Neo-Classical Electronica Artist Gunnar Spardel finds comfort in music, as a way to contemplate life and death. In his introspective work, Spardel's atmospheric music draws from nature and life itself, most recently portrayed in his upcoming album "The Fade to Afterlife".
Born in Germany and now based in the United States, Gunnar Spardel is primarily known for his work as Tigerforest, a chill electronica project that leans towards an upbeat soundscape. However, after the turbulence of recent events Spardel wanted to write under his own name for intimate and personal expression and to understand the new world around him. ‘The Fade To Afterlife’ follows his stunning 2020 release ‘Simplicity in a Complex World,’ which won the Schallwelle Award for Best Artist in Germany.
“‘The Fade To Afterlife’ tells the story of a person facing his final stages of life,” explains Spardel. “Each song tells a story about facing a journey’s end and the uncertainty of what will happen once we pass away.” The songs, which were written on the piano and synthesizers, tell stories of life, loss and love. Gunnar Spardel created the arrangements on his computer, before working with session musicians to cement the ideas and breathe organic life into the pieces. As the album was written during the pandemic, and the musicians could not work together in the studio, they recorded their parts separately. Nonetheless, the album still holds the essence of community, and emotion is felt in every note.
Opening the 8-track album is ‘Gone Into the World of Light,’ a free-spirited and thoughtful composition, constructed of soft mallet arpeggiators. A delicate cello sings above layers of synthesizers and strings, blending together real instruments with electronic sounds. The result is cinematic, especially as the epic, but minimal percussion is introduced, bringing energy without overstepping the melodic elements.
‘The Missing’ brings warmth through strings that shimmer with tremolo. The lone sound of a cello cuts through, eerie yet compelling, insinuating sorrow and hope. The sprinkling of piano adds a warm brightness, and the textures and tones of the soundscape, swirl and bubble, glide and churn intertwined with each other, into an atmospheric crescendo.
‘In The Shadow of Memories’ welcomes back the piano, alongside the gentle swooshing of ambient pads. A harp brings new textural elements, once again combining orchestration with ambient electronic synthesizers. There’s a gentleness and tenderness to this album, and each song is purposeful and thought-provoking.
‘The Light Remains’ experiments with delayed effects which create fascinating interest. There’s a brief moment where the tinkling of the piano pauses before the song drops back in with a sense of urgency thanks to the tapping of a cymbal and a piano arrangement that opens the song. This is the first track on the album where a full drum kit is introduced and it’s a refreshing new layer without overpowering. Brass instrumentation and angelic vocals are also a welcomed dynamic, leading the piece into a new direction.
'On The Quiet Path of Dreams’ is dream-like, as the title suggests. Soft and euphoric, the gentle and sparse piano flourishes over ambient synths and a mournful cello takes centre stage. As the song builds, so does the rhythmic element, arpeggiating synths swell and blossom.
‘Carpe Momentum’ brings lightness, like a sigh of relief, with its delicate, whimsical piano notes. The addition of electronic drum patterns is an uplifting turn of events, but the signature string instrumentation remains for a harmonious fusion of contemporary production.
‘Towards Silence’ opens with the low bass of a piano, slowly but thoughtfully moving forward. The song experiments with percussion and ethereal brass, before dropping and down tuning offering new energy, with the strumming of an electric guitar, played by Brian Eno’s guitarist, Leo Abrahams, and the joyful kit, recorded by Ólafur Arnalds’ live drummer Chris Tschugnall. It feels like a turning point of acceptance, as the brass once again elevates the piece, sprinkled with synths, harps, and vocals for a triumphant and cinematic crescendo.
‘The River,’ a 10-minute finale closes ‘The Fade to Afterlife’ and explores the concept that life is like a river, forever flowing. Even when it changes course, it cannot be stopped. Life always goes on and Gunnar Spardel captures it beautifully, through graceful piano and synth melodies that move effortlessly with one another.
‘The Fade to Afterlife’ is a journey. Reflective, thought-provoking and inspirational, Gunnar Spardel has captured what it means to be alive. The album is scheduled for release on SUNSEASKY in Spring 2023.
