The Serpent's Lair
by Andy Waggoner, Interface
The second CD release from Steve Roach's own Timeroom Editions, SLOW HEAT is a remarkable experience. So few musicians ever truly deserve the title "artist" and Roach is definitely one of them. His work is insightful and exploratory, two characteristics that I feel separate art from product. While it would be easy to simply label the music here ambient, reflect on its subtle and beautiful nature, and recommend that you order it, more needs to be said about this piece of work from a truly great sound and music sculptor.
SLOW HEAT is an exploration into the desert that surrounds Roach's home in Arizona; from the interaction of the sounds that Roach produces electronically with the sounds that the desert produces instinctively, to the aural interpretations of the heat that the sdesert radiates and the effect it has on its inhabitants. For the entire CD, which is a single track designed to be played on repeat at low levels (although I found at high volumes it had a rather intense effect as well), Roach uses sweeps, washes, and reverbs, along with the sound of the desert night, to reveal and explore the soul of the desert. As fitting a soundtrack to a mental journey as you will find.