SLEEP (Just Music series vol. 18)
I've always had a very conflictual relationship with sleep. My natural sleep/wake cycle is the opposite of most people, as I go to sleep at 5.00 or 6.00 am and get up at 2.00 pm, more or less. That makes things very difficult in a society whose waking hours are very different. It is not just that, though. Nightmares (I mean terryfing way beyond description ones) were an issue for many years. Now they have disappeared, but I still have some quite interesting bad dreams and agitated nights of not-exactly sleep. Insomnia is yet another problem that plagues my nights now and then, often triggered by occasionally having to get up in the morning, and even more often by worries and looping thoughts. However, sleep is also the place where I find the solutions that escape me during my waking hours. And, above all, it is a condition/mechanism that fascinates and scares me deeply. I came up with the concept behind this album in 1995, even if I had probably been thinking about it for many years. I only composed one definitive track, though, which I have re-made now (track no 1 on this album). It sounds quite different from the original, of course, because now I am a very different person (I'm writing this in 2010). However, even if I wouldn't record it in the same way today, I have decided to include the original 1995 recording as a bonus track, as I think it still has something to say. I made it with the only instrument I had back then (a Roland D5) and by bouncing audiocasettes one track at a time. Anyway, the music on this album faithfully represents part of what sleep is to me today and what my nights are like...

Normally I associate Mac of BIOnighT with upbeat, melodic synthesizer music. Even albums he tells me he wrote during a dark time seem optimistic to me for the most part. I hadn’t even considered asking myself the question, “What would an ambient album by Mac sound like?” Now I don’t need to ask, because the answer is this excellent album. Sleep includes two lengthy tracks and two slightly shorter ones that explore the dark recesses and crevices, a surprisingly pure ambient album. It is hard to conceive of a Mac album completely devoid of sequencers, rhythm, and melody, and yet here it is. I have always appreciated Mac’s work, and now I appreciate the range of his talent a bit more. This is cool, dramatic, stuff, definitely a walk on the dark side. It doesn’t go to the dark depths of, say, Robert Rich and Lustmord, but it certainly should have some appeal for fans of that ilk. Highly recommended.

Phil Derby, Electroambient Space (U.S.A.) - Click HERE to visit his website