by Roger Batty, Musique Machine
October 2008

LANDMASS finds Roach building a compelling and varied ambient travel log for internal landscapes and alien worlds, dropping down along its nearly 70 minute arc in beat-bound, hypnotic and deep ambient sound worlds.
Throughout the album's six tracks, Roach really manages to capture the feeling of travelling, both physically and mentally. The journey starts off with the first track "Transmigration" which really brings to mind walking across a fabulous and strange sunlit montainscape; at first slowly then getting your walking pace up. Roach conjures up a building, hypnotic and subtle tribal-beat ambient track built with guitar elements, synth textures and beats, having an almost hazy dub reggae feeling without the bass line. Later on, "Monuments of Memory" feels like you've drifting into yourself (possible on a rest stop) as Roach produces deeply soothing yet vertigo-inducing deep ambience that gives the feeling of swirling down and down though a tunnel of clouds. The rest of the tracks fit nicely between the two sonic disciplines of beat-bound or buoyant ambient texturing, to deep, lush ambient freefalls or drifts.

Another very rewarding and involving long form ambient trip from Mr. Roach, which touches down in all sides of his ambient mastery. LANDMASS will easily whisk your body and mind off to strange and wonderful lands that you won't want to come back from.


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CD  $15.00 
ON SALE, $12.00 
Combo Pack $20.00
Steve Roach
2008 Timeroom Editions 20 (CD)
Reviewed by e/i magazine, Electroambient Space, Musique Machine, Sonic Curiosity, Tokafi

LANDMASS is a surreal shape shifting grand adventure in sound, morphing through a constantly altering perspective giving witness to the creation of iconic landscape formations, stone monuments and massive alluvial desert plains, and the occasional pyroclastic flow. Recorded live on the Star's End radio show in the WXPN studios in Philadelphia with a small audience in attendenace. This adventure in sound reaches into the primal forces of nature and channels them into a work of nearly uncontained energy, momentum and deeply nunanced texture. Even the most massive non-rhythmic soundforms seem to be shifting and moving from the inside out, eventually giving birth to undulating rhythmic ecstasy. A stand-out release in a style defined by Roach.

This is the 20th release on Steve Roach's Timeroom Editions, which marks its 10th anniversary this year. LANDMASS was selected especially for this occasion, and is presented in a beautiful six-panel Digipak.

"LANDMASS is a quintessential compendium of [Steve's] recent activities, spanning a bridge from his 'infinite and minimal' zones to his grand-scale projects in between rhythmic trance and immersive Ambient drift. In many ways, it appears to be a continuation of a confident new style, making use of a diverse palette of timbres, tools and techniques. Percussive particles keep turning up even in the outstretched beatless passages, lending a constant additional tension and propulsion to the already viral visions. Tracks could explode at any minute. Roach is no longer building landscapes from sound, he is recording 'sounding' landscapes built on the most essential building blocks: rhythm and harmony. In this sense, LANDMASS continues the only tradition an honest artist can and should really be true to: his own." — Tobias Fischer, Tokafi

1. TransmigrationMP315:31 
2. Cerulean Blue Sky Over a Seared Desert WastelandMP315:36 
3. Monuments of MemoryMP311:22 
4. Alluvial PlainMP39:46 
5. TrancemigrationMP37:52 
6. Stars BeginMP36:51 

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