Brian Froh’s alias (ghost) began as a way to write music in the comfort of his own home. After many years of playing in bands, as a DJ, and other musical ensembles he sat down with a laptop, a copy of Logic, and a small two-octave keyboard to create. In 2013 we saw this come to fruition with the album 'Departure'; a combination of acoustic elements he was familiar with, combined with a familiar 00’s era IDM sound. Shortly after Brian moved to Denver, CO to pursue music and meet other like-minded musicians. It wasn’t long before these new ideas culminated into the album 'A Vast and Decaying Appearance' and the likely titled 'Elas' EP. The following release 'Everything We Touch Turns To Dust' was much darker, and closely shadowed the struggles that existed in Brian’s life at the time. For the time being, (ghost) was almost nonexistent. Aside from remixes and compilation tracks the artist stayed dormant, not appearing on any social media or playing any live events.
After what has been almost a five year hiatus, (ghost) returns with his new album ‘Effloresce'. Inspired by the passing of his friend, this album is the beginning of a new chapter. (ghost) takes everything he has worked on for the past ten years and refines it to create his own signature sound on this record. Expect to hear familiar synth tones, subtle guitar, and crushing drums set to a somber yet somewhat hopeful timbre. As the album title suggests this is just the beginning of a much lighter hearted and beautiful journey that (ghost) will soon take us on.
Inspired by modern day minimalism and baroque like orchestrations, Simplicity in a Complex World is a meditation on the complexities of the modern way of life. It is, for Spardel, both a reflection and recreation of the inner space we must all find for ourselves in a world that is constantly shifting beneath our feet.
‘Deep Code’ is the 7th studio album from acclaimed artists Saso which is to be released by Sun Sea Sky Productions on 12” vinyl in Mar 2021.
The album continues Saso’s recent musical direction of instrumental compositions using analog synthesizers, upright piano and electronics.
Saso were formed in Dublin, Ireland in 2000 by Jim Lawler (compose /multi instrumentalist) and Ben Rawlins (producer/recording engineer) who share a unique artistic relationship as a composer and producer partnership.
The inspiration for ‘Deep Code’ comes from Ben’s desire to revisit a soundscape from his formative years as a young musician and avid film fan.
“I was inspired by movies and tv shows from the late 70s and early 80’s with the music of John Carpenter a major influence. Those films helped me learn about music. Dark, brooding, synth laden themes. They weren’t orchestral. They were minimalist and evocative” (Ben)
Ben came up with the concept and Jim picked up on this direction and sought to investigate this soundworld.
“I didn’t know where I was but somehow picked up on the sonic themes. I felt drawn to the unknown and wanted to let go of preconceived beliefs and seek purity of expression. This became a theme. Being lost. Being curious. Letting go of how I normally compose music. Trying to get into flow state” (Jim)
Saso committed to the performance aspect of just playing and recording live. No click tracks were used. There were no restrictions on how songs should be structured. The tools were vintage synthesizers and an analog valve desk which were of that time. Nothing was locked to a grid. Most of the compositions were improvised.
The result is an evocative and atmospheric work, which is expansive in nature. Layering a hybrid of textural synthesis and organic composition, Saso takes the listener on a cosmic journey to an unseen world.
Using '80 synths, piano, guitar, field recordings and an intricate mix of programmed and live drums, Isophene's cinematic downtempo music is as lush as it is melodic. Drawing from a similarly vibrant musical palette as Boards Of Canada, Helios and Tycho, Isophene immerses the listener in sun drenched waves of emotive sound.
Glamaticus’ Ajabu ya Maat [July 21st] is themed after the ancient kemetic civilization of Afrika and the principles of creation, particularly Ma'at. Ma'at in ancient Kemet (now known as Egypt) and still today is a symbol of harmony, known as the feather of truth it represents balance, equilibrium and justice. Ma'at was the Goddess and the abstract ideal of truth, created by Ra from his quintessential light.
