Propagation

by Robert Rich

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about

According to the composer, Propagation is nothing less than a sonic metaphor for "the miraculous process of living," the spreading of genetic material across the planet in a brilliant, perpetually evolving dance of chemical, biological, and spiritual ecstasy. In the fertile imagination of Robert Rich, musical ideas and instruments from around the world mingle, mate, and proliferate in the lush, brackish waves of sound that flow from his well-tuned synthesizers and electronic processors. According to the composer, Propagation is nothing less than a sonic metaphor for "the miraculous process of living," the spreading of genetic material across the planet in a brilliant, perpetually evolving dance of chemical, biological, and spiritual ecstasy.

Appropriately enough, Rich has managed to combine and recombine his vast musical influences to create a few new sonic species of his own. The third Hearts of Space recording from this talented Bay-area multi-instrumentalist adds a number of guest artists to the sensuous yet rigorous cross-cultural stew he's been perfecting for years. Rich himself excels on synths, samplers, slide guitar, percussion, and bamboo flutes, often adding extra spice through his use of exotic tuning systems that reach back to the ancient roots of harmony.

On the opening track, "Animus," Middle Eastern-style flute melodies wrap their breathy, sinuous lines around nebulous veils of synthesized sound and trance-inducing rhythms. Subsequent selections combine Rich's evocative sound imagery with LISA MOSKOW's inviting improvisations on the Indian sarod, Forest Fang's oriental-style violin melodies, and CARTER SCHOLZ's mesmerizing solos on Indonesian gamelan instruments.

The seven resulting pieces illustrate a new level of maturity and complexity in Rich's style. At the same time, Propagation embodies a clarity of vision matched by few artists immersing themselves in the deep and often murky waters of cross-cultural sound explorations.

credits

released February 15, 1994

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Hearts of Space Records New York, New York

Hearts of Space Records | A Valley Entertainment Label

Launched in 1984, this record label was created as an extension of the weekly syndicated radio show Hearts of Space. Centered around contemplative music, the label features music from the ambient, new age, electronic, world, Celtic, classical, and experimental genres. ... more

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