Robert Rich | Nest

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Electronic: Ambient New Age: Nature Moods: Instrumental
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Nest

by Robert Rich

A revery of landscape and internal spaces.
Genre: Electronic: Ambient
Release Date: 

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1. Memories of Wandering, Pt. 1
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5:03 $0.99
2. Memories of Wandering, Pt. 2
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3:59 $0.99
3. Seeking Eden
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8:06 $0.99
4. Moss Carpet, Sky Blanket
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7:01 $0.99
5. Generosity of Solitude, Pt. 1
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8:03 $0.99
6. Generosity of Solitude, Pt. 2
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11:12 $1.99
7. The Gate Is Open
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8:38 $0.99
8. Memories of Home
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13:50 $1.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
"Sublime ambient sounds in the vein explored by Brian Eno in his classic album 'On Land' — but deeper, more musical and much more sonically refined. If there is one Robert Rich album that is ideal for Hearts of Space listeners, this is it."
Stephen Hill, Hearts of Space

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Maleny, Queensland Australia. February is summertime in this subtropical paradise. I heard dripping sounds late at night, on the wooden deck and leaves nearby, sparse percussion among cicadas and chirping tree frogs. I assumed it was condensation from morning's light rain. Next day, I looked up to see these drops coming from foamy packets suspended in forked twigs among the foliage. Tiny dots of frog eggs filled each frothy airborne puddle. These tree frogs had circumvented an amphibian's need for standing water for their young to mature. They created their own diaphanous ponds in the leaf canopy, strong enough to stay intact as eggs hatched and tadpoles developed lungs and legs, yet porous enough to absorb and retain moisture from the light summer rains. To me it seemed miraculous.

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Nest represents unfinished business for me. It’s an album that might have come from my childhood, from a hidden quiet place. I rarely make such calm music. Nest folds inward like a nurturing cushion; yet it never sits motionless, it evolves towards a kernel of revelation with slow searching energy.

Nest began with recordings from the eastern Australian bush, when I was on tour in February 2012. I often incorporate natural sounds into my music, but this music wanted to live entirely in outdoor soundscapes, surrounded by a subdued yet palpable sense of life. This texture resembles my earliest releases like Sunyata, Trances and Drones, where the natural world integrates completely with the music.

I approach these juxtapositions of music and nature recordings with caution, as they risk sounding trite. For me, the combination works best when the music retains an attentive, submissive quality. For an album like this, I remove so much material during creation that I struggle to leave any music at all. Each note serves primarily to outline its own absence, to create an illusion of silence.

Like much of my music, Nest also explores tuning systems, including just intonation. Over time I have become more relaxed about tuning, shifting where the instruments sound most natural. Nest navigates towards harmonic intervals when piano is absent, toward equal temperament when piano dominates, searching for a certain fragile balance.

Robert Rich - August 2012

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Robert Rich: piano, flutes, lap steel guitar, MOTM modular, glass and copper bells.
Environments recorded February 2012 in Broken Head NSW and Maleny QLD, Australia.

Thanks to 2C Audio, Apple, Audio Damage, Izotope, Synthesis Technology, Flux.
Custom lap steel guitar by Todd Plummer. For warm hospitality in Oz: Simon, Paul, Andrew & Kate, George, Nev & Louise, Rod & Thea, Kevin & Claire, many others. Of course, Dixie.
More information at http://robertrich.com

Graphics and design by John Bergin, additional photos by Robert & Dixie Rich





Reviews


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Richard Gurtler

"Nest" is musically beautiful and utterly captivating!!!
This album was firstly announced by Robert Rich on his website at the end of August and by his words it reminded him the place he was about 30 years ago when recording works like "Trances/Drones" or "Inner Landscapes". My jaws dropped immediately, I was counting every day and couldn't wait to explore the next chapter of Robert's more atmospheric fragranced works. Inspired by the natural wonders during Robert's Australian Tour in January/February 2012, "Nest" unfolds with utterly tranquil ambience "Memories Of Wandering, Part 1", precisely bridging wonderfully captivating nature sounds with pristine and luscious piano and trademarking, quietly soaring flute-like sounds. Symphony of chirping bird sounds with gentle rain drops with Robert's virtuosity immerses immediately each listener into dense forest, and even if the night falls, this scenery is absolutely beautiful and contemplative. This peaceful sonic postcard overlaps also to the second part of "Memories Of Wandering", this time less organic, but still deeply soothing with quiet interplay of piano and washes, safely guarded by intangible choirs. This magically colorful sonic stillness holds each journeyer in highly relaxed frame of mind. Amazing flute wizardry invades "Seeking Eden", it's mysteriously yearning and primordial and is as good as anything Robert has recorded with this ancient wind instrument. Hauntingly evocative landscapes are explored through this powerfully distinctive electro-acoustic fusion. "Moss Carpet, Sky Blanket" dives deeply into subterranean realms with gently tinkling bells supported by deeper hissy natural soundscapes and masterful lap steel guitar techniques, sounding nearly like some voice roars. This is Robert Rich at his best and most meditative!!! The next composition, "Generosity Of Solitude", is again divided in two parts, clocking over 8 and 11 minutes. The first part, with piano, drones and occasional bells, is again wrapped by hissy blankets. A quite minimal and silent piece, but incredibly intimate and reflective, and enormously soothing. The second part keeps on the minimal, but effective route, where hazy nature sounds appear rather sporadically, with sparse piano textures interplaying with serenely expansive drones and soaring flute sounds, deeply immersing and bringing back nostalgic moments. Few distant, sort of thunder-like disruptions attractively color this piece as well. Meditative bell sounds and deep drones announce "The Gate Is Open", but soon cinematic drifts along with expressive lap steel guitar artistry join the stage for another highly distinguishing and intense listening experience, a journey showcasing extraordinary innate ability and perfection. "Memories Of Home" get close to 14-minute mark and close this triumphant performance with another expertly harmonizing mixture of piano, drones and flutes, surrounded by a tranquil atmosphere of cicadas and raindrops. "Nest" is musically beautiful and utterly captivating, accomplishing highly sophisticated balance between instrumentation and field recordings. "Nest" will resonate in my ears for many more hours. And my eyes are delighted again thanks to the gorgeous artwork by John Bergin, frequent designer of Robert Rich's releases. "Nest" is an essential listening for any quiet activity and another virtuoso performance by Robert Rich, one of the giants of the genre!!!

Richard Gürtler (Nov 11, 2012, Bratislava, Slovakia)