"A Haunting Presence" is my brand new album. Released on October 1, 2009. This is my 4th album overall. First off let me say that this album is probably the most personal and emotive album I have ever done. Its theme throughout is about trying to overcome life struggles. Even though the themes are of hardship, the music is genuine, melodic, atmospheric, and from the heart. Especially a song like "In Loving Memory" which features the vocals from Brandon Strader. This song is dedicated to my grandmother's passing. So if you're into New Age/Ambient music with a different twist, I hope you can give my music at chance. My music is original and thought-provoking.
Here's the 1st review off "A Haunting Presence" from BT Fasmer at New Age Music Nu (www.newagemusic.nu)
Each music genre has its own set of atmospheres that artists more or less adhere to. Even in experimental genres like psychedelic, post-punk or soul-jazz, artists rarely create something that has a totally different atmosphere. They create music with different expressions, but the underlying atmosphere stays the same. This is also the case with new age. Here we usually have an ethereal and meditative atmosphere that is both loved and hated for its simplicity.
But there is a hidden world of sound here too, that is being presented to us by the band Transcend with Time (TwT). It has the atmosphere of progressive rock and the sound of new age. Now TwT has released a new album entitled A Haunting Presence. Read on, and get to hear about a hidden world of sound!
Transcend with Time is a one-man band by Mark Mendieta from Brownsville, Texas. His previous projects all have thoughtful names, which beautifully show the duality between light and darkness in his music: A Voice of Calmness (2006). Reflections of the Soul (2007) and Through Memory’s Perception (2008). Mark Mendieta also has a progressive rock project called Subject to Thoughts, which is also highly recommended by this reviewer.
The brand new TwT-album, A Haunting Presence, opens with a song that is called Hourglass Falls. It is a perfect introduction to TwT’s music; it is as beautiful as it is eerie, as complicated as it is simple. When listening to it is like stepping into a scary old house, filled with things that belongs in children’s nightmares – stuff that aren’t really scary, but still give you a foreboding feeling. Hourglass Falls is a new hit from TwT. It is Halloween music you can play all year round.
The ingredients in TwT’s music is a mix of piano, analogue sounding synths and drums. Note that the foremost beauty is not in the arrangement, but the atmosphere. Therefore it is too easy dismiss TwT as “synth music” (which I have seen other reviewers do in the past) – but this is not the case at all. Just beneath the sequenced synth are layers of heartfelt musical poetry.
The title song is, as implied, haunting, but in a good way. The songs flows away, like a dark undercurrent, taking you on a 7min18sec long journey.
But there are brighter segments here as well, like the song In Loving Memory, which includes a wonderful vocal by Brandon Strader. It is 11 minute long, and the atmosphere rises and falls naturally, like if it was not a song but a stage play about the loving memories of a now lost family member. One of my favorite songs on the album is A Silent Lullaby. It is like an early Tangerine Dream-song, with its analogue synths, flutes and sharp strings. It is an ambient jewel; very meditative, and filled TwT’s usual mix of melancholy and joy. Another song I would like to mention is the faster Beneath. It could have been the sound track to an action movie.
On A Haunting Presence Mark Mendieta takes everything that is great about new age and adds, what he calls, “a twist of Dark Progressive”. It creates a totally different atmosphere, unlike anything else you are likely to find in this part of the forest. TwT is not easy listening, and that is also the case with the new release. But if you give is some time, you will for sure be amazed of the richness in sound.
After all, a haunting presence is not something you are likely to notice right away. The new chapter in TwT’s history is a very rewarding listen.
You can sample and buy the album on Melodic revolution. Also be sure to check out TwT’s page on MySpace.