All tracks written and produced by Paul Ellis
- The only known photograph of God [7:16]
Paul Ellis - synths, guitars, bass ; Steve Roach - synths ; Jeffrey Koepper - synths
- Trillium [9:42]
Paul Ellis - synths
- Peripheral Vision [5:22]
Paul Ellis - tron flutes, rhodes ; Steve Roach - pad and bell synths, processing ; Will Merkle - bass
- The wind-up synthesizers of the Glass Reich [7:01]
Paul Ellis - synths ; Otso Pakarinen - synths
- Trance figure [8:58]
Paul Ellis - synths, guitar, bass, rhodes, vocals ; Laurie Guild - flute
- Continental drift [10:51]
Paul Ellis - synths
- The dumb angel's periscope [6:45]
Paul Ellis - synths, rhythm programming, guitar ; Steve Roach - synths, sequencers, rhythm programming
- Silent conversations [11:32]
Paul Ellis - synths, arranging ; Brenda Erikson - cello ; Alison O'Connor - vocals
- Dialing in the sun [9:00]
Paul Ellis - synths ; Steve Roach - synths and rhythm programming
the American synthesist Paul Ellis is a fast growing power in electronic music. From the Berlin school-orientated music he created with the band Dweller at the Threshold and on his early solo works, he switched to an impressive mixture between Berlin school, ambient and lots of own inventions.
His latest album "the Sacred Ordinary", his first on the groove unlimited label, already was a masterpiece but what he has done on "Silent Conversations" is no less than sensational.
On "Silent Conversations" there is an important place for the genius of ambient Steve Roach, who contributes on four of the nine tracks. This can be heard on the excellent opening track with the great title "the only known photograph of God" and "Peripheral Vision". Ellis is a master of sequences. Tracks like "Trillium", "The wind-up synthesizers of the Glass Reich", "Continental Drift" and "Dialing in the Sun" show some of the best sequencer lines ever. All these sequencer forces are, so to say, being put to rest in a bed of fantastic ambient sounds. And then there are also the slightly experimental "Trance Figure" on which Paul plays guitar, bass and a Rhodes electric piano and the atmospheric title track with the intriguing vocals of Alison O’connor.
Ellis is a master of electronic music, as is Pablo Magne a master of cover designs. These two elements together have resulted in an album that can now already be regarded as a classic.
This album is a bit of a departure for Paul Ellis, as well as for sequencer EM in general. In addition to synthesizers it features a nice use of guitar, bass, voice and some other acoustic and electric instruments. That doesn't mean, however that Paul's style is unnoticeable, because there are still plenty of rhythmic sequencer tracks done in the typical Paul Ellis manner. On some tracks, Paul is helped by friends Steve Roach, Jeffrey Koepper, Otso Pakarinen and others. So, strictly speaking, some of the tracks on "Silent Conversations" are actually collaborations with other artists.
We start with "The Only Known Photograph of God" that has Steve Roach and Jeffrey Koepper helping out on synthesizers, while Paul plays synths, guitars and bass. It has an atmospheric beginning but after a while in come the sequences and several minutes later it settles into a nice rhythmic groove. There are some stunning jazzy chords that make the track really stand out, giving the proceedings a slightly funky vibe. The mood is relaxed and very enjoyable, like a comfortable space voyage in a warm, enveloping capsule. The track really took me back to the golden age of EM with its subtle pulsations, electric pianos and warm analog string sounds.
"Trillium" is a Paul Ellis solo synth piece that starts with a slow, echoing sequence of the kind that Paul is so good at. The pace remains slow and relaxed throughout the piece, while the atmosphere is decidedly alien and unearthly. Nice deep bass sounds on this one. Some faster sequences are playing alongside the slow ones, giving the track a rich, full sound, in spite of the fact that the music itself is based almost exclusively on rhythmic elements, with a few weird FX injections here and there. The way the sequences are changing, mutating and interacting is simply gorgeous.
"Peripheral Vision" is a collaborative track with Steve Roach (pad and bell synths, processing) and Will Merkle (bass). It's firmly in the Ambient school of thought, with Steve laying down the atmospheric background on top of which we can hear Paul playing Rhodes piano and a bit of Mellotron flute near the end, while Merkle provides a few subtle touches on bass guitar. Rhodes is certainly what gives this track (and album as a whole, because this instrument is used on some other tracks as well) its own specific atmosphere. It's a pleasant diversion, as the sounds of Fender Rhodes are very characteristic of 70's Progrock, Fusion and even EM records, so the album has a lot of that "good old" feeling in it.
