1 Slow Heat 71:14
Slow Heat 71:14
20th Anniversary Remastered Edition
Remastered in 2018 by Howard Givens
Timeroom Legacy Edition of 500
Slow Heat was the premier release on Steve Roach’s personal Timeroom Editions label, which has now grown to 45 releases. This 1998 long-form zone represents an early example of Steve’s infinite playback soundworld environments explored on The Dream Circle and since developed into a substantial area in his vast body of work.
Slow Heat breathes in and exhales a constant flow of calming influence and serenity directly extracted from Steve’s desert habitat. Shaped over two summers of evaluation on his playback system wired to the outside patio, the natural environment of the simmering Sonoran nights were found to be in perfect harmony with the Slow Heat atmosphere. By running microphones fifty feet from the Timeroom out into the desert night, a pure moment of natural magic was captured and woven into Slow Heat. Perhaps no other of Steve’s long-form pieces has placed the listener in such an intimate and subtle expression of the sensual, expansive nature of the desert atmosphere.
This 2018 remaster by Howard Givens fine-tunes this piece to a new level by utilizing the advancements of audio mastering technology revealing the deeper, spacial qualities at a sublime level.
Steve Writes: “Slow Heat evolved from the atmosphere of my habitat. During the stillness of the summer days, the heat makes everything quiet in a simmering sort of way. Early stages of ‘the Heat’ would often play on the outside speakers into the night world, creating a subtle link between the extremes of this ‘zone’ and its influence upon the creative impulse. The cover artwork, Andy McIntire, was inspired by Slow Heat, and in turn influenced the feel of the final mix. The night-time desert sounds were recorded outside the Timeroom in the Dream Circle, a circular sitting area for contemplation consisting of stones and a small pond. I created this space after completing The Magnificent Void, when the urge to use my hands in a different way was needed. Moving rocks around to mould this space was a good way to return from the long hours creating the Void. Soon after completing it, a host of desert frogs moved in, along with a constant display of other activity within this small sanctuary viewable from the Timeroom window. The soundworld was created for continious, lower volume playback. If you have more than one copy, experiment playing other Slow Heats at low volume levels in different rooms of your living space simultaneously.”
A review by Andy Waggoner from Interface Magazine #14
The first CD release from Steve Roach’s own Timeroom Editions. Slow Heat is a remarkable experience. So few musicians ever truly deserve the title “artist” and Roach is definitely one of them. His work is insightful and exploratory, two characteristics that I feel separate art from product. While it would be easy to simply label the music here ambient, reflect on its subtle and beautiful nature, and recommend that you order it, more needs to be said about this piece of work from a truly great sound and music sculptor. Slow Heat is an exploration into the desert that surrounds Roach’s home in Arizona; from the interaction of the sounds that Roach produces electronically with the sounds that the desert produces instinctively, to the aural interpretations of the heat that the sdesert radiates and the effect it has on its inhabitants. For the entire CD, which is a single track designed to be played on repeat at low levels (although I found at high volumes it had a rather intense effect as well), Roach uses sweeps, washes, and reverbs, along with the sound of the desert night, to reveal and explore the soul of the desert. As fitting a soundtrack to a mental journey as you will find.