Album Only
AVX010 | 2019-12-02  
The tenth volume of the AstraVox Music catalog emerges via the work of dear label friend and long withstanding Dallas musician, Terry Valderas. Valderas employs a multitude of ghost piano-lines echoing through large ballrooms alongside backward dulcimers that merge mellotrons strings into dramatic soundscapes, crafting AstraVox Music’s signature incidental sonics.

Valderas entered the music world in the late ’80s as the original drummer for the Dallas band The Toadies. He was soon seduced by electronic music of the early ’90s and started producing original works. His original music has graces the catalogs of seminal imprints such as Plastik People, 3 AM Recordings, and Headset to name a few, and has been featured on BBC Radio One, Ministry of Sound, PureFM Berlin, and Sirius/XM.

Valderas started working on the Earthbound LP around eight years ago as a side-project, recording and composing the majority of the long-play in New Mexico, and finishing it in Texas (March 2019). Highly influenced by Coil—particularly their “Lunar” period—this project captures the influence of drones, floating sonics and utilizes various church mode scale collections concentrating on simple pure sheets of sound and drifting tone beds.

Preluding with “Adrift in Dead Calm”, inspired by a late-night sailing excursion that left Valderas stranded in the middle of a lake for hours in turbidly frigid dawn. Featuring a deluge of generative synth pads contrasted against phasing piano motifs and ominous nature sounds.

Taking its name from the Gnostic Scriptures, “The Light Has Surrounded Darkness” arrives via textural scapes that eschew ostinatos of modal piano harmonies set against the enveloping dulcimers reversing.

Pedaling piano motifs come to the foreground in “12th Century Skies at Night”, as cascading synthetic strings as bell tones play backward. Influenced by ancient astronomers seeking scryers—working vigilantly under the veil of darkness and secrecy—a sense of propulsion drives the tapestry into dissipation.

Departing into the streets of Paris, “Le Dôme Café” features the emergence of intellectual ghosts in the background dining at their favored gathering place on the Montparnasse, while overlapping swells of strings contrast against the street scenes. The distance conversations muffled by the disruptive clinking of glassware, synthetic layers of resolute pads textures bring about an idling ambiance.

Recorded in Albuquerque, “There Is A Ghost In This Room” replicates the conversational voices in the walls, tribal drums in the vents, and chanting often heard in the quiet hours at Valderas’ home while living in New Mexico. Summing regional ancestors, this last work on the LP features pointed and sharp metallic motifs set against voices that play forward and in reverse—creating a polyrhythmic ostinato bed—which lays atop a harmony of synthetics that conjure the perilous character of sections of Carpenter’s “Escape From New York” score.

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