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MICHAEL STEARNS

Progressive Electronic • United States


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Michael Stearns biography
Electronic wizard, sound designer and master of analog synth space music. To a certain extent, Michael Stearns can be considered as the founding father of the Californian sacred space music scene next to Steve Roach and Robert Rich. His typical musical signature reveals sustained floating sound waves in a pure classy electronic vein, turned to absolute harmonies and mantric-like drones, punctuated by found micro-sounds and nature sounds (Morning Jewel, 1979) Substantial musical catharsis which later goes into the subterranean dark ambient genre, in a,. closed Lustmord genre. Michael Stearns is also know to have composed a handful of brilliant soundtracks for cinema (Chronos, 1984; Baraka, 1993...). Ancient Leaves (1978) and Planetary Unfolding (1981) represent the quintessential of his discography.

Philippe Blache

Michael Stearns official website

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Buy MICHAEL STEARNS Music


JewelJewel
Sonic Atmospheres 1990
Audio CD$194.26 (used)
Encounter: A Journey in the Key of SpaceEncounter: A Journey in the Key of Space
Hearts of Space 1991
Audio CD$11.29
$1.99 (used)
Planetary UnfoldingPlanetary Unfolding
Sonic Atmospheres 1992
Audio Cassette$23.98 (used)
The StormThe Storm
Spotted Peccary 2001
Audio CD$6.80
$2.58 (used)
Sacred SiteSacred Site
Hearts of Space 1993
Audio CD$8.13
$1.99 (used)
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MICHAEL STEARNS SACRED SITE and ENCOUNTER 2 CD LOT Vidna Obmana Robert Rich US $7.07 [1 bids]
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Baraka [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] by Michael Stearns (CD, Aug-1993,... US $0.99 [0 bids]
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Floating Whispers by Michael Stearns (CD, Sonic Atmospheres) US $4.99 [0 bids]
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GEIST MOODS OF LIGHT 1988 CASSETTE Richard Burmer Michael Stearns US $7.07 [0 bids]
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BARAKA SOUNDTRACK CD Music by Michael Stearns US $9.04 Buy It Now 10 days
CRUISERS 1.0 - New CD - Hearts of Space Sampler - Don Harriss Michael Stearns US $11.00 Buy It Now 10 days
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Baraka Original Soundtrack (Michael Stearns) CD '05 US $8.00 Buy It Now 12 days
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Michael Stearns Planetary Unfolding vinyl LP 1981 US $65.00 Buy It Now 16 days
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Baraka Music From the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Michael Stearns 2005 US $9.99 Buy It Now 17 days
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MICHAEL STEARNS discography


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

MICHAEL STEARNS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.00 | 2 ratings
Sustaining Cylinders
1977
4.00 | 1 ratings
Ancient Leaves
1977
3.05 | 2 ratings
Planetary Unfolding
1981
3.91 | 2 ratings
Lyra Sound Constellation
1983
4.00 | 1 ratings
M'ocean
1984
4.00 | 1 ratings
Chronos
1984

MICHAEL STEARNS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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MICHAEL STEARNS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Lyra Sound Constellation  by STEARNS, MICHAEL album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.91 | 2 ratings

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Lyra Sound Constellation
Michael Stearns Progressive Electronic

Review by Progfan97402

4 stars I remembered watching an episode of the 1980s version of Ripley's Believe It or Not, the one hosted by Jack Palance, and his daughter Holly Palance and they were bringing up Michael Stearns and this LYRA used on this album, which came out at the same time that particular episode aired. LYRA was a custom made string instrument invented by Michael Stearns and partner George Landy (who did sculptures). Basically a bunch of strings attached to hexagons from bottom to ceiling, and plucked and bowed. Apparently a Beam was used too, some metal beam with strings attached that Francisco Lupica used on his Cosmic Beam Experience album in 1976 (he was going by just Francisco on that album), he's the same guy who did some of the sound effects off Star Trek: The Motion Picture off the Beam, and since I've can identify that sound, I wouldn't doubt Stearns got a hold of one since I frequently hear similar sounds off LYRA Sound Constellation. To me this is to the 1980s what Tangerine Dream's Zeit was to the '70s. This is truly a dark ambient album, conjuring a sinister atmosphere that would be very unsettling to mainstream listeners. Much of it using the LYRA and probably the aforementioned Beam. Hardly any synths are used, except for the final piece which is used in that grand, symphonic style. Given how I tend to avoid the 1980s like the plague because of not only what happened to prog rock, but of electronic music (Tangerine Dream slipping into mediocrity, many others going the New Age route, and Jean Michel Jarre not sure what he should try next), but I'm glad this is not like that. This is truly recommended if you iike Zeir, or dark ambient in general.

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 Planetary Unfolding  by STEARNS, MICHAEL album cover Studio Album, 1981
3.05 | 2 ratings

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Planetary Unfolding
Michael Stearns Progressive Electronic

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Michael Stearns' Planetary Unfolding consists of spacey, ambient electronic meanderings. In its slow pace and gradual buildups, I am reminded of a smoother, more purely electronic, substantially more ambient and somewhat more new age-leaning take on the sort of musical territory visited in Zeit by Tangerine Dream. Taken in the balance, though, I think Zeit is able to command a broader emotional range and suggests far more turmoil than these peaceful, tranquil compositions. Fans of progressive electronic music may find this one overly simplistic, but if you're really into ambient or need something to relax to it certainly does the job more than adequately.

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