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Baker's Dozen

Tell-tale Pulsations: Laraaji Picks His 13 Favourite Albums
David Stubbs , November 15th, 2017 12:03

From the Faces Of The Christ to the Sounds of Nature, ambient master Laraaji picks the 13 albums that shaped him


Steve Roach - Dreamtime Return

There are comparisons made between Steve Roach and Klaus Schulze, another great artist who could easily have made this list. One of the great ambient icons. Steve Roach lives in the desert and his music strikes me as someone who spends a lot of time in contemplation of the desert - a very deep, mystical mood. He started out as a motocross racer. This album is inspired by aboriginal culture - he first used the didgeridoo in his music, not an instrument people would have thought of as ambient.

But then, that was the case when I first picked up a zither. That had originally been known as an instrument with bluegrass/folk connotations. It was tuned to be able to play any melody, in any key. In my playing of the zither, though, I restricted it to one scale, one mode, one harmonic landscape and I would stay in that harmonic landscape for the duration of an album, creating a very thick mood. Even now, I don’t think people think of the zither as ambient, except with me.

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