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    Richard Lainhart – Ten Thousand Shades of Blue

    Richard Lainhart - Ten Thousand Shades of Blue

    Richard Lainhart is a composer, author and filmmaker who studied composition and electronic music with Joel Chadabe back in the 1970s at the State University of New York at Albany. He has worked and performed with some of the big guns of 20th century music, including John Cage, David Tudor, Steve Reich, Phill Niblock, David Behrman and many others. Ten Thousand Shades of Blue is a double CD collection of Richard’s music released in 2001 by New York-based experimental music label XI. Disc one and the first track of disc two feature three prime minimal works recorded on magnetic tape between 1975 and 1980. “Bronze Cloud Disk” from 1975, “Two Mirrors Face One Another” from 1976 and “Cities of Light” from 1980 feature vast, mesmerizing drones composed of eight layers of bowed and pitch-shifted tam-tam, Japanese temple bells, and human voice, respectively. The overall sound in these pieces is that of raw, seemingly static, yet subtly-shifting clouds.

    Moving on into the mid ’80s, we encounter three shorter and smoother digitally-recorded tracks, two of which were played on real-time interactive computer music systems. “Ten Thousand Shades of Blue” from 1985 and “Staring at the Moon” from 1987 both layer ethereal, sweeping synth lines over low-pitched drones. In addition, “Staring” adds in some lovely struck and bowed vibraphone to quite spooky and stellar effect. The vibes continue alone in the final track “Walking Slowly Backwards” from 1989, adding a lively yet subtle and shimmering exclamation point to the album. Overall, this CD is a fine addition to the minimal canon. It’s the perfect music for sitting alone on the beach, staring into the setting sun and going permanently blind. No more sunrise, no more light, no more looking, just pure listening.

    Label: XI Records Catalog Number: XI 115 Format: 2-CD Packaging: Jewel case Tracks: Disc 1: 4, Disc 2: 2 Total Time: Disc 1: 72:50, Disc 2: 62:58 Country: United States Released: 2001 More: Discogs, Forced Exposure, Last FM, O Town Media, Scaruffi

    Text ©2009 Arcane Candy

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