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Ascension and Revelation (cdr)

Mongioe peak, myself descending West mountainside, 26 April 2008, middle morning.
Photo shutted by my rope buddy, complaint Andrea Rossocci.
Photo elaboration courtesy of my friend Paolo Canali.

Music compositions, performances and mastering by Giorgio Robino.
Composition is a single long suite subdivided with 7 indexes,
for a total time of 01:17:23 (almost 78 minutes).
Audio format available: Audio CDR (single cd) / Download FLAC files.

Instruments on performances:
electric guitar, 6 strings electric lap steel guitar, classical guitar,
loops and delays pedals.

Instrument on postproduction (overdubbing and mastering):
an ordinary personal computer with an ordinary acquisition device, an ordinary CD burner.
Final release: 22 September 2006

go to Store page to purchase!

Tracks
Ascension (part 1)
Following Sparkling Filaments (track 1, 00:00:00) 
original title track (in Italian): Seguendo Filamenti Luminosi
Fire Birds Climbing Shining Waterfalls (track 2, 08:08:00) 
original title track (in Italian): Uccelli di Fuoco Arrampicano su Cascate Scintillanti
Felsenmeer Endless Labyrint (track 3, 00:25:00)  download MP3
original title track (in Italian): Labirinto Senza Fine del Mare di Pietre
Revelation (part 2)
Carried Away by Inorganic Beings (track 4, 00:34:00) 
original title track (in Italian): Portato Via da Esseri Inorganici
Achieving Sky True through Vertigo Vortexes (track 5, 00:42:00)  download MP3
original title track (in Italian): Raggiungendo la Verità del Cielo attraverso Vortici di Vertigine
Talking Stones Levitation Path (track 6, 00:55:00)  download MP3
original title track (in Italian): Sentiero Levitante sulla via delle Pietre Parlanti
One Love Collective Ascension (track 7, 01:02:00) 
original title track (in Italian): Ascesa Collettiva all’Amore Unico


Listeners' comments
Add Your comment!
When I heard "Following Sparkling Filaments" I closed my eyes and it filled me with a sense of calm. I imagined a lush tropical environment with a waterfall and colorful sparkling plants with long tendrils blowing softly in the wind. It also brought to mind Roger Dean's drawings on the Yes "Close to the Edge" album with the floating islands and lush green scenery. Thank you so much for your music - it has brought me much joy.
Jeffrey Kaufhold, USA, 18 January 2012

I'm a writer and I very much enjoy listening to ambient (if you'll forgive my use of this broad definition) music. I write very late at night and often a sound-scape without beats or words is just what I want to keep my spirits up and my attention focused. I often listen to an internet radio program called the "Drone Zone" on SomaFM -- www.somafm.com -- and this is where I heard "Ascension and Revelation", which was played in its entirety.

I actually had to stop writing to listen to your music. Since it was keeping me from work, I kept meaning to turn it off but found that I couldn't. And so I sat for over an hour, just listening, unable not to get caught up in the beauty you had created.

To me, all art is a communication and I heard such a powerful spiritual element in yours. Funnily enough, I also find a powerful spirituality in Tarkovsky's films and so the name "Solyaris" seems very apt, indeed!

I, like many people I think, become very attached to the music that moves me and so I was very glad to find not only that your music was for sale but that you were overseeing its sale yourself. I am always extremely happy to be able to support such endeavors.
Stephanie Rogers, Canada, 18 March 2008

Now your music has more dimensionality. "Achieving Sky True through Vertigo Vortexes" is most impressive for this. At first I got the image of increasing distance from me, as when I look out from a mountaintop. Then from the superimposed continual single glissandos from one note to another, fading in and out, being replaced by others, I somehow got the feeling of 'velocity'.