"The Wind-Up Synthesizers of the Glass Reich" (talk about odd titles!) is a collaborative piece with Otso Pakarinen also known as Ozone Player, who plays (no pun intended) synthesizers. The piece is based on a matrix of sequences with some great melodic moments as well.
"Trance Figure" could be considered typical American Ambient, akin to Steve Roach and similar artists, but the guitar (quite a bit of it), voice (Paul's!) and flute played by Laurie Guild are something unusual for EM camp. The track sounds very close to New Instrumental music, with synthesized structures taking the back seat, while the upfront solo elements are provided by guitar, Rhodes, flute and so on. Paul Ellis even plays electric bass on this cut. The final chords gave me the goosebumps - pretty dramatic stuff.
"Continental Drift" - solo Paul Ellis again, on just synthesizers, coaxing more sequences than I can ever count. Making them all interact and stay synced and in tune with each other must have been an enormous task.
"The Dumb Angel's Periscope" (this way he may even outdo Edgar Froese in the weird title department) is once again a collaboration with fellow musician Steve Roach. Both play synths and sequencers while Paul also plays guitar. Taking into account the title of the song I do notice a humorous touch in the music, albeit a very light one. The sequences are a bit chunky and.. well, *clumsy*. Interesting composition overall.
The title track is a calm piece with processed cello sounds and vocals (both provided by guest musicians). The cello gives the track a vaguely Schulzean flair. Again, a non-typical (for EM, that is) number.
The album closes with Paul's own interpretation of Steve Roach's "Sundial" that first appeared on Steve's "Life Sequence" album and where also Paul played synthesizers. Here the track is called "Dialing In the Sun" ;-). My favorite element in this piece is the soloing, which is sparse but spot-on. Interesting sequencing as well. It's nice to hear the album finish with this upbeat optimistic composition.
"Silent Conversations" comes as something really different for Paul Ellis. The concept here is perhaps slightly more obscure than that of "The Sacred Ordinary".
Feeling more like a collection of tracks, rather than a single piece of art, it is still a very enjoyable disc that will possibly require a few spins to be appreciated in its entirety by die-hard EM fans, but I still think that the sheer beauty of some of the pieces will be noticed and enjoyed by followers of Paul's talent.
2005. Artemi Pugachov / Encyclopedia of Electronic Music
I have not heard any of Paul Ellis' music before but after hearing this review copy of "Silent Conversations" I might well be purchasing some more. This album is a work of contrasts, with rhythmic
pieces contrasted with more ambient ones.
The opening track "The only known photograph of God" for instance is repeated with jazzy style guitar over sequenced drums and percussion, whilst various synth textures float over real bass. Indeed throughout the album the synths and sequences are complemented by various guitars, bass, flute, wordless vocals, and cello. Many of these instruments are played by
the various musicians guesting on the album, including no less a figure than Steve Roach, whose presence is felt throughout.
Standout tracks include the excellent "Trillium" which has a synth-like flute motif over building arpeggio figures. As the track builds a very insistent rhythm part builds up drawing the listener into the track as it continues to build, with the leads, sequences, rhythm and background fx constantly changing, but with purpose, an excellent piece of music.
The more ambient pieces include "Peripheral Vision", on which Steve Roach makes his presence felt, "Trance figure", which despite its title is not a dance track but an excellent piece of ambient music with Laurie Guild guesting on flute and "Silent conversations", which has an almosy classical feel to it, including as it does the cellos of Brenda Erikson, the wordless vocals of Alison O'Conner, Gregorian Chant and Pauls' synths.
More rhythmic tracks include the wonderfully named "The wind-up synthesizers of the Glass Reich", which captures the minimalism of the two composers alluded to in the title.
The album ends with "Dialing in the sun" another collaboration between Paul Ellis and Steve Roach, which combines drifting synthscapes with skittering percussive rhythms.
This is a great album and has plenty of variation to keep the listener involved, from drifting synths to guitar, cello and flute lines, interesting rhythms and sequences that are not retro copies.
One for the discerning listener.
