2001
5.00 | 2 ratings
The Last Camel in Paris
2008

TERRY RILEY Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

TERRY RILEY Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.67 | 3 ratings
Descending Moonshine Dervishes / Songs For The Ten Voices Of The Two Prophets
1992

TERRY RILEY Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

TERRY RILEY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A Rainbow In Curved Air by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.26 | 49 ratings

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A Rainbow In Curved Air
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The recent death of ISAO TOMITA (22 April 1932 / 5 May 2016) made me remember an EP disc which was included as a bonus promotional disc in WENDY (THEN KNOWN AS WALTER) CARLOS's LP album "The Well Tempered Synthesiser" (1969) that my father bought in 1969-1970. I think that at that time my father was discovering Electronic Music during a time when it became popular maybe more thanks to CARLOS's "Switched-On Bach" album from 1968. Both of CARLOS's albums which I mentioned above had the characteristic of having music composed by J.S. Bach played with Moog Synthesisers. At that time those albums were seeing as very "revolutionaty" in music, and particularly "Switched-On Bach" was a very successful and popular album. That EP had a fragment from a work which was played and recorded by another Electronic Music pioneer called TERRY RILEY. I think that it was a fragment from the Side One of this album, called "A Rainbow in Curved Air" (1969), but I can't remember well now. Anyway, recently I had the opportunity to listen to this album as a whole for the very first time.

In contrast to TOMITA and CARLOS, who used synthesisers for their albums, RILEY in this album only used more "conventional" keyboards, like organ and harpsichord, plus some percussion instruments.

The "A Rainbow in Curved Air" title musical piece in the Side One of the LP is inlfuenced a lot by Indian music, with a drone effect done by a single note played in an organ, plus several other organ parts playing scales in a "geometrical" way. The music is so well synchronised that it never loses a beat. Maybe RILEY used some recorded tape loops to create this sequence of sounds. It is so well done that the music never loses its "geometric pattern". And while the repetition of this pattern goes on and on, there is a lot of variety and even improvisation with some keyboard parts who play melodies and scales at the front of the loops. It never tired me as a listener. It has to be remembered that this album was recorded a long time before the arrival of programmed synthesisers and keyboards. So, a lot of work could have been done in the late sixties by RILEY and his production team to achieve this.

"Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band", in the Side Two fo the LP, also has a lot of Influence from Indian Music, with again a drone effect done by some keyboards. This musical piece is less "melodic" than the first, even a bit noisy in some parts, but it is also very good. Again, I could listen to the "geometric effect" produced by the tape loops. In this musical piece RILEY also played on saxophones a lot of melodies and solos, recording several sax parts. This musical piece maybe also has some influences from KARLHEINZ STOCKHAUSEN, another musician who also was a pioneer and contributor to the experimental music of the 20th Century, and another composer which my father listened to sometimes.

A very good electronic / experimental music album from the late sixties. It also influenced PETE TOWNSHEND from THE WHO, who was inspired by RILEY's work to create the keyboard parts which TOWNSHEND played for "Baba O' Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again", both being songs which he composed and recorded with THE WHO for their "Who's Next" album from 1971.

 In C by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1968
3.97 | 26 ratings

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In C
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

4 stars Although TERRY RILEY actually composed his famous IN C way back in 1964, it didn't find a release as a recording until four years later. RILEY is famous for his minimalist approach to Western classical music with a healthy helping of jazz and Indian classical music as influences. Apparently the 60s was a time when composers were obsessed with finding ways to break down the barriers and limitations of the status quo by throwing all the accepted norms out the window and freeing themselves of set chord changes, scales and anything else that was thought to be "normal" for composers to accept.

IN C is interesting in that when played live it has no set duration. It can last a few minutes to several hours and every performance is improvised and therefore completely different. This one album is but a particular snapshot serving as a mere example of what you might hear if you happen to witness a live rendition. The whole thing is quite technical to explain and all the terminology including the term heterophonic which refers to different rhythmic displacements can easily be found on the internet.

Basically the whole thing begins on a C major chord with different patterns that recur by adding and subtracting different instruments. I would say it's kinda like you were walking down a very long hallway with rooms on each side and in each room there is a different instrument playing a subtly different part off of the C major chord. As you continue to walk you would hear the instruments you've already passed fade away while the ones you approach getting more prominent. Of course while all this is occurring some instruments begin and stop randomly.

