Composed and performed by Stephen Humphries
- Just Above the Surface [17:28]
- Out of Bounds [9:45]
- Follow the Shoreline [11:28]
- Run for Cover [5:52]
- This Island Life [8:47]
- Paradise [12:28]
- Heaven Waits (for Grandad) [4:52]
Stephen Humphries - Acces Virus B, Acces Virus Indigo, Alesis Andromeda A6,
Arturia Jupiter 8V, Creamware Pro 12 ASB, Dave Smith Instruments Mono Evolver Keyboard, Doepfer Schaltwerk Sequencer, Doepfer MAQ 16/3 Sequencer, EMU PX-7 w/ Vintage Expansion, Kawai K5000R, Korg Triton Rack, Korg MS2000 BR, Korg Electribe ER-1 mkII, Korg Mono/Poly, Roland JV-1080, Sequential Circuits Inc. Prophet-600
During March 2007, Stephen Humphries had a nasty accident at his work, leaving him house bound and unable to work properly for four months. While being at home, the Englishman started watching the TV-series "Lost". The impressions of the show about a plane crash, leaving the survivors trapped on an island where all kinds of things are happening, inspired Stephen to record some new material under his artist name Create. Stephen has earned a special place in electronic music. He started with only a computer and the Reason software but later on he became a collector of synthesizers, new and old, and now has developed kind of a name in the retro/Berlin School area of electronic music. The nice thing about Stephen and his music is that it is growing with every album. Especially his sequences (not an unimportant element of retro-electronic music) are becoming better and better and have a special place on "Lost On An Island Of Adventure".
The opening track "Just Above The Surface" has traces of mid-seventies Klaus Schulze.
An eerie piece like "Run For Cover" captures the atmosphere of the TV-series excellently. The best sequence on the album can be heard on the outstanding track "Paradise".
"Lost On An Island Of Adventure" has become Create’s best album until this moment.
The last piece of music, "Heaven Waits (For Grandad)" is dedicated to Stephen’s grandad who sadly passed away in November 2007. Stephen manages to come with a fitting honor. It means that music can say a lot and Stephen does that.
Depuis son apparition sur la scčne e-musicale, je ne peux pas dire que la qualité soit une caractéristique majeure des albums de Stephen Humphries, le synthétiste qui se cache derričre CREATE. En fait, celui qui veut découvrir ce musicien peut se contenter de ses albums impairs. Et malheureusement, celui-ci est le 4čme.
Pourtant, Just Above the Surface augurait d’un album aussi réussi que son prédécesseur avec son intro cosmique sur laquelle embrayait une séquence magnifique. Mais pour une raison connue seulement du musicien (et du Divin aussi bine entendu), le morceau connut un grand coup de frein et y perdit sa dynamique. Tout comme le reste de l’album, malheureusement, oů les morceaux se succčdent sans beaucoup d’inspiration.
Par comparaison, réécoutez l’album précédent oů tous les morceaux sont bâtis autour d’un concept central (le continuum espace-temps) qui leur cohérence et leur force.
Vous l’aurez compris. Attendez le suivant!
2010. LouLou / Prog-résiste
This release from 2008 offers 71 minutes of pleasant electronic tuneage.
Languid electronics layered on expansive textural foundations generate a dreamy sonic excursion seasoned with a sense of hidden wonder.
Lavish atmospherics establish an airy mood that is then tempered by blooping pulsations and additional harmonics which guide the tuneage ever upward. This ascension seems to continue without ever reaching stratospheric heights, always remaining with the ground and human concerns in plain view. Gradually, keyboard loops enter the mix, seeping in softly until the riffs have fused with the harmonic flow and bolstered the gentle ambience with hints of more substance.
The keyboards are soft and underplayed, contributing through filtration instead of any dominance. They commingle with the celestial tonalities, mimicking the vaporous disposition but rarely rising to prominence. This overall pacific demeanor makes the music very soothing with a touch of anticipatory promise.
This is not to infer that the tuneage lacks any sense of power. The songs possess a subtle undercurrent of vitality that is meticulously kept in check. As the CD progresses, though, the keyboards exert more definition in the tunes, conjuring an elevated majesty.
While percussion is generally absent from this music, a certain rhythmic presence is present in some tracks, usually accomplished by the application of cycled non-impact sounds which approximate tempos as they slither along with the harmonic environs.
These compositions are pleasant and expertly crafted, evoking a dreamy temperament with their aerial passages. Apparently, these tunes were inspired by the TV show Lost; which explains their deceptive progression toward unrevealed revelations.
