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Messages - Robert Logan

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Mike and Robert,

I've been listening to Nest lately and I think what you're hearing on Tracks 3-5 are cicadas or a relative very close to them.


Ah, thanks. Mystery solved (for me at least!... Maybe it should have been obvious. But us Brits don't get to enjoy so many interesting insect sounds.)

By the way, what do people make of this new Robert Rich release in a more general sense!? It's a sequel to Somnium after all! Kind of significant... :-)

it sounds like a air valve which seeps constantly while the "pressure " in this "valve" does vary the sound does come and go a little bit.. disappear for a few seconds but always come back...
Hmmm . . . this sounds like the exact same problem I hear in "Nest". It starts up around the end of track 3, and continues through to the end of track 5. The entire album is bathed in forest environmental sounds, but these field recordings are quite noisy. There's something very raw about the recordings that I can appreciate though, and I figure that was Robert's intent, but the hiss during those parts is especially distracting.

Looking at the spectral analysis, those tracks have a wide band of noise covering 3.5-10k range. From your description, this seems like the hissing sound you're talking about. As you said, it's not a consistent hiss. It sort of reminds me of bad noise reduction where the noise is sitting on the threshold of being removed or not.
The noise actually extends beyond that to the ceiling, but there's a clear drop in gain beyond the 10k range. It looks similar to MP3 compression, but without the smearing.

I wonder if it's a bizarre chorus of bugs of some kind.

I'm glad someone mentioned this! Thank you Altus. :)

I love 'Nest', you see, except I have always found that 'hissing' noise that runs from track 3 to track 5 pretty bizarre and distracting. Part of me usually likes seemingly 'strange' sonic decisions like that, but for me it's strange because it's actually such a plain sound. Sometimes when listening I can't even tell if it's a field recording or just some constant modular white/pink/whatever noise layers simmering in and out! I found it so odd I was going to email him to ask about it, but never got round to that.

He is obviously a master of sound, though, and I generally find his work technically flawless and wonderful on all systems. That's what makes that aspect of tracks 3-5 all the stranger (as deliberate as it obviously is.)

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Aphex Twin
« on: October 01, 2014, 02:40:51 AM »
So, what do folk here make of his new album, 'Syro'?

I seem to really love it one day, and then find it boring and irritating the next.

Lots of old school vintage sounds on this one, for sure... Much like his last Analord and Tuss releases.

It seems from interviews there are other 'more experimental' releases lined up, and he defined this as his 'pop album' - so I look forward to hearing those (if they actually materialise!)

It's great to have new Aphex material whatever the case. :-)

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Bad Ambient
« on: September 03, 2014, 06:04:27 PM »
I must say, some Tim Hecker (and similarly, Ben Frost's ambient moments) match what you're saying exactly. Whatever interesting things may be going on texturally in some of their pieces, and however much I enjoy these more extreme approaches to distortion, I find the harmonies behind it all so obvious and saccharine that the music trips up on itself. Now, I don't see any division between melodics, texture, production, harmony, or whatever other divisions people make: it all melts into one. And the musical clash of fragility and beauty with sonic violence is so exciting when it is done well. But this case is different. I've read people describe the harmonic movements of, say, Tim Hecker's 'Harmony in Ultraviolet' as 'emotional', but I find it hard to get emotional with such tried and tested progressions, and the excellent sonics actually makes the lack of imagination in that department all the more apparent to me. It's a weak juxtaposition, which is a same, as in theory I should love such a combination.

PS - I should say do like some of these guys' music very much!

This arrived today and I've given it a few spins.

There are some gorgeous and fresh sounding analog textures on this album, even if they'd sit comfortably with the kinds of sounds Steve has been emitting from many other releases. Still, these are luscious and beautifully subtle soundworlds, and space and silence are utilised to great effect in the music. I also prefer the darker EQing of Steve's newer stuff, but I can understand if people miss the brightness of old!

As much as one part of me enjoys the minimalism and focus of these pieces and other newer Steve Roach releases (like 'Spiral Meditations'), I do miss the days where individual tracks would have more distinct developments and contrasting sections within them. I remember often loving the majestic gear shifts throughout some tracks on The Magnificent Void, Mystic Chords and Sacred Spaces, that album The Dream Circle, the Vir Unis and Vidna Obmana collaborations, and many others. But this isn't specific to Steve's output; I've noticed that a number of ambient artists I like tend to focus on one main 'idea' per track these days, whereas their past works often had more surprises and definite shifts within individual tracks.     

The samples are much longer on Spotted Peccary -->


This release is sounding great. I have take the plunge. :D

I enjoyed reading people's impressions too...


Has anyone had a chance to listen to this new Steve Roach release yet? Apologies if it has already been discussed, but I couldn't find anything when I searched the forum...

The samples are a little short for me to be able to deduce anything much about the music. It'd be really interesting to read your impressions. :)

Just downloaded and had a quick listen to 'At The Edge Of Everything'. It's actually fantastic. I am glad to hear more of this fierce 'darkness' or 'otherness' in a new release of his ( is a concert from many years ago. But perhaps that kind of weird energy will show up again in a new release!) 

