Slow Heat

The first of Roach's new Timeroom Editions, SLOW HEAT follows in Roach's ever-evolving ambient style that has produced recent memorables THE MAGNIFICENT VOID and THE DREAM CIRCLE. Sporting a dazzling cover by digital artist Andy McIntyre, the CD consists of one 71-minute atmospheric piece designed to be played in continuous playback mode. SLOW HEAT resonates with Roach's desert impressions. It does have a very warm feel to it, reminding me of shimmering desert mirages and hot, quiet summer days. As Roach reflects in the booklet, "there are certain times of the day when everything falls silent, as if the birds, cicadas, and even the trees are under the spell of the heat." This feel is effectively reproduced in the atmospheres, an environmental ambience that swelters and recedes, a wide pallet of sounds that varies lazily over the CD's course. Since STRUCTURES FROM SILENCE, Roach continues to produce longform work of very high quality, and SLOW HEAT is perhaps his best yet. The sounds echo the vastness of open spaces, the hum of nature, and the placidity of peace and solemnity; the complex polytonal chords give rise to intense human emotions; and the dynamics range from undercurrent to thunderous.

Slow Heat

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Slow Heat
Steve Roach
1998 Timeroom Editions 1 (CD)
Reviewed by Exposť, Progressive World, The Raging Consciousness Desk

This is the first release in a Special Edition series that continues in the spirit of the infinite playback sound-world environments explored on THE DREAM CIRCLE and "To The Threshold of Silence" from WORLD'S EDGE. SLOW HEAT rises and falls, breathes in and exhales a constant flow of calming influence. Shaped over two summers of evaluation on Steve's patio playback system, the sounds of the warm desert nights were found to be in perfect tune to the sound-world playing back for hours on the speakers outdoors. These sounds were recorded by stretching 50 foot mic cables from the Timeroom out into the desert night, capturing a pure moment of natural magic to be included in the piece. Perhaps no other long-form piece from Steve has placed the listener in such an intimate and subtle expression of the sensual nature of the desert atmosphere.
1. Slow HeatRealAudioMP371:16 

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