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Robert Carty: Deep Spirit

AAJ Staff By

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A brief synopsis: Carty is a gifted ambient electronics composer, touching on space music yet more mysterious, echoing Vangelis, Serrie, Demby, Tyndall, and others. Most importantly he has carved his own niche, a unique style of ambience that is high-quality, moving, pristine, and professional. His ambient synth work is, as I call it, filled with true "soulfire", in touch with unseen realities. Carty is highly recommended in this particular sub-genre of his wider spectrum of synth releases.

"Twilight", 10:21, features a "spaced-out" cricket vocalization, with chirpings that seem to pierce the heavens. "Echoplex"-ed into infinity, its call meets droning synths, swirling about. Layerings of synth upon synth build in crescendo then fade. Chime-like, bell-synth voicings bring in a melodic theme. All is aswirl, echoed, the listener immersed in a sonic whirlpool. Chordal synth pattern begins – a strings voicing evident. Space-cricket theme returns to forefront as if the cosmos, stars and galaxies collapse back to earth. Lone cricket noises, fade out . . .

"Into Deepness", 11:13, brings falling water sounds, huge shimmering, metallic, crystalline synthforms descend, massing in density and volume – listener is engulfed. Deep drone becomes evident. Water sounds become louder. Volume levels then fall off, relaxation, release – a vague song pattern tries to emerge but another repeating synth mode rises above it. Synth walls-of-sound begin crashing in, building, drowning out all sound-spaces then fade to near silence as flowing water sounds return. Tension-release- tension-release, Carty favors this structuring. Water sounds fade . . .

"Growing Light", 9:13, Similar synth signatures as prior piece but no water. However synths are cascading in, building as waves, floating and hovering. Brassy, sharp, cold string-synths are Carty's choice again. Ebb, flow, rise, fall as ocean surf – Carty's sound-walls are relentless. Whirlwinds, vortexes of brilliant light, flashes – are near then far, ever-reproducing a new barrage. No listener release here. Merely a fade to silence. What tiring torrents!

"Spectrums", 10:53, ahh, finally relaxation, low-key, mammoth swirling, low- end, muted but heavy drones with some brief peakings of mid to high-range "trumpetings" or "outbursts". Synth colorings reflect those of first track, spacey, galactic, cosmic but without insectoid chants. Buzzing synth embellishing then regal "horn" synths to soon gain a certain pipe-organ hugeness and splendor yet too brassy and sharp to be fully organ-voiced. Relaxation has ended and the building of intensity of sounds returns. Then comes a quick release in a fade to silence.

"Deep Spirit", 11:01, title track begins with that same swirling, deep down, "swamped" synth-waters feel but a minute tinkling synth effect is added. Buzzing, fast vibrato-echo-distorto synths invade briefly calling to mind Eno's stints with Cluster. This effect of course builds, in typical Carty modality, mutates, expands, oscillating the listener's left and right cerebral hemispheres into some "out-of-phase" state. Big lower octave drones drift in slowly to soothe and overwhelm the moment. Finally, again without release, all sounds simply fade away . . .

"Gentle Revealings", 7:28, (my wife has just drifted off into sleep, holding our very old Yorkie in her lap, recliner and Carty to blame), a final track, a final release, extremely calming piece with harpsichord-ish, glistening synths and keys. Full- splendored feel here with a 1/3 speed frog? cricket? call in background synths awhirling. Is this some distorted sampling of an old fan belt at slow speed? Weird. Chimed synths seemed very Larry Fast-ian or Vangelis, circa Antarctica and that slow-speed screeching "unknown" fades away as final sound, a synth reprise, then final fade.

Cyberhome: http://www.geocities.com/deepsky_84107/index.html


Track Listing: (see review)

Personnel: Robert Carty: everything

Title: Deep Spirit | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Deep Sky Music


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