I noticed someone else posted a review of Paul Ellis' forthcoming "Silent Conversations". I was lucky enough to receive an advance copy of this and I think it's Ellis' best work to date. If there's one thing about the album that stands out the most, to me, it is its diversity, yet the tracks
are cohesive and keep drawing the listener in with each moment. The diversity further proves the professional quality of material Ellis continues to release.
Great work Poly!
Portland-based EM artist/synthesist Paul Ellis reveals his multi-faceted musical talents on his latest release, Silent Conversations, and he wastes little time doing so on the first track, "The only known photograph of God" when, amidst the percolating sequence and swirls of keyboards (some of which are handled by guests Steve Roach and Jeffrey Koepper), he breaks out his electric guitar and sets to riffing in a decidedly jazzy fashion, cooking up some brilliant counterpoints to the quasi-Berlin and spacemusic elements of the track. Who the hell knew the man had axe chops? The sequenced notes and buzzing, whirring synths circle the guitar refrain and a thumping bass guitar pumps underneath it all with just a hint of some keyboard jazz riffs at the tail end.
"Trillium" steers back into more familiar territory, with Ellis alone on assorted synths, carving out a solid nine-minute piece that unfolds ever-so-slowly, with spacy textures, a wonderful solo flute carrying a refrain, cascading sequence high notes, and some deep bass beats, all of it added layer by layer until there is so much going on that keeping track of it all is an exercise akin to watching several flocks of different species of birds all take flight at once and trying to follow them as they speed away. By track's end, Ellis has brought in retro EM elements, a la Synergy and Jarre, as well as trace fractal grooves. Wow!
"Peripheral Vision" is the shortest song on the album at five and a half minutes and its another melding of EM and jazz elements, this time in a more dark ambient vein (Steve Roach sits in on this cut with synth support - and he is immediately recognizable - plus Will Merkle contributes on bass as well). The jazz elements come from Ellis' integration of Fender Rhodes keys with the more desert-like drifting electronic ambient textures. He really allows the Fender to reverberate way back to the horizon line, and boy does it make the music sound cool! I really like the mellow vibe of this track, yet laced with mystery and a palpable sense of wandering in the desert at dusk.
There are six more tracks on the album including the quirky and sinistro-whimsy of "The wind-up synthesizers of the Glass Reich" (Ozone Player, a.k.a. Otso Pakarinen, guests on this one and again, for anyone who has heard his stuff, his handiwork is immediately apparent). Label this one "dueling synths" as Ellis and Pakarinen see who can top the other with getting truly bizarre, yet accessible, textures and sounds from their keyboards!
"Trance figure" has Ellis bringing out both his guitar and Fender Rhodes again as well a featuring a real flutist (Laurie Guild). The cut merges an almost Western-motif form of guitar with washes of synths, once again conjuring up mental images of forlorn desert landscapes, this time more in tune with walking down the empty streets of a ghost town, as tumbleweeds do their dance under the hot noon-day sun. When Ellis plunks the main refrain, accompanied by unbelievably "bassy" bass and flowing keys underneath, the music is both eerie and nostalgic.
"Continental Drift" is vintage Ellis (working alone again), i.e. his unique take on EM which combines elements of Berlin school, retro European electronics, and contemporary elements that lend a futuristic air to the proceedings while still rooting it in accessibility with a nod toward tradition, i.e., soaring synths and mellotrons, bubbly sequenced rhythms and notes, and catchy melodic refrains.
"The dumb angel's periscope" once again mixes Ellis brand of EM with Roach's fractal sensibilities. Label this one "controlled chaos" as the assorted synthesizers (it sounds like there are about ten or more lines going at once) flit, chatter, ping-pong, and float all over the soundfield.
Silent conversations the title track has Brenda Erickson guest starring on cello and Alison O'Connor contributing vocals. It's the longest piece at eleven and a half minutes and it's unlike everything else on the disc (and maybe unlike anything Ellis has ever recorded), as Erickson's cello, mildly distorted, melds with electronic waves and washes, sounding almost spiritual and/or classical at times. However, don't mistake this for sounding the least bit "new agey" as it's got a subtle dark edge to it, as well as being overtly electronic (except for the discernible cello and O'Connor's vocals which are wordless, ethereal in nature, and quite beautiful, to be honest). The more I listened to this, the better it got * warmer, more expressive, almost achingly sad or haunting at times, yet compelling so you can't turn it off. It ends quirkily, with a series of halting spacy electronics, pealing church bells, and O'Connor's voice, more naked and present then before.