If one is traveling while one is standing still in three dimensions, then one must be traveling in time. That was the next feeling. One can travel in time backwards, called 'memory' and one can also travel forwards, which is a real trick. All of us recognize that we can do it for a short distance in the future. but most music deals with memories --the past

So, in view of this musical piece I would call you "Safecracker of Time". Essentially, a man who cracks a safe figures out the combination on the lock, figures out how to open it. Question is, what is in the safe, when it opens to the future?

"Felsenmeer Endless Labyrint" is like a heavenly visit, more positive, but more static, as if one is standing in one place and listening to the energy left over from the 'big bang' which began the universe --astronomers like to do this. They say that the ‘residual energy' of the 'big bang' can still be heard. I prefer to think that the 'residual energy' is more musical, harmonious than something detected by scientific instruments.

Your third song "Talking Stones Levitation Path" --I listened to it before I read your story about it. I got the heaviness of it, not so much the grief of it, but listening to the lower notes, and how they change by fifths and fourths, and how the first dominant note becomes the subdominant of an inverted new interval, --- that is a nice musical device. To me it said 'things are not always as they seem....'
Alan Fontana, USA, www.clarencethecat.com/sizzler.htm, 29 September 2007

I always enjoy the ambient sounds you obtain using your combination of guitars. This album, like your earlier albums, contains a dense layer of interesting sounds and harmonics. I think you've got a very interesting and solid sound going on your current path in which you explore the possibilities in processing sounds from these analog instruments.
Gurdonark ( Robert Lullany), TX-USA, http://ambient-review.livejournal.com, 9 February 2007

I Love It! Incredible, really is! It really IS the finest work that you have done.
Ascension and Revelation, containing almost 78 minutes of stringed bliss, is a long-form piece and should be listened to as such, time constraints allowing. The CD uses electric and acoustic guitars, e-bow guitar, zither, mandolin, steel-string guitar, and some looping and other treatments, although not as much as in, say, Western Detunes.

The piece is quite visual, not surprisingly as Giorgio's favorite hobby of recent times is mountain climbing. I considered this piece not in terms of tracks but in terms of an arc, as one ascends a mountain, stands on top and stares out in wonder (the steel string guitars are used to great effect in this part of the piece,) and descending the mountain after having caught a glimpse of the heavens above.

Musically, Giorgio has not so much "moved on" as he has codified his approach. The sound is more harmonic than before, more acoustic, and seems to feature less looping, or at least, more "real time" playing. Although Giorgio's musical influences are still evident (Stars of The Lid, Windy and Carl, Susan Alcorn, particularly her Curandera CD, Colleen's "DIY" ethic, the harmonic swilling beauty of Laraaji) this piece has effectively melded everything into a "Solyaris Music" record. There are segments on Ascension and Revelation, about twenty five to fifteen minutes from the end as one is descending the mountain, that the sound becomes gentler; one hears a smooth harmonic sheen (a la Jeff Pearce) but with faintly overdubbed steel guitars gently breezing by-at moments like this, I listen and think, "How can anything sound better?"

Granted, 80 minutes is a lot to ask of any listener, and this is a piece that requires, no, DEMANDS to be listened to all at once, particularly in headphones. Sure, you can tune into spots and hear wonderful music, but the beauty of the arc, how Giorgio got from "A" to "B" to "C," will be missed.

Ascension and Revelation is either the last great work of 2006 or the first one of 2007. When you have 80 minutes for detailed listening (this is no background music,) the first 77:23 to listen to this splendid string collage, and at least a couple of minutes to "debrief" from the intensity of the experience, you will find no better activity than to bathe in Ascension and Revelation. Giorgio Robino a/k/a Solyaris has gotten it right, and Ascension and Revelation is imbued with a spiritual beauty rarely found in contemporary music.
Bravissimo Giorgio!
Gordon Danis, NY-USA, 2 February 2007

I am amazed at how deep and sensual the trance state I enter with your music...
I am curious about your source(s) of inspiration, I am sure they include BEAUTY…
Laraaji (Edward Gordon), great artist, dwij.org/rising_stars/laraaji.html, NY-USA, 24 January 2007