The release represents and embodies a reconnection to songwriter Derrick Shadrack’s ancestry and paying tribute to that life force, the energy of creation that continues to flow through both him and the world. The album is an inspiration for others to learn about the true history of Afrika, Afrikans and the significance of the timeless ancient wisdoms and ingenuity that have given this world the art of living. Ajabu ya Maat is now available for pre-order, and will be officially released this July on all digital + streaming platforms!
Gemini Tri is back with his second installment of exquisitely crafted IDM, ambient, and downtempo on SSS. Astroida [June 16th] channels cosmic moods interspersed with abstract themes ranging from an appreciation of the observable universe to deep space exploration. The album features seven tracks of slow calm pads as well as glitch experimental tracks featuring arpeggiators and guitars. Still more cold and mechanic sounds are on offer here, hinting at the ruthlessness of space and life as rarity in the outer fringes of the cosmos. Pre-order the album now, before being released on all digital + streaming platforms worldwide mid-June!
London-based Spinger returns with Invisible Tree [May 5th], continuing his deep dive into the world of downtempo and ambient music, and featuring a track written with long-term collaborator Data Rebel. With an emphasis on melody and the unexpected, the songs on Invisible Tree blend vocal, guitar, and piano textures with tiny glitches and expansive electronic soundscapes. Pre-orders are now open, before the album sees a digital release next month!
Charm Days is back with his second release on SSS. A Firefly Out of Season [Apr 7th] explores moodier palettes, influenced by the innovations of artists like Flying Lotus and Teebs, while maintaining the artist’s same accessible melodic sensibilities. A heavier emphasis on vocal samples also brings an additional layer of complexity, often blurring the line between human and machine. Mastered by Taylor Deupree/12k. Pre-order the album now, which will be available on all digital + streaming platforms in April.
Drogtech is Łukasz Pałys, a Poland-based artist influenced by producers such as ASC, Sam KDC, Tycho, Helios, and Hammock. Drogtech’s SSS debut Fractured [Mar 17th] offers up pleasing melodic downtempo and easy on the ears electronica for fans of Northcape, Slidecamp, and Melorman. Fractured is now available for pre-order on CD/Digital, and will be released at the end of March.
The first new music in three years from Signal Hill and fresh off the heels of the 10th anniversary remaster of More After We’re Gone, this new limited edition 7” teams them up with UK’s Good Weather For An Airstrike with one new exclusive song from each artist.
Ten years later, Signal Hill's "More After We're Gone" (MAWG) still represents one of the most memorable and iconic albums in the genre. Now completely remastered by Taylor Deupree and featuring all-new artwork, the album is being properly reissued on limited edition 12" double vinyl and digital formats.
Vinyl is limited to 100 copies (white) and 150 copies (black) on 180-200g virgin vinyl. 18pt (350gsm) full-color gatefold jacket w/5mm spine and matte machine varnish finish. The release also includes a special photo collage insert commemorating the band’s history and release of the album.
“Holding In My Arms” marks the debut full-length release on Sun Sea Sky Productions for prolific Seattle-based producer and sound designer Branden Clarke, who has previously contributed several remixes for releases on the imprint.
Gemini Tri is the stage name for Denis Piryazev, an electronic musician from Mosсow, Russia. "Lemniskata" marks the debut release from the artist on Sun Sea Sky Productions, and should resonate with and appeal to fans of Lights Out Asia, Tycho, Near The Parenthesis, and Boc Scadet.
The release also features five noteworthy remixes by label stalwarts Charm Days, Bluetech, Data Rebel, SineRider, and Mike Allen.
Through its crystalline labyrinth of granular synths and tape saturation treatments, Blochemy's "Rea" sheds the artist's former Tri Repetae-era Autechre and Atol Scrap-era Arovane influences, instead trading these in for more panoramic electro ambient forward material.
"Rea," while retaining a stark desolate beauty all its own, undeniably channels Campfire Headphase-era BOC ambient pieces, Near The Parenthesis' work, along with Arovane's (and Kleine's) masterpiece "Tides." Underpinning the album are sci-fi thematics of once hostile planets now terraformed into more habitable atmospheres and environments.