Closing out the album is "Dialing in the Sun" which is Ellis' reinterpretation/arrangement of Roach's fractal/ambient/EM composition "Sundial" (featured on the latter's album Life Sequence). The track is easily identifiable, yet Ellis (working with Roach again) re-imagines the music with some distinct differences that merit its inclusion on this album.
Silent Conversations will prove revealing and rewarding for long-time Ellis fans as they discover new-found subgenres that the artist is comfortable exploring and traversing. While I was surprised at some of the directions he has taken, I wasn't (nor shouldn't have been) surprised to witness the diversity and scope of his talent. I'd love for him to further plumb the lands of cyber-EM jazz, as those were the tracks which blew me away the fastest here.
However, all of Silent Conversations is worthy of your attention and the CD offers proof that Ellis is a solitary visionary when it comes to forming an alchemy of past and future electronic music.
2005. Bill Binkelman
Silent Conversations sees Paul Ellis collaborating with many musical friends from round the world, as well as producing a couple of solo tracks. There is quite a strong focus on Paul's guitar work, and this really lifts things out of the ordinary. The production is as crystalline as we have come to expect from Mr Ellis.
1. The Only Known Photograph of God Features Steve Roach and Jeffrey Koepper on additional synths. This starts off very quiet and drifty, but gains momentum over the course of its seven minutes. By the end it has become quite funky!
2. Trillium. An intricate tapestry of sequences always morphing. The kind of thing that Paul does so very well. Lovely fat bass notes and ethereal clouds of sounds propel the track along nicely. Electronic percussion joins in later, and I keep expecting a key change in a Crystal Lake/Halo style. Perhaps the lack of key change gives it /more/ tension rather than less!
3. Peripheral Vision. Steve Roach and Will Merkle guest on this track. Bass guitar and Rhodes piano give this a nice organic feel. The dreamy backdrop is lovely, and I think Steve Roach probably put a lot of his production skill and knowledge into this track.
4. The Wind-Up Synthesizers of the Glass Reich. A humorous play on words on a track with a humorous start. Otso Pakarinen brings synths and clockwork to this collaboration. A bit aggressive for my tastes, unfortunately. It may grow on me.
5. Trance Figure Beautiful. Slightly Indian sounding. Sparse guitar work over a backdrop of drones intertwining around each other. My second favorite track. Laurie Guild appears towards the end with some lovely flute work.
6. Continental Drift. The second solo track on the album. It's more typical Paul Ellis material, with multi-layered sequences and a slightly malevolent feel to the lead work.
7. The Dumb Angel's Periscope. Ellis gets together with Steve Roach once more for this uptempo track. Almost electro-popish in character, it was not what I was expecting, at all. Quite pleasant, though.
8. Silent Conversations. Just breathtakingly beautiful. Again, there is a slightly Indian feel to this track, aided by the awesome cello work of Brenda Erikson and the wordless vocals of Alison O'Connor. I can't do justice to this piece with words -it just has to be heard. Not everyone's cuppa tea (I know at least one other B_EM member who is not impressed), but it floats my boat (on an ocean of tenderness). I could stand a full album of this! Five gold stonks!
9. Dialing in the Sun. A re-arrangement of the track 'Sundial'. A bit too much like chill-out trance for my liking, but a nice bonus track to have.
2005. Grant Middleton
Thanks for the review, Grant!
I wanted to mention a couple things briefly. I'm glad you liked the track Silent Conversations so much... that was a fantastic track to record and you might be interested in the process which it was created.
A couple comments on your comments:
2. Trillium *This album is intended as a sort of last plunge into minimalism for me.
Albums like E2-E4 and Music for 18 musicians have always fascinated me.Time-wise these pieces are much shorter but I tried to keep the mood fairly mesmerizing in different ways.
5. Trance Figure *I was surprised that both you and Paul Lawler liked this and Silent
Conversations the best. I would have pegged you both as preferring the sequencer stuff.
7. The Dumb Angel's Periscope *I wanted to mention that this cut has been changed out to another one which fits the flow better ( I used the same title though just to be confusing...).