I primi brani sono diversi da quello a cui ci hai abituati con gli altri album. C'è un suono di fondo più intenso del solito e meno di quelli che a causa della mia ignoranza chiamo "canti delle balene". Ad un ascolto superficiale il tutto sembra molto uniforme, ma in realtà non lo è per nulla. Mi fa venire in mente il colore giallo. Come quel colore, anche questi brani sono difficili da lasciare in sottofondo perché riempiono molto. Dal quarto brano si abbandona il nuovo stile per avvicinarsi a quello degli album precedenti per poi arrivare ad una fusione tra i due a partire dal sesto brano. In pratica questo album è una dialettica tra il nuovo e il vecchio, che prima si sfidano e poi si combinano per creare un punto di incontro aperto verso il futuro.

Initial pieces are different from what Solyaris get us used with previous CDs. There is a background sound more deep than usual and there are less of what I call "whale singings". Whit a superficial listening all seem very uniform, indeed it is not uniform nothing at all; this music reminds the color” yellow”. As that color, also these tracks are difficult to remain as background because these plug up a lot. From fourth track the new style is abandoned coming close to that one of previous CDs, finally arriving to a fusion from the sixth track. All in all this work is a dialectic between the old-style and the new-style, that at first challenge these self  end afterward these fuse creating an encounter point open toward the future.
Paolo Montrasio, www.paolomontrasio.com, Italy, 6 November 2006

I wanted to say thank you for the Ascension and Revelation CD. I really do enjoy listening to it as I don't really listen to a lot of ambient. I think that you are one of a few ambient people who I think has whatever it is that makes ambient worth listening to (that was a compliment if it doesn't translate correctly). I really hope that you continue with your work as I really do enjoy listening to what you create.
Diatonis (Stuart White), ambient music video-artist, www.diatonis.com, USA, 19 October 2006

Your music is very peaceful and beautiful to me.
Best wishes for your continuing work.
Christina
Christina Carter (Charalambides), www.wholly-other.com, 29 September 2006

I have just finished listening to a draft mix of Solyaris' "Ascension and Revelation". Once again, I am in awe of his ability to make such lush, complex sounds with such simple tools. He isdefinitely the master of what someone called " shimmering ambient". Seldom is the feel heavy. Instead, I am left with a feelingof freely floating, without a worry. I catch myself wanting to buy a kite and fly it while listening to this. I can imagine what my neighbors wouldthink when they saw the old guy flying a kite and listening on headphones [Smile]. Oh well, it couldn't be any worse than what they thought when they saw me playing my guitar in the backyard through my Rockman with a thunderstorm approaching [Wink]. I know one thing for sure, when I finally release my CD, I'm going to have Giorgio name the pieces for me. "Firebirds Climbing Shining Waterfalls" has got to be the best title I've heard in a long time. Anyway, I can't recommend this work enough. Great job , Giorgio.
Harry Dibrell, Texas-USA, 25 September 2006

Self Introduction (verbose)
What Solyaris Music is?
How could I define my music? That’s an embarrassing question and I always in doubt when people ask it me. I generally say “I compose ambient music using slide guitars” as a very general simplification, indeed I’m perplex defining my music as “ambient” because this imply many misunderstandings; for example the “ambient music” definition report people immediately to Brian Eno’s conceptions that I really feel far from me.

Someone defined my works “shimmering ambient” or “light ambient”, maybe to differentiate these from dark-ambient and much “static” drone music. I appreciate the “shimmering” definition, in facts my music is pretty “dynamic” in opposite of the static of much so called ambient music; with “dynamic” I refer to some time-traversing evolutive paths that start form an initial “consciousness status”, ending in a final one usually different; I mean that it’s important for me that music could act as a “stalker-instrument” that bring you away from the initial context (physical or psychological), achieving some (not foreseen) unpredictable “final-status” (that I hope will be something “better” or profound in a spiritual sense… this is my final aim that motivate me to realize music).

