by Stacy Meyn, Outburn
Ambient conductor Steve Roach takes another backwards gander at his EARLY MAN recording by releasing a double CD edition. A trilobite and sunburst over ancient rock strata grace the cover, as the discs themselves reflect the fossilized remains and optimistic sunburst. Disc one (the "original" EARLY MAN) shares six different rhythm zones that comprise "a day in the life" of an ancient hominiod. Roach states, "This soundtrack was created for my most distant ancestor. The image of one lone, wandering early man reoccurred throughout the creation of the music." "Early Dawn," "Begins Looking Skyward," "Walking Upright," and "Hunting & Gathering" each indicate the steady progress of our common predecessor. This portion was first available in 2000 as a collector's edition in a handmade slate package. In this handsome dual presentation, disc two delves into the larger aspects of time and memory in the nearly seventy-one minute "Early Man Decomposed." New audio thrills including Roach's signature drones take a deeper look into man's (and woman's) past. "Walking Upright II," "Mastodon," and "Late Dawn" expound upon the things that kept early humans occupied. We, later versions, will be fascinated by "Timeline" and "Carbondate." Next time you contemplate your existence, consider EARLY MAN as your soundtrack.