I'll be submitting this one to the E-dition sampler CD. Check out the soundbite for that one when I make the announcement. It kind of reminds me of Chambers of the Heart from Mysterious Sketches,
which I seem to remember you liked.
8. Silent Conversations *Yeah this may be the best track I've ever worked on ...
and again, I'm glad you like it... ;-)
2005. Paul Ellis
The new PAUL ELLIS CD called "Silent conversations". Is a fabulous follow up to "Sacred ordinary". He is joined, among others, by Steve Roach on this release. The basses on this album are so tight and deep that it will bring sheer tremors to your body. And the sequencing is so outlandish and unique that I wonder how he made this! To all space music fans, this could be the best space album, since decades. And a great production. and that is putting it mildly."
2005. Ron Boots / Groove
Paul Ellis understands that his purpose as an artist is to envision and communicate. His album Silent Conversations (76'30"), like its author, is a complicated treasure. The nine tracks display Ellis' impeccable sonic sense and an incredible facility with his instruments.
The building momentum of the rhythmic sections resolve into big-sounding, fast moving tributes to sheer synthesizer power, while the title track is tender and more poetic, and offers a beautiful space for reflection. Operating beyond mere brainy acrobatics, Ellis shapes each movement with loving care. His concentric circles of sequencer patterns exhibit an irreducible complexity, all parts are necessary for the work to function. The rhythmic cross currents of these interlocking beats are artfully woven, not from the tick of a clock, but from the beat of a heart. Ellis commands a striking range of electronic color and texture.
From the brittle sounds of vintage Mellotron flutes and the vibrato of classic Rhodes piano, to innovative synth modulations and stretched acoustic samples, to the icy peels of synth strings and pieces of melody tossed back and forth, Silent Conversations is an episodic travelogue through the advanced magic of Ellis' animated musical imagination.
2005. Chuck van Zyl / STAR'S END
Paul Ellis gives us a new gift of a magnificent record of Space Music. For the occasion, Paul has surrounded himself with a team of splendid musicians. Steve Roach, Jeffrey Koepper, Will Merkle, Otso Pakarinen, Laurie Guild, Brenda Erikson and Alison O'Connor collaborate in this album. This work enters a very futuristic and complex terrain, with turbulent atmospheres, deep chords of hypnotic resonances, and melodies between the majestic and the enigmatic. As a general rule, the compositions possess rather strong rhythms, even if there are some passages or themes of a more deliberate nature. The rhythms are sequencer-based mostly, thus resulting into complex, powerful, impressive, sinister, and occasionally very aggressive ones. Each one of the nine compositions that integrate the album is a surprising sonic experience. One of the most intense, best achieved themes is "Continental Drift". In a few words, this is no doubt a fascinating album, accompanied by a magnificient cover, and one of those recordings that takes electronic music to its highest reaches.
This album could almost have been credited to 'Paul Ellis & Friends' as here he is joined by a number of collaborators, most notably Steve Roach, who pops up on four tracks. Indeed the manner in which Ellis has largely left his Teutonic influences behind & transformed his music into a more innovative, constantly surprising entity bears a resemblance to the spirit of Roach's 90s output.
Similarly, whilst the 9 tracks here are constantly atmospheric the use of acoustic instruments give the album a very earthy feel, not least on the opening "The Only Known Photograph Of God" which builds from an impressive opening ambience into an almost smoking piece dominated by Ellis' faintly bluesy guitar.
"Trance Figure" again sees Ellis proving himself a capable guitarist while the resonant bass chords evoke majestic, wide open spaces (not unlike US band Brain Laughter or Roach & Co's Desert Solitaire release, I thought).
The slowly shifting chords that grace "Peripheral Vision" work just as well while Brenda Erikson's haunting cello & Allison O'Connor's ethereal voice do the same on the title track.
Likewise, the brilliantly titled "The Wind-Up Synthesizers Of The Glass Reich" (which also features Otso Parkarinen) is very clever as the track is first wound-up while the sequencers have an appropriately mechanical feel while "The Dumb Angel's Periscope" is a prime example of the best in American EM as Ellis, Roach & Will Merkle combine to produce a gutsy but atmospheric track that is full of possibilities.
Above all this, though, is Ellis' ever-increasing expertise in producing music that is constantly surprising, atmospheric & innovative but not at all difficult to get into which makes this late-night listening of the first order.
