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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

STEVE ROACH: Nostalgia for the Future (2017)

Updated: Mar 5, 2021

“Nostalgia for the Future is an album arisen from the feeling of solitude and this can be felt all over this last rather dark journey into the inner mind by Steve Roach”

1 Home Now 19:48 2 The Rising Tide 11:31 3 The Rising Tide Part Two 11:37 4 Inside the Inside 7:43 5 Nostalgia in Waves 8:11 6 For The Future 15:00 Timeroom Editions ‎| TM42 (CD/DDL 73:50) (V.F.) (Deep immersive Ambient Music)

With Long Thoughts and NOSTALGIA FOR THE FUTURE, Steve Roach makes a copy/paste of the albums Fade to Grey and Painting in the Dark. These albums released at the very end of 2016 have the same peculiarities and, more or less, the same structures of meditative vibes as Long Thoughts and of its unique title, as in Fade to Grey. And like in Painting in the Dark, NOSTALGIA FOR THE FUTURE proposes 6 titles which lengthen its music time of a single second with regard to Painting in the Dark. And the game of comparisons doesn't stop there. Quite the opposite, both albums flirt on the same pattern with as many structures which split into a long mosaic of meditation. But still here, the sculptor of the soundscapes from California succeeds to pull the improbable of this long lineage of meditative ambiences albums by insufflating a little of new in the old.

Home Now begins with warmness. On a slow and continuous humming, a more musical wave raises the game of the comparisons with a floating movement which pours its moans on this shaded task. If no percussion, or movement of sequences, liven up the ambiences, Steve Roach attributes to his sound reflections some slow winged movements which are propelled by slow ripple effects which roll on an ocean rocked by the hands of Neptune. It's quiet and very serene, besides having a melodious approach as attractive as mysterious. Hollow breezes win in power and smother the lines of melodious song of Home Now to empty its finale towards the saga of The Rising Tide, a more ambient and darker title with harmonies so discreet that they are noticed on the late. The avalanche of the sound layers gives a rather impenetrable approach, dense and heavy from where also escape more lugubrious inhuman thin lines of singing exercises. Note that our friend Steve coats his music here with a fine membrane of white noises, giving a beautiful twilight contrast to the approach always very hollowed of his music. Speaking of which, the heavy moods in The Rising Tide Part Two surpasses the qualifier. The pile of synth lines gives an image of magma stopped by some very icy radiations where we can hear the boiling fusion howling to coldness. And from the opening line of Inside the Inside, NOSTALGIA FOR THE FUTURE goes back into the ambiences of Home Now in order to reach a delicious moment of emotionalism with these winged songs which get loose from the long skeleton of hummings. Nostalgia in Waves follows with a slow and fascinating undulating movement which is pushed by reverberant waves. It's like to follow the evolution of a rangy hypnotic travel which is sculpted in the skeleton of a drone gliding between two stratospheric layers. For The Future ends this last Steve Roach's meditative odyssey with another drifting structure armored of drones which is also split into multiple fragments of serenity and by moments of ambiospherical swells which feed on the tenacity of drones to survive in scattered movements of calm.

Composed and recorded between January and July of this year, NOSTALGIA FOR THE FUTURE is an album arisen from the feeling of solitude and this can be felt all over this last rather dark journey into mind from Steve Roach. A little darker, as a little more harmonious, but also with an impressive presence of the breaths of sound drones, NOSTALGIA FOR THE FUTURE follows closely the way traced by Painting in the Dark. It's another intimate opus that the musician offers to his fans. I would not say that it is an essential work in Steve Roach's repertoire, but that remains a more lugubrious ambient music with a harmonious side as much imperceptible as very elusive, but especially very fascinating in a decoration which sounds very devastating like the one of a planet which is in its last miles. Effective and very magnetizing, the fans of Steve Roach are going to be feed. Up until the next chapter. Sylvain Lupari (September 8th, 2017) *****

Available at Timeroom Direct Bandcamp

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