On This Planet

Roach, Steve

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Roach, Steve

On This Planet


CD, Playing time 72:59 minutes

Track List:

  1. Heart of the Tempest - 4:26
  2. Journey of One - 3:38
  3. The Nexus Place - 7:05
  4. Trilobite - 3:33
  5. Void Memory 4 - 5:36
  6. Cloud Watching With Toolmaker - 5:41
  7. The Ecstasy of Travel - 4:59
  8. Remember It Now - 10:36
  9. A Darker Star - 13:19
  10. On This Planet - 14:06

Publisher No.:
(1997) Fathom Records - 11082-2

This followup to THE MAGNIFICENT VOID by the [dark] ambient soundscape explorer ON THIS PLANET is a new category of live recording--a "studio re-creation of the live experience." Roach spent over a year creating the elements of his epic two hour live show, then refined the best material into this brim-full CD.

The ancient overtones run deep. Rattles, didgeridoos, clay pots, rocks, and log drums share the stage with synthesizers, samplers, and a host of high-tech digital effects. MUCH more rhythmic and powerful than previous outings, ON THIS PLANET is a ritualistic journey that's positively electric with the on-the-edge energy of the live moment. This "CD Concert" opens with a massive thunderclap and brings the dark rumbling of a Steve Roach live performance into your own space.
Reviewer: Jennifer Daunt

On This Planet was carved from the live experience. Every concert I played over the last year provided a testing ground for the sonic topography I was exploring and refining. There were moments when the spontaneous inspiration of the setting brought new compositions into form. A Darker Star was such a piece, recorded live as it is heard with a few brush strokes added later. Most of the material, however, was perfected in the Timeroom soon after returning from various performances or just before packing up to leave.

Rather than assemble a collection of concert excerpts, my aim was to absorb the on-the-edge atmosphere, take what I considered the peak moments and most profound musical discoveries, steep myself in the feelings and shape them over time. Since I began presenting my music live nearly 20 years ago, I've been striving to capture the intensity unleashed when the honesty of putting oneself out in front of an audience is pursued. I encourage listeners to travel the terrain I've mapped On This Planet at the volume level of its creation. Turn it up, feel it in your bones! 1996 Fathom Division/Hearts of Space
Reviewer: Steve Roach

Steve Roach's recent sold-out solo concert before an enthusiastic Tucson audience was a spellbinding evening of contemporary ethno/electronic theater. The visual setting was simple -- modern hi-chroma lighting and a fog machine on an open stage -- but completely effective in creating an awesome atmosphere for intense sonic ritual.

A cluster of electronic and ethnic instruments center stage were mixed into the 3D sound space of a multi-channel surround sound system brilliantly operated by engineer Roger King. Loud enough to be emotionally satisfying but never harsh or tiring, this was concert sound totally unlike the norm and infinitely more involving.

The audience, ranging in age from 15 to 55, were completely attentive to a program that asked for extended immersion in the deepest and most powerful currents of sound. Two hours disappeared in a hypnotic display of virtuosic live performances on the didgeridoo, synthesizers, and an array of tribal percussion instruments, all animating a thunderous recorded backing track of ambient elements created and mixed by Roach on-the-fly for the performance.

Steve Roach's live show confirms what fans of his many recordings have known for years: this is an artist who is traveling his own road, sending back reports that have the power to inspire and engage less daring travelers. I'm not one to throw around words like "shamanic" but this concert warrants language like that. In scope, intensity, maturity, and depth of focus, Roach delivers the level of live experience serious concertgoers long for -- but seldom find. 1996 Fathom Division/Hearts of Space.
Reviewer: Stephen Hill

Copyright 1997 by John Morfit - All Rights Reserved