Flatlands is on these releases:
|The Desert Collection|
2014 Timeroom Editions 30 (CD)
The Desert Experience:
This release started as a collection of desert-themed tracks sequenced for summer road trips between Arizona and California, sometimes in dark of night cloaked from the heat, other trips in the broad searing rays of the Summer sun. Drawing from over three decades of desert music, this magical blend creates a set that places one directly into the dramatic and emotive, immersive Southwest landscapes.
The Land Of Extremes:
My daily life and creative motivations are constantly infused with the relationship that has evolved for me within this land of extremes. The expansive beauty, harsh and dramatic, still and quiet, it's all here. While much of my music is not directly about the desert, the constant influence of this land that is my spiritual home is the calibration tone I set my life to. It continues to burn away the insignificant and illuminate with a perfect light what matters.
The Desert Collection:
Since before I was making music, I was making mix-tapes (first on 8-track and then cassettes) of road music for drives through the SoCal desert and mountain backroads. The music soundtrack to these drives would somehow play to where the dynamic pieces would time out with dramatic shifts in the landscapes, most always by chance and always making the moment larger than ordinary life. I love the freedom of driving—alone, in the Southwest with music. It unfurls the knotted mind and cleanses the palette for new creative thoughts to emerge over the drone of the engine mixed with a well-crafted set of music. It seems to propel the car towards the horizon as the sun sets or rises. Countless numbers of my albums have been evaluated, mapped-out and road tested over thousands upon thousands of miles over the years. It's true to say this mix-tape was 30 years in the making.
When I hit play on this soundtrack on the way out of Gila Bend recently heading west, thermometer at 105 an hour before sunset, the sky was bleeding orange and red. The first track on THE DESERT COLLECTION emerged. and so did the chills and wet eyes as I was feeling those non-motorized Western travelers from not so long ago -- like me -- looking to "go west". On-board the Ghost Train indeed.
The cover: Elephant Head Dreaming
The images, taken by Steve's wife Linda Kohanov, are about ten minutes from the where a portion of The Timeroom sits. Often Steve and Linda hike out to this area to take in the sunset. It's close to home yet eons away from the things we take for granted every day. The massive rock guardian, Elephant Head, is the archetype of the Cathedral in its pure and essential form; a stone Ganesh of multi-symbolic radiance. The afternoon light upon this icon is always a marvelous spectacle.
The Music of Connection
2013 Epona (CD)
This collection of pieces was refined over several years of movement magic between horses and humans. Created for the Eponaquest horse-faciliated workshop Rasa Dance by equine innovator and best-selling author Linda Kohanov, the music sets the tone for interactive sessions where horses and humans literally move and dance together, thus providing a supportive atmosphere for the experience of connection. This dynamic music set covers a powerful range of emotions and inspiration which perfectly mirrors the Rasa Dance workshop theme. The collection brings together an inspired set of thematic, rhythmic, and melodic pieces from Steve Roach's vast body of work.
From the liner notes by Linda Kohanov:
The Evolution of Rasa Dance
In 1993, at the height of my career as a music critic, I sold my CD collection to buy Tabula Rasa, a beautiful black Arabian mare. Six months later, I was riding her in the desert when a huge Rottweiler chased us through a deep sandy wash, injuring Rasa's right back leg, ending our promising riding career, yet ironically leading us on a much more fruitful path.
The Chinese sage Lao-tzu observed that "it is upon disaster that good fortune rests," a lesson that Rasa and her other herd members challenged me to embrace over and over again. While the sheer joy of working with horses always outweighed the hardships, the most profound transformations happened when things didn't go my way -- when my most reliable tools, ideas, and coping strategies failed, and I had to respond to the world rather than try to control it. Through Rasa, I learned to dance with the unexpected while literally learning how to dance with her on the ground. This consolation for my inability to ride her turned into a relationship-enhancing practice that I used with other horses, and eventually taught to people through our "Rasa Dance" workshops.
For these clinics, my husband Steve and I perused his extensive list of original compositions, selecting various moods and tempos. This CD collection was refined through years of movement magic between horses and humans. "Eye of Noche" and "Where Rasa Lives" were later created in memory of two horses who became great dancers, then great dance teachers of people, including those who had never worked with horses before.
I was subsequently surprised to find the phrase "Rasa Dance" associated with the ancient god Krishna, who danced with his followers by moonlight. In India, a sacred performance is still called a Rasa Dance, signifying a state of grace in which Spirit engages with its many manifestations, expressing different aspects of infinity through the music of connection.
But it was a living, breathing horse named Rasa who taught me that when two beings move in synchrony, a greater consciousness arises. Most importantly, I learned that if we can dance with joy, ecstasy, power, frustration, miscommunication, tragedy and anything else that comes our way, an underlying sense of deep peace emerges, allowing us to fully engage with life.
Track 2 titled "Truth and Beauty"; Track 7 titled "Eye of Noche" (both previously-released).
|Dreaming... Now, Then: A Retrospective 1982 - 1997|
1999 Fortuna 14163 (CD)
Reviewed by Eclectic Earwig Reviews, Exposé, Insite: Atlanta's Entertainment Magazine, Muze, Outsight
This double CD presents selected pieces from Steve Roach's large body of work on the Fortuna Records label. Carefully selected and sequenced by the artist himself, and remasterd by Roger King, Disc 1 presents the rhythmic-electro-tribal-trance side of his work in nearly chronological order, starting with "The Ritual Continues" from 1982 and winding down with a previously unreleased live montage from 1997.
Disc 2 presents an overview from the vast atmospheric soundworlds that only Steve can brew up. A stirring, spiraling, unreleased archive piece closes the second disk in a subtle yet profound way, illustrating why this influential artist continues to inspire listeners worldwide.
Steve Roach, Michael Stearns, Kevin Braheny
1989 Fortuna 17070 (CD, Cassette)
Reviewed by CD Review, Muze
The follow-up to WESTERN SPACES, this time with Michael Stearns. The intensity of the desert's elemental power and allure are brought into focus on this collection of evocative sound paintings. Intense heat and thunder storms, craggy desert mountains, vast labyrinth-like canyons are at the center of this remarkable portrait of the American Southwest, one that the late writer Ed Abby wrote about so potently in the book Desert Solitaire from which the title was borrowed.
|1. ||Flatlands||MP3||4:50|| |
|2. ||Labyrinth|| ||6:56|| |
|3. ||Specter||MP3||9:31|| |
|4. ||The Canyon's Embrace||RealAudio||3:35|| |
|5. ||Cloud of Promise|| ||6:38|| |
|6. ||Knowledge & Dust|| ||3:23|| |
|7. ||Shiprock|| ||4:00|| |
|8. ||Highnoon|| ||10:30|| |
|9. ||Empty Time|| ||5:51|| |
|10. ||From the Heart of Darkness|| ||3:50|| |
|11. ||Desert Solitaire||MP3||6:06|| |