It is all strange and unpredictable as to which rhythms and timbres will occur yet totally predictable as to which notes will continue during the 45 minutes of length, at least on my CD. Of course RILEY would go on to redefine music in other ways but on this album he shows that you can be academic in your approach and still make something pleasurable to listen to. Of course, this is one of those occasional listens since it is so strange as to be almost alien. I can hear how artists like Philip Glass and others were influenced by some of RILEY's approach. It seems the Acid Mother's Temple has done a version of this as well as many others.

 Happy Ending by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.71 | 9 ratings

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Happy Ending
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by admireArt
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Masterful!

1972, what a year for Prog! But not all the "masterpieces", got the same attention. Quiet undeservingly, considering Terry Riley's music, influenced most of those guys. Riley's unpretentioness, didn't help much neither. Too much of an Artist, to run the "rat-race", he simply refused to use the marketing strategies, you needed to become "notable" (one of the many reasons, for the rise of the Rock in Opposition movement).

The best and easiest way, to explain this "Happy Ending", instrumental project, to newer Prog and Rock audiophiles, will be in terms of association.

So, ...imagine there is no religion. Just kidding!.. Imagine the synth-sequenced introduction to The Who's, "Baba O' Riley" (which holds on to the story, that it actually was a "tribute" or "cover" of Terry's musical language, although, I have read different versions, by Townshend, himself, so who knows?), anyway, imagine that "intro", as a whole musical composition, played with a hammond organ, alongside analog synths. That will turn out to be "Journey From the Death Of a Friend", the side "A", of this masterpiece album. This composition, will be a delight specially, for those who appreciate the Prog-Electronic sub genre. The side "B" composition, "Happy Ending", will please the experimental, Avant/Garde, RiO followers, who appreciate the Jazz influence, without the Jazz. Played with the hammond, a synth alongside a tenor sax, it provides a refreshing and beautiful counterpart, to the more "minimalistic" and faster, previous side.

Anyone who appreciates, or wants to learn a bit more, of the real, anonymous and powerful influence, Terry Riley's music has been , not only to Prog, but contemporary music, should just let the "Master" do the talking.

What else, *****5, rounded "BIG", PA stars!.........If you miss it, you were forewarned!

 In C (with Bang On A Can) by RILEY, TERRY album cover Live, 2001
4.05 | 2 ratings

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In C (with Bang On A Can)
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by admireArt
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Terry Riley masterpiece in the hands of the hyper-active and creative "Bang on a Can" ensemble, in the, at least, twelfth version of this multi-experimental composition. The feeling as opposed to the original release, is more "world music" oriented, I mean, of course not the common association with the style, but that of the inherent musical "canon' non-western instruments possess. The use of a koto, ties you down to its tuning for example. So as expected fom this ensemble, no matter what or who they play, it is almost impossible to mistake them for someone else. That is almost miraculous, considering they have covered an extended line of works, of most of the contemporary composers, "classical" and not. (They have their own version of Brian Eno's "Music for Airports", also highly recommendable).

A masterpiece in the hands of "Bang on a Can", rarely loses, but the opposite, normally grows out, even from the original limits, and as if magic,developes branches that were even overlooked by the composer himself.

The 2nd best way to be introduced to this "ground breaking", ahead of its time, really not a Prog (although adopted in this sub-genre), more a classical music "Masterwork". The first original version is still the best for me, but this one comes as close as you can get with added drops of inspiration by this ensemble.

****4.5 PA stars.

Climb the ladder!

 In C by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1968
3.97 | 26 ratings

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In C
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

3 stars Terry Riley's In C is a modernistic piece of art from the mid 20th century. This is very progressive music and inspired a lot of musicians afterwards. I have to capitulate for it. Well it's rather monotonic and hard listened music but it's easy to hear how intelligent it is. Even if it sounds monotonic it changes a lot from the first minute to the fourty-second. The record features a bunch of great musicians. Terry Riley himself plays saxophone. What carries this music is the woodwind and brass instruments and a marimba that lies in the background the all the time. This is sounds from a modern time and sounds from the city. I got some flashbacks from the Medieval period in some moments. This tells us how music can be, totally wrong but also right. It's honest and almost religious in it's approach. I wouldn't consider this as my kind of music but I have to admit this is quality. It could also be a record that I will appreciate more in the future.
 A Rainbow In Curved Air by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.26 | 49 ratings

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A Rainbow In Curved Air
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by Dayvenkirq

4 stars OK, so you don't get to hear any guitars or drums. However, you get to hear some truly revolutionary music here.