That aside, the music achieves an engaging melodic character of lush ambience with hints of restrained puissance.
2008. Matt Howarth / Sonic Curiosity
Watching the TV show "Lost" while at home recuperating from an injury, Steven Humphries aka Create was inspired and Lost on an Island Adventure is the happy result.
The disc begins the 17-minute epic "Just Above the Surface." Humphries has made no secret of his admiration for the AirSculpture style and sound, and he once again bottles it perfectly here, from the moody, meandering atmospheric opening to the brisk but quiet sequencing and back again. Lots of pure electronic fun here, loaded with cosmic twitters and other cool sound effects.
Mellotron strings are put to good use in "Out of Bounds," again following the familiar Berlin school formula but doing so effectively.
Mellotron-like flutes introduce "Follow the Shoreline" as vintage synths round out the sound. And so it goes from one Teutonic track to another, all deftly executed. In a sweetly sentimental nod to his recently deceased grandfather, "Heaven Waits" is a beautiful light touch to end the album quite nicely.
2008. Phil Derby / Electroambientspace
Welcome to the sonorous complex universe of Create. As years go by this fervent fan of Air Sculpure, and Tangerine Dream, forged a unique style with its reedy synth to strident laments in a nebulous sound environment where rhythm difficulty cuts his place in the immense intergalactic maelstroms of Stephen Humphries works. Inspired from the series Lost, Lost On An Island Of Adventure does not get away from Create musical structures.
As soon as we hear the first keys of Just Above The Surface we are plunged in a cosmic blackness which brings us back in the 70’s area; electronic twitters which fray in a dense Mellotron space, accompanied by a synth with dubious keys, creating an embryonic melody. An intro in the pure Create tradition which becomes animated quietly on a gallops sequence which crescendoed on layers as melodious as hypnotic. The rhythm became heavy and hammering, Just Above The Surface effectively depicts the universe of contrast which we find on Lost One Year Island Of Adventure. A heavy and very dark title fills up will spectral Mellotron. The pace is very fragmentary and is mislaid in a tinted ambient universe of a desolation that Create transposes with accuracy.
Out off Bonds offers a cosmic forest intro. Cries of birds and animals on deviating Mellotron layers, a little bit as if our mind was escaping us. A deafening sequence releases a rhythmic paranoiac which undulates on a synth with the breaths of a harmony quite as worrying.
This hybrid atmosphere where the Milky Ways meet some Amazonian elements continues on Follow the Shoreline. An intriguing title which starts on deflecting layers and some acute tinkling which inspire a beautiful dreamlike flute. Follow the Shoreline is a cosmic kind of procession which progresses on an almost hypnotic bass sequence. A galactic cha-cha stuffed of splendid whistling solos which twist around a pretty counting rhyme with tinkling minimalism keys in a stiff Mellotron field.
A beautiful track which plunges us in the atmospheric portion of Lost On An Island Of Adventure with Run for Cover.
This Island Life spreads heavy Mellotron veils which reverberate under a fragile flute. A poetic contrast from which a sequence escapes on a delicate metallic gallop which animates a dubious rhythmic, even incongruous in this misty opacity.
Paradise is a good track on Create 6th opus. Reverberating layers, animated of threatening cymbals, in an atmosphere which seems about to burst constantly. Around the 4th minute, a beautiful sequence floods our ears, accompanied by Create caustic synths. A loud and hypnotic moment, worthy of Redshift, Volt and TD’s Franke years repertory, that dies out quietly in the rich atmospheric pads of Create.
Heaven Waits (for Grandad) close this last work of Stephen Humhpries with a sober and very atmospheric approach. Still there, mellotrons are intense and superb. They endorse a sadness which floats around in a heavy cosmic movement that silky tinkling revive of a found happiness.
Do not like Create which wants. Stephen Humhpries developed the art of complexity with dark albums of a sound density with very tight links. Lost On An Island Of Adventure makes part of works which are slowly tasted in order to seize all its dimension. A beautiful album, its Create's best to date.
2008. Sylvain Lupari / Guts Of Darkness
The latest studio album from Create, Steve Humphries, is inspired by the TV series Lost and dedicated to his Grandad who past away last year. By now Create has set his stall out with a style based on the three act paradigm started by Tangerine Dream in the 70s with a spacey section, the addition of sequencing and melodies, then a spacey denouement. Lost on an Island of Adventure follows in that tradition apart from the closing piece.
Liquid spacey ripples shoot over a soundscape of cosmic drones and washes in the opener "Just Above the Surface". Further washes add wisps of melody and then a burbling sequence fades in along with a bleeping and percussive rhythm, all played in a staccato manner and augmented by quickly meandering electrified notes.