Paul Ellis has definitely come into his own with the rich tapestry of songs that form Silent Conversations.
We begin with "The Only Known Photograph of God", slowly fading in on dreamy wisps of sound, followed by light crisp hypnotic sequencing. Steve Roach and Jeffrey Koepper add their own special touches to this complex yet comfortable piece.
"Trillium" features beautiful fluty synths that playfully bounce up and down the scale. A cool resonant bass line enters the scene, again with some fine sequencing, clear and bright. Some downright funky rhythms emerge near the end, and then it all gently falls back in upon itself.
"Peripheral Vision" begins as an eerie floater, but then easygoing keys lightly play through the midsection, echoing back and forth.
Paul is always one for fun song titles, and "The Wind-Up Synthesizers of the Glass Reich" certainly falls into that category, with references to two of his key influences.
"Trance Figure" is proof of the "less is more" adage," a simple repeating phrase used to great effect. Ellis plays guitar on this one, strumming in relaxing fashion.
"Continental Drift" is probably the closest Paul gets to classic Berlin school, but it still has his unique musical voice, always in motion.
Cool bass and percussion form the backbone of "The Dumb Angel’s Periscop,", as a variety of electronics run through it, another one of four tracks including Steve Roach. This low-key affair builds a nice bridge to the title track, a unique blending of synths and cello, lending a strong classical feel. Alison O’Connor’s wordless vocals remind me much of Diane Timmons’ vocal enhancements of Spacecraft’s music.
A cool bonus cut is Paul’s arrangement of his collaboration with Steve, "Dialing In The Sun", a variant of the track "Sundial" that appears on Roach’s Life Sequence CD.
It is familiar but quite distinct from the original version, a worthy inclusion and conclusion.
2005. Phil Derby / Electroambient Space
This release from 2005 offers 76 minutes of gripping electronic music.
Joining Paul Ellis (who plays synthesizers, guitar, bass, rhythmic processing, tron flutes, and Rhodes) on this recording are: Steve Roach on synths, processing and rhythmic programming, Jeffrey Koepper on processing, Will Merkle on bass, Otso Pakarinen on synths, Laurie Guild on flute, Brenda Erikson on cello, and Alison O'Connor on vocals. The music was mastered by Ron Boots.
Delicate keyboards blend with flowing textures, producing a lush but soothing climate. Surging patterns provide tasty density, augmenting the quite infectious influence of non-percussive rhythms. While crystalline structure spiral overhead, pensive embellishments coalesce with charming results. Astral illusions waft in the sonic wind, evoking stratospheric expanses of limitless potential. One can easily get lost in the electronic ballet of riffs as they frolic and interweave, generating a pleasant, celebratory quality.
Cyclic chords establish sedative foundations which are then augmented with more demonstrative loops, creating commanding soundscapes of generous proportion. Subtle bass notes punctuate the flow, establishing a thrilling demeanor and furnishing the tuneage with a touch of the unpredictable.
Classical instruments lend a fanciful airiness to a few tracks, while lazy guitars provide a romantic edge.
Heavenly music is the motif here, with lavish soundscapes unfurling to envelope the audience in their shimmering sonic embrace. A sense of passive introspection maintains itself despite the bias of sweeping chords which seek to captivate with their invigorating allure.
2005. Matt Howarth / Sonic Curiosity
I Paul Ellis není ádný mladí ek. Debutoval na hudební scén v polovin osmdesátých let, vydal dlouhou ádku sólových alb, spolupracoval s adou muzikant (z celé plejády zmi me alespo Stevea Roache nebo Craiga Padillu) a nesmíme zapomenout ani na jeho spol ení s Dave Fultonem pod názvem Dweller At The Threshold.
Osobn mezi své nejv tší vzory adí francouzské impresionisty (Debussy, Ravel, Satie), americké minimalisty (Reich, Glass, Adams) a evropské elektroniky (Schulze, Ashra, J.M.Jarre ad.). Vezm me to jako klí k rozšifrování i tohoto nejnov jšího díla pilného amerického elektronika, který krom všemo ných syn ák ovládá také hru na kytaru, basu a flétnu.
