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Music to Films - PS 08/40
Release Date: 4 April 1994
Movement I 16.46
Movement II 11.58
Movement III 9.47
Movement IV 23.51
Movement V 14.48
all tracks written by Dr. Atmo and Oliver Lieb
One of the first Fax CDs I bought, back in 1994, and my first taste of the sublabel. Well, what a fine choice to make! Representing one of Dr. Atmo's many outings on Fax, as well as the solitary appearance by Oliver Lieb (aka Spicelab), this disc is a pleasing, peaceful parade through a drifting, mysterious, often majestic world of ambience, albeit one not without its livelier moments.
The first of the five movements builds slowly from a slow, two-chord sequence, more elements appearing until a hypnotic main line arrives around the five-minute mark, dominating much of the rest of the track in a variety of guises, before giving way to a more complex melody. Movement II is perhaps the strongest, wide open spaces leading into another melody performed using a number of different sounds. Uncomplicated and yet gripping.
Movement III is a lighter affair, marking a noticable shift in approach, and has an initially startling use of tom-toms(!), while Movement IV is initially ponderous (hello?) :-) before developing into a more lively affair, with more active tunework and some more of those toms back for another workout.
The final movement is more similar in character to the first two pieces, being once more beatless, but also still related to the other two in the more lively manner of the later melody. There's also a reappearance of an element from Movement I, before a slow drift towards the end.
I've yet to see the film on which this is based, but I must really get round to it some day. Seeing the inspiration for a piece as haunting as this will indeed be intriguing.
Verdict : 9/10 - quality ambient soundscapes.
(review by Martin Jones)
After reading the above review, I was intrigued by the fact that "Music to Films" was produced as an alternative soundtrack to the film "Koyaanisqatsi". For a number of years, this had been one of my all time favourite films, and so when I managed to pick up a copy of this album recently, I wasted no time in listening to it whilst watching the film. Well, I can honestly say that the music on this disc works very well with the film. The music's repetitive synth patterns loop around on themselves very much like the original Philip Glass soundtrack did, and the carefully selected samples of crashing waves and dialogue compliment what is happening on screen perfectly. There isn't too much repetition though, as Oliver Lieb's melodies regularly change throughout the five movements. Those with Lieb's album on the Recycle or Die label will recognise many of the sounds used in the music. Anyone who has this CD, has not really experienced it to the full until they've watched the film at the same time. Sadly, "Koyaanisqatsi" is not currently available on video or DVD, but a re-release is apparently planned for late 2002. "Music to Films" came out back in 1994, so it's probably quite rare now. If you're looking for something a little bit different on Fax, it's worth seeking out a copy.
(review by Andrew Firth)
Inspired by the film "Koyaanisqatsi", you're instructed to start the music as soon as the film title disappears. I've never seen the movie, but I expected something different. I thought of some tribal percussion and sounds, but they stick to a pretty ambient format and never really break out into any kind of beats at all, except for some lame looped thing that sounds like it was a break from some heavy metal band. It stays ambient as is filled with sweeping melodies. It sometimes gets a little repetitive, but the music is very dynamic and holds your interest throughout the journey. It does sound like music to suit a film, but is never that cheesy. MTF being Dr. Atmo and Oliver Lieb (Spicelab), I expected a little bit more after hearing "Java" on Eye-Q, which was extremely good. But I keep forgetting that this is ambient, and they do it quite well, with a more melodic and accessible twist.
(review by unknown)