In his book 'The Ambient Century' an Irish writer Mark J. Prendergast claims the album to be closely related to ambient or just being ambient. Well, the first track isn't really ambient from my perspective. The second track possesses this huge emphasis on tone, but it's too dynamic and intense to be regarded as purely ambient. Also, some time ago I've read in Wikipedia that these two compositions feature just intonation. I don't trust Wikipedia, so if you are seeking music that prominently features this kind of intonation, beware. Now, let's closely examine the character of the music on the record.

The title track is more than just a dense interplay of organ and synth parts; it's a vehicle for entertainment. Most of the parts on the track are so fast that they sound funny, like some kind of a joke on Christmas music, so don't even bother memorizing any of the melodies on it. These melodies could be visually associated with liquid jets, if it helps as an appreciation tip. However, it is groovy, so you might as well bob your head to it. Yes, it's lengthy, and the track is for people who can stand numerous repetitions of the same groove.

The second track is my favorite. I was really enthralled with the music when I heard it on the BBC documentary 'Prog Rock Britannia'. Now that I found out who was the guilty one of this music and what album it came from, I can enjoy 'Poppy Nogood and his Phantom Band' in its entirety, and it's really worth it; take my word for it. In a few different and very bizarre ways the music is quite emotional and entertaining at the same time. To my certain knowledge not a lot of musicians managed to pull off something like this. It's amazing what you can do with those echo machines. Very impressive for 1967. First, there is this track; then there is Pink Floyd's "Meddle". Unbelievable.

Ratings/comments (if you have to ask):

1. 'A Rainbow in Curved Air' - *** ; 2. 'Poppy Nogood and his Phantom Band' - *****

Stamp: 'I like it.'

 Terry Riley and the Kronos Quartet - Requiem For Adam by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 2001
4.09 | 4 ratings

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Terry Riley and the Kronos Quartet - Requiem For Adam
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

4 stars Adam Harrington, son of the violinist David Harrington, was sixteen when he suddenly died for a blood clot. This is a requiem written by Terry Riley in his memory and performed by the Kronos Quartet, a strings ensemble of which David Harrington is a member.

There's much of classic contemporary in this composition, in the darkest passages it reminds to authors like the Estonian Arvo Part, but in the same time it keeps the minimalistic approach of Terry Riley. 40 years are passed since "In C", but the trademark of the American genius is still evident.

The Requiem is divided in three parts, then the fourth track is a piano solo and the only track performed by Terry Riley.

The first movement is based on a sequence of four notes continuously ascending. This music is full of melancholy, at 2:30 minutes there's a pizzicato that gives the impression of somebody climbing a stair. The tempo increases as well as the dissonances that are the ony thing that identifies the epoch of the composition. Without dissonances this string quartet could seem baroque. After the pizzicato the music gets its identity. Of course there's not a melody. It works as a succession of moments/motifs, which raise to compulsive or quiet down to contemplative. Close your eyes and watch Adam following his path.

The second movement, "Cortejo Funebre en el monte Diablo" translated means "Funeral Procession to the Devil's Mountain", that's the place where Adam died. This movement starts with chaotic percussions. It has to be dark, but the brasses make it grotesque. Terry Riley clarified that he was inspired by Jazz funeral marches in the New Orleans stile. If the purpose was giving the idea of a procession he has met his target. A weird procession of grotesque figures, like in some medieval representations of Death.

The third movement is the proper Requiem. The two pizzicato notes represent the sillabes of Adamd's name....imagine the violin crying A-dam, A-dam.... The glissato of the other strings works as a lament. A very dark composition on which the violin cries all its pain (don't forget that the violinist is the dead boy's father). The fiddlestick is like a saw which saws out the pain. To be honest I don't know how much this album can fit into PA, as it's mainly contemporary classic, but it's so intense and emotional that I think any progger can enjoy it if it's approached in the right moment.

"The Philosopher Hand" is a very sad piano composition written and performed by Terry Riley. The story is that at the time of Adam's death Riley was working on a tribute to the Indian philosopher Pandit Pran Nath. This man attended to the Funeral and took David Harrington's head. He later said that it was the softer hand he had ever held. This episode is what inspired this slow, sad and intense piano piece.

