Steve Roach: Holding the Space : Fever Dreams II (CD)

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Tracks

  1. The Wounded Healer
  2. Energy Well
  3. Opening the Space
  4. Heart’s Core
  5. Fires Burning
  6. Metamorphic
  7. Holding the Space
    total time : 72:18

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Featuring Byron Metcalf: percussion, frame drums ~ Jennifer Grais: voice

“Brace yourself for one of the most stunning tribal-ambient-atmospheric recordings ever made. In Holding the Space, the second installment in the Fever Dreams series, soundcurrent wizard Steve Roach dishes up a heroic dose of powerful sonic textures saturated with archetypal power from the collective ancestral depths. Take a breath and plunge head-first into an astonishing blend of meticulously crafted synth worlds and multi-layered throbbing grooves, augmented by the high-velocity percussion of Byron Metcalf and the achingly beautiful vocals of Jennifer Grais. This holotropic recording pulses with life and spirit, beckoning each of us to journey to our depths to discover (or recover) what possibilities we are destined to embody. This is archaeology of the soul.” – Saizan Owen, poet, author of The School of Soft-Attention


A review from soniccuriosity.com/


This release from 2004 offers 72 minutes of mesmerizing electronics. Joining Roach on this recording are: Byron Metcalf on percussion and frame drums, Mark Seelig on flute, and Jennifer Grais on voice.

Meanwhile, Roach utilizes a bevy of synthesizers and hybrid grooves to achieve an eerily atmospheric realm that seethes and drifts like a cosmic nebula come to ground. Dreamscapes unfurl, spilling from the cranium to ooze across the audience like vaporous zones of sedation. Textural threads are elongated and bent to form curvaceous moods. Auxiliary electronics filter in and out of the mix like migrant impressions of formless definition.

Frequently, Roach employs treated guitars to escalate the music’s haunting quality. These askew tones serve to lend the sonic fog a ghostly quality that is distinctly different from the on-going ethereal ambience conjured by conventional electronic apparatus.

The percussives are ubiquitous, slithering their soothing tempos through the ambience like ingenious serpents. Rhythms wobble and slush unlike regular beats. The result is one of mild tension peppered by subtle invigoration. While initially evoking a tribal flavor, this mood is swiftly replaced with a modern temperament, resounding as timeless rhythms spawned by introspection rather than any expression of arcane spiritual connotation. The consecration turns inward, delving into cerebral folds to draw forth ruminations devoid of any conventional holiness. This new sanctity revolves entirely around neoteric motives.

One track consists entirely of monumental didgeridoo tones accompanied by Grais’ choral voice, achieving an ancestral tapestry that captures antediluvian reverence with a human yearning.

As the album progresses, prior elements return to conspire together in glorious effort, producing an increasingly lush soundscape of manifested dreams.


A review from Electroambient Space
Steve explores realms similar to the first Fever Dreams CD, minus Patrick O’Hearn on bass but adding contributions from Byron Metcalf and Mark Seelig, vocals from Jennifer Grais, and “sample food” from Jeff Greinke. Primitive percussion jumps right out in front on “The Wounded Healer,” the only true solo track, as Steve catches a groove and rides it, folding in his usual strong array of sounds. “Energy Well” grabs attention with a slow insistent rhythm and another cool hybrid groove. The rhythm is really allowed to take center stage here. “Opening The Space” is a tightly focused duo featuring Steve’s didgeridoo and Jennifer’s voice, recorded live in the Timeroom. Ms. Grais’ voice is also featured in the two songs that follow. “Heart’s Core” is aptly named, similar in style to the percussive grooves on Core. “Fire’s Burning” is more restrained on all fronts, vocally and in terms of the intensity of the groove. The result is a rewarding trance-inducing journey. “Metamorphic” reminds me of elements from Light Fantastic. The interplay between the guitar atmospheres and the grooves and drumming is very good. The soft guitar textures eventually take over, drifting dreamily by. The title track takes up the last 21 minutes of the disc. There’s a cool buzzy edge to the percussion that I can’t place at all – I can’t tell if it’s some sort of processing at Steve’s end, or the nature of the instruments Byron is playing. Whatever it is, I like it, as well as the surreal guitar and synth soundworlds Steve creates. It’s a very pleasant space to hold to the end. – Phil Derby
Weight .3 lbs
Label

Timeroom

Release Year

2004

Format

CD

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