Seven Veils

by Robert Rich

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Coils 06:03
Alhambra 10:09
Ibn Sina 08:33
Dissolve 05:34
Lapis 10:19


Seven rhythm-charged compositions with the exotic, sensual ambience of the Middle East from Robert Rich.

Robert Rich has shown uncanny skill at merging ethnic instruments with electronic enhancements. Seven rhythm-charged compositions with the exotic, sensual ambience of the Middle East. A must-have record for any World/Ambient aficionado. "All music is world music."

- Lou Harrison, composer

Seven Veils is artfully woven in layers of musical and metaphysical mysteries, and each time it is heard, more can be uncovered. ROBERT RICH's chosen focus as a composer is sound driven by his intense response to music from Middle and Far Eastern cultures and its many expressions of musical tradition, as well as his "perception of awe for the universe...and how small we are" as bits of living matter in the Petri dish called Earth. The seven-track release reflects Rich's interest in non-Western music and those elements find their way into his work. Particularly affected by North African/Egyptian trance, Persian, North Indian classical, and Indonesian gamelan music, Rich wanted to utilize himself "as a crucible to melt together these influences into something that feels personal." Seven Veils conveys Middle Eastern music's ecstatic element, open to the honest ecstasy within itself, and the resultant communal ritual "magic" that enthralls so many Western listeners.

"Unlike a lot of Western adaptations of non-Western music," adds Rich, "I am not adopting musical vocabularies undigested, but absorbing them and trying to make them into my own voice." Seven Veils can be heard as an expression of an individual searching for truth, and not a pastiche recognized as a bunch of other cultures' music. Rich wanted every note to be honest avoiding obvious references to established ethnic styles. With collaborators DAVID TORN on guitar, HANS CHRISTIAN (who also records with Robert's group, AMOEBA) playing cello, FORREST FANG's gypsy violin, MARK FORRY's Balkan kaval, and the fretless bass of ANDREW MCGOWAN, Rich mixes in his own keyboards, steel guitar, flutes, and the prevalent hand drums, which serve as the heartbeat amid the flow of Seven Veils. Rich's production is pristine, making this an audiophile-quality recording, allowing the listener to differentiate between each acoustic and electronic element, yet feel enveloped by the warm and inviting whole.

Rich is cultivating a seamless blend of body music with Seven Veils. Merging physical, conceptual and mystical elements, the music strives for ecstasy and unity while staying grounded in a lush sensuality. By incorporating, not regurgitating, the vocabularies of non-Western music and traditional truths in his original fashion, Robert Rich's Seven Veils is a balance of body music in which we can find honesty and ecstasy.


released August 18, 1998


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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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