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Steve Roach Unearths Two "Delayed Transmissions" From the Early 80s

"Emotion Revealed" and "Firelight" discovered on unlabeled Maxwell cassettes

Michael Scott Barron

Last year, the Austrian label Vinyl on Demand approached the synthesist and ambient music pioneer Steve Roach about reissuing his 1982 debut NOW as an LP. "They requested adding a bonus track," writes Roach on his bandcamp. "I scoured the many archived boxes of hundreds of tapes dating to the late 70s and early 80s. Most were labeled with some shorthand, obscure title, or nothing at all. 'Emotion Revealed' was one with no label, but the chrome Maxell cassette was in new condition. Hearing it again, instantly I recalled the piece, and how at one point I was going to release it in the early 80s. One that got away was back in my hands!"

The search evidently led to Roach snooping around another archive (one many of us depend on) — the one his mother kept for him. "'Firelight' was created for an environmental art installation titled the Grounding Place by artist Rita Yokoi. The original 4-track tape was lost after many moves; however a high-quality metal master cassette found its way to the San Diego house I grew up in. In the summer of 2015, I was going thorough years of archived material my mother had collected and stored in a dark, cool closet, and I discovered this tape: the only copy left at this point."

Both track were recorded at San Francisco's Timeroom studios, a fact that Roach notes wryly: "The connection to then and now... emotions rediscovered and revealed after 34 years. The Timeroom indeed."

"Emotions Revealed" and "Firelight" are available for free download on Roach's bandcamp for the rest of the day. Otherwise, you'll have to wait until February 2016 for it's official release date.