By the way, I define “timescapes” this soundscapes-based music that I compose with the aim to design atemporal paths (in the sense that transcend time concept) … difficult maybe … but the only ascensional way I can see as true and uncontrived. Coming back to listeners’ definitions, I basically presume that “shimmering” is referring also to my use of (slide) guitars mostly in the high frequency spectrum. Some other people refer to my music as “space music”, and some others agree that my music is not ambient, but many state that what I realize is not drone music, is not space music, is not psychedelic music … so, what my music is?! Maybe I’d joking define it “solaristic music” as tribute to Andrei Tarkovkij, the immense Russian movie director!

“Ascension and Revelation” CDR presentation and tracks “explanation”:
My new CDR consists in a single long suite (1 hour and 17 minutes) occupying pretty all CD media length, subdivided in seven tracks cross faded together. In facts there are not really different pieces, but just some evolution of initial seeds that evolve becoming “plural” till final vast coral multitude “drones”. All in all it’s very slow motion music that evolve from a state to a successive one without discontinuity, with very slow and smooth cross-fades, passing through dramatics/tenses peaks but finally reaching a resolution in relaxed (but hyperkinetic?!) blissful atmosphere (at least this have been my intention). You could see the composition with the metaphor of walking (climbing? flying?) in a mountain path that made your soul (and body) lighter and lighter as soon you achieve the summit, when and where you finally could clearly “view” what there is this behind: the vision of a beyond world …(please read the dedication at the end of this letter).

I enjoyed myself subdividing this single composition in two “virtual” parts: “Ascension” (first three tracks) and “Revelation” last four tracks. The initial “Following Shining Filaments” introduce the “seeds” (guitar-alaps improvisation licks) that will become a tense waterfall of hyper-overdubbed guitar waterfalls wall of textures in “Fire Birds Climbing Shimmering Waterfall” in a style that I explored in my previous work “Cellardoor”, even if here the layering of sound is really exaggerated producing often an “aliasing-vertigo” that engulf myself!. Third cloudy-chunk, “Felsenmeer Endless Labyrint” is performed on my classical guitar (I sold this instrument to my great friend Roberto, now death, almost 20 years ago … and his wife now very kindly gave back to me); piece result in a real mess of phrases that nothing resolve … that’s why they recall the temporary resignation to be inside that labyrinth of sharp sad stones (Felsenmeer mean “sea of stones”). The second part, “Revelation”, start with “Carried Away by Inorganic Beings”, a piece based on looped slide guitar performances that broke the agitation of first part, now going back to calm profound slow winds atmosphere, that evolve in successive “Achieving Sky True through Vertigo Vortexes” where the scenario become rough and vortexes bring up and up in an “ecstatic hyper-tension” ?! that finally resolve in “Talking Stones Levitation Path” where all tensions are went and serene detuned polyphonic bass drones remains as “carrier” of the final ascent: “One Love Collective Ascension” achieving a summit of estatic (but hyper dynamic) blissful peace …





Who could love and who could hate ““Ascension and Revelation”:
I know my music and especially this last work is not for everyone; unfortunately occasional listener, nowadays used to listen only few minutes long pieces, probably will reject a music that evolve in 78 minutes of continuum soundscapes without silences or breaks …but the real reason some people hate or almost “reject” listening my music is because my music is not “easy listening”, indeed requiring an introspective concentration, a meditation willing, etc. that scare?! On the other hand, I fair also many “experienced” drone-music listeners could judge my music too much anxious and kinetic and not “relaxing” or “calm”.