Pod pokli ku vzniku titulní skladby nechal nahlédnout v rozhovoru pro osmé íslo asopisu E-dition: "M l jsem melodicky p kn postavenou skladbu, ale nem la dostate n vysokou la ku po stránce technické kvality a aran e. Nechal jsem tedy ásti skladby p ehrát cellistou. Zvuk cella jsem zprocesoval p es tvery filtry (n které jako "závoje vlající ve vánku" apod). Pak jsem nechal stejné ásti ješt nazpívat mladou vokalistkou. Z první hodinové session se dalo pou ít patnáct vte in. B hem pátého pokusu se do toho kone n dostala, a mne b hem pojednou vstávaly vlasy na hlav , jakou to m lo sílu. I tento materiál jsem prohnal procesingem, abych vytvo il souhru mezi hlasem a cellem. Nakonec jsem v tšinu p vodního syntetického materiáu vyhodil a zjistil, e takto má skladba v tší sílu." Ji z tohoto popisu je jasné, e Paul postupuje jako malí , hraje si jako impresionisté s atmosférou, je je pro n j alfou i omegou. Není proto divu, e se na albu dokonce ve ty ech skladbách objevuje mistr pouštních ambientních nálad Steve Roach.
Minimalismus prolezl asi nejz eteln ji do skladby The Wind-Up Synthesizers Of The Glass Reich, která u názvem nazna uje, e budeme mít co do in ní s osobitou Ellisovskou poctou velikán m minimalismu. No a evropskou elektronickou školu má Paul pod k í ji nadosmrti. Na rozdíl od Hemisphere, kte í vše potáhli temným závojem, Paul je vzdušný, se mu síly sta í. Pe liv st ídá ist elektronické kusy s t mi, kde mají významnou roly akustické nástroje. A hlavn sní s otev enýma o ima, tiše konverzuje s múzami a ono soust ed né usebrání je z nahrávky doslova hmatatelné.
Tahle nahrávka vás neohromí ni ím výjime ným po stránce aran í, hudebních postup nebo ánrových pr nik . Tady se jen trp liv zúro uje ryzé muzikantství v poctivý a uv itelný kus hudby.
Mírn pokrátit stopá jak jednotlivých skladeb, tak i celého alba, a bylo by to bez výhrad.
Pavel Zelinka / Radio Akropolis
Taste can be a curious thing - I thought his last album was dull, dull dull. Yet this - THIS - is sheer quality from start to finish. Across 9 tracks averaging over eight minutes each, he's produced as fantastic a set of original compositions as you'll find, none of which "sound" like anyone else, all of which "sound" totally familiar and each of which is both completely different from one another and yet with a flow and cohesion that binds the album into one amazing set of tracks, not one second of which is less than 100% enjoyable.
You'll find space music, rhythmic music, evocative mixes of the two, soaring synth harmonies, magical melodies, depth, a production that's so atmospheric, layering that's crisp and sharp, and a sense of emotion that's simply glorious. You'd need - and I daresay some will - more space than I've got here to do a blow-by-blow account of each track, but it's all got that "spark" of originality that makes it a welcome addition to any synth music collection, while at the same time full of other-worldly splendors.
Andy G. / UK
Electronic artist Paul Ellis reaches deeper into his talent for rich, melodic based electronic music for the mind and comes up with a fully matured release of striking pieces. Elegant and sophisticated throughout, the cd covers a wider range of terrain than his previous release. He brings in a few acoustic elements as well, and knows how to blend these with the right touch. Add to this some fine guest performances, including Steve Roach on four tracks. Foundations for two of these tracks were created from live Timeroom improvs with Paul, Steve, Will Merkel and Jeffrey Koepper.
And this leads us quite nicely to one of the finest modern American synthesists, Paul Ellis, who has released two albums "Silent Conversations" (GR-119) & "Infinity Room" (GR-130). As ever, Paul uses his surrounding environment to influence his work, giving it a definate ‘American’ feel that, in places, is reminiscent of Steve Roach circa Dreamtime Return & the band Brain Laughter. Thus, it’s very different to European fayre, being reminiscent of wide open prairies with some strummed guitar adding a very earthy tone to "Trance Figure" on the former album.
The latter has 6 tracks, all running at exactly 6 minutes each & is another thoughtful & progressive album where Ellis’ skills in creating really atmospheric synth music are again well to the fore. The sequences are used sparingly, with the exception of the closing "MirrororriM" where they really let rip, boasting an almost psychadelic edge that brings this fine album to a tumultuous close.
Carl Jenkinson / Sequences