Once again I am FINALLY back in the studio! I really prefer to live here. The toil and turmoil of the university can really be deadening to the creative flow, especially around finals week, and at the end of a long term at the end of a longer academic year. Burn-out is extinguished by creative work; and delving into sounds, synthesis and composing refreshes me. I am very thankful for the opportunity to do this with the wonderful tools at my disposal.
To distract myself from all of the stultifying university work (thanks for all the committees people!) I have just composed a knock-off. If you say the title a while, out loud or in your head, and think about it, recalling Cage and Erik Satie perhaps, you might understand both the title itself and also the music a little better. I know. Mysterious…
Working on the Anodize project has had me revisiting some of my previous projects. There are a lot of them and they stretch back a long time – all the way to 1976 when, as a very young man, I recorded my first project L’Objet d’Art, an hour-long work in five movements for Moog III synthesizer recorded, of course, in the analog domain. This work is in the archive and remains unpublished as of now. Not that it is totally listenable. It is probably better remembered than experienced for now.
An older recording that opened a lot of doors for me was my first of two solo releases on Oasis/Mirage. What a wonderful and helpful opportunity that was now nearly 20 years ago and way back in 1996. This specific recording, The Silent Shore, captured the imagination of a lot of people and has some very interesting stories associated with it. One of them lovingly describes how the recording was the first ever listened to by a newcomer to our planet…that was really cool to hear about. Quite an honor I thought. A “recent” comment by Renzo Peressi intrigues me – apparently the recording still resonates with people:
“I love ambient, and I have been listening and composing a lot of it. R.S.T in my opinion created his best album yet, not only that but for me the best ambient album ever, it takes you on an inner-self journey, I suggest to listen to the whole album in order because with each track it takes you to a deeper state of consciousness. (R.P. August, 2014, about The Silent Shore, edited)
I have been immensely gratified that so many people over the years have felt so strongly about this recording.
I hope you will take a moment to listen to The Silent Shore and also share the Spotify link with anyone that you think might like to hear it.
This is not to suggest that the current Anodize project is following in the spirit of The Silent Shore, after all this is now 20 years hence and my approach has changed quite a lot. Even so, I cannot help but consider the resonances of these earlier recordings and recognize how composing them has shaped my current approach and methods.
The publisher for the Anodize recording has suggested a blend of my ambient and electroacoustic (acousmatic) styles with a modernist edge and future-looking perspective. I find that reviewing the past works is helpful to this goal. Perhaps this new project will become a kind of fusion. More on that as things progress.