Monday, 5 June 2017

"A Rainbow In Curved Air" by TERRY RILEY (April 2012 Esoteric Recordings CD Reissue – Ben Wiseman Remaster) - A Review by Mark Barry...



This Review Along With 300+ Others Is Available In My
SOUNDS GOOD E-Book on all Amazon sites
CLASSIC ROCK & POP 1970 to 1974 - Exceptional CD Remasters  
Just Click Below To Purchase for £3.95
Thousands of E-Pages - All Details and In-Depth Reviews From Discs 
(No Cut and Paste Crap)



"...Back Street Luv..."

Name-checked by Pete Townshend of The Who and Mike Oldfield as influences on both "Who's Next" and "Tubular Bells" – and with the British Prog Rock Band pinching CURVED AIR as their name – Californian Terry Riley’s 1969 LP on Columbia Masterworks “A Rainbow In Curved Air” has had extraordinary influence across the decades. Everyone from Tangerine Dream, Amon Duul, Can, Neu, Soft Machine right on through to Steve Reich, Orbital and Boards Of Canada cite the man’s repetitive Electronic noodlings as seminal in the development of their sound. In fact you could say that 'all' Minimal, Ambient and Electronica music owes a debt and a nod to Terry Riley’s groundbreaking LPs. And this beautifully remastered CD (BEN WISEMAN has handled the original master tapes) digs out all those nuances and layers and keyboard flourishes as never before. Here are the Switched On Bach details...

UK released April 2012 – "A Rainbow In Curved Air" by TERRY RILEY on Esoteric Recordings ECLEC 2306 (Barcode 5013929430648) is a straightforward CD remaster (40:27 minutes) of his 2nd LP first issued November 1969 in the USA on Columbia Masterworks MS 7315 and belatedly released 1971 in the UK on CBS Records S 64564. Side 1 is called "A Rainbow In Curved Air" and is one continuous piece of Electronic Music at 18:47 minutes - while Side 2 is "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band" running to 21:41 minutes. Produced by DAVID BEHRMAN – the album was originally Engineered by GLEN KOLOTKIN and ROY SEGAL (his 1st album for Columbia Masterworks is "in C" from 1968 on MS 7178 – which Esoteric Recordings have also reissued on remastered CD - ECLEC 2305 in 2012).

Instead of a 16-page booklet – the inlay folds out into a large 16-square display that gives the smiling face artwork loads on room to shine both back and front (it includes a photo of the rare and different French LP version). There is a superb appraisal of the album, its music and its inventor by noted music writer SID SMITH. It reproduces the liner notes to the UK LP and even has the trade advert from Columbia gallantly trying to explain "What does terry Riley’s music sound like?" and managing to offer up waffle like "...the beginning...inside of you..." But better is the gorgeous remaster. 24-Bit Remastered by BEN WISEMAN at Audio Archiving in London – this CD sounds sensational – unwrapping layers in the density and making it feel like you’re hearing more (and all of it sounding better). A superb job done...

As you play Side 1 – you can so hear where Townshend got the 1971 opening ARP Synthesizer piece to "Baba O'Riley". In fact "A Rainbow In Curved Air" sounds like that "Baba O'Riley" synth pattern taken to a near nineteen-minute opus – all layers and doodles and more layers – looping – rhythmic – dance music minimal – hypnotic and kind of beautiful like the best Kraut Rock is. Riley plays Electric Organ, Electric Harpsichord, Rocksichord Keyboards, Goblet Drums and Tambourine.

Because Side 2 is so busy on the ear – "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band" sounds like there’s a hundred different instruments bombarding your speakers in a sort of Indian meets Classical meets Tangerine Dream – but in fact there’s only two – Organ and Soprano Saxophone. You also notice the way its compiled - as you reach seven minutes into the piece you can so hear where Mike Oldfield got the magnum opus sidelong construction ideas for "Tubular Bells", "Hergest Ridge" and "Ommadawn" between 1973 and 1975. And as the Organ and Soprano Saxophones drone at first and then overlap in a dance – the effect is magical really – the kind of music that will have customers running to the counters of records shops asking with a wide-eyed glint – "whose this!"

It’s experimental for sure and mad in places – but 45 years after the event – "A Rainbow In Curved Air" stills sounds extraordinarily contemporary and of the now (literally years ahead of his time). And the affection and dare we say it awe that Terry Riley is held in has been growing in the Dance and Sampling communities for decades now (a sort of "Back Street Luv").

