Recorded during Boddy's concert at the planetarium of the National Space Centre, Leicester, UK on 1st November 2003.
- Gravity Well
- Dark Matter
- The Mystic
- Still Point
- Mechanic Organic
"Chiasmata" was recorded during Boddy's concert at the planetarium of the National Space Centre, Leicester, UK on 1st November 2003. Boddy has, in the past, often used concert appearances as a testing ground for material that would then see a full studio re-working before release. Indeed this was the original intention with this concert but on listening to the tapes in the post-concert calm of his studio it became apparent that this material had really worked well in the concert environment. There was passion and delicacy in equal measure and a sonic construction to the semi-improvised set that would be next to impossible to recreate in the hard, cold glare of the studio spot-lights.
The music on "Chaismata" spans over 10 tracks with a total running time of 68:46. The first 9 tracks form a continuous suite of music, the last track being the encore piece from the performance.
One of the main hopes that Boddy had when he formed the DiN label in 1999 was to provide a melting pot for several areas of electronic music to cohabit and intermix. Many have seen it as the perfect environment for the marriage of early Teutonic/space music styles with more modern forms of electronica.
"Chiasmata" is a perfect example of this and shows just how comfortably Boddy has absorbed these influences to create a confident assemblage of sonic genres interlaced with his own virtuosic sound design. The music ranges from deep space
ambience through chilled out analog grooves by way of classical orchestrations and Berlin school sequencing to intimate solo piano improvisations. The main suite of music seamlessly blends all these elements into a continuous set that ebbs and flows with the assured touch that Boddy brings to bear on his concert appearances. A skill he has developed with over 80 concert appearances spanning 23 years of playing "electronic music".
This set shows in what way Ian Boddy is capable of adopting classic space music elements while still sounding very unique with his own personal stamp on all of the tracks.
Some of them are quite abstract, creating a feeling of wide open space while others, like "Nucleotide" and "Kinaesthesia" add some great Boddy-style rythms to this set of compositions (which has to be listened as a whole!)
Especially the futuristic and at the same time retro sounding "Ecliptic", the gentle ambient "Lightfall" and the title piece which features live sounding strings on top of slow, mighty beats are standout moments for me, but, as I said before, this album is only understandable if you experienced the whole context of it. Very much recommended!
Pure electronica - ranging from gliding, beatless ambience to programmed rhythms and sequences - all brimming with feeling. A number of tracks on Chiasmata have a deep, haunting air either created by amorphous creeping beds of sound or by melancholy lead lines, plaintive and beautiful.
Tracks one to nine interfade smoothly, forming a single suite of music where the style flows naturally through a broad spectrum of structures. Weightless and abstract to begin with, then as we move into 'Ecliptic', melodic elements draw in followed by a soft beat and we're gracefully floating on a cushion of echoing blips and synth chimes. The CD progresses on through poignant washes and celestial operatic voices, through passages of varying intensity - at times rigidly rhythmic with lumbering percussion and regular arpeggiation and then spacey, shapeless, finally leading into one of the most engaging and delicate piano solos - 'Still Point'.
The mood on Chiasmata varies constantly - shadowy, brooding then wistful and elegant. There is an overriding pathos and sense of mystery that that dissipates and reforms in different guises throughout much of the collection. A love of sonic technology is evident in Ian Boddy's music, embracing synthetic and programming techniques - yet the human aspect is also strong; clearly passionate, be it in twisting zones of darkness, heavenly ethereal drifts or in mournful melodic improvisation.
Simple abstract imagery in turquoise sea blues fill all panels with soft effulgence - almost like a billowy eye of clouds on the front cover. Inside the CD booklet, the artwork maintains tonal consistency, but here appears to be a painting, reminiscent of falling lights. A plain graphic band forms a backdrop for the equipment list and sample credits inside and a similar arrangement works for the track list on the back of the booklet. On the back cover of the CD we're told that Chiasmata is a limited edition of only 1000 copies.
Chiasmata is a nine track live performance recorded at The National Space Centre, Leicester, UK in 2003 followed by the encore piece 'Mechanic Organic'. Originally delivered beneath astronomical projections on the dome of the planetarium - this set was clearly going to be difficult to recreate for a studio album and so here it is in original form.
Two of the tracks on Chiasmata did appear previously on the album Aurora where they had a slightly cooler personality - but here as part of this live arrangement they seem perfectly at home. Ian Boddy's multi-layered synths are fresh, clear and confident, rich in detail and depth - silken-soft and shimmering one moment, sinister, dark and disquieting the next.
This live CD will likely be a must for anyone at the concert, however, the new material is of near studio quality and so if you like Ian Boddy's sound, don't miss these pieces. This is serious music and will likely appeal to lovers of the post-Tangerine Dream aesthetic. Fans of pure electronica will find plenty of variety on this CD - with beats and without.
Ian Boddy goes beyond the panoramic on his live album Chiasmata, a concert recording of his November 2003 performance at the planetarium of Leicester's National Space Centre. The music on Chiasmata was created live beneath a night sky of spinning spheres, comet trails and intense stellar phenomenon, all projections on the dome of the planetarium. At such places, music and visuals combine to provide audiences with some of the most compelling space & music experiences possible.
The concert opens with churning clouds of cosmic debris slowly settling into a sonorous expanse of atonal synth modulations and free-form galactic eruptions. These abstract aural expressions are an attempt to put into understandable form, the infinite scale and vastness of the universe. Boddy's personal sonic revelations are excellent (and as valid as any lecture or text attempting to define that which is infinite).
Out of this weightlessness rises the track "Ecliptic" (originally from the album Aurora). The piece's fascination rests in its relaxed rather than robotic phrasing. Here Boddy draws on his roots in classic spacemusic while embracing the vernacular of ambient chill. Throughout the concert, Boddy alternately widens and contracts the scope of his work with wonderful transitions and imaginative musical scenarios - drawing us in and then moving on. The soft edges of drifting amorphous forms and figures contrast the rhythmic lattices of electronic blips and bleeps. From stillness and absence of motion to activity and order, his music gently swings back and forth between dynamism and contemplation. According to Boddy, celestial mechanics has a backbeat. The smart grooves and interlocking arpeggiations within his more active and energetic pieces develop incrementally, steadily advancing and expanding, and act as a reminder for us to slip back into our bodies and feel the pulse and beat of the music mix with our own. Astronomy has learned nearly all of what it knows from light. Through sound, and our vivid imaginations, Boddy and his audience endeavor to move out across the dark distances of space - to visit places no human has ever been.
2004. Chuck van Zyl / STAR'S END