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Steve Roach - Analog and Digital Instruments, Groove Creation, Prehispanic and Shamanic Percussion and Voice, Atmospheres, Soundworlds and Processing. Vir Unis - Fractal Groove Creation, Synthesizers, Treatments, Atmospheres and Soundworlds.
From the gene pool of possibilities, an evolutionary mandala emits the music of chance, while the electric body emerges intelligent and in an awakened state of eternal becoming. Forged out of the primordial protoplasm from which we crawled, Body Electric is a cyber-shamanistic celebration of man and machine.
Steve Roach and Vir Unis combine different rhythmic sensibilities and undeniable soundscapes in an alchemical reaction, creating an aural sensation that is surreal, hallucinogenic, but still organically human. Body Electric is a welcomed edition to the borderless world of new electronic music; this album is a zenith in bio-electronic body music, an evolutionary spark, a focused, high-energy trip of life-affirming, hyper-terrestrial grooves and sustained, soul-expanding soundworlds.
Fresh from an extensive schedule of concerts and traveling, Roach found his energy still simmering and in need of expression. He had been exchanging ideas on tape for several months with Vir Unis. Both were anxious to get together -- ideas were sprouting and in need of cultivation . . . the desire to create a new level of bio-electronic body music was clear. The result: an extensive marathon in Steve's Tucson recording studio, The Timeroom.
The music on Body Electricmelded together, relying heavily on what Steve calls "the body clock," a sense of timing and flow both artists turned towards in shaping the music that evolved from their collaboration. "Chance" situations were explored and combined in an alchemical reaction, often setting a piece in motion - opening yet another zone of sensation to explore. These chance combinations created a powerful and intimate symbiosis for both artists, so powerful that they termed it their "mind link."
Steve Roach . . .. . . is recognized as a prominent pioneer of electronic/ethno-ambient music, with over forty albums released under his name or in collaboration with others. His work consistently tops various Ambient, Contemporary Instrumental and New Age sales charts and reader polls and are considered quot;classics"in the genre. His ceaseless productivity, constant innovation and musicalopen-mindedness has led him to this new collaboration: Body Electric.
"Collaborations that work are about taking each other to places you might not get to on your own. I feel that's true here. Vir Unis has a highly developed and unique rhythmic-fractal groove style that goes beyond any beat-of-the-month styles, while still feeling like it's driven by the pulse of modern life. This, in combination with my rhythmic sensibility, has created a sound that is exciting to our ears and feels potent in the body. Our mutual fascination with surreal, hallucinogenic soundworlds brought a common, undulating ground to stand on and create from. It feels like the evolution of sound that I have been reaching for since the beginning of my musical life."
Other Vir Unis titles distributed by Projekt: The Drift Inside • Aeonian Glow
Surprisingly more organic and perfectly formed than Roach's superb On This Planet, Unis brings his own palette of original sounds to the mix and both artists provide groove creations that serve as the album's molten core. The driving rhythms rival the music itself in alien texture and exotic tonality. Early tracks race and skitter and tumble across the face of a planet in the throes of reformation, just as those that follow burrow underground to seek refuge in subterranean caverns. Body Electric is a Steve Roach release like no other in his oeuvre. Its 56 minutes pass like a brief dream brimming with detail and mystery, and Vir Unis is clearly an artist to watch. Faithful Roach fans may well find this his most addicting release to date, and those who think they've heard it all haven't even heard the half of it.
Or, as liner notes say "From the gene pool of possibilities, an evolutionary mandala emits the music of chance as the ecstatic electric body emerges in an awakened state of eternal becoming."
A soft stratospheric roar fades in from silence, and busy little beats announce the new arrival; Born of Fire is an introduction to things to come. An enveloping electric rhythm emerges to the forefront, along with ney flute and fluid shimmers, all of which recede, growing lighter and thinner. Lofty string-like strata phases into Pure Expansion (10:16), where panning cymbals begin to draw us into a billowing world of wonder. In an immersive dreamwalk, hazy cumulus swells and ritualistic, mid-tempo beats are eventually visited upon by ghostly female voice fragments. Everything smooths out to a further blur, which becomes the unsettled quiet of Mind Link, where a rhythmic pulse builds and primitive adornments shuffle and pitter by. A surging electronic groove powers boldly through the shifting sands of this lush, active soundworld, where you hear the crickets as twilight sets upon the music before its transition into...
the Gene Pool, where boiling bubbles and eerie synth-strands give way to subtly growing percussion. The atmosphere here is warm, though pensive and a bit spooky. Things begin to speed up toward the track's end, a whispy freeform percolation which flows into a Synaptic Gap (1:57), where it collects, rises and slowly swelters, then fades to make way for the Homunculus Within, which accounts for the odd hoots emanating from this steamily organic zone. Deeper grumbles phase through the oddly glistening area with a machine-like accompaniment, everything seems to break free, thinning and spreading, taking off, in other words, Bloodstreaming into a smooth flow which seems to travel a circuitous course of shimmers and pulses, which rise and seamlessly become...
the shining, airy Solar Tribe which consists of mellow drifts and vocal clouds with slight percussive textures. Via a fade-in of insistent cymbals and beats, the piece segues into perkier airwaves of The New Dream, which swells and evolves to picks up a thrumming bassline which drives through criss-crossing waves of ethereal ebb and flow, taking all to the final destination, the Cave of the Heart, a beaty, yet mellow dream-like haze which grows quieter and quieter in a luxuriously slooow fade.
Richly produced, Body Electric marks a further evolution for Steve Roach's neo-primitive atmospheres; by stirring Vir Unis's fractal contributions into the mix, a fresh yet familiar sound is born. It's the perfect soundtrack for your own cyber-shamanistic activities. delicious subtleties and the overall tribal beckoning that calls me in to join the tribe.