Australia: Sound of the Earth
by Darren Bergstein, Muze

More a gathering of kindred spirits than a three-way collaboration, this evocative and fairly breathtaking recording holds its rightful place in fully bringing to virgin Western ears the sounds of Australia, specifically the time-bending timbres of the didjeridu and the ancient aboriginal spirit catcher, an sort of minimalist 'harp' that is whirled over the head and is said to "act as a receptor for unseen spirits." Judging by the otherworldly grooves of the didj and Roach's attendant cloak of synths, these earthsounds might in fact originate out of numerous lands before time. The opening "Red Dust and Sweat" flaunts nearly ten minutes of sublime digital dream over the vituperative grunts of Hudson and company's tree-hown soundpipes it's difficult to resist the sensation that you've stepped back into the very bowels of the primordial soup from which we've all came, bringing back those 'first sounds' as evidence. On "Atmosphere for Dreaming," Roach and Hopkins set the participant off on clouds of delicate synths amid the fluttering of migrating moths, carrying the aboriginal signature on their wings. Listen first, and then remember if you had too much to dream last night...




Australia: Sound of the Earth

CD  $15.00 
ON SALE, $12.00 
Cassette $20.00
iTunes 
Australia: Sound of the Earth
Steve Roach, David Hudson, Sarah Hopkins
1990 Fortuna 17071 (CD, Cassette)
Reviewed by Linda Kohanov, Muze

Roach's second trip to Australia was documented by yet another breakthrough release that was celebrated in Australia with high critical regard. David Hudson's didgeridoo and cellist Sarah Hopkins are featured in this sonic travelogue down under. "It is somewhat ironic that one of the best Western-Aboriginal fusions has been the work of the highly regarded American ambient musician, Steve Roach." -- (Sydney Morning Herald)

"The album breathes heat, the scorching breath of that red and rainless land. It's built on a bedrock of unearthly ambience, the kind of night bush sounds that would make even the most fearless and skeptical travelers move closer to the fire". -- (Sonics, Australia)
 
1. Red Dust and Sweat 10:40 
2. Call to Kuranda 3:12 
3. The Ancient Voice 3:06 
4. Atmosphere for Dreaming 7:47 
5. Darktime  
6. The Initiation 7:09 
7. OriginMP34:32 
8. Spirits 3:16 
9. The Hunter 3:00 
10. Awakening the Earth 14:06 
11. Land SoundMP35:14 
12. The Dreaming Place 5:14 



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