Jan 23, 2011

Sundaze 1104

Hello, i'm rather tired currently, so i keep it brief ...enjoy

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Steve Hillage ( 2 August 1951, London, England) is best known as a guitarist. He is associated with the Canterbury scene and has worked in experimental domains since the late 1960s.

Whilst still at school, he joined his first band, a blues rock band called Uriel. In 1969, Hillage began studies at the University of Kent in Canterbury, befriending local bands Caravan and Spirogyra and occasionally jamming with them. Meanwhile he wrote songs and, by late 1970, had accumulated enough material for an album. In early 1971, Hillage formed Khan which released Space Shanty (72) the band split later that year. Hillage promptly joined Kevin Ayers' new live band Decadence, participating in Ayers' 1973 album Bananamour and touring the UK and France for two months. Having in the meantime become a fan of Gong, Hillage stayed in France after the tour to join the band. January 1973 he took part in the sessions for Flying Teapot, the first instalment of the "Radio Gnome" trilogy, and soon after graduated to full-time membership.

Late 75 Hillage departed Gong to start a solo career on the back of the success of his first soloalbum, Fish Rising, recorded while still in Gong and featuring most of his bandmates. His next effort L album was recorded in the United States using musicians from Todd Rundgren's Utopia, and on its release Hillage formed a touring band which toured in late 1976. 1977's Motivation Radio, with its shorter tracks, marked a departure from the long instrumental workouts of previous efforts, but 1978's Green, co-produced by Pink Floyd's Nick Mason, was a return to his earlier work.

These 1970s works ( in collaboration with his longtime girlfriend Miquette Giraudy) blended complex studio production techniques with dreamscape anthems. Culminatiing in the fully ambient Rainbow Dome Musick. During the 1980s, Hillage mainly worked as a record producer, for the likes as Simple Minds, Cock Robin, Murray Head.
Hillage was recruited back to the music scene by Dr. Alex Paterson of the Orb, who spun Hillage's Rainbow Dome Musick at London's Heaven one night while Hillage was there himself. The two became friends, and Paterson encouraged him to begin recording ambient house -- with Hillage's guitar explorations just as prominent in the mix as on his solo work. Hillage teamed up with Giraudy again in the early 1990s to form their own ambient dance act: System 7. They soon became part of the underground dance scene in London and Hillage was also a key figure in getting the Glastonbury Festival to recognise the dance scene and set up the Dance Tent, which he programmed in its first year. As System 7 the duo released 12 albums since 91, often with diverse collaborators from the music/dj scene.

In November 2006, Hillage made a surprise return to the Gong fold when he and Giraudy performed at the Gong Unconvention in Amsterdam. This participation was reprised in a small number of concerts held by Gong in London in June 2008, where Hillage and Giraudy were among the line up which also included Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth, and Mike Howlett. These past years Gong has given concerts here and there with a changing line up..Then in 2009 the album 2032 appeared, produced by Hillage, with many of the old members present, the album build on the 73-74 Radio Gnome Trilogy.

Steve Hillage - L   (76 now in Flac  315mb)

1 Hurdy Gurdy Man (6:32)
2 Hurdy Gurdy Glissando (8:54)
3 Electrick Gypsies (6:24)
4 Om Nama Shivaya (3:33)
5 Lunar Musick Suite (11:59)
6 It's All Too Much (6:26)
Bonus Tracks
7 Eight Miles High (4:34)
8 Maui (4:41)
9 Shimmer (3:50)

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This album was written by Hillage and long-time recording partner Miquette Giraudy in 1979 for use at the Mind-Body-Spirit festival in London where it was played on a loop in a large dome (the Rainbow Dome of the title) where people could go and relax. They combined recordings of running water, layers of twirling synth sounds, Tibetan bells and (of course) floaty guitar-lines to create 44 minutes of dreamy beatless chill and one of the first ambient LPs. It was well ahead of its time

Steve Hillage - Rainbow Dome Musick (79 now in Flac 219mb)

1 Garden Of Paradise (23:09)
2 Four Ever Rainbow (20:30)

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Another request, sir!

Steve Hillage - 'Rainbow Dome Musick' in FLAC (if it is available from you in a lossless format).

Thank you very much, Rho!

- 313