Steve has thrown in a surprisingly quirky piece called "This Island Life" to catch out people like myself who think they know what's coming next. Synth chords that expand out and die away like a ghostly klaxon lead the way for a fat beepy rhythmic loop, and later a space flute comes in to add an mysterious atmosphere. I had to do a double take when first hearing this piece because there's a constant sound which I can only describe as similar to a vacuum cleaner continually groaning in the background.
The one track not following the three act path is "Heaven Waits (for Grandad)". Shiny flickering metallic drones sound against a reverberating tone and heavenly male chorales of the kind encountered on TD's Rubycon add an otherworldly aura. Along with slow refrains the piece conveys a mix of emotions from subdued weeping and letting go to the hope for an afterlife awaiting the departed soul.
I wouldn't call myself a big fan of this kind of music. That said, Lost on an Island of Adventure is more palatable than a lot of music oriented around sequencing that I've encountered. There's enough variety and a wonderful closing track to raise this album above being a run of the mill quasi retro fest.
Dene Bebbington / Melliflua
Der britische Elektronikmusiker Stephen Humphries, der sich hinter dem Pseudonym Create verbirgt, hat sich auf seinem neuen, sechsten Album „Lost On An Island Of Adventure" von der amerikanischen Fernsehserie Lost inspirieren lassen. Durch eine Krankheit vier Monate ans Haus gebunden, verfolgte er die erfolgreiche TV-Sendung und begab sich mit neuen Ideen in sein Studio.
Wer wie ich jetzt vermutet hat, dass irgendwelche Samples aus der Titelmelodie, naja, ne richtige Melodie ist das ja nicht, oder Sprachfetzen aus der Serie in den Stücken auftauchen, den muss ich an dieser Stelle leider enttäuschen. Vom Klang oder der Melodie her erinnert nichts an die Serie. Sechs Stücke, die sich auf Lost beziehen, sowie einen Track, den er seinem verstorbenen Großvater gewidmet hat, sind auf der CD enthalten.
Mit dem mehr als 17minütigen Stück „Just Above The Surface", das mit zirpenden Synthies beginnt, startet die CD. Ob diese, für Create typischen Synthiesounds nun auf eine einsame Insel oder eher ins Weltall passen, muss der Hörer für sich entscheiden. Langgezogene Flächensounds sorgen zunächst für einen ruhigen Beginn, der erst nach gut sechs Minuten durch rhythmische Sequenzer etwas beschleunigt wird. Diese elektronische Musik ist der „Berliner Schule" verhaftet und bietet hypnotische Synthiephrasen, in deren Umklammerung man sich begeben kann.
„Out Of Bounds" schließt da nahtlos an, wobei hier eine Sequenz, wie man sie von der niederländischen Fraktion kennt, geboten wird. Vor allem im zweiten Teil kann dieses Stück durch seine Melodielinien und Akkorde überzeugen. Auch die folgenden Stück ähneln vom Aufbau her den ersten Tracks.
Bei „Run For Cover" wirkt der Sound allerdings erstmals wie eine Geschichte. Zu den ihnen kommen mir Bilder einer Odyssee durch einen verregneten Urwald. Hier ist das Thema meines Erachtens von Stephen gut umgesetzt worden.
Die „Berliner Schule" der 70’er hat für „This Island Life" eindeutig Pate gestanden, denn hier klingt es als, ob Stephen analoge und digitale Synthies miteinander verknüpft. Sehr schönes Stück – für all die, die auf die 70’er Elektronik stehen.
Das abschließende „Heaven Waits" ist quasi ein Bonustrack, denn er ist nicht Teil des Inselabenteuers. Dieses Stück hat Stephen seinem kürzlich verstorbenen Großvater gewidmet. Die Synthiechöre, die Stephen hier benutzt, erwecken bei mir den Eindruck, als bewege ich mich zwischen weißen Wolken am Himmel. Das hat etwas sehr beruhigendes und sanftes.
„Lost On An Island Of Adventures" ist all denen zu empfehlen, die auch die anderen Alben von Create mochten. Auch Freunde der „Berliner Schule" sollten hier ein Ohr riskieren. Wie schon bei den anderen Alben, liefert Stephen wieder solide Arbeit ab, die aber nicht aus der Masse herausragt.
2008. Stephan Schelle
Here we have the latest release from British electronic musician Steve Humphries aka Create.