Rounding out the package are four remixes from hallmark ambient and electronic acts Halftribe, (ghost) + Yuánfèn Dream, SineRider, and Stray Theories.
On his latest album, solo artist Mike Allen continues to forge an identity and sound that finds itself in like company with contemporaries Dave Gahan/Depeche Mode, Trent Reznor/NIИ, and John Penney/Ned's Atomic Dustbin/Groundswell UK. "The Benefit of Doubt" offers striking commentary on Allen's contempt for organized religion and its many blind and in some case hateful followers. Allen concedes, "It’s a topic that’s caused a lot of turmoil within me and one I felt inspired to create a soundtrack to."
While he struggles with the notion of [a] God, Allen's lyrics often point to the sheer beauty and wonderment of life that make the belief in something far greater than ourselves seem reasonable and plausible. However, Allen remains keenly aware of the dangers and pitfalls of blind faith and the individuals or victims that have and continue to fall prey to this notion.
Sun Sea Sky Productions has teamed up with the Bluetech to compile all four of the artist’s “Four Horsemen of the Electrocalypse” series EPs into a Limited Edition Double CD set featuring stunning eight-panel digipak artwork from Totemical that appeared on the EPs, as well as new artwork for cover and inside panels. All orders ship with an 11"x17" poster and 1" button while supplies last!
These four EPs reference the Biblical bringers of the Apocalypse. Drawing inspiration from the classic fantasy art of Moebius, Beksinki and Syd Mead, “The Pale Horse” dances around eschatological tropes with tongue firmly placed in cheek. Featuring gorgeous artwork from concept designer Justin Totemical, each release in the series presents a facet of the visionary prophetic current.
“Emerging from a long period of creative drought and personal struggle, I was seeking a way to frame my own experience in a larger meta-narrative. Navigating through loss and painful transformation always feels apocalyptic, so I wanted to take the opportunity to not only frame my heartbreak in a larger context but also to really laugh at myself and experience the high drama of being human with a sense of humor. The Revelations of our little lives feel like the end of everything, and looking out of our windows of meat and bone we feel the ground rumble with the approach of the 4 Horsemen.
On a larger scale, it’s easy to draw parallels between the realities of modern life and the harbingers of ‘the end’ in John’s symbolic vision of the end of the Roman Empire. We are in the grasp of a dying empire watching the destruction of our biosphere, and yet… every seed must go to ground before new life emerges.
This series of releases is about watching it all burn with a smile, embracing the death of the self as an act of beauty in order to grow. By aligning my own story and our collective story with a prophetic vision of epic proportions, I was able to to regain my joy and (en)lighten my life.”
Debut three-song digital EP from Remy Boccalatte and Andrew Foley's Brisbane-based An Heirloom project. Like recovering old, family photos from a corrupted, hard drive, An Heirloom melds warm nostalgia with layers of glitch electronica. Amidst the hazy synths, shimmering melodies and dreamy, indie pop vocals, beats disintegrate, clip and stutter.
The indie electronica produced by Remy Boccalatte and Andrew Foley evokes artists like Dntel, Tycho, Baths, Postal Service, early M83 and Son Lux.
Label debut from London-based Spinger. By definition, the album's title "Internecine" references or suggests mutually destructive conflict, however listeners are amply rewarded with warm lush melodic ambient electronic music, not unlike predecessors/brethren Data Rebel and Planet Boelex. Internecine effortlessly weaves interstellar themes and world music samples throughout it's vast 47 minute journey, reassuring us that otherwise inexplicable situations, even annihilation, can also offer a road to awe and the promise of rebirth.
A massive retrospective spanning Data Rebel's entire 2012-2018 catalog of releases, including new and previously unreleased material. This compilation celebrates the artist's rich body of work for longtime fans and newcomers alike.
