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CATALOG > Amorphia

Robert Scott Thompson
Record Label: Aucourant Records
Catalog Number: AUREC 9599
UPC: 649783959923
Type: PRO CD-R
Released: 1995


Amorphia is a collection of computer music works created in 1995. Each of the works is concerned with the algorithmic definition of musical structures; largely through the use of stochastic methods – utilizing various probabilistic means to create musical materials and textures.

At the same time, the concept of these works in sound and “instrumentation” is as simulacra of chamber and orchestral ensembles. The appearance of instrumental timbre throughout is in the acousmatic tradition – transformations vary in degree of removal from source identification.

Amorphia, the title track, features to a large extent string timbre, while the short work Stochos I is entirely created using frequency modulation synthesis techniques. Wind in Trees (an homage to composer Joji Yuasa) focuses on percussion, woodwind and synthetic timbres and is the major work of the disc at over 32 minutes in duration. Remnant and Stochos II round out the collection.

RST's style of computer music generally focuses upon software synthesis and digital signal processing methodologies. Each of these works was created using the acoustic compiler Csound and a variety of digital signal processing tools, such as the Composer's Desktop Project (CDP) software.

Amorphia includes the elaborate work Wind in Trees, dedicated to RST's mentor, composer Joji Yuasa and remixed in 2007. The album was also re-mastered in 2007 and has been re-released in updated packaging.

Robert Scott Thompson has been creating computer ambience for more than 20 years. From his early days in the analog world to his modern forays in the new millennium digital realm, he has always been on the cutting edge and in the forefront of electronic music. "Amorphia" is one of the finest sets of computer ambience available. Robert has the unique ability to combine his intellectual prowess with his spiritual and emotional creativity. He is also able to work in a variety of genres and sub-genres at the same time. This deep adventure has elements of his classical compositions along with his avant-garde and electronic stylings. It goes beyond psychadelic and beyond psychotropic. It is absolutely psychoactive! The experiMENTAL computer effects stimulate brainwave activity. That activity provokes physical, emotional and spiritual responses. Deep listeners will feel and HEAR their hearts fluttering and their muscles twitching. The avant-garde sounds (reminiscent of Charles Ives' dissonance of the early 20th century) evoke eclectic, yet pleasant, imagery. The closest comparison would be a completely organic and non-toxic hallucinogenic experience. This is an important sonic adventure and a milestone in modern music!
- Jim Brenholts

On this CD Robert Scott Thompson again explores the musical possibilities offered by the computer, structured as "simulacra of chamber and orchestral music" (RST). Track #3, in particular, is a major work of percussion, woodwind and synthetic timbres, offering a journey both atonal and semi-tonal, unlike anything I've heard. The whole CD is a wonderful exploration of sound, and while my personal favourite remains track #2, where the richness of the computer is particularly intriguing, the whole CD is yet another marvelous example of the genius that is Robert Scott Thompson.
- Ulf Claesson

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