Tom Heasley - Desert Triptych (Farfield)


Author: Damion
Date: Aug 4, 2005
Views: 2390

Date: Aug 4, 2005
Text: Damion
Taken from:
Vote: 8/10

It’s easy to forget that what we on planet psytrance call chillout isn’t really ambient, but more like footnotes to the Planet Dog / Ambient Dub vibe of the early nineties. This, on the other hand, is ‘proper’ ambient, and sounds to the psy-chill fraternity like a whole album of the bits-in-between-proper-shpongle-tracks. Desert Triptych is deep, it’s long, and it’s quite magnificent. Best seen as an infusion of didgeridoo and electronic soundscapes, it’s not easy to tell where one starts and the other finishes. And in fact, if we’re being accurate, there are NO synths in this at all – it’s all didg-plus-a-bit-of-voice put through effects…. all recorded live. While spacey drones make it sound vast and alienating, the organic-ness and general earthy feel provide a great contrast. Think Tangerine Dream camping in a rainforest. With some hippies. It works remarkably well, with sounds and themes spontaneously arising (most spine-tinglingly on Solitude, a Maori Vangelis). It also captures the essence of its subject pretty well – the desolate yet nature-rich desert environment: hostile, with a combined sense of change and permanence. It’s an album for the long haul, and which in practical terms is likely to do well as your going-to-sleep album, your mental-day-at-work-make-it-go-away album, or as the soundtrack to your sore head end-of-trip moments. Don’t expect anything too psy-accessible – but if you want challenging, lasting, gorgeous music that’s different to most of your collection, then look no further. (Note: you may need to look further than your normal psy supplier for this – <> should sort you out.)

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