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HYPNOS RECORDINGS => Hypnos Label Releases => Topic started by: mgriffin on May 06, 2011, 10:38:36 AM

Title: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: mgriffin on May 06, 2011, 10:38:36 AM
Artist: Steve Brand
Title: Avatara
Label: Hypnos (digipak CD)


Steve Brand got his start releasing experimental music under the name "Augur," and more recently switched over to releasing music under his own name (both solo and in collaboration with such artists as Ishq and Disturbed Earth) on the Atmoworks, Hypnos Secret Sounds and Relaxed Machinery labels. He's quickly established himself as one of the more interesting and distinctive artists working in ambient music, and having released two albums Bridge to Nowhere and Children of Alcyone on Hypnos Secret Sounds in 2008 and 2009, we're very excited to follow up with Steve Brand's new album Avatara on the main Hypnos imprint. This album has a ritual feel common to many of Brand's recordings, though Avatara is more ambient and less percussive. The recording starts out in a place of low-key contemplation and evolves through distinct stages and moods, though it is always gentle and meditative.

Steve Brand describes some of the inspirations behind this album:
Avatara is Sanskrit for "descent" in the sense of a deity's descent from heaven to earth. Avatara is inspired by the various avatars of various ages and cultures...Yeshua, Quan Yin, Buddha, Brigit, Krishna, Saint Germain, White Buffalo Calf Woman, and others. I’m fascinated by the idea and the various stories in various ages and cultures of humans becoming "ascended masters," or avatars, non-human beings that still are attached to humans and choose to returns to Earth to assist them. The stories vary, and almost every culture has its masters, but one thing is consistent throughout each of their stories, they've realized a more expanded expression of being and awareness, of what we are and what we are capable of, and return to assist other human beings.
Track list with MP3 samples
01 - Avatara - 5:09 -- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-01.mp3
02 - The Far Shore - 8:45 -- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-02.mp3
03 - Morning Glory - 12:09 -- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-03.mp3
04 - Still Here (breathing space) - 13:38-- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-04.mp3
05 - Act of Creation - 14:26 -- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-05.mp3
06 - Avatara (deathless) - 7:10 -- MP3 clip http://www.hypnos.com/audio/hypnos-sbr-a-06.mp3

Purchase direct for $12.99



Purchase direct for $12.99
Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: richardgurtler on May 06, 2011, 11:09:29 AM
"Avatara" CD just arrived today and I am absolutely impressed, it's a real masterwork, both musically and visually!!! Big thanks and congratulations to Steve and all others involved!!! Also I would like to thank to Mike & Lena for releasing Steve's work in this format, I think it's well deserved for Steve to have his music available as pressed CD with nice digipak packaging. Please keep on going, guys!!!

Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: mgriffin on May 06, 2011, 03:32:13 PM
Thanks, Richard. Response to Avatara has been very positive so far.  Though I'm just getting around to announcing it here, the CD actually came out about 2 weeks ago -- as you know, since you ordered right away!
Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: hdibrell on May 06, 2011, 09:03:39 PM
Me too! :) This is really a very good release. I've been listening to it quite a bit in the last few days. One of Steve's best IMO.
Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: richardgurtler on June 13, 2011, 03:11:38 AM
Hi friends, here is my little review on this great album:

Steve Brand "Avatara" CD

Steve Brand has already collaborated with Hypnos before when releasing his "Bridge To Nowhere" and "Children Of Alcyone" albums on Hypnos Secret Sounds during 2008 and 2009. This time he landed on the main Hypnos imprint. I was very curious about this one since the very beginning, when the album was announced on Hypnos. Now finally in my hands, with gorgeously looking cover artwork (by Kati Astraeir) and ready to be fully exoplored and enjoyed. "Avatara" opens with mysteriously beautiful and unique title track, amazing echoed intro I must say! The next one, "The Far Shore", is more slow-breathing ambience later unfolding into slighly more monumental, but tranquil mood, at times more gloomy or meditative. "Morning Glory" is by far more active piece nicely crossed with silent interruptions and aerial ethereal washes, another huge one, a real masterpiece! "Still Here (Breathing Space)" takes us to exciting outer space voyage, later on enriched by crispy bell sounds. Credited for additional sounds on this masterfully absorbing composition are Matt Hillier/Ishq and Charity Masters/Holon, carefully executed! "Act Of Creation" with its longing feel is the most organic and resonant piece, colored by environmental recordings. "Avatara (Deathless)" is even more mysterious than the intro part of this title track and also perfectly fitting closer for this album. "Avatara" is certainly one of the best and most polished, if not the strongest, works of Steve Brand. Last but not least, it's well deserved for this highly creative sound artist to have his album finally released as pressed CD and packaged in nicely looking digipak, so extra points go also to Mike & Lena of Hypnos. "Avatara" is without any doubt absolutely breathtaking listening experience!!!

Richard Gürtler (Bratislava, Slovakia)
Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: Steve Brand on September 16, 2011, 10:59:30 AM
Thanks for everyone for their for their invaluable help and support on this release—specials thanks go to, Mike, Lena, Kati, Chuck, Harry and Richard.
Title: Re: RELEASE: Steve Brand - Avatara
Post by: Seren on September 16, 2011, 02:08:02 PM
I've praised Avatara in the now listening thread, but it's worth adding here too.

I like the way Steve uses panning and silence in some of the tracks - great music, well worth getting and giving a spin...