At a spritely 79 years of age - Riley has a body of Electronic Work that now reaches into the 11’s. Well done to Cherry Red’s Esoteric Recordings for doing such a stellar job...and keep on twiddling those knobs (in an ambient kind of way you understand)...

Name-checked by Pete Townshend of The Who and Mike Oldfield as influences on both "Who's Next" and "Tubular Bells" – and with the British Prog Rock Band pinching CURVED AIR as their name – Californian Terry Riley’s 1969 LP on Columbia Masterworks “A Rainbow In Curved Air” has had extraordinary influence across the decades. Everyone from Tangerine Dream, Amon Duul, Can, Neu, Soft Machine right on through to Steve Reich, Orbital and Boards Of Canada cite the man’s repetitive Electronic noodlings as seminal in the development of their sound. In fact you could say that 'all' Minimal, Ambient and Electronica music owes a debt and a nod to Terry Riley’s groundbreaking LPs. And this beautifully remastered CD (BEN WISEMAN has handled the original master tapes) digs out all those nuances and layers and keyboard flourishes as never before. Here are the Switched On Bach details...

UK released April 2012 – "A Rainbow In Curved Air" by TERRY RILEY on Esoteric Recordings ECLEC 2306 (Barcode 5013929430648) is a straightforward CD remaster (40:27 minutes) of his 2nd LP first issued November 1969 in the USA on Columbia Masterworks MS 7315 and belatedly released 1971 in the UK on CBS Records S 64564. Side 1 is called "A Rainbow In Curved Air" and is one continuous piece of Electronic Music at 18:47 minutes - while Side 2 is "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band" running to 21:41 minutes. Produced by DAVID BEHRMAN – the album was originally Engineered by GLEN KOLOTKIN and ROY SEGAL (his 1st album for Columbia Masterworks is "in C" from 1968 on MS 7178 – which Esoteric Recordings have also reissued on remastered CD - ECLEC 2305 in 2012).

Instead of a 16-page booklet – the inlay folds out into a large 16-square display that gives the smiling face artwork loads on room to shine both back and front (it includes a photo of the rare and different French LP version). There is a superb appraisal of the album, its music and its inventor by noted music writer SID SMITH. It reproduces the liner notes to the UK LP and even has the trade advert from Columbia gallantly trying to explain "What does terry Riley’s music sound like?" and managing to offer up waffle like "...the beginning...inside of you..." But better is the gorgeous remaster. 24-Bit Remastered by BEN WISEMAN at Audio Archiving in London – this CD sounds sensational – unwrapping layers in the density and making it feel like you’re hearing more (and all of it sounding better). A superb job done...

As you play Side 1 – you can so hear where Townshend got the 1971 opening ARP Synthesizer piece to "Baba O'Riley". In fact "A Rainbow In Curved Air" sounds like that "Baba O'Riley" synth pattern taken to a near nineteen-minute opus – all layers and doodles and more layers – looping – rhythmic – dance music minimal – hypnotic and kind of beautiful like the best Kraut Rock is. Riley plays Electric Organ, Electric Harpsichord, Rocksichord Keyboards, Goblet Drums and Tambourine.

Because Side 2 is so busy on the ear – "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band" sounds like there’s a hundred different instruments bombarding your speakers in a sort of Indian meets Classical meets Tangerine Dream – but in fact there’s only two – Organ and Soprano Saxophone. You also notice the way its compiled - as you reach seven minutes into the piece you can so hear where Mike Oldfield got the magnum opus sidelong construction ideas for "Tubular Bells", "Hergest Ridge" and "Ommadawn" between 1973 and 1975. And as the Organ and Soprano Saxophones drone at first and then overlap in a dance – the effect is magical really – the kind of music that will have customers running to the counters of records shops asking with a wide-eyed glint – "whose this!"

It’s experimental for sure and mad in places – but 45 years after the event – "A Rainbow In Curved Air" stills sounds extraordinarily contemporary and of the now (literally years ahead of his time). And the affection and dare we say it awe that Terry Riley is held in has been growing in the Dance and Sampling communities for decades now (a sort of "Back Street Luv").

At a spritely 79 years of age - Riley has a body of Electronic Work that now reaches into the 11’s. Well done to Cherry Red’s Esoteric Recordings for doing such a stellar job...and keep on twiddling those knobs (in an ambient kind of way you understand)...

No comments:

Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

INDEX - Artists, Albums, Record Labels, CD Remaster Engineers, Liner Notes Authors, Links etc