Indeed I think music can’t be interesting if didn’t explore “some” feeling traversing, passing through a sort of hypnotic behaviors that allow to see beyond time and space (something I just called “timescape”). All in all my way to compose music is that ”report” a sort of feelings evolution (the intuition of something beyond ?!) and specifically I like these paths that bring the human being from an initial status (probably chaotic) in a final one where the soul evolve in something better, more free, more conscious of (one) love, almost with a temporary resolution …the way to be happy (as human being). So, people will enjoy my work are “deep listening” music lovers without (cultural, technical …) prejudices, open to listen something uncontrived, that could explore a possible new path of consciousness …

Technicalities:
The technique used for performances and recordings/mixing/mastering this CDR is not really different from that one I consolidated in my previous works (see “Mellow Stasis” and especially “Cellardoor” web pages for details). My use of treated guitars is pretty particular but nowadays almost ordinary… I process electric standard guitar, slide guitar and classical guitar (It’s first time I record this instrument) with large amounts of delays and looping (I used here a real-time loop pedal for first time). After the performance sessions, I work at computer for mixing: I cross-fade many overdubbed layers, reaching what someone called “a wall of sound”, anyway very dense textures that often do not seem made by guitars; BTW, some people insist that I use electronic synthesizers but that is absolutely not true: my music start from the touch of a string and end with a delay/reverberation/layering processing; that’s all. Please note that I use computer as a simple multi-track editor, without any software filtering-elaboration, with the exception of some small noise reduction.

Rethinking on melodic and harmonic (and rhythmic!) constructions of “Ascension and Revelation”, one could say that my music is “modal music” with an approach maybe similar to that used in Indian music; I’m referring to the different” phases” of a classical Indian music (alap, etc.) composition, where for example the melodic textures are based on some possible modal scales (that are not completely tuned in tempered system). This could be partially true, even if I love a lot Indian music paradigm. “Ascension and revelation” is built on melodic interfacings around a basic tone (E), but a complete listening of the suite reveals that indeed the initial basic tone evolve changing in “near” tonal centers (through a continuum of detuning and drifting drones) … So another time I can’t define this music as modal. Also in this work I used some harmonic ambiguities (I – IV – V degree) that one could call bluesy in a very general sense; by the way; I hate blues music clichés, but in facts I – IV movements are “natural” for standard tunings guitar-based music … I know, I have strange ideas and my music is often alien and surprising also to myself! …

References to other musicians:
My music is inspired to music composed by musician I love and In “Ascension and Revelation” I “copied” many techniques of these musicians: just for start, the use of delays interlacing drones by Carl Hultgren, the guitar-side of Windy & Carl, the use of e-bowed slide guitar drones by Stars of The Lid magnificent creativity, the use on contact-micro on classical guitar by superb Cecile Schoot, in art Colleen, that I love for her incredible use of looped classical guitar as harps clusters, some hyper-reverberation cloudy atmospheres by Steve Roach and last but not least, I could say that all my music is the tempt to reproduce some magician of sound-sorcerer Robert Rich. I have to remember here also the influence of music of my friend Stefano Musso, in art Alio Die, a master of quiet drone music inspired to Mother Earth creatures, Laraaji’s music because his hypnotic use of delayed and overlapped zithers, and I can’t remember Suso Saiz for his “hypnotics” work!

Thanks and dedication:
A very special thanks to Marina Porcile (wife of Roberto Minniti, my great friend, now death); she very kindly gave back to me recently “my historical” classical guitar (I used in this composition) … this is a very funny moving story: almost 20 years ago (I was teen-ager) I sold my first instrument, just that classical guitar, to my friend Roberto (because some economical problems at that time); afterward, this instrument became the preferred of Roberto (a guitarist too), that years after never want to resell me back the instrument … for any proposed price! So this “joking issue” has been the symbol of our friendship.

Grazie Marina! Le vostre figlie Licia e Gaia potranno sempre contare su di me per la musica (per quel poco che posso) se mai ameranno liberamente la musica! Un abbraccio.

Giorgio Robino, Genova – Italia, 17 September 2006

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