01. Nova Skies - Dreams For An Abstrakt Mind lp (Kahvi Collective) 2012 02. Lost In Dam Central - Dissonance Compilation v/a lp (Kahvi Collective) 2012 03. Kalide - Remains lp (Self-Released) 2013 04. Silent Running - Previously Unreleased 2014 05. Following Seven - Reborn lp (Self-Released) 2015 06. The Unknown - 3 Year's Anniversary Compilation v/a lp (Spiritech) 2015 07. Think Of View - Reborn lp (Self-Released) 2015 08. Solaris - Unstill lp (Self-Released) 2015 09. Patera - Unstill lp (Self-Released) 2015 10. Walk Away - Unstill lp (Self-Released) 2015 11. Helium - Unstill lp (Self-Released) 2015 12. Electrode - Unstill lp (Self-Released) 2015 13. Angular - Angular lp (Self-Released) 2016 14. Tortoise - Angular lp (Self-Released) 2016 15. Tendril - Tendril ep (Self-Released) 2017 16. Ullinish - Ullinish ep (Self-Released)2017 17. Invisible World - Imbalance lp (Self-Released) 2017 18. Ecliptic - Ecliptic single (Self-Released) 2017 19. Synthetik - Escape Velocity lp (Self-Released) 2018 20. Galaktika - Escape Velocity lp (Self-Released) 2018
"Lower Self" is the new six-song EP from Athens-based producer Antonis Haniotakis. The release enters into a bit of new sonic territory for the artist, offering a refined mix of chilled downtempo electronica and idm/dance. Melorman's signature sound is still present, but in between the deep introspection and reflection, listeners will also find the energy and influence of his more recent live sets taking center stage on some of the recordings.Read more »Less
What originally started as two artists collaborating and remixing a few of each others' favorite tracks, would eventually spark the idea to release a more full-bodied 6-song EP. Two of ambient electronica's finest are represented here. Beautiful photography/design and packaging round out this release. All orders ship with a limited edition 11"x17" poster and 1" button while supplies last! Available on CD and digital formats this fall.Read more »Less
Originally released in 2011, Mike Allen's 'Sounds From Home' has been completely remastered by Crimson Sun Audio(Touched Compilations, Covert Series, etc.) and is being reissued as a free or name your digital download release on the label. Includes remixes by Northcape, BLCK/MRKT/RGNS, Boc Scadet, and Mike Allen.
Over a year in the making, "Of Tree" came together as organic as the project's title indicates, with four artists (Melorman, Mokhov, Data Rebel, and SineRider) each contributing three tracks loosely based around and/or exploring themes in nature. Behind Clouds, Jani R, Ocean Lost (aka Stray Theories), and Warmth remixes are also included on this truly one-of-a-kind release. Coming soon on CD + Digital formats.Read more »Less
Giving a nod towards the artist's more ambient works on Archives, Silk, and Sun Sea Sky Productions, this understated and sublime 6-song digi EP is complimented by equally outstanding artwork/illustration courtesy of Timothée Mathelin (aka shift.). Mastering by Christopher Leary / Ochre / Melograf Mastering.
Charm Days' debut full-length album on Sun Sea Sky Productions. Doug Kaufman is a composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist based in the mountains of Western North Carolina. He has released several titles under his own name, as well as aliases Black Sparrow and Charm Days. His work has been featured on History Channel, MTV, Bloomberg, Vice, Nat Geo and more.
'Shelter' is the artist's second release as Charm Days, and the album immediately engages listeners with its exquisite production, playful melodies, chilled downtempo beats and warm expressive tones throughout. RIYL: Mokhov, Northcape, Melorman, and Obfusc.
Originally released on Compact Disc in 2003 on Germany's Elektrolux imprint, Ruxpin's classic IDM/Lovetronica album "Avalon" has been completely remastered and features all-new artwork/illustration by shift. (www.futurorg.com). The release has finally been given the vinyl treatment it deserves, and will made available as a limited 2xLP including a BONUS and accompanying 6-song "Fields Of View" Digi EP (feat. never before-released tracks) with purchase.
The six selections chosen for this EP were culled from recording sessions throughout 2000-2004, at or around the time "Avalon" was conceived and written. This is the first-time-ever that these tracks have been released to the general public.
Originally released in 2005, Mike Allen's 'Mold' has been completely remastered by Crimson Sun Audio (Touched Compilations, Covert Series, etc.) and has been reissued as a free digital download release on the label.
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