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More Electronic Music by Spyra

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Wolfram Spyra is known for his rich electronic compositions. The following releases consecutively show a more experimental and more meditative side of his creative endeavors.

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DER SPYRA: Excerpts 1 (CD on Ricochet Dream)

This CD from 2004 features 70 minutes of archival EM selections by this talented composer.

The first track was recorded in 1986, and features auxiliary percussion by Toxh. The music has a sparse beginning, but mounts to achieve a dazzling hypnotic state with drifting textures and ominous passages.

The next track is from Spyra’s soundtrack for an installation in a parking garage. No date is given. Accompanying Spyra is Eric George on saxophone. Sedate electronics and hushed percussives generate a claustrophobic milieu that is made quite melancholy by the sax.

The third track is an excerpt from one of Spyra’s performances from 1990. Sampled instruments and nature sounds blend with tenuous rhythms.

The next piece comes from another live performance from 1987. This slow building drama reaches epic proportions peppered with vocal hiccups.

Next, there is an experimental track from 1991 during which Spyra familiarized himself with working on a MIDI computer. A toy-like quality evolves depth and appealing tension.

Then there is a second excerpt from that parking garage installation soundtrack. Tonalities meander and achieve a sense of rewarding anticipation.

Next, there’s another live piece, this time from 1991, with Christiane Winning supplying processed voice. Again, a sparse soundscape unfurls substance with engaging results.

The selection concludes with a bonus track that was recorded during the early Nineties. Sighing electronics conspire with muted rhythms to produce a soothing exit.

Although old material, these tracks are all previously unreleased. They provide tantalizing glimpses at the musician’s formative years, and honestly reveal the same dramatic luster as his recent compositions.

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SPYRA: Meditationen (CD on Manikin Records)

This CD from 2005 features 71 minutes of new melodic electronic music.

Joining Spyra on this release is Chris Lang on one track.

This release offers three long-form tracks, two of which exceed 28 minutes each. This type of structure exactly fits the overall meditative intent of this music.

In the first composition: a luxurious opening consists of drifting electronic textures vibrating softly as the harmonics unfurl at a leisurely pace. Surf-like tonalities creep into the flow, generating a steady increase of substance. Heavenly airs surface amid this soothing soundscape, breathing divine serenity into the audience. Exhibiting stately patience, a pittering rhythm rises from extreme depths to punctuate the liquid flux. These elements gradually thicken until the dreaminess is almost outgoing. Auxiliary textures surge and retreat, approximating a tidal effect.

The second piece begins with sober piano goading the textures into an introspective softness that echoes softly as if traveling down a long tunnel to reach the audience’s ears. Periodically, variant harmonics journey along that tunnel, embellishing the ambient drone with their tender sonic augmentation. These languid sweeps serve to create a sluggish pulsation of melody, each rise and fall taking several minutes to complete their appearance, suitably enhancing the flow with disrupting the even temperament. Nearing midpoint of the composition, slightly energetic keyboards emerge, injecting a mild pep to the lazy soundscape. Surging and withdrawing, these pleasant riffs conduct the audience through the remainder of the piece.

The final track exhibits more body and rhythm with twinkling electronic pulsations filtering through a rising tonality. Keyboards produce cyclic expressions, delicate but essential, cascading with rejuvenating demeanor and ultimately leading the way from the listener’s psychic nadir back to the material world.

A superb soundtrack for a mental voyage in search of the zen center of being.

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