A masterpiece of calssic contemporary, not of prog rock, but it can be an excellent addition. 5 stars if this was a classical music site. Here just 4.

 A Rainbow In Curved Air by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.26 | 49 ratings

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A Rainbow In Curved Air
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Without question this is one of the earliest Electronic albums and I would also include Holger Czukay's "Canaxis" album from the same year (1969) in this category. We get two side long suites from this innovative American. "A Rainbow In Curved Air" opens with organ as these hyper sounding synth-like expressions come in around a minute.They sound like they swallowed helium.They stop after 6 1/2 minutes as the organ continues. It sounds like percussion before 9 1/2 minutes then we get a more powerful sound before 11 minutes.It settles back a minute later as percussion and organ lead.The hyper synth-like sounds are back to end it. "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band" opens with atmosphere that builds until we get wave after wave overwelming us. A deep hum comes in before 5 1/2 minutes and takes over. Other sounds join in. A powerful atmosphere arrives 10 1/2 minutes then we get these horn expressions that take over and stay until 21 minutes in as atmosphere ends it. This is certainly a must for Electronic collectors out there or anyone who is a big fan of that genre.
 A Rainbow In Curved Air by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.26 | 49 ratings

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A Rainbow In Curved Air
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Providing sounds 20 years ahead of its time - literally, there's points where you'd swear those were crisp 80s-era digital synths playing - A Rainbow In Curved Air is, of course, an inspirational model for the electronic scene, laying the groundwork for every synthesiser wizard with a perchant for side-long tracks afterwards. What's particularly notable about the title track is how busy it is - this is not a classic era Klaus Schulze composition with glacier-like slabs of electronics moving at a sedate and relaxing pace, there's a lot going on at any particular time. At points it reminds me of Mike Oldfield - check out the organ that kicks in at just over six and a half minutes in and you'll see what I mean. The second track, Pappy Nogood and the Phantom Band, is a free jazz composition reminiscent of some of Robert Wyatt's early solo work that, again, manages to introduce sufficient variation that it never becomes boring. Proof that not only was Terry Riley one of the first to play electronic music, he was also one of the first to play it well.
 A Rainbow In Curved Air by RILEY, TERRY album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.26 | 49 ratings

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A Rainbow In Curved Air
Terry Riley Prog Related

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

5 stars It's hard finding the right words to speak of the genius of Terry Riley. This third album which follows the great "In C", is even better that its predecessor. Instead of minimalistic contemporary classic music we have a purely electronic performance. As In C, this "Rainbow in Curved Air", from which the omonimous Canterbury's band took its name, is based on major chords. There are no percussions of any kind, but this composition has a rhythm and a tempo. The difference with In C is that there are less repetitions. The organ interlude after 6 minutes leads to changes that are not only variations. There's a "relativistic" version of the cover sleeve that's pink with a rainbow split in two parts over a pink sky made of graph paper. It gives the idea of what a "curved air" can be.

The B side hosts "Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band". It starts with an organ crescendo. This track is more similar in the structure to the famous "In C" as it's Hortophonic. Overdubbed sax, loops, it's a synthesis of what we now call electronic music. The absence of rhythm gives a sense of "liquidity" to the organ background that after 6 minutes is left alone. Over it there are sounds that make it similar to a mantra. The "Tibet Suite" of Lucia Hwong has many contact points with this suite, but even if this part can sound tibetan, Terry Riley is closer to the jazz atmospheres than to the himalayan heights, so when brass-like sounds come over the organ it sounds jazzy. Think to a more artsy relative like Blade Runner Blues. Then for some time we have just an organ chord until the jazzy or tibetan part restarts. More chaotic and electronic this time. The essence of the composition doesn't change, but it has different "colours". It's after about 13 minutes from the start that we can clearly hear the sax. The basic chord is now minor, and even if from a perspective it adds a bit of dramaticity, from another it's quite sad music and can be a little boring, but just try to imagine Miles Davis playing his trumpet on this base. The theme doesn't change much until the end, there are true or electronic instruments coming and going until the organ is left alone, and the song is over.

Is it an essential masterpiece? I think so, specially if you like Krautrock or Progressive Electronic. This album and its predecessor are where it all started.

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