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Terry Riley - Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band - All Night Flight Vol.1 (1996)


Originally released as part of the Organ of Corti Archive Series, this live recording has finally been made available once again and it's about time too. I can't say I heard this one the first time around, but hearing it now is a revelation, especially knowing that drone music has achieved a new-found acceptance in modern music. Over forty minutes and five tracks, Terry Riley uses Soprano Saxophone, Organ and a Time-Lag Accumulator (delay unit maybe??) to create the most otherworldly waves of drone you're likely to come across. It was recorded live in 1968, and what's most stunning is that it hasn't dated at all - I imagine at the time it was considered totally unique, totally untouched and now indeed people have created works similar at least in sound, but I could have been told that this album had been recorded last year and I wouldn't have been surprised. Riley's use of loops and delay was way ahead of his time, and his textures and forms are still unmatched in the scene. If you harbour a love for affecting waves of organic, instrumental ambience then you owe it to yourself to listen to this album. Artists such as Tim Hecker would likely not exist without Terry Riley's influence on the music scene. it's that simple. Essential. 


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