"Just Above the Surface" begins in typical EM fashion, with twittery effects and mysterious pads. Very soon, a moody synthesizer melody is heard. However, things remain pretty much retrained for a few minutes more. After the 5-minute mark we hear the long-awaited sequences slowly creeping in. They are supported by a heavy noisy rhythm and a symphonic lead line. Another excellent upper register sequence joins and we are now firmly in Berlin School territory. The music is unusually soft, gentle and flowing for Create, which is mostly known for a rougher, more biting sound. Not that it was an unwelcome change, though. Excellent atmospheric section closes this epic track that is, in many ways, a formulaic Berlin School composition and yet has enough originality and new interesting sounds to really keep your attention.
"Out of Bounds" begins with phased pads and exotic effects (like tropic birds for instance). Excellent synth lead line comes in, in stark contrast with the sounds of wildlife. A curious sequence appears, making the track sound more urgent and somewhat restless. A symphonic lead line is a nice extra, before the atmospherics return and draw this track to its close.
"Follow the Shoreline" begins mysteriously with synth atmospheres and tinkling electronic bells. The pads then take over, joined by high-pitched Mellotron flutes. Nice atmosphere! A very unusual, slow sequence starts as all of the above-mentioned elements appear in various combinations. A high-pitched sequence appears, as an analogue lead line plays on top. The track is finished with Mellotron flutes and a lot of phased pads.
"Run For Cover" introduces heavy rain / thunder effects and unnerving pads. Interesting synth sounds compliment this moody and totally atmospheric (no rhythms!) piece of music.
"This Island Life" begins with some twittering effects and pads. They are combined with a low, siren like bass synth. Mellotron flutes also appear in small doses. A sequence appears, sounding somewhat out of tune. I am not sure if this is intentional or not but it does create (no pun intended) a strange, vertigo-like effect. Another sequence soon joins, and a very strange one it is, too, sounding as if coming from a 1980's digital synth. The third upper-register sequence compliments the first two, creating (man, it becomes tough avoiding this! :-) a very intense sound.
"Paradise" begins with soft atmospheres and some contrasting effects. A sharp, but at the same time liquid lead line hints at the glory to come. A sequence appears as the track gets even more dramatic. Fat, dual-oscillator lead lines are very nice. As it turns out, the sequencer part of this track was relatively short and three minutes prior to the track's close, we are back to atmospherics.
"Heaven Waits" is a bonus track dedicated to Steve's Grandad. Gentle pads and heavenly voices is what we get from the beginning. The track sounds very emotional and sincere. Nice Mellotron choirs are a classic extra. After a while we hear a slow tinkling sequence, sounding very melodic and ethereal. Although the track is somewhat different in style from the rest of the material, I thought it was also one of the best tracks.
"Lost On An Island of Adventure" is certainly the best one I've heard from Steve and it does manage to create that special atmosphere of being on a deserted tropical island.
Best tracks: "Just Above the Surface" because it shows some new sounds and possibly new style; and "Heaven Waits" for its sheer emotional power. Get this album from Groove.
2008. Artemi Pugachov / Encyclopedia for Electronic Music
Ka dému ivot tu a tam p ipraví p ekvapení, které p evrátí p edstavy a plány o 180 stup. Stephen Humphries alias Create utrp l loni v b eznu nep íjemnou zlomeninu pravého kotníku, která ho uzav ela na tvrt roku do domácího ošet ování.
Stephen volný as v noval mimo jiné sledování televizního seriálu Ztracení (www.lost.cz), kterému zcela propadl. Není tedy divu, e šestice nových skladeb je tímto kultovním seriálem ovlivn na. Navrch p ichází ješt bonus v podob vzpomínky na zem elého d du autora v podob tracku Heaven Waits for Grandad.
I kdy se nádobí ko Create postupn obm uje ze softwareových hra ek na hardwareové p edlohy, základní výraz z stává stejný. A pro tentokrát vyzbrojený o celou škálu „ostrovních" field recordings, p esto z stáváme v klasických kolejích retro elektroniky Berlínské školy. St ední tempa, melodické bloud ní a p edevším stále stejný výsledný výraz srá í kolekci Lost On An Island Of Adventure do kolen. A kdy se jedná o jistý posun oproti lo skému propadáku Sonic Space Continuum, stále to vidím na šedivý ánrový pr m r.
The seven pieces included in this album are pure Space Music, with the philosophy of exploring new sonic continents nonetheless without abandoning melody and rhythm. The melodies are very impressive, with mysterious and also romantic traits, yet without falling into an excessive sweetness.
Also there are interesting electronic textures and even meditative sonic passages. In a few words, this is a work that will enthusiasm the aficionados to Space Music and Ambient in general.