I can understand where people are coming from on the newer Steve Roach releases, but 'Spiral Meditations' actually sounds pretty vibrant and fresh to my ears (from the samples at least.) I'm purchasing it.

Hello sonic adventuring brothers...I've just noticed that the soundtrack has been released. :) &

Forum Member Projects News and Promotion / Re: Nominated for an Emmy Award
« on: September 19, 2013, 03:46:54 PM »
Very beautiful Robert.....congratulations .

Ive been listening to your sound cloud page......Love it.   Grinder,  thats just wild.  The ambient  track 0 > θs ≥ −6◦ is very special,  Ive played "Kid" quite a few times.  Looking forward to you release.

Thank you! It is very encouraging to hear how you enjoyed the music...

And thank you all who posted congratulations! 

Forum Member Projects News and Promotion / Nominated for an Emmy Award
« on: September 16, 2013, 08:52:24 PM »
Ivor and I were recently nominated for an Emmy Award for our soundtrack to a great HBO documentary film called 'Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God'. (

Going to the awards was a very surreal and extravagant (and very fun in places). We didn't win. But we were the only documentary in the category, and the winning entry (and all the other 4 nominees) were proper blockbuster, big budget, full-on-orchestral affairs, so I'm thankful we were nominated at all.

Here is a little piece I composed for the film:

Here is another piece I want to share, not from the film:

I have also been working on solo material for the last 4 years. Hopefully this new album (along with some ambient material) will see the light of day sometime soon. You've got to let go at some point, after all! ;-)

Thanks for letting us know. I really liked the feel of this and bought it.

Great work! I love music that 'rests' in a specific, almost 'neutral' state like this. It is non-didactic and both relaxing and very intense and interesting at the same time. Thank you.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: AMBIcon 2013 Update
« on: May 24, 2013, 08:26:56 AM »
I've so enjoyed watching all these concerts (and the panel discussion) over here in rainy England. Thank you Stephen Hill and everyone who has made it possible to view them online. I want to fly over and experience it 'in person' if there is another one, though (thankfully I have a wife who actually likes this kind of music!)

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Steve Roach - Today
« on: March 02, 2013, 08:06:16 AM »
Thanks. That's a lovely little track....

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Recent music purchases
« on: March 02, 2013, 08:03:42 AM »
Why do you folks make of the new Autechre?

I can't make my mind up about it. But I do know the second track, 'irlite (get 0)', is one of the strangest and most fantastic things I have heard in a long time. It's got a wonderfully thick, foggy, dark, surreal but fun atmosphere. The new album also sounds much better and more 'three-dimensional' on headphones to me than most of their more recent albums do.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Overrated Ambient
« on: February 14, 2012, 04:57:43 PM »
Interesting thread.

I would say Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II. I think I understand what it is trying to do, and there are some tracks and some moments that are quite sublime, but overall there's too many irritating and lazy aspects in much of the music (for me) to be able to get fully immersed in it.

Another one could be Structures from Silence. Now, I do find this album absolutely beautiful (and much more enjoyable and far less overrated than Aphex's SAWII), but I'm surprised how it's often viewed as one of Steve Roach's best. I enjoy so many Steve Roach releases more than this one (and more than Dreamtime Return, as it happens.) But maybe that's just me.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Steve Roach 2012 Box Set
« on: January 17, 2012, 05:22:44 AM »
'Back to Life' is the best solo Steve Roach album I have heard in a while. It's not particularly different to what we've heard from him many times before, but it sounds very rich and it opens up parts of my soul in the way only great Steve Roach releases can. Where I have found some of his newer releases of this ilk a little lacking or raw in sound and detail, 'Back to Life' is deep and sonorous.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Robert Rich: Medicine Box (2011)
« on: January 04, 2012, 09:46:40 AM »
What do others make of this release? I'd be interested in some more in-depth opinions now that it's been out for a while. I feel the same way about it on the whole - though the last track has grown on me a huge amount.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Robert Rich: Medicine Box (2011)
« on: November 15, 2011, 06:04:51 PM »
I hate to sound negative, but in a similar way to Ylang, I'm finding this a bit difficult to get into. 'Kaaruwana' still sounds stunning, as do one or two other tracks. In fact, there are sublime moments and some beautiful melodic turns in this, and thankfully it is a more striking listen than Ylang. Generally, however, it's not nearly deep-amospheric or minimal enough for me to enjoy in a 'let it wash over you' kind of way, and it's a little too predictable and meandering for me to enjoy in the way I enjoy more 'active' music, if that makes any sense. The tracks kind of 'go' from start to finish in exactly the manner I'd expect them to. I agree with mystified, though; the pieces do have a lot of integrity, and Robert Rich obviously put a lot of care into this album. The production is as beautiful and as subtle as ever, and the music has real character. Hopefully it'll grow on me. 

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